Thursday, August 19, 2010

Point / CounterPoint: Hijabs vs Costumes

Query: Who's Less Oppressed, Who's More Victimized

August 19, 2010 - An Explanation of Point/CounterPoint

Let's forget about the subjugation of the masses for a second and talk about individual choice. Which of the women pictured above is more oppressed? Which one is succumbing more to male dominance? Which one is doing whatever she wants, simply because she genuinely likes it? Which one looks more silly? And who the hell are we to decide what's "silly?"

The Hijab, the "scarf" worn by some Muslim women, is often viewed in the West as a sign of oppression. Granted, it at times may be. However, at other times it clearly isn't. It is as much an assertion of identity and personal beliefs as a tattoo or a yarmulke. Hell, add to that some of the practical aspects - no make-up, no worry about bad-hair days, and no worries about the spinach caught between your teeth. A recent survey indicated that women are at times passed over for certain jobs for being too attractive. What's one sure-fire way to avoid being judged based on your looks? Hide 'em. It's a painfully practical approach. What should women do:

  1. Change every neanderthal lech in the world,
  2. Decide they truly don't care about anyone else's opinion, or
  3. Hide the goods.
So what's your answer? Mine's pretty easy- they should do whatever works for them individually: challenge men's attitudes, flaunt what they've got because they enjoy, or just make the issue moot.

Ya wanna wear your hijab? Go for it baby. Ya wanna go topless? Cool. Ya wanna tell men they're carriers of the weaker and dying chromosome? Can't argue with that one either. Let's not impose our own biases on others. Let Muslim women wear their hijabs and let Jewish men wear their yarmulkes. It's often something they've chosen freely.

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