Honor Killings

I told Julie I was meaning to write about this ever since I submitted my first post here, but I've been delaying it.

However, my friend Elena just sent me this article from a Jordanian magazine, "Jo", and I thought it was about time for a little rant (or a big one). Official statistics are scant, but the chilling fact is that brothers and fathers and relatives are killing their sisters and mothers on a notion that the women are tainting the family honor, they are being treated sympathetically by courts, and bragging about their noble actions. The thought sickens me, but the bleak reality remains.

Here's the link to the article, if you'd like to have a read.

So, the article begins with establishing the problem. Women are being killed in the name of "honor". This so-called honor is determined using a terribly unreliable method (checking for blood after penetration). And the worst part is, it's considered normal.

At that point I was thinking, "Cool. This article is pretty good."

Of course, they have to screw up somehow, right? Here's part of the last paragraph:

"We can be conservative and teach our daughters how to preserve themselves... We should make them decide by free will to take the safe path... that's the only guaranteed way to make it happen. Otherwise we'll be wasting our time, trying to show that we're the kings of the jungle and fooling ourselves into thinking everything is OK, while in reality we might be losing control."

Preserve ourselves? Take the "safe" path? Bullshit.

I understand this standard of safety and preservation probably comes from a religious perspective, but, really, this isn't taking us anywhere. It's like saying, "We think the girl should be a virgin on her wedding night. We're not going to kill her for it, though."

I'll admit, taking the killing part out of honor killing is an improvement, but the idea is still there. The idea that the "safe" path is the sex-free one, that virginity equals preservation, and that relationships taint a woman and maim her entire family's fucking honor.

More articles by Category: Feminism, Gender-based violence, Violence against women
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Helen H
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