Picture this: Driving on the motorway and all of a sudden you get pulled over by a Police car. You get out the car, you can’t recall doing anything you shouldn’t have and all you can do is wait for what the officer has to say “Do you realise you’re wearing trousers which is an indecent and against the law?” * Handcuffs you* “…anything you say can and will be held against you in the court of law.” I honestly think I would remain silent out of sheer and utter confusion rather than the fact that he r she told me that anything I say could be held against me.
The point of this blog post today is not solely about gender or the marginalisation of women. It’s more to do with basic human rights that apply to everyone regardless of where you belong on the gender continuum.
Okay back to trousers, jeans or as Americans say pants, imagine if it was illegal to wear such immoral clothing! I could if we lived in an era where it was unheard of but in Sudan it is still considered to to be indecent for women to wear trousers in 2015. Women are taken to trial and suffer the repercussions of being flogged or lashed publicly.
Fardos (in the picture above) is a 19 year old Christian girl who has the triple jeopardy being young, female and in some respects Christian as they make up only 3% of Sudan’s population with other African religions that are practiced in the country. To be frank the country’s leader President Omar al-Bashir is making it difficult for anyone who is not a practising muslim.
In the world we live in, sometimes the layers of our identity are marginalised and at times people can’t quite grasp that these layers can vary, for instance:
- Sudanese , Muslim, Female
- Sudanese, Christian, Male
- Sudanese,Atheist Male
- Chinese, Muslim, Male,
- British-Sudanese Muslim Female
These combinations are in no particular order nor do they follow a pattern it’s pretty random to be honest, and that’s the point I’m making; we’re all so different but so alike but some of us are failing to come to this realisation.
Amnesty International have fully grasped this and advocate those who find themselves being silenced by the majority because they’re different or because people can’t understand their views. Please join Amnesty International and click on this link. Thank you.