Is this photo grounds for death?

52

Two weeks ago, a young Tunisian woman known only by the name “Amina” posted political self portraits to Facebook to protest the continued oppression of women in the Arab world’s first democracy.

Posing topless, one photo featured Amina smoking with the Arabic declaration “my body belongs to me, and is not the source of the honor of anyone” scrawled across her chest; the other showed Amina standing defiantly, her middle fingers raised to camera, and the English words “F— your morals” blaring out from her body.


Today, Amina is in a psychiatric hospital, admitted there against her will by family members who’ve expressed shame over her actions. Her aunt appeared in a YouTube video to declare, “Amina does not exist anymore for me. She is responsible for her acts, and we are devastated by what she did. Our family is educated and open-minded and we did everything we could for her. Her father has been crying and has been in a miserable state.” She later added, “I hope she pays for her actions. She does not represent her country or Tunisian women.”

While Amina’s aunt may deny her niece’s actions speak for or even to Tunisian women, not everyone agrees. The Wahabi Salafi preacher Almi Adel, head of the almost comically titled Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, warned Tunisian newspaper Kapitalis, “Her act could bring about an epidemic. It could be contagious and give ideas to other women. It is therefore necessary to isolate [the incident]. I wish her to be healed.”

It’s tempting to mock the preacher’s words for the crude expression of fear that they are. If women begin to think for themselves and question their environments, they might then demand their own liberation from the kinds of patriarchal societies that empower men like Adel to wield control over them. Perhaps even more terrifying is the possibility that they might succeed.

Unfortunately, the consequence of men like Adel having power is that they do wield it. And his proposed solution to ‘isolating the incident’ is to execute Amina in accordance with his misreading of sharia law. “The young lady should be punished according to sharia, with 80 to 100 lashes, but [because of] the severity of the act she has committed, she deserves be stoned to death.”

Written By: Clementine Ford
continue to source article at dailylife.com.au

52 COMMENTS

    • In reply to #1 by Peter Grant:

      Why are her beautiful boobies blotted out?

      Uncensored Image

      Why indeed and who blotted them out? I sincerely hope it wasn’t RDNET. She gone through and is going to go through a lot to demonstrate personal autonomy only to have her statement degraded by some gutless editor.

    • In reply to #1 by Peter Grant: “IDiots also have rights.” – Peter Grant …. An egalitarian position well put, but should they be allowed to exercise them without restraint?

      Why are her beautiful boobies blotted out?

      Uncensored Image

  1. Tunisia, one of you more liberal ( in the classical sense ) Islamic countries,

    ” “Her act could bring about an epidemic “

    Does this nut bag mean this literally, or does he mean an epidemic of freedom?

    • In reply to #2 by Neodarwinian:

      Tunisia, one of you more liberal ( in the classical sense ) Islamic countries,

      ” “Her act could bring about an epidemic “

      Does this nut bag mean this literally, or does he mean an epidemic of freedom?

      Perhaps he has never been to the beaches on the other, more civilised North side of the Mediterranean!

  2. Today (March 27) Martine Gozlan of “Marianne” wrote about how she found Amina and talked to her. Here’s the link (in French):

    J’ai retrouvé Amina, la Femen tunisienne

    Amina is both detained and protected by her relatives. She is heavily drugged with antidepressants.
    She said: “I want to go back to a normal life. I want to study, to phone, to connect to Internet”. The article is very detailed…

  3. May this young woman’s brave but desperate act of defiance (she reminds me of “Madder than hell and not gonna take it any more” – Network 1976) and the evil consequences she is facing remind us all that the freedoms we enjoy in our own countries are under constant attack from this kind of fundamentalist thought-police, and will be taken from us unless we too confront them and especially stop our politicians from accommodating their outrageous words and actions.

    Indeed, I hope it does ignite an epidemic of rebellion among oppressed women everywhere.

    • In reply to #7 by Katy Cordeth:

      Glad to see RDnet members are focusing on the important aspect of this story: Amina’s tits.

      Thank you Peter Grant for your services to feminism.

      You’re welcome, but I’m not a feminist. I just genuinely like women and feel that they ought to have all the same rights and freedoms men enjoy.

      In reply to #6 by whiteraven:

      In reply to #1 by Peter Grant: “IDiots also have rights.” – Peter Grant …. An egalitarian position well put, but should they be allowed to exercise them without restraint?

      That comment was from another thread and I was referring to religious idiots. Whom I am all for restraining when their religious idiocy harms real people like the lovely Amina.

      In reply to #5 by cornbread_r2:

      Why indeed and who blotted them out? I sincerely hope it wasn’t RDNET. She gone through and is going to go through a lot to demonstrate personal autonomy only to have her statement degraded by some gutless editor.

