Writing in the Australian, Pamela Bone complains that when a bunch of Muslim feminists (Muslim feminists! What’s next, “gay Republicans”?) met in New York last week to fix an agenda for dispelling a couple of anti-Muslim rumors going around (that they’re terrorists, and that Islam oppresses women), the media gave it a big fat pass. Bone thinks it should have been front page news on accounta Muslim feminists have the solution for the war on terror. Sadly, neither Bone nor the Muslim feminists suggest that the way to make Islam (or any other religion, for that matter; they’re all a bunch of festering nightmares) safe for the world is to get rid of Islam. There is no question that Allah is here to stay, so we must rely on women’s activism from within to dilute its toxicity to a level tolerable to its female supplicants and favorable to Western economic interests.
Bone reminds the reader that the most brackish bogs of human ignorance — pockets of primordial sociopolitical muck Ã la Afghanistan from which anti-Western sentiment slithers ashore like honky-hatin’ lungfish to writhe in economic agony — are notable in the main for their disobliging views toward women. Where one finds women enjoying the social status of livestock, one also finds extreme godbaggery, extreme poverty, and extreme dudes who are willing to blow themselves up to preserve this colorful lifestyle.
Bone’s antidote is to “[pour] billions of dollars into the education and empowerment of women around the world.”
Education! I cry myself to sleep at night dreaming of its pungent possibilities even as I remember that it will never happen. Nobody in a position to do so could imagine for a minute that educating poor Muslim women — or any other kind of women — might have greater entertainment value than armies and bombs and Jesus. And besides, for it to do any good, the education in question would have to be of a nature that encouraged a rational critique of the collection of atavistic ghost stories that form the global instruction manual for women’s oppression.
Naturally, nobody — Bone included — will admit to an interest in ridding the world of its fundamental godbag delusions. As always, the tone is one of universal tolerance of “the beliefs of others.” This despite that there are no religious societies anywhere in which women do not ritually get the shaft. Yet Bone remains sanguine.
“If Christian women,” she writes, “have been able to argue, more or less successfully, that the misogynistic passages in the Bible are merely a reflection of the era in which they were written and have no relevance to today, there should be no reason Muslim women can’t do the same.”
Naturally the spinster aunt is pulling for the Muslim feminists and the possibility, however slender, that they might achieve some mitigating effect on the misogynist brutality their menfolk so often seem to enjoy. But alas, Bone’s core assumption, that Christian women have been “more or less successful” in combatting the ritualized misogyny prescribed by their archaic belief systems, is in error. She has overlooked that even in enlightened, babe-a-licious countries like Australia and the US, where Christian women are all the rage, the casual observer from the planet Obstreperon would be forced to conclude that the only thing women have won is the right to enbiggen the stock portfolios* of pornographers like Joe Francis by showing him their surgically-augmented tits for free while drunk on spring break. The observer’s conclusions would be confirmed after noting that the New York Times is still writing about how women who are not currently pregnant should be forever “pre-pregnant,” women’s uteruses are still owned by the megatheocorporatocracy, women still earn less than men do and get harassed while doing it, and posts on minor blogs criticizing femininity as a patriarchal construct still get over 200 comments.
in other words, though it may differ in degree of brackishness from the aforementioned bogs of human ignorance, our own culture is no limpid pool.
Women’s liberation from patriarchal oppression depends on many things, but Job One is getting this tiresome God character off the air.
* “Girls Gone Wild” grosses $40 million a year
[NYTimes link courtesy of blamer Paris]