The cowardice & misogyny of Islamic extremism

In mid November two men on a motorcycle tossed acid in the faces of young Afghani girls walking to school in Khandar as punishment for wanting to be educated. The group of schoolgirls some as young as fourteen, have all been disfigured for life with two permanently blinded. All of their mothers insist they will not allow their daughters to continue their schooling for fear they will be either maimed again, or eventually murdered for the offence.

George Petrolekas and Mike Capstick write in an editorial in today’s Ottawa Citizen:

” And as punishment, at least two of those girls will never see the light of day again; their friends and countless hundreds of other little girls equally condemned to a lesser life as the very fear of venturing outside their homes denies them a future as surely as the acid in the eyes has accomplished. And to that end, it is no different than the torching of schools, the beheading of teachers and the intimidation of parents”.

I predict that this recent example of human depravity will sink to the bottom of our collective conscience like the many other countless examples of terrorism have found themselves. Worse, it will provide one more opportunity for the apologizers of terror to which there are many, to spin their usual, pap and nonsense. Common catch phrases such as ‘root cause’, cultural misunderstanding’, the ‘resistance to western influence’, ‘religious hijacking’ or ‘religious misinterpretation” will all surface by the usual suspects to explain away the revolting and bizarre tactics of those who would impose horror at every turn, every day, against innocents. For those who work diligently to convince the world community turn a blind eye to the insufferable inhumane treatment of these girls and who would deny the Islamic religious component of these atrocities, the media will once again be labelled as an ‘islamophobic, Zionist institution with a never ending anti-Islam bent’. Blah, blah, blah.

What sheer and utter nonsense.

To entertain this piety is to abandon the clear plight of women and girls in Afghanistan and to condone the oppressive and suffocating lives these women are forced to endure. While fomenting imams in North American and European mosques spew their transplanted misogynist rhetoric with near carte blanche ease, many Western politicians work over time to bastardize long established Western values to accommodate these extremist, retrograde views that continue to deny women lives of dignity, freedom and the right to fulfill their full potential as equal human beings. Misogyny is an undeniable constant in much of the Middle East. While all this dialogue dithering, religious sentimentality and cultural tolerance is hashed out across America and Europe, these Afghan mothers and daughters must surely feel an overwhelming sense of abandonment.  

I cannot understand the passive response, excuses and warped justifications made in reference to such incidents, especially by many western women’s rights groups. Is gender equality a quality of life notion which should only be guaranteed for western women? Why do these medieval tyrants deserve an ounce of consideration or their backers access to fair dialogue? How many western mothers would be willing to barter the well being of their own daughters away for cultural, religious sentiment? Zero? All?

Messrs. Petrolekas and Capstick continue: “this day, girls won’t go to school for fear, not because they don’t belong there, but because misogynist terrorists have made the decision for them”. ‘For the sake of another generation we must not forget these girls, as their unseeing eyes exhort us to do more; we cannot let our own granddaughters conclude that we stood about and did nothing’.  


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