      If you follow the link above it’s the same image.

      • In reply to #8 by Peter Grant:

        In reply to #7 by Katy Cordeth:

        Glad to see RDnet members are focusing on the important aspect of this story: Amina’s tits.

        Thank you Peter Grant for your services to feminism.

        You’re welcome, but I’m not a feminist. I just genuinely like women and feel that they ought to have all the same rights and freedoms men enjoy.

        Surely but in discussions on grave matters such as this one, there is such a thing as relevance. This isn’t about flashing tits! This brave woman risked her life by doing what she did. And now, she is being detained in an asylum and drugged silly to prevent her from escaping. Which could very well be some sort of a “plea bargain” between her family and the islamic authorities to prevent her from getting stoned.

        No one can blame you for finding this woman attractive but perhaps this isn’t the best time for this sort of talk.

        • In reply to #10 by NearlyNakedApe:

          Surely but in discussions on grave matters such as this one, there is such a thing as relevance. This isn’t about flashing tits! This brave woman risked her life by doing what she did. And now, she is being detained in an asylum and drugged silly to prevent her from escaping. Which could very well be some sort of a “plea bargain” between her family and the islamic authorities to prevent her from getting stoned.

          No one can blame you for finding this woman attractive but perhaps this isn’t the best time for this sort of talk.

          They are her tits and she should be able to flash them if she wants to without receiving death threats. This about freedom of expression and censorship.

          • In reply to #15 by Peter Grant:

            They are her tits and she should be able to flash them if she wants to without receiving death threats. This about freedom of expression and censorship.

            Aren’t there quite a lot of places in Africa where this is not an issue? – Unless the fundamentalists have turned up – along with foreign corruption etc!!

          • In reply to #16 by Alan4discussion:

            Aren’t there quite a lot of places in Africa where this is not an issue? – Unless the fundamentalists have turned up – along with foreign corruption etc!!

            Not far off the mark. I see boobs every day and I haven’t raped anyone yet.

          • In reply to #15 by Peter Grant:

            They are her tits and she should be able to flash them if she wants to without receiving death threats. This about freedom of expression and censorship.

            Yes, but when you use terms like ‘beautiful boobies’, the impression it conveys is one of lasciviousness. One gets the sense, perhaps erroneously, that for all your talk of censorship and freedom of expression, you’re actually getting off on the story.

            Why else would you provide a link to the uncensored photograph of Amina? Seeing her breasts sans the black bar doesn’t convey any additional information.

            Never mind. As NearlyNakedApe has said, you’re human and a man; evolution has programmed you to go a bit funny at the sight of any unfettered bosomry.

            But cool it with the Benny Hill stuff, m’kay?

          • In reply to #17 by Katy Cordeth:

            Why else would you provide a link to the uncensored photograph of Amina? Seeing her breasts sans the black bar doesn’t convey any additional information.

            The black bar makes them seem dirty and shameful like something the public must be protected from, when in fact they are perfectly natural and quite pretty.

            Another point no one seems to have brought up is that the bar also obscures some of the Arabic text.

            Never mind. As NearlyNakedApe has said, you’re human and a man; evolution has programmed you to go a bit funny at the sight of any unfettered bosomry.

            Now you sound like the Islamists.

          • In reply to #17 by Katy Cordeth:

            Yes, but when you use terms like ‘beautiful boobies’, the impression it conveys is one of lasciviousness. One gets the sense, perhaps erroneously, that for all your talk of censorship and freedom of expression, you’re actually getting off on the story.

            I think there is cultural prudery involved here. Perhaps you don’t know, that Peter lives in a part of Africa (as comments 16 and 21 discuss) where women going topless is quite normal.

            Why else would you provide a link to the uncensored photograph of Amina? Seeing her breasts sans the black bar doesn’t convey any additional information.

            Never mind. As NearlyNakedApe has said, you’re human and a man; evolution has programmed you to go a bit funny at the sight of any unfettered bosomry.

            Some men are “a bit funny” – if they come from regions where a big issue is made of this, and it is featured exclusively in “Lads’ Mags” or “porn TV”. They may then behave like Moslem fundamentalists looking at women’s hair or skirts.

            However, as I pointed out at comment 9, those who frequent beach resorts of Spain, France, Germany or Greece, may simply regard seeing skin as normal, and like Peter, may admire beauty.

            Having said that, I think the cigarette spoils the image, but that’s her choice!

