Hijab burning

11 03 2009

To celebrate women’s day Sara Azmeh Rasmussen, a Norwegian of Syrian origin, burned a hijab in an official ceremony. She calls herself a ”cultural muslim”, and outed herself as lesbian early last year. The burning was announced beforehand

Rasmussens appeal might be related to the report of an Oslo women’s shelter, stating minority women were beaten into submission and forced to wear Hijab.

After the event Rasmussen declared that she is happy to live in a country where people can express strong opinions freely, and people who don’t agree with her have as much right to speak their mind too.

Although she was hit on the head with a snowball, she said she had been expecting much worse.
Naturally there was lots of outrage and screaming and there were water and snowball throwing attempts, however the hijab was utterly burned in no time. :mrgreen:
I think its a bit childish behaviour on the part of the Holy-Hijab-Worshippers: after all, the public burning of all and sundryΒ  is a well-established folkloristic pasttime amongst the easily insulted Ummah.

Rasmussen wanted to call attention to what she thinks the hijab stands for – womens submission, objectification of women, fewer choices in life, and segregation of the sexes. She compared her action to bra-burnings in the 1960s. Growing up in Syria she heard from her grandmother that a womans wings are clipped.

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37 responses

11 03 2009
sabiwabi

YES! Down with polyester! I agree with her! It’s an unbearable crime against Muslimahs not to have soft, natural fabric choices when it comes to hijab. She can have all my polyester scarves!

Viva la 100% cotton!

I’ll also throw in my polyester jilbab with the sneaky, self-opening buttons, just as a bonus.

Seriously though, anyone besides me think that her and Manji would make the CUTEST little lesbian couple?! Awww……

11 03 2009
Aafke

Woehahahaaaaaa! Sabiwabi, you are a worthy contributer to my blog! πŸ˜€
Yes, they would be the cutest!!!!!
πŸ˜‰
Funnily I was thinking the same: ”must be one of those nasty polyester ones” πŸ˜€
Thanks for pointing out a different way to look at the protest-action!

11 03 2009
Chiara

Manji is taken–unless she had a recent breakup. She is also monitored for her own safety by the RCMP, not such a cosily romantic scenario. :mrgreen:

Unfortunately, Rasmussan being a lesbian will undermine her credibility for some. She nows how to throw a burning though! πŸ™‚

12 03 2009
sirius

To show solidarity with Sara I dug out a pair of suntan pantyhose (must have
been invented by a man) and torched them.

12 03 2009
Hning

clipped? what wings? was that a metaphor? no seriously, what did you mean by that?

12 03 2009
coolred38

Maaaannnn!!!! I should have done that years ago in front of my ass…I mean husband at the time. He got so damn emotional when I argued about not wanting to wear the damn thing…I might have been able to cause a fortuitous heartattack to ensue :mrgreen:

12 03 2009
Achelois

Oh my! Rasmussan is brave.

See, this is what I meant when I said I don’t celebrate Women’s Day. I’ll link to this post.

12 03 2009
Aafke

Chiara, yes that was defenitely an expressive burning πŸ˜‰

Sirius, what are suntan pantyhose and why have you got some?

Hning, you will have to ask Sara Rasmussens grandmother for that one. I think her grandmother considered women in Muslim societies having few freedoms we in the west take for granted, and the ones they do have are more like a ”privilege” granted by a consenting mahram.

coolred… what a pity… a missed opportunity indeed….

Achelois, aaahm, yes, I am going to comment on your post, I have thought up something good, your different websites were typical!

12 03 2009
Kalimaat

She can do as she pleases but i hope she does not turn to another Ayaan Hirsi Ali and spares us her thoughts on how to “liberate” muslim women.

12 03 2009
susanne430

Thanks for sharing! πŸ™‚

12 03 2009
Specs

I agree with sabiwabi(I was lol-ing at your wit! πŸ™‚ ) and Kalimaat. I hope they take this action in the right direction

And yes, down with polyester scarves and polyester abayas. They stink!

12 03 2009
Abu Sinan

A bit dramatic, but I guess that was the idea. You know, I HATE both sides on this issue.

I HATE the idiots that attack women for NOT wearing it, and I HATE the idiots who attack women who choose to wear it.

They are both just as bad as the other. They make the assumption they have the right to label women who dont follow their own points of view.

The liberals who attack the hijab, and women who choose to wear it, are hypocrites. At least with the religious extremists, they dont claim to want to stand up for the freedom of women. We know where these idiots are coming from.

Liberals claim to want to support women and help them with their freedoms, yet feel no issues when they label women who wear hijab as “sheep” and “brainwashed”.

I say a pox on both of their house. Shut the heck up and let women do as they will without the attacking and labeling from either side.

12 03 2009
Chiara

Abu Sinan–well said. I agree, which leaves one with the harder to refute notion of burning polyester!

