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Veiled statues

Posted by Richard on March 8, 2008

Today, March 8, is International Women's Day. To celebrate, a German-based organization calling itself "Anonymous Group of Democratic and Free Thinking" (yeah, their English translations are less than perfect) has stepped up a guerilla campaign that actually began last year — the veiling of public statues and sculptures of women in order to call attention to a growing threat to women's rights in Europe:

Veiled WomanThe aim of the campaign is to refer to the creeping Islamisation endangering the European idea of UNITY IN DIVERSITY and other similar cultural achievements of the liberal thinking world. Particularly, the phenomenom that Muslim women wear increasingly Burqa or headscarfs, is a visible expression of the challenge and threat to our liberal societies with their values such as women´s rights, democracy, liberal and secular thinking.

With this campaign, we would like to increase public awareness of our liberal values and to advocate them. The liberal achievements such as equal rights of men and women, individual freedom, Human Rights, and the dignity of each individual are no negotiable values! We would like to point out that substantial and partly irreconcilable differences exist between the Muslim and the liberal thinking world.

Veiled statueWhat a terrific idea! In the last couple of days, these brave human rights activists have veiled public statues of women in Berlin, Braunschweig, Dortmund, and Düsseldorf, Germany, in Helsinki, Tampere, and Turku, Finland, and in Moscow, Russia. 

The group's press release, even in awkward English translation, made clear their uncompromising commitment to the universality of human rights (emphasis in original):

It is not racist to point out these issues, it is racist to keep ourselves from protecting and advocating the rights of the women in the Muslim world, whether they live in foreign countries or in ours. So, where are the women’s rights activists who used to stand up for women’s rights for the Western women in the our world? There is no reason and no need to leave these Muslim women alone without help in sight.

We would like to compare two quotes, one is taken from the Declaration of Human Rights and one is chosen from the Quran in order to show where the substantial differences are:

… "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood." …

Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations, Art. 1

… "To those (women) on whose part you fear desertion, admonish them, and leave them alone in the sleeping-places and beat them." …

Quran, Sura 4,34

On this International Women's Day, I celebrate and applaud the anonymous human rights advocates throughout Europe who are participating in this campaign to challenge and reject the atrocious, barbaric 7th-century ideology that already dominates the Middle East and is trying to extend its control across Europe and eventually the entire globe. I'm only sorry that they consider it necessary to remain anonymous. 


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