          • *In reply to #24 by Alan4discussion: The cigarette could be part of the statement of protest. It isn’t clear to me what online sources about Islam are authoritative but this one http://islam.about.com/od/health/a/smoking_fatwa.htm provides a quote from the “Permanent Committee of Academic Research and Fatwa, Saudi Arabia” saying it is forbidden because it is harmful and unwholesome, and the prophet said not to harm yourself or others (no comment), prescribes what is good and pure, and forbids what is unwholesome. It notes lack of unanimity on smoking and a trend toward greater disapproval. *

            In reply to #17 by Katy Cordeth:

            Yes, but when you use terms like ‘beautiful boobies’, the impression it conveys is one of lasciviousness. One gets the sense, perhaps erroneously, that for all your talk of censorship and freedom of expression, you’re actually getting off on the story.

            I think there is cultural prudery involved here. Perhaps you don’t know, that Peter lives in a part of Africa (as comments 16 and 21 discuss) where women going topless is quite normal.

            Why else would you provide a link to the uncensored photograph of Amina? Seeing her breasts sans the black bar doesn’t convey any additional information.

            Never mind. As NearlyNakedApe has said, you’re human and a man; evolution has programmed you to go a bit funny at the sight of any unfettered bosomry.

            Some men are “a bit funny” – if they come from regions where a big issue is made of this, and it is featured exclusively in “Lads’ Mags” or “porn TV”. They may then behave like Moslem fundamentalists looking at women’s hair or skirts.

            However, as I pointed out at comment 9, those who frequent beach resorts of Spain, France, Germany or Greece, may simply regard seeing skin as normal, and like Peter, may admire beauty.

            Having said that, I think the cigarette spoils the image, but that’s her choice!

          • In reply to #15 by Peter Grant:

            In reply to #10 by NearlyNakedApe:

            Surely but in discussions on grave matters such as this one, there is such a thing as relevance. This isn’t about flashing tits! This brave woman risked her life by doing what she did. And now, she is being detained in an asylum and drugged silly to prevent her from escaping. Which could very well be some sort of a “plea bargain” between her family and the islamic authorities to prevent her from getting stoned.

            No one can blame you for finding this woman attractive but perhaps this isn’t the best time for this sort of talk.

            They are her tits and she should be able to flash them if she wants to without receiving death threats. This about freedom of expression and censorship.

            I couldn’t agree more but that’s not what my criticism was about. These pictures are a political statement: a woman’s defiance against religious tyranny. Not being able to see “the whole breasts” because some sites blurred them is beside the point. The important thing to see here is the significance of the act and not the specific details of her anatomy.

          • In reply to #18 by NearlyNakedApe:

            I couldn’t agree more but that’s not what my criticism was about. These pictures are a political statement: a woman’s defiance against religious tyranny. Not being able to see “the whole breasts” because some sites blurred them is beside the point. The important thing to see here is the significance of the act and not the specific details of her anatomy.

            It’s just another form of censorship, it’s buying in to Islam’s crazy paranoia and fear of the female form.

      • *In reply to #8 by Peter Grant: Yes, I know, I read your profile page and took it from there. It is a broadly applicable observation, too good to restrict to religious wackos.

        Next, the link you provided goes to the source story by a female writer for Daily Life (online, Sydney Morning Herald) a “…source of news and lifestyle content for busy Australian women … news, opinion, … dedicated to providing the best advice … and, most importantly, a place for women to engage with each other and discuss the hot topics of the day”. The comment policy states “,,, a proudly female biased website with content tailored to women …”

        There were 143 comments by a mix of female and male authors. I read or scanned all of them closely enough to evaluate the quality of the (1) vocabulary and (2) discourse. It took a good bit of time to get through it.

        What follows are extracts (7) from virtually all comments at Daily Life relating to the image censorship that is discussed here at RDFRS using the terms “bobbies”, “boobs”, “tits”, “breasts” (only Katy #17), “nipples” (literal use, not euphemistic #23):

        “And that of all things is what you can find to talk about- that you can’t see her entire naked chest.” # “It seems like “The Age” is also embarrassed of her breasts.” # “I wonder if this is radical enough for Germain Greer who apparently cannot take seriously women who have small breasts, are not fat …” # “Female breasts are different from male breasts – kochie [David Koch of Au TV?], the law etc.” # “If this was a photo of a man it would not have been censored, apparently male nipples are not offensive but female nipples are?” # “…will be arrested for baring their breasts in public while men won’t.” # “Recently I wrote that women should cover up most of their breasts when breast-feeding in public.”

