News coming out of Germany that German Chancellor Angela Merkel has joined a growing movement to criminalize forced marriages in Germany, which is growing less tolerant of practices among Muslim immigrants that clash with the nation's liberal social values. Angela Merkel said in a speech at a women's conference
I completely agree that forced marriages should be punishable as a criminal act
Sibylle Schreiber, a spokeswoman for the women's rights group Terre des Femmes responded to Angela's speech
We are thrilled that the chancellor has made such a clear statement. Finally she's given a signal to the people that forcing your daughter into marriage is a crime.
Serap Cileli, a Turkish-German writer whose book — "We Are Your Daughters, Not Your Honor" — documents her escape from a forced marriage at age 24, welcomed Merkel's initiative but said it was important to address the immigrant community directly.
As long as we don't teach the fathers, husbands and brothers to let the women live self-determined lives, this wound will never stop bleeding.
It is obvious that as the Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel deserves to be paid attention to, but while Serap Cileli is not an elected official she has personal knowledge and understanding that must not be ignored. Serap is to Germany like Ayaan is to Holland. I found an in-depth interview that Serap gave in 2005 to a blogger, Chameleon. Here are just snippets from the interview.
Chameleon: How do you react to the talk of multiculturalism? Do you see it as an excuse to treat women as second-class citizens? What is your opinion of it?
Serap: This multicultural idyll, as it were, is a mere pretext for violating human as well as women’s rights, an excuse for looking away, for not wanting to face up to the realities for reasons of convenience. I always contend that those who stand up for this multicultural idyll and then frantically defend it in public debate are accomplices when human rights are violated next door.
Chameleon: What are your feelings about headscarves? Perhaps you could also say a few words about the recent attempt in Canada to introduce sharia law.
Serap: There has of course been a major debate about the headscarf. From my point of view the headscarf is a form of oppression of women. Now who can explain it to me when teachers at our state schools wear headscarves whilst they teach, that they have to cover up their charms in front of six, seven or eight-year-old Turkish or Muslim boys so that they do not sexually excite them? Who can explain this to me? Many women who wear the headscarf, for example, feel that they are only doing so for religious reasons. Now, if they are wearing it for religious reasons it means that they have to protect their feminine charms from men. That is the rationale. However, if we turn the argument on its head, this means that on the one hand men are being discriminated against, and on the other, that men do not have their sexual urges under control. I mean, if we are living in the 21st century it is a humiliation, a form of discrimination against the male sex, isn’t it? This is why I call upon enlightened men to stand up and be counted and speak out against the women who are in favour of the headscarf. What we don’t have is men standing up and rebelling against it. In Canada an attempt was made recently to introduce the sharia as law in the parallel societies. That would mean that if someone had stolen something he could have his hand lopped off. If someone committed adultery, like in Iran, for example, the woman, or both parties involved, could be stoned to death. It is absurd that in a democracy people wanted to accept a law as backward as sharia.
Sometimes it amazes me how people can call themselves liberal or progressive and embrace the multicultural moral relativism b$llcr@p. The German gals I am posting about do not consider themselves as political conservatives. Instead they believe there are modern social values that need to be defended instead of ignored.