While attacking Romney, Obama continues to largely ignore abuses in the Muslim world
FINBARR O’REILLY/REUTERS – Women in Istanbul, Turkey
For the greater part of this election cycle, we’ve heard a good deal from the left about a fictional Republican “war on women.” Everyone from President Obama himself to Georgetown-law-student-turned-Democratic-mouthpiece Sandra Fluke has tried to convince female voters that Mitt Romney is hostile to the female portion of the electorate.
But thousands of miles away, there is a real war on women. It is one that Obama and his supporters would prefer to ignore.
In the same region where four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, were brutally murdered on Sept. 11, women suffer each and every day. Radical Islamic thugs were behind the fatal attack in Benghazi, as well as the riots that spread across the Middle East; Muslim females, however, are persecuted and oppressed not by terrorists, but by their own communities, governments and even families.
Obtaining insurance-covered contraceptives (a big concern for the American left) is the least of these women’s worries. Instead, females in many Muslim countries are focused on having their bodies fully covered from head to toe, aren’t allowed to drive and cannot leave their homes without the supervision of a male family member. Laws and cultural norms vary from country to country, but it is undeniable that, as a whole, the Muslim world has a serious problem with how women are treated.
In the wake of the 9/11 attacks, Time magazine investigated this problem in an article called “The Women of Islam,” a piece that remains relevant today. It diagnoses the problem as a profound one, dating back centuries: “The Koran allots daughters half the inheritance of sons. It decrees that a woman’s testimony in court, at least in financial matters, is worth half that of a man’s. Under Shari’a, or Muslim law, compensation for the murder of a woman is half the going rate for men.
“In many Muslim countries, these directives are incorporated into contemporary law. For a woman to prove rape in Pakistan, for example, four adult males of ‘impeccable’ character must witness the penetration, in accordance with Shari’a,” writes Lisa Beyer.
And while all religions must grapple with how to integrate ancient texts, with their sometimes-outdated notions, into modern life, the Muslim world seems to have done far too little in this regard,
Take, for example, Islam’s attitude toward domestic abuse, with the Koran (sura 4:34), which has been “interpreted to say that men have ‘pre-eminence’ over women or that they are ‘overseers’ of women and that the husband of an insubordinate wife should first admonish her, then leave her to sleep alone and finally beat her,” as Beyer chillingly wrote.
Not much has changed in the decade or so since. It was only two years ago when Time magazine ran the horrific and now infamous cover picture of, Aisha, an Afghan woman with her nose and ears cut off by the Taliban for fleeing her abusive in laws.
There is no excuse for this kind of medieval behavior in the 21st century. And yet it goes on. As Riffat Hassan, professor of religious studies at the University of Louisville, told Beyer, “The way Islam has been practiced in most Muslim societies for centuries has left millions of Muslim women battered bodies, minds and souls.”
The Arab Spring, which Obama has celebrated, has hardly been a boon for women. In fact, quite the opposite. “For many Egyptian women, sexual harassment — which sometimes turns into violent mob-style attacks — is a daily fact of life,” reports the BBC. One blogger calls the harassment of women in the post-Moammar Khadafy Libya as “out of control.”
It seems, then, that the “revolutions” in the region have only empowered fanatics to take their misogyny further out into the open. To her credit, Secretary of State Clinton has acknowledged this violence, but Obama has largely ignored it, even seemingly aligning himself with the culprits by hosting the Muslim Brotherhood at the White House.
Writes Mark Whittington for Yahoo, “It seems the Obama administration is capable of accusing Republicans of hating women for not wanting to see the Catholic Church hand out free birth control contrary to the Church’s doctrine. While it is doing this, it is treating with a terrorist group that has as its governing platform the imposition of Shari’a Law, which would send Egyptian women into lives of degradation and oppression.”
Worst of all is that thousands of Muslim women have suffered from female genital mutilation if they don’t comply with these strict rules or have been the victim of honor killings — murders conducted by spouses or family members in the event of misbehavior. There is a growing trend of honor killings happening in the U.S., as well.
This, too, demands attention from the administration. But the silence has been deafening.
Let’s not even wade into the issue of homosexuality, which can be met with death or imprisonment in many Muslim countries — yet Obama supporters are preoccupied with painting the right as anti-gay for opposing gay marriage, a position President Obama and Joe Biden held until recently.
But the left would rather forget these inconvenient truths. The Obama administration is comfortable railing against Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and some Republicans for sticking to their peaceful religious beliefs, traditional though they may be, but refuses to call out the Muslim world for sticking to its own outdated prejudices.
In fact, when he went to Cairo in 2009, Obama praised Islam for sharing the West’s principles of “justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.” He is clearly uncomfortable admitting that there are violent strains of Islam that want nothing more than to hurt not only Americans, but women living in their own countries.
Rather than appease the violent strains of religious extremism, Americans of all political affiliations (as well as peaceful Muslims) should band together for what we support: the advancement of women and tolerance for everyone. Radical Islam is a threat to more than just females; it’s determined to kill and to eradicate freedom all over the world.
The real issue is the tolerance of the intolerant. If President Obama, many on the left and the media truly cared about women’s rights, they would acknowledge the real war on women instead of tip-toeing around it for political gain. A true champion of women’s rights stands up for all women, all of the time, not just when it’s expedient in an election year.
This is also part of the real war on women:
Little lambs to the slaughter… THIS IS BEYOND SCARY
That’s the quickest way to populate the world!
Poor kids – what a terrible fate to be born as a girl
in a Muslim country, esp. one in the Middle East.
HAMAS PLAYS HOST TO PEDOPHILIA
Is this, Sharia(h) Law, not the ultimate insult to and a direct war on women and children? And it applies not only to child brides and the abuse of women and girls under Sharia Law, but to boys as well!