        Conclusions: (1) RDFRS users deploy a more diverse and colloquial vocabulary about this part of female anatomy. Since only one obviously female commentator appears here, and the rest are likely male, the only thing to be said is that male users have an opportunity to enhance their vocabularies. Serves the f-ing cheating Aussies right for stealing the America’s Cup from us in ’83; they gotta live life without tits and boobs and settle for something you can get at the grocery store (true enough, there are a few different sizes and varieties). (2) The discussion at the source was reasonably well written, short paragraphs strongly focusing on the larger issues; censorship was discussed a broader context. No one commented or speculated on the attractiveness of what had been hidden. The first ten comments did not mention it whereas the first post here had nothing else in mind.

        With all the concern about censorship, I’m surprised no one at either site commented on the bleeping of “F— your morals” in the English text. Maybe readers were looking at or thinking about other things. Whether the black bar succeeded in censoring the Arabic is up in the air until we find someone who can read it. If it is obscured, would nipple censorship be sufficient to serve the cause of free speech and artistic expression or would it just create another problem? Is it appropriate to censor the English vulgarity but expose the Arabic?

        Would the discussion here have been any different if Amina were not a svelte, attractive young woman with pretty breasts and perky nipples? For me, the most perverse, hypocritical and disgusting image is the one in which the nipples have been airbrushed out of existence. This would not been done to a male figure. What really differentiates the two is the form of the female breast vs. the male, yet that is not what is changed to neuter (there is no antonym for eroticize) the image. Interesting. *

        In reply to #7 by Katy Cordeth:

        Glad to see RDnet members are focusing on the important aspect of this story: Amina’s tits.

        Thank you Peter Grant for your services to feminism.

        You’re welcome, but I’m not a feminist. I just genuinely like women and feel that they ought to have all the same rights and freedoms men enjoy.

        In reply to #6 by whiteraven:

        In reply to #1 by Peter Grant: “IDiots also have rights.” – Peter Grant …. An egalitarian position well put, but should they be allowed to exercise them without restraint?

        That comment was from another thread and I was referring to religious idiots. Whom I am all for restraining when their religious idiocy harms real people like the lovely Amina.

        In reply to #5 by cornbreadr2:_

        Why indeed and who blotted them out? I sincerely hope it wasn’t RDNET. She gone through and is going to go through a lot to demonstrate personal autonomy only to have her statement degraded by some gutless editor.

        If you follow the link above it’s the same image.

  4. It is almost suicidal for women in islamic countries to rebel. The cowardly muftis, clerics imams and other excremental criminal big mouths are so desperate to hold onto power that they give licence for extreme violence to anyone who is willing to do their dirty work. Women in the home are subjected to beatings as a minimum punishment for expressing any form of dissent. Even the other females in the family unit do not support their ‘sisters’ because of the real threat of extreme violence. Islam is an abomination that treats is women as the incubators of the next generation of male bullies. Islam has no place in the civilised world.

  5. Just to clarify re the “censorship” of her boobs. It is my understanding that the photo was uploaded by Amina onto Facebook, and to comply with Facebook’s general terms and conditions, she blurred out her nipples, as have other women posting similar photos. I don’t know who added the black bar. Anyway, I think we’re missing the real issue, which is “Go f**k yourself, Islam”.

    • In reply to #28 by hhobbit:

      Do I not see a bandage around her wrist, and what else might be going on that we don’t yet know?

      If you look at the third photo down on the Huff Post article about this story, you’ll see that Amina appears to have some cuts on her left forearm. You also might notice that she’s been released and is presumably now in no immediate danger of being lobotomized, but I don’t think that’s really relevant to this discussion.

      From the above article:

      Today, Amina is in a psychiatric hospital, admitted there against her will by family members who’ve expressed shame over her actions.

      I don’t suppose there’s any chance at all that it was Amina’s self harming, if that’s what it was, which gave her family cause for concern and ultimately led to her being committed to a psychiatric facility.

      • In reply to #38 by Katy Cordeth:

        In reply to #28 by hhobbit:Do I not see a bandage around her wrist, and what else might be going on that we don’t yet know?If you look at the third photo down on the Huff Post article about this story, you’ll see that Amina appears to have some cuts on her left forearm. You also might notice that she’s been released and is presumably now in no immediate danger of being lobotomized, but I don’t think that’s really relevant to this discussion.From the above article:Today, Amina is in a psychiatric hospital, admitted there against her will by family members who’ve expressed shame over her actions.I don’t suppose there’s any chance at all that it was Amina’s self harming, if that’s what it was, which gave her family cause for concern and ultimately led to her being committed to a psychiatric facility.

        I suspect shes a self harmer from the scars. Knowing what little I do know from people who work in child protection and schools who’ve suggested the form of protest she’s chosen seems very in line with slicing great lumps from your arms.

        In the UK it is on the increase and linked to low feelings of self worth, and in the UK it is linked to the very opposite of being surrounded by ‘prudish’ idiots Peter Grant.

