March 7 2014

The Real War On Women: Why Do Feminists Ignore the Plight of Women in Muslim Societies?

Charlotte Hays

It is a curious fact that our courageous feminists leaders, women who attack mild-mannered American men at the slightest sign of sexism, often grow oddly silent when confronted with the more fundamental abuse of women in Muslim societies.

Inclined to speak out against female genital mutilation (FGM), the barbarian practice described so heartrendingly by Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who experienced FGM?

Don’t—you’ll only show how culturally insensitive you are.   

In a piece on the leftwing Guardian's Comment is Free website, a feminist columnist chastises to those who are critical of the way women are treated in Muslim societies by saying, "This isn't ‘feminism'. It's Islamophobia: I am Infuriated by White Men Stirring up Anti-Muslim Prejudice to Derail Debate on Western Sexism."  She went on, “Horror stories about Muslim misogyny have long been used by western patriarchs to justify imperialism abroad and sexism at home."

Given the atmosphere in which feminists operate, Julie Bindel, an English feminist, co-founder of a group called Justice for Women, and a frequent Guardian contributor deserves kudos for having the guts to write this on the Standpoint magazine site:

I am a deeply committed radical feminist who, for more than three decades has fought against sexual and gender-based violence, but am I within my rights to speak of a universal war against women?

Not according to the appeasers of Islam. I am, it would appear, allowed to speak about the abuse of women by men, so long as they are within my demographic. But if I stray from my own turf and begin to speak of such abuse within Muslim communities, I am sticking my nose in where it is not wanted.

Worse, I am imposing my white, Western imperialism on what is described by my critics as a much misunderstood, maligned community.

Bindel tells the story of a British-born Jewish feminist blogger who wrote a post sympathetic to the aforementioned Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a feminist who respects and values the traditions and liberty of Western society. A friend wrote the blogger to say that she regarded Hirsi Ali, a former member of the Parliament in Holland who had to flee and now lives under a death threat from Muslim authorities, as “megalomaniac and self-promoting.”

What are we to make of the phenomenon of feminists who won’t lift a finger (or at least their voices) to help women who really suffer in the Muslim world? Are they really unable to see that these women suffer? Bindel thinks that such feminists are “more cowardly than ignorant.”  

Yes, it doesn't take much bravery to be critical of Western society.  The real war on women is being waged elsewhere, however.

Shame on all those professional feminists in free societies who routinely dismiss the very women most in need of their support.

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