Newspapers are different in the Middle East. Take the Yemen Times, one of the Mid East’s most widely read English-language dailies. The publication, which was lauded for its work in freedom of the press by the National Press Club (yes, that one) back in 1995, presents a variety of views. One of them is the idea that domestic violence is totally alright. According to op-ed columnist Majed Thabet Al-Kholidy, “there must be violence against women.” Some excerpts from this piece follow. It reads like it’s straight out of The Onion, but the op-ed is pathetically real:
“Some human rights organizations recently have attacked violent acts against women, standing against any type of violence – even that between a father and daughter – and citing the cases of some women as examples.” [...]
“One such case involved a woman whose husband allegedly had beaten her. Without revealing the husband’s reasons for doing so, such human rights organizations immediately urged the wife to complain to the police and the courts, while at the same time generalizing the instance and other similar solutions to any type of violence.” [...]
“Beating is considered a type of violence, according to human rights organizations, which urge women to complain to the police. I just wonder what kind of families our societies would have if Muslim women started doing this regarding their husbands.” [...]
“Fathers are responsible for their daughters’ behavior, but human rights organizations deny this too. Brothers also should take action regarding their sisters’ behavior, especially if their parents are too old or dead. If a daughter or sister makes a mistake – especially a moral one – that negatively affects the entire family and its reputation, what’s the solution by such organizations?” [...]
“Fathers should handle their daughters via any means that suits their mistake; thus, is it better to use violence to a certain limit or complain to the police? Shall such women then complain to the police against their fathers or brothers? It’s really amazing to hear this.” [...]
“In some cases, violence is necessary, but there must be limits. Those “good human rights organizations” don’t make any exceptions in their solutions because their aim is to serve society. Will it be a better society once we see wives, mothers, sisters and daughters going from one police station and one court to another, complaining against their husbands, fathers, brothers and even sons?”
Meanwhile, the Yemen Times is edited by a woman, Nadia Abdulaziz Al-Saqqaf. Yeah, we want to puke for a while over that op-ed. I mean… c’mon.