The bible is a fantastic marriage manual

Ah the supposedly “liberal” Anglican church.

Peter Jensen, Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, is not “liberal.” He demonstrates this in his explanation of the Anglican demand for wifely sumbission in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Many of our young people want to be ”wives and husbands” rather than simply  ”partners” and in their weddings they come as ”bride and groom” rather than  simply two individuals.  They believe that expressing these differences,  including different responsibilities, makes for a better marriage. [Read more...]

Woman iz associate to man, can haz some rites

Uh oh.

Tunisia is working on a new constitution. That is, Tunisia’s government is. Tunisia’s government is Islamist.

Tunisian politicians have provoked outrage by debating draft laws that would impose prison sentences for vaguely defined acts of blasphemy and approving wording in the country’s new constitution that says women are “complementary” to men.

The panel approved an article to the new constitution under the principle that a woman is a “complement with the man in the family and an associate to the man in the development of the country”, according to Ms Mabrouk’s August 1 Facebook post.

Another version.

The newly written constitutional clause protecting women’s rights in the Tunisian constitution has angered feminists and opposition politicians with wording that calls women the “associate” of man.

The article – article 27 of the constitution – states that women’s rights should be protected “under the principal of complementarity at the heart of the family and as man’s associate in the development of the country,” according to versions of the text, translated from Arabic to French, which have circulated on the Internet and in Tunisian media.

It was approved by a vote of 12 to 8 by the Commission of Rights and Liberties, with 9 of those voting for the clause coming from Tunisia’s ruling Islamist party, Ennahdha.

The article was quickly and publicly condemned by Salma Mabrouk, a member of the center-left Ettakatol party who voted against the version of the clause passed by the committee. In a statement on her official Facebook page that quickly spread throughout the activist and feminist communities, she stated, “The majority version completely annuls the concept of equality of the sexes.”

This is not good.

Police made her father sign a “pledge”

And then there are those strange coincidences – like when a woman complains to the police that her father and brother beat her, and they are arrested but then released on bail, and three days later the father takes her body to a clinic where a doctor issues a death certificate. Spooky, isn’t it.

The men, from al-Samu near Hebron, were detained for four days, but a court released them on bail on July 18.

Randa’s brother has told south Hebron prosecutor Mohammad Gaboon that on his release he returned home and beat Randa on her face and chest. “She lost her conscious and I left the room at that time,” he said.

On July 21, Randa’s father took her body to a clinic, where a doctor issued a death certificate.

And the family hastily buried her, without a funeral.

Several months before her death, Randa had sought police protection from her father and her brother, said Farid al-Atrash, the regional director of the Independent Commission for Human Rights told Ma’an.

In January, she filed complaints with the family protection unit and at police stations in al-Samu, where she lived, and Yatta, a nearby town. Police made her father sign a “pledge” to stop beating her.

The beatings continued and Randa approached the Independent Commission of Human Rights on Feb. 4.

“We called the family protection department to find her a safe house, but family protection said that her father and brother promised to find her a job,” al-Atrash said.

Oh well in that case – obviously she’s perfectly safe staying with them.

Randa was living with her family after her husband threw her out, Hiyan Qaqour, a lawyer for the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling told Ma’an.

Aged 28, Randa was forced to marry a 78-year-old man from Beersheba, in Israel, her mother told Ma’an.

They were married for six years and he regularly beat her, the lawyer said. Randa complained to Israeli police, who arrested him. On her husband’s release, he sent her back to her family in as-Samu in the southern West Bank, Qaqour added.

Got it. Shit life, and shit death. Treated like shit by her birth family, and the man she was forced to “marry,” and the institutions around her.

You are the gardener

Speaking of Mars Hill and Mark Driscoll…That article in the Stranger is interesting.

To become a “member” at Mars Hill Church requires more than attending church. Becoming a full-fledged member—a process highly encouraged, and sometimes thunderously demanded, in Pastor Mark Driscoll’s sermons—requires months of classes and a careful study of Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe, Driscoll’s 463-page Mars Hill textbook. To seal the deal, the prospective member must formally agree to submit to the “authority” of the Mars Hill leadership.

Driscoll, the church’s cofounder and public face, has made a name for himself with his strutting, macho interpretation of Christianity, one in which men are unquestioned heads of their households and “chick-ified church boys,” as he calls them, need not apply. He rails against mainstream Christians who imagine a “Richard Simmons, hippie, queer Christ… a neutered and limp-wristed popular Sky Fairy.” Instead, he has molded a doctrine based on manliness, sexual purity, and submission to authority: wives to husbands, husbands to pastors, and everyone to God. [Read more...]

A visit to exotic Whitechapel

A strange article by Jemima Khan in The New Statesman on what she calls “Asian” marriage but discusses mostly as Muslim or Islamic marriage.

Marriage Asian-style is practical, contractual and, to the western mind, deeply unromantic. “The spinster crisis is an issue of modernity,” preaches an energetically gesticulating man in a white prayer cap, jacket and trainers. “Success is the right attitude – no conspiracies, please. Can’t blame Israel.” Cue laughs from those assembled: women in hijabs seated on one side of the wood-panelled hall; men, mostly in suits, a few of them in Arab dress with beards, on the other; chaperones at the back.

The speaker is Mizan Raja, the engaging founder of the UK-based Islamic Travels agency, who also set up the Islamic Circles community network and now presides over the east London Muslim matrimonial scene. I’m at a Practising Muslim event at Toynbee Hall in Whitechapel. According to the network’s website, the event is held four times a year and is “especially geared towards those Muslims who are actually practising, ie, not a ‘fasiq‘ – open sinner – as defined by the classical texts in sharia law”.

