Who is guilty, women or men?

We always looking for the guilty person, what Iranians have gotten used to it over their long lasting history. Whenever something wrong happens we usually try to blame others and shirk our responsibility. If our relationship breaks up, always our partner is responsible; if women encounter violence in their houses, if women’s rights are neglected and all similar situations always other people are guilty. A rule which does not have any gender exceptions, and is the same for both men and women.

It is many years which women are protesting about the disregarding of their rights, which we have a patriarchal society and there is no gender equality. Sometimes, their voice has become even louder for opposing the anti-women jokes or asking about why they cannot enter sport stadiums. These are one of the hottest headlines these days and women’s rights activists are trying to reduce the gender distance between women and men.

Based on the international institutes’ reports, Middle East countries do not have a good condition for women’s rights. Even in Afghanistan and Pakistan the situation is worse. The dogmatic thoughts are dominating all over these regions. Despite the fact that Taliban does not rule in these countries anymore, Talibanism thoughts are dominating people’s minds. In many states women cannot go to school, vote or even have the basic rights of a woman. In Pakistan, a girl who wanted the right for education was terrorized, whose name is Malala Yousafzai and won the Nobel Prize for peace. In Saudi Arabia, it was a debate on women’s right for driving a car. Some of the women broke the law and tried driving. The traditional Arab’s society blamed them, but women’s rights activists appreciated them.

However, in Iran the situation is completely different. Iranian women do not have such problems like neighbouring countries like right for education or driving cars, but they want some other rights that they are attempting to achieve them. The viewpoints about women are not the same between the men. Unfortunately, some men believe that women’s rights activists are looking for nudity and their interpretation about women’s rights and freedom is mostly wrong. Moreover, governments with their ironic decisions made women more vigilant about their rights. Caring about women’s right have been always one of the slogans during the presidential elections, like opposing the gender separation in universities, equality between men and women’s rights, allowing women to enter sport stadiums, opposing the violence against women.

In Iran, discussion about women’s right is tied to religion and tradition. Maybe one of the most annoying factors is common people’s nonsense beliefs which they labelled them as tradition or religion. While none of these thoughts have any place in Iranian’s traditions or in Islam. There are some drawbacks in the opinions about women’s rights. Women blame men for inequalities, while some men and political activists believe that our women do not know what they actually want from this debates, and maybe the atmosphere of the worldwide struggles against gender discrimination affected them, which finally will lead to anomalies in society. Nevertheless, who is guilty, women or men?

Women are themselves guilty because of such views against their rights. Some ones has gotten into power by bribery and some ones really care about women’s right, but nobody can hear them. However, both of these groups blame men for the gender discrimination.

But, is it men’s fault if some of the female members of parliament instead of supporting women’s rights are suggesting anti-woman plans to the parliament?

Is it men’s fault if most of the women only remember that they are women in some special days like 8th of March or Iranian women’s day?

Is it men’s fault if women themselves forward anti-women jokes and PMs for each other and laugh at them?

Is it the men’s fault when they look at the women as a tool for showing off the balance in a political or social system by only using one or two women in their system to pretend they care about women, but they really don’t and some women accept to be a part of this show off?

The realistic view to this issue reveal that women are as guilty as men in disregarding of women’s rights, and men exacerbate this situation by their traditional views. The activity of women supporter NGOs are limited to their offices, and governments usually deal with this issue emotionally not technically. We should wait and watch when this argument about who is guilty would finish, and women can achieve what they really deserve for being a part of the society.

 

Published in special leaflet of women’s day ceremony, “Nedaye Iranian”

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