Numerous Muslim males who advocate for girls’s proper to put on the hijab don’t truly consider the hijab for granted.
I hissed in exasperation as I got here throughout a Twitter thread advocating for girls’s proper to put on the hijab. My response wasn’t in itself towards the content material of the thread, however the hypocrisy behind it. This thread was written by a person who’s infamous for demonising feminists and ladies’s rights activists and condemning them to hell. Right underneath the tweet was a video of an Iranian man in Qom; one in all Iran’s most conservative cities, making an attempt to arrest a girl for not protecting her hair correctly. I smiled; not the vast cheeky, full-hearted sort, however the one which masks a fiery surge of anger on the hypocrisy and misogyny in our communities.
Speaking as a Muslim girl who wears the hijab, I cringe when Muslim males completely battle for girls’s proper to put on the hijab. Where is that this similar vitality once we speak about ladies’s socio-economic and political rights? Why are additionally they not advocating for Muslim ladies’s proper to self-determination and full company and in search of justice for Muslim ladies? How do males who imagine that girls lack authorized existence; males who see ladies as subhumans and aggressively search to regulate the minds and our bodies of ladies immediately start to speak a couple of girl’s “right” to put on the hijab? Centuries of Islamic legislation legislations, which have departed from the unique ideas established within the Islamic neighborhood led by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) erased the Muslim girl’s authorized existence and consolidated it into that of the lads in her life, underneath whose wings and authority, she performs every little thing.
In the a part of the Qur’an the place the ethical codes turned outlined for men and women, the Prophet was requested to inform the believing women and men to decrease their glances and guard their personal elements (Qur’an 24:30) He was additional requested to inform ladies to let their headscarves fall to cowl their necklines, and never reveal their charms besides to their kinfolk, kids, ladies and slaves. (Qur’an 24:31). The headscarves referred to on this verse of the Qur’an have been already usually worn by each Arab women and men earlier than Islam. The ladies’s headscarves lined their heads and trailed their backs, exposing their necklines and a few elements of their breasts. Hence, the injunction to make use of some a part of their head coverings to cowl their necklines and bosoms
These verses of the Qur’an have been addressed to ladies, believed to have full company and freedom of selection concerning whether or not or to not observe the prescribed mode of dressing. Such was the case of Fatima Al-Kubra, an excellent descendant of Muhammad (PBUH), who refused to cowl her hair together with the noblewomen of her time. A chunk of clothes, which was initially an expression of freedom of selection turned sadly manipulated and politicised over time.
Centuries of Islamic legislation legislations ensured that one set of legal guidelines utilized nearly totally to ladies, and was aimed particularly at muting their voices. The jurists decreased ladies to sexual beings and held them accountable for controlling males’s lusts. They thought of ladies weak and susceptible to ethical weak spot and sin. The resolution, subsequently, was to seal ladies away from the view of males. Women might be harshly humiliated merely for speaking an excessive amount of or too publicly or in a tone of voice that appeared grating or comfortable. The gown code prescription turned expanded and extra stringent for girls. It turned the accountability of males to impose the hijab on ladies to make sure that they fell in line. If a girl acquired harassed, attacked or raped, it was as a result of she wasn’t obeying the legislation by both protecting up fully or staying in her house.
Today, there isn’t a basic consensus that the hijab is obligatory. While many jurists dominated that it’s certainly, compulsory for Muslim ladies, some others dominated that it’s merely prescribed and never obligatory. And whereas many Muslim ladies who interact with these arguments imagine that it’s certainly obligatory and select to watch it, different Muslim ladies imagine that it isn’t obligatory and select to not put on it. Every Muslim girl ought to have the suitable to freely debate the hijab and select whether or not or to not put on it. To insist in any other case is to disclaim the company, bodily autonomy, and selection of those Muslim ladies.
In a world the place the hijab remains to be getting used to restrict many ladies to their houses, limit them from collaborating within the public sphere, and deny them their socio-economic rights, I cringe when Muslim males blindly ignore all the problems bedevilling Muslim ladies right now and aggressively advocate for our proper to put on the hijab. I discover it actually hypocritical and insulting. Numerous Muslim males who advocate for girls’s proper to put on the hijab don’t truly consider the hijab for granted. They aren’t preventing for the Muslim girl’s proper to self-determination and freedom of selection. These males present harsh judgment and intolerance in direction of Muslim ladies who don’t put on Hijabs. Their insincere agitation is an extension of their misogyny which stems from the assumption that girls are the supply of evil and temptation, and may subsequently be sealed away from the general public sphere. They imagine that males’s salvation lies in curbing the facility that girls maintain over them. What they’re, certainly, preventing for is their very own proper to impose the hijab as a political instrument of energy and management.
If these males are certainly honest about their agitations, they need to make investments the identical vitality into preventing oppression, inequality and injustice. They must also respect the alternatives of these ladies who select to not put on the hijab. Until then, we don’t want them to battle for us.
Aqilah-Layla Bashir is a skincare entrepreneur and social justice activist.