When a woman is less important than a pet dog

The majority of the world sees the female human as a piece of property, a commodity, and certainly anything but an equal.  In these societies a woman has a status far below that of a pet dog.

Within most of these communities she is born and kept isolated from others, especially men, until she is given to a man she’s usually never met before, and is then his property.

(A beautiful landscape hiding an ugly humanity)

Actually, she’s his slave, pandering to his every whim, whether that be to never refuse him sexually, or to never complain when she is used as a punchbag.  Her function is to be what her mother was to her, but to the children she must produce.  If she fails to produce children, even if the biological fault is that of her husband, she can of course be discarded, killed, and replaced for bringing shame on his name.

For a woman in this kind of society it’s a lonely, quite harrowing and awful place to be.  Having no choice but to have this life must be very daunting.

Well, of course, these poor women know nothing else so it all just ‘feels’ normal to them.  They must hide themselves under what are effectively large blankets so that nothing of them is seen by men.  To be ‘seen’ is to somehow bring disgrace on the family, and to make them no longer a prized item to be given to a man at the allotted time in exchange for a large dowry payment.

Recently, we heard the awful tale of the young 15 year old Pakistani girl Anusha, who turned her head and looked at a young man riding a motorbike through the street.  For doing this, her father beat her violently and the mother poured acid over her which slowly burned her to an agonising death.  All perfectly acceptable in the parents’ eyes.  In the twisted primitive and immature logic of their society, the girl had potentially brought dishonour on their family.

Unusually, the parents were arrested for her murder.  Normally it’s just let go, accepted, and turned a blind eye to. It is a tradition that dates back forever.

What I personally found most unpalatable about the case is how the parents are unrepentant.  It was her ‘destiny’ declared the murdered girl’s mother, obviously not understanding what all the fuss is about and completely confused as to why she had been arrested.

Her daughter had looked at a boy riding past on a motorcycle, and so that would bring dishonour on the family, and so she had to die.  That was her logic.  It made perfect sense to her.

Around a thousand women are killed every year in Pakistan in these so called honour killings, and when you look into it it’s never really a case of the women being actually adulterous or having actually done anything like stealing or some other quantifiable actual crime.  It’s more usually because they’ve been raped, or accidentally exposed their face or been in the same room as a male for 2 seconds.  The mentality of the parents or people declaring that something dishonourable has happened is on a par with playground bullying in a infants school.

In other words, the punishment will be about nothing that actually makes sense in the adult world.

Yet, entire villages of these adults with infantile brains will react and demand that ‘honour’ be restored.

I recall working with a lady whose parents originally came from a remote village in a similar area to the one in which Anusha was killed.  This particular lady was born in a different, far more modern country, and had then moved to the UK.  She was very Westernised.  However, at age 14 she had been tricked into returning to her village of heritage and was forced into a marriage to a much older man who then beat her, constantly raped her and made her life a living hell.  She eventually escaped from him and was smuggled back to the more Westernised country she was born in.

As the years went by, the ‘husband’ accepted his loss, and re-married.  However, he always refused to divorce the lady I’m speaking of.

Time moved on, and she met and fell in love with a kind man.  They lived together in the UK.  However, despite years of living together, the man had to live out of a suitcase.  At a moment’s notice they would have to cover-up his existence and he would have to move out.

This would be when relatives of hers were visiting.  Not just those who might live in the remote village of her ancestors, but even the more up to date liberal relatives.

Her dishonourable crime of being married, yet separated from the evil man, but living happily with her current man, would bring shame upon her family back in the traditional village.  If a man decides to not divorce his wife, she cannot ‘lay’ with another man.

To me, a chap who has always not given a fuck what others might think, she should have just got on with her life and just ignored the relatives in the village.  However, the reality is that if her ‘laying’ with another man had been discovered or even hinted at back in the village, then the whole village would have ex-communicated her family.

Being ex-communicated means bugger all in our modern society, we just get on with our lives.  But in those remote primitive parts, it means nobody would trade with the family, nobody would provide work or food, and they would be effectively starved to death for the ‘sins’ of the grand-daughter.  Leaving the village for other nearby villages would not be an option either as nobody welcomes a dishonoured family, and news travels fast.  The entire extended family would have to uproot and move to proper civilisation in order to escape punishment.  Such a move would be impossible.

So, for the rest of her life, ‘operation cover-up’ has to be invoked whenever relatives come to stay, lest a dozen or so people in a far off land be punished by what is inevitably death, for her bringing ‘dishonour’ to the village.

It seems to me that we need to stamp on all this by prosecuting the murderers, and educating the people rather than allowing them to continue with such primitive and stupid unforgivable behaviour.