        • In reply to #39 by atheistengineer:

          In the UK it is on the increase and linked to low feelings of self worth, and in the UK it is linked to the very opposite of being surrounded by ‘prudish’ idiots Peter Grant.

          I think the French would disagree.

          • In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:

            In reply to #39 by atheistengineer:In the UK it is on the increase and linked to low feelings of self worth, and in the UK it is linked to the very opposite of being surrounded by ‘prudish’ idiots Peter Grant.I think the French would disagree.

            Well seeing as I said ‘in the UK’, apparently you live in Africa and she lives in Tunisia which as far as I know gained independence from France in the 1950s I’m not really sure what relevance France has? Please enlighten me?

            Maybe the reasons for self harming are different in France but that wasn’t what we were discussing.

  6. Peter Grant:

    You’re welcome, but I’m not a feminist. I just genuinely like women and feel that they ought to have all the same rights and freedoms men enjoy.

    Oh good, I look forward to the day when we see naked images of gorgeous men with lovely willies adorning this website to give us the same rights and freedoms as the RD males seem to be enjoying. Point me in their direction, Maybe your photo will be one of the first?

    • In reply to #30 by atheistengineer:

      Oh good, I look forward to the day when we see naked images of gorgeous men with lovely willies adorning this website to give us the same rights and freedoms as the RD males seem to be enjoying. Point me in their direction, Maybe your photo will be one of the first?

      If you want that sort of equality, could I suggest a holiday in Gran-Canaria. It’s a Spanish island off the west coast of Africa on the opposite side of Tunisia to the Mediterranean topless beaches. – Miles of beautiful sand dunes in subtropical climate.

      http://www.gran-canaria-info.com/guide/nature/nude-beaches-on-gran-canaria

      Topless sunbathing is almost the norm on Gran Canaria’s beaches among both tourists and the locals.

      Nudism is perfectly acceptable but you might get a few stares if you take your bathers off in the wrong place. Take your cue from those around you and you will be fine!

      If you fancy letting it all hang out on Gran Canaria the easy option is to head to the main beach in front of the Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés tourist resorts. To find the nudist section, simply walk from either end towards the middle and stop when you find all the naked people in front of the sand dunes. The nude area even has a specific gay nude zone centred on the snack hut flying the big rainbow flag.

      • In reply to #35 by Alan4discussion:

        In reply to #30 by atheistengineer:Oh good, I look forward to the day when we see naked images of gorgeous men with lovely willies adorning this website to give us the same rights and freedoms as the RD males seem to be enjoying. Point me in their direction, Maybe your photo will be one of the first?If you want that sort of equality, could I suggest a holiday in Gran-Canaria. It’s a Spanish island off the west coast of Africa on the opposite side of Tunisia to the Mediterranean topless beaches. – Miles of beautiful sand dunes in subtropical climate.http://www.gran-canaria-info.com/guide/nature/nude-beaches-on-gran-canariaTopless sunbathing is almost the norm on Gran Canaria’s beaches among both tourists and the locals.Nudism is perfectly acceptable but you might get a few stares if you take your bathers off in the wrong place. Take your cue from those around you and you will be fine!If you fancy letting it all hang out on Gran Canaria the easy option is to head to the main beach in front of the Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés tourist resorts. To find the nudist section, simply walk from either end towards the middle and stop when you find all the naked people in front of the sand dunes. The nude area even has a specific gay nude zone centred on the snack hut flying the big rainbow flag.

        Well just as a matter of interest why do I have to fly to Gran Canaria whilst all you have to do is log on to the so called serious, equality based, atheist discussion for science and reason to see some breasts and discuss how much you like them with your pals. Rather a financial imbalance there don’t you think.

        My point is if this site is supposedly equal than every pair of breasts should be balanced out with a nice large willy for your female contributors. Or is atheism for women really just a version of religion for women but without god?

        And why this protest particularly? Last summer hundreds of brave women from Islamic countries braved death threats to come here and compete in the Olympics. None were featured. What about Ashtiani the 100m runner. Thrown out of cabs, threatened with rape, beatings and death in her native Afghanistan just for having the audacity to try to run fast. She gained a standing ovation in the stadium yet no recognition at all here. Why? Heres a suggestion – clothes? She was fully clothed when running?

  7. WhiteRaven comment 26

    Would the discussion here have been any different if Amina were not a svelte, attractive young woman with pretty breasts and perky nipples?

    Actually I think a more apt question would be would the post even have appeared on the site if she weren’t young?

    If a 60 year old had carried out the same protest would the picture have appeared?

    And would RD net have published it?

    Even though the woman would have been making the same protest and facing the same penalties?

    And as for the discussion, what’s the betting Peter and Cornbread and yourself would be objecting to it being posted.

