It makes my head hurt. Bringing more women into leadership roles so that they can force women into more submissive roles. No not Sarah Palin, no not Michelle Bachmann – the women in the Muslim Brotherhood.
The rise of the Muslim Brotherhood to power in Egypt has brought with it a new group of female politicians who say they are determined to bring more women into leadership roles — and at the same time want to consecrate a deeply conservative Islamic vision for women in Egypt.
But if they are determined to bring more women into leadership roles then why do they want to consecrate a deeply conservative Islamic vision for women?
Really, people, those two things do not go together. It’s like trying to eat and vomit at the same time.
Islamists who make up the majority on the constitution-writing assembly are racing to try to finish the document in the coming weeks to put it to a referendum. One of the biggest fights is over an Islamist-backed clause that would call for equality between men and women but only if it does not contradict Islamic law, or Shariah…
Omaima Kamel, perhaps the most powerful of the Brotherhood women, defended the clause. Kamel is a member of Morsi’s advisory team and sits on the constitutional panel.
In a recent interview on state TV, she said that without the phrasing, certain rights that Shariah gives to men and not to women could be overturned — such as men’s right to marry up to four women or inheritance laws that give a greater to share to men than women. Such polygamy and inheritance laws existed during the Mubarak era and in most Muslim countries.
Kamel, a 51-year-old doctor, dismissed fears that hardliners would use the clause to pass harsh restrictions on women, saying only rulings of Shariah that are “firmly established, with no controversy around them,” like polygamy and inheritance, could be applied.
Oh great – only stuff like polygamy and unequal inheritance, which are totes uncontroversial.
Kamel goes on to say that issues of FGM “do not bother anyone, we have bigger issues” – which is grotesque, given what FGM is and what the experience of it is like.
It’s terrible. Of course the MB wants women like that in “leadership roles” – as figureheads to persuade everyone that women are just delighted with theocratic rules that make them inferiors.
Happy Malala Day.