See what I mean by strange? It starts off sounding cheery and vaguely tourist-like, then suddenly veers into the sinister, then reverts to the cheery tourism (Mizan Raja is “engaging”) then goes beyond the sinister into the frankly scary. What are we reading here? A journalistic report on quaint customs in East London or an exposé of theocratic abuses of women’s rights ditto? [Read more...]

This god certainly hates women

Another one gets away. Deborah Feldman was raised in the reactionary Hasidic Satmar community based in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. She escaped.

In her memoir, “Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots,” out Feb. 14, she chronicles her oppressive upbringing and arranged marriage.

At 23, emboldened by classes at Sarah Lawrence College, she left her husband and the community for good — taking her 3-year-old son with her.

So often the way – college classes inspire and/or embolden people to escape. Fundamentalists are right, in their terms, not to want their children to get tertiary education.

She was married at 17, to a man she had met once. Their sex life was creepy beyond belief.

After the first time, you have to call a rabbi and he asks the man questions — did this happen? And he declares you either unclean, or not yet consummated. Once you’re consummated, you’re unclean, because you bled. So after the first time, your honeymoon is a no-sex period.

For two weeks every month, he can’t touch you. He can’t hand you a glass, even if your fingers don’t touch. He has to put it down on the table and then you pick it up. Secondary contact can’t happen. If you’re sitting on a sofa, you have a divider between you. It makes you feel so gross. You feel like this animal in the room. If there’s a question about your period, you take the underwear and put it in a zip-lock bag, and give it to your husband. He takes it to the synagogue and pushes it into this special window and the rabbi looks at it and pronounces it kosher or nonkosher. It’s so disgusting.

Maybe a little.

She says things are getting worse.

Over the past 10 or 20 years [the Hasidic community] has gone from being extreme to being ultra-extreme. They’ve passed more laws from out of nowhere, limiting women — there’s a rule that women can’t be on the street after a certain hour. That was new when I was growing up. We hear all these stories about Muslim extremists; how is this any better? This is just another example of extreme fundamentalism.

And notice the common element: it’s all about controlling women. It’s all about making the restraints tighter…and tighter…and tighter. God is always A Man; men are always the people, and women are always the others; the people always have to keep the others down; down down down. The people always have to strip the others of all rights, all capabilities, all modes of escape and autonomy. This kind of religion seems to be about almost nothing but puffing up men and stamping down women. It’s religion as constructed by stags in rut.

 

 

On her own she will not be able to get her rights

There’s a woman in the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Apparently she’s there to spread the word to women. She does that.

Speaking to the London based Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper Saturday, Abul Hassan argued that “When a woman marches to defend her rights, this affronts her dignity.”

She added that “Does she not have a husband, a brother or a son to defend her?”

Because, to the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, “dignity” for a woman means being passive and hidden and dependent on male relatives. That’s interesting, because to me that means degradation, not dignity at all. It means subordination, which implies inferiority. It’s hard to see how that can be “dignity.”

“This march was a sectarian one, because all the groups of Egyptian society should defend women. She should not defend herself on her own. The man should stand beside the woman because on her own she will not be able to get her rights,” said Abul Hassan.

Because the Muslim Brotherhood won’t let her.

H/t Małgorzata Koraszewska.

 

This will feel a little cold

Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, the move to erase women wanders even deeper into Bizarroland.

The controversial exclusion of women from various settings in Israel because of pressure from ultra-Orthodox Jewish leaders reached a new level this week with a major conference on gynecological advances that is permitting only males to address the audience.

Yes you read that right. A major conference on advances in medical management of women’s plumbing excluded women. Well what’s it got to do with them, after all? If they don’t want a man’s arm up them, they shouldn’t have been born with female plumbing. If they don’t want men and only men telling them what’s what about their plumbing, they should…um…well they should sit down and shut up.

Women are allowed in the audience, in a section separate from men.

Ah, that’s nice. That’s very generous.

As far as Puah is concerned, it operates on a strictly kosher basis, as required by the ultra-Orthodox rabbinate. While there are women on its board of directors, its public face is strictly male, and the two sexes are not allowed to mix at its events.

Because the rabbinate is strictly male, because it always was strictly male, so it’s not about to change now, is it, so it says the public face has to be strictly male too, because it always has been, because let’s face it, women are dirty and weak and whoreish and stupid and treacherous, so obviously they can’t be part of the public face and they can’t mix with men and get dirty weak whoreishness all over them.

 

The crime of Moska

So that’s how it’s possible to treat rape victims as perps.

Just 21, Gulnaz had been released that week from prison, where she had given birth to her daughter Moska. Gulnaz seemed younger than her years, but she held my gaze almost defiantly as she told her story.

She had been imprisoned in a Kabul women’s jail after her cousin’s husband raped her.

The crime came to light when the unmarried Gulnaz became pregnant.

The police came and arrested both Gulnaz and her attacker. Under Afghan law she too was found guilty of a crime known as “adultery by force”, with her sentence increased on appeal to 12 years. [Read more...]

Decent women don’t have “crisis pregnancies”

And if we haven’t had enough religious bullying today, here’s another batch.

As ThinkProgress has reported, so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” that claim to help women in need are actually established by anti-abortion activists with the sole objective of shaming women out of having abortions. Despite receiving federal and state funding, they have a history of preying on and misleading pregnant women who are seeking abortions and giving them false medical information to dissuade them from making their own decisions. [Read more...]