    What relevance does the fact you find her svelte and attractive have? Why should your perception of her physical appearance make any difference? Why mention it?

    She is not an object she is making a protest and her looks should be irrelevant. Otherwise she’s wasted her time, all she has done is titilated a few men and RD net has posted it just for your titilation. That really doesn’t say a lot for RD net or RD does it.

    There are thousands of women protesting against Islamic oppression and suffering for it daily. Fighting for real rights to drive, to work, to choose their sexual partners, to have sex without fear. Yet they rarely feature. Explain why that is? Explain why this woman with this particular protest. And explain what right exactly is she fighting for?

    My guess is the 60 year old woman wouldn’t stand a chance of RD net caring about her fate! It seems RD can be elderly and slightly past it in the looks dept but women only feature if they are young and topless or being shot by the religious.

    • *In reply to #33 by atheistengineer: You’ll have to get a response from the site moderators about why the story was posted. I think the REAL question is would you have been drawn to the story or found it of any interest if it had appeared without a picture? If you think anything descriptive that I wrote mischaracterizes what I was discussing, or is not pertinent to the points I tried to make, then you’re welcome to address those issues. Otherwise, I don’t understand what itch are you scratching.

      I can guarantee to you that there was at least one woman 50-55 who could compete very well with this girl before or after she had a unilateral mastectomy. Your reply tells me that you kinda missed my point; sorry if it was opaque. Your attitude about whether a similar image of a 60 year old woman might carry any appeal comparable to the one before us is surprisingly naive, uninformed, insulting and pisses me off.. *

      WhiteRaven comment 26

      Would the discussion here have been any different if Amina were not a svelte, attractive young woman with pretty breasts and perky nipples?

      Actually I think a more apt question would be would the post even have appeared on the site if she weren’t young?

      If a 60 year old had carried out the same protest would the picture have appeared?

      And would RD net have published it?

      Even though the woman would have been making the same protest and facing the same penalties?

      And as for the discussion, what’s the betting Peter and Cornbread and yourself would be objecting to it being posted.

      What relevance does the fact you find her svelte and attractive have? Why should your perception of her physical appearance make any difference? Why mention it?

      She is not an object she is making a protest and her looks should be irrelevant. Otherwise she’s wasted her time, all she has done is titilated a few men and RD net has posted it just for your titilation. That really doesn’t say a lot for RD net or RD does it.

      There are thousands of women protesting against Islamic oppression and suffering for it daily. Fighting for real rights to drive, to work, to choose their sexual partners, to have sex without fear. Yet they rarely feature. Explain why that is? Explain why this woman with this particular protest. And explain what right exactly is she fighting for?

      My guess is the 60 year old woman wouldn’t stand a chance of RD net caring about her fate! It seems RD can be elderly and slightly past it in the looks dept but women only feature if they are young and topless or being shot by the religious.

  8. In reply to #28 by hhobbit:

    Do I not see a bandage around her wrist, and what else might be going on that we don’t yet know?

    Perhaps she has suicidal tendencies, considering the sort of prudish idiots she’s surrounded by I wouldn’t blame her.

    • In reply to #34 by Peter Grant:

      In reply to #28 by hhobbit:Do I not see a bandage around her wrist, and what else might be going on that we don’t yet know?Perhaps she has suicidal tendencies, considering the sort of prudish idiots she’s surrounded by I wouldn’t blame her.

      The sorts of suicidal tendencies seen fairly regularly in schools and colleges in the UK actually. Where there are no prudish idiots around. And self harming which is on the increase despite our total lack of prudish idiots.

      I would agree tho, it does look like a self harm or something similar type of bandage.

      • In reply to #36 by atheistengineer:

        I would agree tho, it does look like a self harm or something similar type of bandage.

        The term is honour killing. Many Muslim girls immolate themselves to avoid bringing “shame” on their families.

  9. In reply to #37 by Peter Grant:

    The term is honour killing. Many Muslim girls immolate themselves to avoid bringing “shame” on their families.

    That’s rather presumptuous. How can you claim to know that Amina Tyler’s alleged self harm was motivated by a desire to protect her family from shame?

    This would certainly seem to be contradicted by her subsequently posting topless photos of herself on the internet.

    • In reply to #41 by Katy Cordeth:

      How can you claim to know that Amina Tyler’s alleged self harm was motivated by a desire to protect her family from shame?

      Perhaps, in many such cases, it is rather a desire to escape the consequences of bringing her family “shame”.

  10. This is a fantastically strong and brave image surely rendered instant iconic agitprop in the version on Maryam Namazie’s blog.

