Yes you can.


A firm congratulations to Tawakul Karman called the “Mother of the Revolution” in Yemen.  I congratulate her for winning The Nobel Peace Prize.  She has fought for women’s rights in one of the most oppressive regimes in the Middle East.  She has fought for the rights of all her people as well as the women and in so doing has been instrumental to the Arab Spring and the Revolution in Yemen. She is an inspiration for women around the world and very deserving of this Prize.

And I can’t help but wonder if Tawakul Karman was from the Muslim community in South Africa, would she have been ostracised and isolated for not know her place at home? The South African Muslim community (primarily those of Indian descent) suppresses the efforts of the women to contribute towards the upliftment of society in many ways. There are some pockets of reason that don’t, but the vast majority of the Tableeghi Jamaat-inspired communities insist that a woman should be out of sight and out of hearing whenever men are around. And they’ve successfully created an elitism about this to the point where the current generation has become more rebellious than before.

It seems that an act of extremism on one side inevitably leads to extremism on the other. In this case, an extreme interpretation towards conservatism and modesty, is leading to an extreme sense of rebelling against such unsubstantiated cultural constraints enforced under the guise of Islam. We often forget what moderation is in our efforts to exert our individual piety upon a community. 


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