In 2004 a “No Abuse” campaign (by King Khalid Foundation to provide legal protection to abused women and children) was launched, where a woman clad in a niqab with a badly bruised eye stared into the camera with a message, "Some things can't be covered.” While the campaign was fruitful to have culminated into a legal ban on domestic violence by Saudi cabinet. Even the famous TV presenter, Rania Al-Baaz, was not spared and recently suffered thirteen fractures on her face due to her husband’s beatings, who fled soon after the incident. Even more disturbing is the recent video aired on Lebanese Television which discussed the “right” ways and occasions to beat wives. The production of this video in itself speaks volumes about the psychology of some men and their stubbornness to accept domestic violence as an evil act.
Is beating a wife legitimate because she did not cook a meal according to his taste or because she wore neon colored nail polish to the market? While a husband feels no guilt in slapping his ‘misbehaving’ wife across her face and fracturing her jaw, is the wife also allowed to do the same when the husband is not taking care of her needs and beats her up because he is drunk? Far worse is the way these men seek to legitimize their hideous actions by saying, “So what if she gets a slap or two? This is not violence!” At times Quranic verses are being misinterpreted and used to justify domestic violence. It is widely believed that physical abuse is allowed if used moderately, but who decides the fine line between moderate and extreme? After all, a moderate slap may be enough to break a wife’s tooth or bruise her eye!
A prominent Saudi publicist, Turki al-Dakhil states that, “Hitting has become the 'deed of deeds' for the man.” While we are quick to criticize and condemn acts of domestic violence, we fail to realize the source of such actions. The issue is engraved in the mentality of our society where the male is the head of the family and has the right to govern and control the members at all times and in any manner he deems right. Thus, these beatings are left unquestioned even when he acts irrationally during a temper fit. Women, too, have succumbed to the notion of silently bearing the brunt of these men who they consider to be their masters in order to save their marriages from divorcing and from societal malign. When the problem lies in the way society thinks, it is unlikely that the number of such hideous incidents will reduce any time soon. We can only hope that the abusers are punished and the society accepts it as a social evil and tries to combat it.
Saudi Police took action against registered complaint of domestic violence by the famous media personality and arrested her Husband Muhammad Bakar Yunus Al-Fallatta. Saudi Court gave its verdict by punishing the culprit of domestic violence with 6 months Jail and 300 lashes. It is fair reward for the domestic violence, isn’t it?
Source: Arab News
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