    The black bar here is rather an own goal. “See….see,” they will say. “It is offensive even to Richard Dawkins.” Pathetic and entirely counterproductive. Grow some gonads RDnet. and fix this. Sell t-shirts for Namazie and to raise funds for this.

    http://www.change.org/en-CA/petitions/petitioning-tunisian-government-amina-must-be-safe

    Signed.

    (Reading the book is a piece of genius.)

  11. WhiteRaven:

    I think the REAL question is would you have been drawn to the story or found it of any interest if it had appeared without a picture? If you think anything descriptive that I wrote mischaracterizes what I was discussing, or is not pertinent to the points I tried to make, then you’re welcome to address those issues. Otherwise, I don’t understand what itch are you scratching.

    The story would have been identical, and the protest far stronger without the pictures. Just look at the comments it generated. Any about strength or ability to compete with men? Any about prospects or what she might have to say? Any about her right to marry whom she wants, work, o. Straight away the protest has been turned into a comment on how attractive her nipples are.

    When men are more mature and women in the west equal than the picture will be appropriate. Till then Peter Grant and the others obsession with her ‘pretty nipples’ rather wipes out any of the message that she may or may not have been trying to make.

    Most women are fairly cynical about such protests by the way.

  12. It really saddens me to see how large a part women play in their own oppression. Take Amina’s aunt for instance. Women the world over will need to embrace much more liberal values if they wish to be successful in their struggle.

    • In reply to #47 by Peter Grant:

      It really saddens me to see how large a part women play in their own oppression. Take Amina’s aunt for instance. Women the world over will need to embrace much more liberal values if they wish to be successful in their struggle.

      Peter, this is a false dichotomy. There are plenty of very liberal and even radical feminists who would be disappointed in the public nudity aspect of Amina’s protest. The views of atheistengineer and Katy Cordeth here on this thread are in line with this perspective.

      In the feminist view of things, ideally, a woman has the right to make decisions about her own body and all matters having to do with sexuality such as when to become sexually active, with who, and all aspects of her own reproduction. She has the right to choose clothing she likes as long as she is within the law of the land as far as nudity laws go.

      However, there is a strong element of self respect that is expected of women in this movement and this is where the feminists will have a parting of the ways over this type of protest. Feminists want women to maintain control over their own sexuality and this means not giving in to men who just want to use them as cheap sex objects for their own selfish gratification.

      Of course you already know that in the traditional Muslim marriage, women are bought and sold as baby factories and have no control over their own sexuality at all in their whole lives. What the Feminists want is for women to not put themselves on display for men to use as cheap material for a quick jerk-off, but instead to use methods that increase self respect and create real change at a societal level such as education and aggressive career advancement for women.

      In Amina’s part of the world they are in great need of legal reform immediately. They need safe houses for women who are being beaten and abused on a daily basis and can’t leave because they have no money and no right to take their children away from their husband and his family. I hope Amina will go to law school and become a Tunisian lawyer and fight for the rights of her women and make real and substantial changes to a system that is so stacked against them. That being said, I think she’s a hero and my heart goes out to her because I think she was in a living hell and couldn’t stand it for another minute. She used what means she had to express her obvious distress and I support her in that.

      It should be clear to everyone at this point that between all women there is no solid agreement on the right or wrong, good or bad of this type of protest tactic. I am personally conflicted over the whole subject.

      Peter, I included the quote by you above because I can see that you are on the right side of this issue but I think you have underestimated the psychological pain that all women feel when we are presented with news of a young woman in an oppressive part of the world where she is suffering deeply and can’t get out. It’s painful because there is very little we can do to help her and we imagine how it would be if it were ourselves or our own daughters in this horrific situation. We are far away but we feel this very directly in our own lives. This is the context to which we opened this thread to read the comments and saw this:

      Why are her beautiful boobies blotted out?

      We would be happy if you could see your way clear to making amends for that.

      • In reply to #54 by LaurieB:

        In reply to #47 by Peter Grant:

        We would be happy if you could see your way clear to making amends for that.

        Unlike some parts of the Islamic world, where a woman is required to wear a burqa at all times in public.

        (As I pointed out earlier), Peter lives in South Africa where thousands of women go topless as a matter of normal routine!

        Should they also all, “make amends”, for doing so – along with all those who swim with their partners and families on Spanish, French, German, and some UK beaches?
        Body attitudes are involved in requirements to cover-up, along with the question who imposes those requirements and attitudes on others. That was what the OP protest was about!

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  14. In reply to #51 by atheistengineer:

    Which liberal values for women is she espousing?

    She is espousing liberal values for everyone and they are written right there on her chest:

    My body belongs to me, and is not the source of the honour of anyone.

