Help women everywhere

Not familiar with the concept of honor killings? Familiar with them but don’t know much about them or how you of all people might do something about it? Read this post by Azteclady over at Karen Knows Best; read Joss Whedon’s original 2007 post; and then pick up a copy of the book, Nothing But Red to help raise awareness and money for the cause. Heck, buy one for a friend, or a local library.

And please, do read Whedon’s post. I have nothing to add because he already said it all, far better than I could have.

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4 comments on “Help women everywhere
  1. Aaron says:

    I read a story once about a Palestinian girl who was raped by her brothers, then killed by her mother because the daughter had brought shame on the family by attracting the boys’ lust. Cultures are just like personalities: each one contains both good and evil, and we shouldn’t shy away from criticizing what’s wrong.

    All that “Womb Envy” stuff is nonsense and certainly doesn’t help these women. But, honestly, I doubt there’s any easy way to help. On the one hand, force is necessary to prevent the continuation of these killings and such while we try to sway that part of their culture toward reason and love (to save lives now while we work on a long-term solution). On the other hand, force can lead to other problems. We might just have to settle for watching these women go on dying until we can save their progeny through cultural influence. 🙁

    The world has so many evils… you have to pick your battles. We’re not omnipotent. Generally, you can do more confronting the evils directly around you than the evils beyond personal connection. The strongest influence is individual relationships. Change a person’s heart, and that ripples far beyond sight.

  2. heather says:

    All that “Womb Envy” stuff is nonsense and certainly doesn’t help these women.

    Whedon’s a storyteller; it’s in his nature to phrase issues in mythical terms. And yeah, sometimes that does help—the entire Buffy series was based on taking the real and making it mythical, and that’s a valid way to expose and face societal issues. That’s why we have myths and religion. He makes so many good points in that post. I’ve witnessed emotional and physical abuse of women, and when Whedon described the woman in the movie saying, “I’m sorry” when she was the one being abused, and pointed out that most abuse shares that same dynamic, I was nodding vigorously—I’ve seen and heard the same thing, in person. You seem to see this as a distant problem, but to me it hits very close to home. It might not result in honor killings in our culture, but the dynamic is similar and often devastating.

    While I agree that you can often do more good by facing those ills that are close to home, that’s no reason to turn away from those moments when we can help those who are far away. Particularly today, when thanks to airplanes, the internet, etc., we’re all neighbors in a sense. If you can contribute to a cause by purchasing a $6 ebook, and it’s a cause and an ebook you’re interested in, then why not do so? You certainly don’t have to if the cause isn’t one that moves you or you don’t have the money, or would rather put it toward a different cause, but that’s no reason to argue against giving to the cause in general, IMO.

  3. Aaron says:

    With this particular issue, I’m not sure how money can help the problem. The problem is a cultural one, in need of a cultural fix, and the only way I can imagine our money affecting their culture is by lobbying for our government to intervene somehow…. which is unlikely, even with the money. Books, music, and such don’t help, because most of those governments tightly control all media. And law isn’t everything… sometimes things are legal, but still impossible because of social pressures. Believe me, this issue concerns me greatly, but I don’t see anything I can do about it other than to talk with people I meet who are from that region, hoping that they might help their neighbors if they should ever return.

    Here, in this country, I can help. I can confront the abusers and console the abused. In San Antonio, there’s a lot of spousal and child abuse. I knew girls who were raped by their own fathers and grandfathers. I can help them.

    Some problems overseas absolutely can be helped through money, such as medical and educational needs. But I don’t think this is one such problem.

    I wasn’t criticizing Whedon’s description of that woman, and I respect the use of myth to relay truth. But his theory of how so many women came to be victimized does not sound like myth, and I see no value in it. The post began good, but I didn’t like where he went with it… that’s all I was saying.

  4. heather says:

    Actually, there are many good uses to which money can be put in such situations. Shelters for abused women. Education for women. Attempts to lobby local government for protective laws. All of these things take money.

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