Women’s Rights in the Middle East by S.C.

Women’s rights has been a recent topic that has been discussed. I have noticed it being discussed around school and other places but I never really here the topic of what about in the middle east. The public seems to be all bickering about the wage gap when I believe there is a much worse problem. The problem I see is the rights and treatment of women in the middle east is almost the worst it can get yet no one is talking about it. When you bring up the middle east people will regard it as your a racist trying to change their culture or have no comment. I have noticing the treatment of women in the middle east seems to have barely improved for thousands of years.

People will always deny the problem and say that it is only the extremist but I would believe that the middle east culture needs to be changed soon because it’s becoming a problem swept under the rug. In Saudi Arabia women still can’t drive and where only recently allowed to vote. The society and culture put women into a subordinate status. Any kind of change for more rights are always faced with strong resistance from clergy and governments slowing any kind of real change. I talked to my neighbor Amy who is a lawyer she said “ You can see within the law of their society it seems like women are actively targeted to have less rights.” Women have many laws targeting them even for ridiculous things for example The Washington Post said that women in saudi arabia that are raped can be charged for crimes.

General respect for women seems very low in the middle east. Women aren’t even allowed to wear what they want or show makeup to show their beauty. Islamic law has enforced these rules and people that show too much skin are often harassed by the police and the community. Amy’s husband Sam fought in iraq and he said “Women even when just talked to seemed very submissive and careful about what they said.” Additionally according to the Telegraph Saudi Arabia proposed hosting an Olympic games without women which shows very little respect in my opinion.

Honor killing is something you don’t really hear about very much. Im sure the news covered a story but they never really showed that its not that uncommon and we should fight to stop it. Honor killings in the middle east usually are caused by refusal of arranged marriage, seeking a divorce, victims of rape and general rumors, also did I mention in many middle eastern countries the penalty for being gay is death. Honor killings are because of cultural pressure they are not because of one crazy person. The Washington Post interviewed the community around after a honor killing and it really showed a core problem the community was openly supporting it. The people around the community push people to do this and the general community thinks it’s the right thing and usually bring praise for this action, praise for murder should never be a thing especially for their own family members. This is obviously a cultural problem which will be really hard to make change of.

Women in all cultures have been treated differently and usually bad. Cultures have adapted and changed as societies develop and move on. The middle east is slowly making  change but very stubbornly. Change has always been seen though history empowering women. Even if you think about american culture it took us till 1920 before women could vote, that was less than a hundred years ago. Change is soon to come and in full force I believe.


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