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Should we always excuse abuse if it falls under "religion"?

This story is so disturbing, because it assumes that women are always to blame for men's inability to control their behaviors.  A cleric in Saudi Arabia has issued a fatwa demanding that even infant girls wear burkas so that they aren't victims of sexual molestation. 

Get that? 


It's bad enough that they demand that girls wear burkas once they reach puberty.  It's bad enough that women are considered minors in that extreme version of Islam.  But to suggest that baby girls must be covered from head to toe so that Muslim men aren't tempted to rape them?  That's a sign that there's something terribly wrong with the men in that culture, and I'd suggest that it's their religion that corrupts them.

Here's the article.

My question is, then, in line with similar ones I've asked before.  How much do we excuse in the name of religion?  Isn't it clear that women and girls are not given any choice in these situations?  Is that acceptable because it's what their religion decrees?

Answer Question

Asked by jsbenkert at 12:06 PM on Feb. 4, 2013 in Religious Debate

Level 37 (89,331 Credits)
Answers (28)
  • Islam has already made everything clear and there will always be followers who want to change things to their lack of understanding.

    Answer by virginiamama71 at 1:10 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • Understanding of what, virginiamama?  What has Islam made clear?  That women should be subjugated to men?  That girls should be sold if convenient to the man or father-figure in her life?  That she should be covered from head to toe because men can't control their urges?  Why don't the men of Islam pray for better self-control, rather than try to control every aspect of women's lives?

    I ask these questions, by the way, not to be deliberately or personally disrespectful of you.  But you said that "Islam has already made everything clear", when clearly it has not.  Please defend or explain your comment.


    Comment by jsbenkert (original poster) at 1:19 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • I think it speaks volumes about those who want to push this. I would think its their sexual desires that should be questioned, not all followers of Islam. IMO anyone who says a infant can tempt men struggle with pedifile desires themselves and should not be able to be a leader of their religion.

    Answer by skinnyslokita at 1:26 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • I'm sorry, I messed my last answer up.

    How do we differentiate between which country is more wrong than others. I think we could go on forever in regard to a country's treatment of various groups.

    Answer by snookyfritz at 1:50 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • Is there no base for moral behavior towards one another, then?  Is it okay, for example, for one country to execute gays, even if we find it to be morally reprehensible?  Selling daughters into marriage when they are still children (selling them at all) is okay, if it's allowed within the religious laws of a particular nation or group?  Sure, we could quibble over some issues, but some seem (at least to me) to be pretty clear:  Humans must not subjugate other humans.  Period.  Is there moral wiggle room with that?  Seriously?


    Comment by jsbenkert (original poster) at 1:53 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • i dont think its the religion, those men can say its all in the name of religion, but its not. its the country, a political statement (that women are scum) disguised as religious (cause Allah says so). and i think we should respond with a political statement in kind like sanctions, but since they have the oil thats not gonna happen any time soon. if it was the religion we'd see the same outlandish rules in Irag, Iran, etc.

    and what happens to the men who molest little boys? is it the little boys fault, or do they deem that homosexuality on the man's part? either way why do those men have to control themselves yet non-pedo men do not? the men creating these rules are idiots.

    Answer by okmanders at 2:19 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • They are total idiots there is no doubt but you must ask yourself. What are you willing to do to change it? Type a question on here? Big deal that does nothing. Write the President? That's a little better but still not much action on our part. Unfortunately the only way to stop this comes down to wars. These kind of men understand nothing less then killings. If they are so depraved as to rape a baby then they will not stop for anything else. We will all agree that it's horrible and should be stopped but are we willing to put our children or even ourselves on the front lines to stop them? I don't think most of us WILL. We may say we would but will we.

    Answer by baconbits at 2:28 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • We live in a world that respects geo-political and religious borders. And unless you are willing to make any one nation the moral police and enforcer, that's the way it will stay. You can try to affect change through making people aware of what you consider injustices, but I would be quite certain that they have equally serious reservations about us. Kind of a people in glass houses scenario

    Answer by snookyfritz at 4:15 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • Can it be classified as abuse if these women are willing? I'm sure it isn't that simple, many women in these circumstances have no choice. This is where education and human rights come in. It shouldn't be excused. We must try harder to get into countries that allow this. Not to bully and belittle their religion because this is an extreme version of Islam, but to educate and teach and love our neighbors.

    Answer by HHx5 at 6:31 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

  • When I said Islam has made everything very clear --- means there is no need for them to continue coming up with fatwas.
    They do this all the time over issues but most of the fatwas never get anywhere cause there is a committee who has to approve fatwas and this has no reason to be issued.

    Answer by virginiamama71 at 6:52 PM on Feb. 4, 2013

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