12 03 2009
Aafke

I agree Abu Sinan, but that doesn’t apply in Sara’s case, she mainly burned a hijab because she doesn’t like it and wants to express that in public.
As one can in Norway.
It’s the spectators who showed their intolerance by yelling and throwing water and snowballs.
In an ideal world Sarah wouldn’t have felt the need to make a public personal statement, and the other people wouldn’t have bothered…

Which makes me wonder… what would happen in the Netherlands if you burnt one over here???

12 03 2009
Chiara

Well as a political statement, I agree with you Aafke but as a cultural statement I agree with Abu Sinan.

I would imagine all the stoned tourists in Amsterdam would enjoy a good hijab burning!

12 03 2009
Aafke

”stoned tourists” is that a freudian error?

12 03 2009
Chiara

No it’s a quote from American Bedu’s blog:

Aafke, on December 15th, 2007 at 2:42 pm Said:
I’ve been reading your excellent blog while I’m stuck at home suffering from torn ligaments. I love to read your inside views.
I think that to put such harsh implaccable restrictions on people is actually very bad for their behaviour. You see it in smaller detail in other countrys too, for example: I’m from the Netherlands where you can smoke pot (cannabis) if you like. And everybody I meet from outside the Netherlands thinks that we constantely walk around in a blue haze, because that is what they do when they visit the Netherlands! You can’t walk through Amsterdam without stumbling over stoned tourists.
Not so, The people I know who do smoke it, do so very rarely, or for medicinal reasons.
And I myself don’t smoke or drink at all.

The very first Aafke to American Bedu comment?

Or do you also stone the tourists in Amsterdam? :mrgreen:
There were certainly a few stoners in Amsterdam I felt like stoning-and I hate to say it but they were Maghrebi or Americani! πŸ˜€

Freudian errors are good too–especially if you make them in front of a roomful of Freudian psychoanalysts 😳 (been there, done that–but now the exact error is a repressed memory πŸ™‚ )

12 03 2009
Susan

I don’t know … I don’t see it like the bra burning of the 60s really, more like Sinead O’Connor on SNL.

13 03 2009
tanya

love norway! beautiful country, friendly people!

13 03 2009
Aafke

Chiara, I don’t rememeber every comment I made 14 months ago.

Susan, hmmm, if you worship the Holy Hijab, yes, it’s more like Sinead, but as she herself thinks it’s like the bra-burning so she only considers it an constricting garment demanded by men. It’s interestnig one can look at it in so many different ways…

Tanya, never been there, would love to visit though.

13 03 2009
Abu Sinan

I think the act itself is a bit crass and I think people like this are as interested in their own personality as they are about any issue. Having said that, as a firm believer in freedom of speech, I support people’s right to say or do anything they want, as long as they dont hurt others.

In this case, as in many others, the person just comes off as an attention seeking fool. But freedom of speech, like any other freedom, has it’s ups and it’s downs.

Martin Luther King Jr, an up for freedom of speech, hijab burning lesbian? Not exactly a high moment in the history of freedom of speech, but it’s her right.

13 03 2009
sabiwabi

SUSAN! LOL!

THAT’S IT!

I knew she reminded me of someone/something I had seen before! Ripping a picture of the pope, right?

Ahhh, the good ol’ days!

13 03 2009
sabiwabi

LOL at Abu’s last line….just caught it……..

“Hijab burning Lesbian?”…..NAAAAHHHHHH.

13 03 2009
Susan

Aafke, to me, so too did Sinead consider the Pope as a restrictive garment of religion.

This woman’s burning the hijab is to its religion in the same way Sinead’s tearing the picture of the papacy’s then representative was to itsreligion.

Bra-burning on the other hand was to the secular discrimination of women. as she considers the hijab to be.

Sabiwabi. exactly the occasion! Recently watched an excerpted program of some of SNL’s best times – brilliant! Anytime Carol, on American Bedu, writes “queries” I can’t help but laugh cause it reminds me of Tim Meadows doing “The Ladies Man” πŸ˜‰

Back in the day was outstanding!!

13 03 2009
Aafke

I think that hijab gets far too much attention. Look at this post: I think I have far better, more interesting posts on the blog, but everybody gets off on some Norwegian burning a hijab.
It’s totally unimportant to me really. A hijab is nothing but a piece of fabric which some people quite erroniously imbibe as some ”holy religious symbol”.

I think people suffering, being beaten, being imprisoned and old women being sentenced to torture for recieving some charity is way, way more important, and more disturbing.

13 03 2009
Susan

But if it gets far too much attention and is totally unimportant, why add a topic to your blog? :mrgreen:

Besides, it helps you market your blog … yes?

