Egyptians love their football, don’t they? This is just one of the questions that don’t really need answering because literally every game is on our radar, especially the closer to home it gets.
And yesterday, Egypt had its fill of talking about football after Egypt’s U-20 Women won their friendly against Lebanon through Nadia Ramadan’s hat-trick.
But this isn’t what dominated the public dialogue. No, sadly, this is what the public dialogue was like:
Between comments urging the players to take their tops off to celebrate goals (a lot of whom are underage) to comments sexualizing players and dismissing of the Lebanese explosion, it’s safe to say that this only has one word to describe it. Disgusting.
No. Actually, it’s horrifyingly abhorrent considering how much literally everyone in the country has been discussing sexual harassment, rape, and women’s rights to, you know, exist without being treated/seen like puppets made for male whims.
People’s reactions to this kind of outright harassment was, oddly enough, split into two camps. One camp was against the behaviors, which was only right, but the other camp, well…
Yes, as you can see this is this conversation eventually led up to. “Why are you defending them when they wore these shorts?” and “They knew this would happen“.
So, here’s the thing. We don’t need to say this (yet again) but the way a woman is dressed is still not an excuse to harass her. The fact that a woman is in public or she’s playing in a live-televised football match isn’t an excuse either.
Victim-blaming of this sort is a disease, but calling it that would absolve some of the responsibility so let’s just say this:
We all have one responsibility to other people out there and it is to not hurt them. And if we do, especially if it’s on purpose like these comments are, we don’t blame them for being “so hurt-able” and “asking for it“.
It’s past time that this kind of mentality retired because, guess what? It’s never funny, even if you meme it, and the only thing it will be is offensive, hurtful, and blatantly disrespectful of the very women we’ve all talked about standing up for this year.