Sunday, April 22, 2007

Riding with dogs in taxis

“Please fix your scarf,” the taxi driver said to me. “Not because of me, but because the religious police are checking. I don’t care what you wear.”

“It’s not good enough?”

“Make it good enough for them.” I fumed a bit and then retreated into my thoughts. Up front Keivan and the driver discussed the crackdown on hejab.

“I was taking a young woman and she had her small dog with her. The religious police pulled us over. They said, We are impounding your car, arresting the girl, and letting the dog loose on the streets where it will be killed. I said, Hajh Agah, (Mister Hajh: a term of respect given to a man who has made pilgrimage to Mecca) you can’t do that. How can you take my car from me? How will I earn a living? And this young woman, what is wrong with her hejab? She is properly covered. There is no law against having a dog. And you have to consider that maybe the dog was sick, and we just came from the veterinarian.”

Riding in the car was testimony to the fact that he was able to talk his way out of the arrest and that the dog survived.

14 comments:

danielspengies said...

What exactly is consider "good hejab" by the religious police???

ET said...

Being young and attractive in hejab is more likely to get you in trouble than being older. Who knows how they define it?

danielspengies said...

hmm, how would a girl make herself less attractive? Bigger head covering??? Full body cover?

christopher said...

how does one get a job in the religious police?
or in any kind of police?
and do people respect the police in general, or just consider them hacks and buffoons?

Anonymous said...

For those who want to know about real Iran, here is an article from "the Mail", and the writer is apparently a right-wing reporter, read the comments too:

http://www.mailonsunday.co
.uk/pages/live/articles/
news/news.html?in_article_
id=449880&in_page_id=1770&in_a_source=

Ehsan said...

This is interesting, but remember that every year before summer starts they get tough on "bad Hijab" temporarily to make sure it does not get out of hand during summer.

Ehsan said...

Danielspengies, let me tell you what they expect. They expect the women cover all their hair and body with loose cloth so that only the mere face ( not even the ears) are visible. The government has never been able to enforce up to this level, but they try to crack down on those who they think are extremely " provokative" which by western standards is very modest.

ET said...

Christopher... what a great question... I wonder if anyone can answer.

Ramin said...

We have these kinds of preambles in Theoretical governments all over the world.

During 28 years they would be able to force people to wear Islamic Hijab and they won’t be able to do it any more.

What I guess is:
- Every year this time they do the same but this year they started early coz wanted to focus people’s mind to it instead of political and economical problems (uranium enrichment and sanctions).


By the way, you have a great web log.
Take care,
Gura-Gura

Ramin said...

correction:
During 28 years they would NOT be able to force people to ...

Anonymous said...

The socio-cultural renaissance centered in Iran which is sweeping up the East is not concerning superficial stories such as those described here. The above renaissance is more centered around reversal of the tide that the West has been riding since 1498 when the Islamic forces were defeated in Spain and those Moslem Spaniards who did not convert to Christianity were massacred in Granada, Seville, algeciras, Salamanca, and other parts of Spain. The culmination of this tide was formation of the apartheid regime in Palestine, throwing out the population by force, and establishment of the military outpost called Israel. The inflection point of this 500-year process is the 33-day war in Lebanon and the presently occurring collapse of US occupation in Iraq.

There is no question that with reversal of the history comes weakening of the cultural values which have dominated the East out of a humuliating relationship with the East.

The fundamental question is whether with the ongoing historical resurgence will there be a reversal of the cultural role modeling too. The silent majority of Iranian women (who wear the hejab not as a duty but a cultural statement) today ask why should it not be the Western women who should follow our model. The above question resonates powerfully particularly when the disasterous results of “women freedom” over the past 100 years in the West is reviewed objectively.

Anonymous said...

Globalism is not going to work until the entire world can grasp the concept of pluralism, or living in a cosmopolitan society. Personally, I don't understand why any person would allow themselves to believe that it's even worth trying for as long as there are people willing to die to defend their nation? Even here in America we have the church meddling in the business of the state, and vice versa. How can America, or any of it's western allies attempt to offer that type of society to the muslim world, when they can can't even completely maintain it in their own?

Rebecca said...

Anon 3:14 a.m. So why should Western women who are not Muslims wear hijab? My religion (Judaism) does not demand that unmarried cover their hair, it says that both men and women should dress modestly. Both Christians and Jews are "ahl al-kitab," so our religions are given legitimacy by Islam - so why should we dress according to Islamic strictures?

Rebecca said...

Oops, I meant to say "unmarried women." Great blog, by the way.

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