Friday, November 1, 2013

A Time For Change

In American culture, it is often seen that women are similarly equal to men and have very similar human rights. Although there is not an exact equality between men and women, it seems that there is a progression to create more equality in the areas where rights are not equal; however, this is not the case in some Middle Eastern nations. In Saudi Arabia, Tariq al-Mubarak, a male journalist, is currently in prison after expressing his optimism and hopes that women will be able to drive themselves and get closer to having equal rights in an article called “The Woman in the Gulf…Time for Change.” After the article was published and spread, women planned to drive on streets around the country as a way of protesting on October 26; however, this caused the women to be stopped by police and to acquire fines for their actions.

            Personally, I believe that Saudi Arabia is placing these restrictions too heavily on the women and men that want to push for a revolution of rights. From my American upbringing, I have learned that women have many of the same abilities as men and that these women should be able to act on and engage in these equal rights. Here, women are often the providers for families and take a large portion of the action in the home. Although men are seen as the ones with more power in Saudi Arabia, I believe that the women should be more equal. I find this lack of rights to be morally and ethically askew; however, I cannot say that my beliefs are right and that theirs are wrong because that would be an appeal to cultural and moral relativism. Although I understand that their rights are culturally opposing to ours in a system where males have traditionally had dominance for thousands of years, I, like Tariq al-Mubarak, believe that it is time for a change and that these women should have the right to drive, as well as many other rights that they are lacking.

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