If you have been living under a rock, you may find this next fact shocking. Living in Egypt as a woman is dangerous, full stop. It’s a life where you have to look over your shoulder after every little interaction because you never know when a total stranger will decide to be utterly atrocious to you.
Don’t believe us? Then take a second to imagine this. You’re at home, hanging out with a friend. You’re just talking and suddenly, your neighbors break into your apartment and start beating you up to the point where they literally throw you out of your own balcony, leaving you dead.
This isn’t an imaginary scenario. This horrifying crime actually happened to an Egyptian woman, a doctor whose name remains anonymous. She was murdered in cold blood in her own apartment after her landlord and a neighbor accused her of ‘committing carnal acts‘ (i/e: sex) in her apartment.
And the reason for all that was that the victim had a male friend with her at her apartment. For that reason alone, her neighbors thought they had the right to end her life. And later, blame her for ‘committing suicide’ to cover their crime.
We know you don’t need us to tell you that this horrifying. An honor-killing like this is absolutely something everyone should condemn — no matter how we keep condemning and talking about these murders, though, nothing seems to be working because they keep happening. Over and over again, like no one is listening….because they aren’t.
It’s true. For some reason, the public think the lives of women are completely under their control. That as long as a woman is unmarried, her ‘morality’ and ‘purity’ should be a part of the public’s concerns, meaning anyone could do what they see fit to protect her and her ‘honor’. As you can see, a big part of that so-called ‘protection’ is assault and murder for a notion society has literally created on its own.
And even when a woman is married, guess what? If her husband sees it fit to kill her because of literally anything, he could do so and later say he was just protecting their ‘honor’. Yes, this is the society we live in.
If you think this is at all okay, even if these women are ‘guilty’ in anyone’s eyes, you are part of the problem. And the thing is — this problem is spread all throughout Egypt, the very same country where you’ll find a whole bunch of people saying feminism overstayed its welcome because ‘women have equal rights now‘. The very same people who hide sexual harassers to save their futures and excuse pedophilia (like we saw on social media these past few days) because ‘we should think of his family‘.
We need to speak up now more than ever when it comes to women’s rights AND women’s safety because, for some reason, people seem to be forgetting the latter. Misogyny doesn’t end overnight because we celebrate International Women’s Day — our job doesn’t end there. In fact, that’s only where it begins because we need to help and talk about the serious issues that lead to literal murder so we don’t wake up to see another honor-killing.