13 03 2009
Aafke

Susan, you know my blog is very eclectic, I don’t only post about ”important” stuff. I post about chocolate! I consider a small post like this merely an amusing ”filler”.
I posted it because I like a bit of mischief.
I really enjoy seeing women burn bra’s, hijabs, whatever.
I’m a feminist and a confirmed pyromaniac.
And I like to see what it does comment-wise.
And now I have.

I do not ”market” my blog: I get about 300 to 500 hits a day, and am allready satisfied with 30, and a few intelligent commentators.

13 03 2009
coolred38

I wonder what would happen if all muslim women all over the world held a simultaneous Hijab Burning Day!!!….

Would all the self important mullahs and extremists who insist that women be covered (and this includes women) just self implode from the ocean of exposed hair etc…just wondering.

13 03 2009
Susan

Yes, I know your blog is eclectic and that you like mischief.

But it’s easy to market a blog. When we post to other blogs linking, creating a field in the name area to the blog, then somebody likes or dislikes our position on things, and they click on the blog link, so it garners both potential and real marketable viewing — or buzz.

Directly or indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally we all market ourselves. And we who read, etc. enjoy.

13 03 2009
Chiara

Regarding the quote: Hmmm–it was a joke. Perhaps there were insufficient smileys πŸ™‚ . The thread came up because of a recent comment on it, otherwise it is immaterial.

Regarding mass hijab burnings–many women choose to wear them even if others have trouble understanding this as a choice, so I suspect the protesting mullahs would be joined by a gaggle of hijabis, who would probably start shaving heads to prevent haraam gazing at lascivious locks πŸ˜€ ! (very Sinead OConnor now that I think of it) πŸ™‚

13 03 2009
Susan

Yes, I’m wearing hijab today as a matter of fact.

So now all the feminists who have a problem with that can line up next to the ones who faint at the sight of a woman’s hair and there can be a dual reaction. πŸ™‚

13 03 2009
Aafke

Coolred! Oh, nooo! That would cause some serious air-pollution! The skies would darken with the smoke of burning polyester, the temperature would drop globally by several degrees, the icecaps will not only stop melting; they will expand, another iceage will roll over the planet, significantly decreasing the human population. The mullahs and scholars will be the first to snuff it because they life too far from reality to deal with the climate change: The climate will have changed for the next 20.000 years, and all women will walk with their head up, and the wind in their hair……

Susan, I still don’t ”market” my blog:
I write, people come and read: Therefore I blog
”Scribendo ergo bloggum est”
I am happy with my small crew of readers and commentators, the other 470 blurkers I don’t know, and therefore won’t miss.

Chiara, but Sinead looked good! I wouldn’t!!!! Sarah also has really short hair! I still think men can learn to live with seeing women’s hair, just as so many can in the rest of the world. :mrgreen:

Susan, I’m wearing hair today, so the two of us versus the line-up should result in a mass-cardiac arrest!!! :mrgreen:

14 03 2009
Alette Thorsnes

This had to with a question if a woman police could wear a hijab at work.This was debated .We are a country not interested in what religion a person has ,If one at all .As a police you should not wear a necklace with a cross on .Then came the hijab question.Does this take the identity of the police a bit off?Is it related to religion? There are more pressing problems then what a person wears or burns.

16 03 2009
Aafke

Alette Thornes, Welcome to my blog. πŸ™‚ I agree with your stance, But there are muslims who do equate hijab with a holy relic, and who consider, how ever deluded, that a woman who does not wear hijab is automatically destined for hellfire.

17 03 2009
daggero

what is it with women that they must burn something , if it is not a bra ,hejab,or Abaya (kuwait in the sixties) ,they burn Dinner .All man does is burn with desire for woman especially a red headed one

17 03 2009
Aafke

Learn to live with it Daggero, it’s the new ”Pyro-feminism” flaring up again!!!!!!
πŸ˜€ :mrgreen: πŸ˜€

28 03 2009
Rhysz

@ Daggero (and evrryone else)

Let me just help you out there. Bras were NOT burned in the sixties, males burned their draft cards, women threw their bras in the trashcan. Both stories mingled and got mixed up but still ended up perverting history by settling in the cultural/historical subconscience. Personally, I hold only few views on her being a lesbian. I think it does dimish her message but I must say that I think it raises cultural awereness. In the video you can clearly see a couple of ‘halal girls’ with placards; “Hijab is good” (or something). Now, what were these sweet sisters wearing? Only headscarves, I call; ‘Hipocracy!’ and I’ll leave it there.

As a radical secular humanist let me say that in the public space people can wear whatever they like, I have a severe dislike of nudists though. Surely, hot women will annoy me in traffic and guys walking around dangling their “shortcommings”, for all to see annoy me.
On a governmental level, I can be short; check your religion, philosophy, politics and personal opinions at the door and please don’t forget to take them home when your shift is done.

Regards,
Rhysz

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