So for those who don't know there's been this twitter hashtag going around where people, mostly Muslim women, and some others,tweet about various problems/double standards and the like. There have been some very interesting and real tweets such as the one that started off the whole hashtag: “White fems want to pull your hijab off and 'liberate' you and Muslims tell you you don't need feminism.”
My problem with this is not the content. Well most of the the content, there was one about twerking and belly dancing and a couple others I thought were enormously stupid but I digress. The content is fine, women as a whole have never really had it totally fair. Black men could vote before white women could. Men still make more for doing than the same job than women. Hillary Clinton is the closest thing to a presidential candidate this country's ever had and she never had much of a chance. Muslim women have even more challenges in a country were sexualized and liberated are synonyms when it comes to women. But everyone likes to get a little ranting off their chests once in a while. It feels good.
However, the hashtag is not by any means the proper means to accomplish anything besides a little social media fanfare and controversy. Let's look at this logically. You post a problem unique to Muslims and say it's the life of a Muslim feminist. Outsiders looking in see that these women face all these problems because of their oppressive religion. You being a feminist (for the sake of this argument let's define it as a woman seeking equal rights and treatment) is made more difficult because of your religious choice. Regardless of whether or not this is your intention you need to see and judge the impacts of your actions. That is the logical implication people are getting from these tweets and its absolutely horrible. Many who don't know about Islam in any sort of detail will see this and instantly get an awful impression of what it must be like to be a “practicting/religious Muslim.”
Not only that, but the problems people are posting about have nothing to do with actual Islam. They have to do with people forcing their cultural views on women and backing it up under the name of Islam. Not only that but this casts a horrible view on all the Muslim men who aren't sexist, and treat WOMEN as a whole with respect. For every person with a bogus, Saudi view on women's rights there are a thousand Muslim men who think those views are just as BS as the women do.
Here is the bottom line, you'll get retweets and likes from certain people. That's the good part, the consequences are that you creating a horrible stereotype of Muslim men being horrible misogynistic dicks because that's what their religion makes them become. The sheer thought that Muslim women should have to fight for rights is sad, and a sign that some people have abandoned what the Prophet Muhammed (s) taught. Some people have used the hashtag and clarified that this doesn't apply to Islam but only some people. However, when people feel the need to clear up the fact that the hashtag doesn't apply to the religion but rather to certain people, well that's when you know you haven't started something good. If your actions require you to clarify and say “no, no my religion isn't so God-awful and sexist” then you aren't doing the right thing. Sure not all of the tweets are about problems/injustices/double-standards but this hashtag as a whole is not beneficial for anyone. The venting of these issues in this manner benefits nobody and reinforces negative stereotypes of Islam and the people who follow it.
That sums up my take on this issue. Now I'm sure there will be those with conflicting opinions and I just want to put this out there before anyone does decide to comment. I welcome your well thought out input, however if you reject my argument and cite my gender and my lack of empathy towards your plight as the reason, here's why your wrong:
- You haven't actually touched my argument's points at all.
- Your argument is known as a fallacy of ad hominem.
- I'm a human being with the logical capacity to analyze situations and their repercussions. My gender doesn't affect my ability to do this.