    • In reply to #50 by Peter Grant:

      In reply to #51 by atheistengineer:Which liberal values for women is she espousing?She is espousing liberal values for everyone and they are written right there on her chest:My body belongs to me, and is not the source of the honour of anyone.

      But her body is now all over the internet for anyone to comment on. Hardly her own any more.

      What has she actually done for the wome of Tunisia who risk losing hard won real freedoms? Really? Because I’m not really sure her hard working, genuinely brave, female activist peers in the country are thanking her as much as RD net. I’m not sure the female bloggers and protesters appreciate what she is doing for them and I’m sure they’d have preferred an approach more geared to them and their genuine rights rather than teenage boys.

      From an updated article about her.

      Even Amina’s motives seem murky. Since she was condemned to death by stoning by a Salafist cleric, she has gone into hiding and rumors about her well-being are rampant. Some say she has gone into a psychiatric unit. Her lawyer says she is fine and with her parents. She has undoubtedly made her mark on the Internet, her image traveling across the world. But why does she not hit the streets of Tunis like my other activist friends and protest, or blog, or try to highlight the plight of women in a more productive way?

      I fear Amina has brought the cause of Tunisian women backward rather than forward. Why provoke a country that stands at the brink of losing rights that women in the past took for granted? Some Tunisian women recently told the BBC that they chose to go back to niqab, the full veil revealing only their eyes, after the revolution of 2011. Other women tell me that while Tunisia has always been an advanced country in terms of women’s rights, they fear these rights will be threatened.

      Ennahda, to be sure, has not actually taken away any rights that existed under Ben Ali, such as divorce on equal terms or polygamy. One senior official told the BBC that they are not looking to impose a lifestyle on anyone. “We’re here to defend freedom.” Yet there is a generation of women who are genuinely worried. The changes are not happening yet on the surface, but in the important place, in the underpinnings of society.

      “There are more hardliners,” Amna Guellali, director of Human Rights Watch Tunisia said recently. “More of these so-called Salafist groups who tend to impose their own vision of society and religion. I think this might have a very strong effect on women.”

      During the Jasmine revolution, and in the joyous months after, it was exhilarating to see so many young women take to the streets, marching in peaceful demonstrations for democracy. I interviewed dozens of young women bloggers, activists, and protesters. They were inspiring. They wanted to be part of the new regime that would usher in freedom, human rights, and equality.

      But they were also respectful. Any protester knows that the only way activism works is to get the people on your side. Femen is not exactly endearing themselves to anyone, except perhaps to hormonal teenage boys.

      Amina’s heart might be in the right place, but I wish she would cover it up with a T-shirt and protest quietly, but effectively, rather than getting her kit off.

  15. In my opinion the protest would not have been nearly as powerful had she just been holding a placard; fully clothed. Writing the message on her bare body for Islamic prudes to bristle over adds more oomph. Its a good “up yours” to those Islamic bastards.

    I like the cigarette. Nice touch!

    Those ladies protesting male dominantion in autocratic countries with bare bodies are very brave indeed and certainly get my full admiration for what they are doing.

  16. In reply to #52 by atheistengineer:

    But her body is now all over the internet for anyone to comment on. Hardly her own any more.

    I’m not sure what you mean by this.

    What has she actually done for the women of Tunisia who risk losing hard won real freedoms? Really? Because I’m not really sure her hard working, genuinely brave, female activist peers in the country are thanking her as much as RD net. I’m not sure the female bloggers and protesters appreciate what she is doing for them and I’m sure they’d have preferred an approach more geared to them and their genuine rights rather than teenage boys.

    Check out Maryam Namazie’s blog to see all the support she is getting from women around the world.

    From an updated article about her.

    I found the link.
    Not much to say about it other than that the piece sounds very accommodationist. What good are “rights” if you’re too afraid to exercise them?

  17. Body indifference is surely the aspirational state for us and for all. Shame of an ankle or an areola is surrendering too much power to others. It is northern Europe that has made most progress in this through the twentieth century (though the effects may indeed be more noticeable on southern beaches.)

    The (mostly) US snickery “Beavis and Butheadery” prudishness (undoubtedly rooted in the high religiosity of the place) is a rational failure that holds us back. True, males don’t mature until mid thirties and this big demographic fuels the Hollywood snickery exploitation. Worse, there seems to be a schizophrenic attitude to sex there, perhaps the result of an active individualism, where people test the limits of this constitutional freedom in escaping the cultural oppression of the religious. (That latter sounds too dramatic yet I think this has it.) I would love to think that Body Indifference in the US would be an economic catastrophe for sections of the film and porn industries. Whatever, Body Indifference needs to progress if we are to be maximally free of oppressive others.

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