“Everyone wants to save the Muslim woman. Some want to put the hijab on me and save me; some want to take hijab off me and save me; some want to bomb us and save me. Just give me a break man! I can save myself! I don’t need Western imperialism to save me or Western feminism riding on the coattails of Western imperialism to save me. I can save myself. ”—Uzma Shakir (Activist)
“[TW: rape] I asked the Congolese women; ‘give me the 5 major issues affecting Congolese women today’. Rape was number 4. Political participation was number 1. Economic empowerment was number 2. Domestic violence was number 3. And they qualified it; the rape you see is because we don’t have women in high places to effect the change that needs to be done. No.2, if we were economically empowered, we wouldn't be in abusive relationships and will know how to handle ourselves. But outsiders expected rape to be number 1 because that’s the global image of Congolese women. One Congolese woman asked where people got the idea that rape was their major problem. Someone answered her “if you don’t say so, the West won’t give you aid”. Congolese women wanted to show their fellow sister how they've been sustaining their children and communities in midst of the violence they lived in. By the time the white people arrived, they changed their tune: ‘help, I've been raped. I've been abused’. They've figured you all out. That’s the stories you white people want to hear. You travel to cry. So they will make you cry. The media never goes into any community to pick stories of how you survived and what positive things are happening. A pressman once asked me if I've been raped during the Liberian war and when I answered no, he passed the mike over my head. So the easiest thing for those who need media attention or aid is to talk about their personal history and say they were raped. This is a similar situation across the globe for migrants who wanted papers after war; every time they went to the US consulate and told the truth, they were denied. When they went and told a sad story, the counselor cried and granted them their papers. ”—Mighty Be Our Powers with Leymah Gbowee (youtube)
Western media and charity need to portray AfricanS as helpless and meek because that is the global image of Africa they want to sustain.
“My roommate had a single story of Africa. A single story of catastrophe. In this single story there was no possibility of Africans being similar to her, in any way. No possibility of feelings more complex than pity. No possibility of a connection as human equals… The consequence of the single story is this: It robs people of dignity. It makes our recognition of our equal humanity difficult. It emphasizes how we are different rather than how we are similar.”—Chimamanda Adichie: The danger of a single story
i just realized how much and why i hate talking about hillary clinton publicly
because every time i do, like even with the sexist headline about her the other day or the benghazi hearings, all the white liberal feminists (of all gender identities) come out of the woodwork to sing her praises like she’s the greatest thing to happen to the american political system and that she deserves sooo much to be president because she’s the beacon of progress or whatever
meanwhile there is NO critique of how she’s a cog in the imperialist machine, how as the secretary of state she’s a huge cog, and how she has authorized and actively publicly backed horrendous US foreign policy decisions.
look i respect that she’s broken glass ceilings or whatever, but i don’t respect her anymore, and i won’t fangirl for her anymore because her feminism ultimately revolves around western women “having it all” while the bombs she is part of authorizing kill brown women and their families.
if you like hillary & you don’t also address these issues, you’re part of the problem. i am just so sick of talking about her publicly only to get white liberal feminist responses about how much of a hard-on everyone has for hillary and HILLARY 2016 and all that bullshit. how about NOT AN IMPERIALIST WAR-MONGERING PRESIDENT 2016?
General reminder that the idea that faith and culture are two seperate things is Western BS designed for the express purpose of making converting people to Christianity easier.
For a large portion of the world, faith and culture are indistinguishable. Telling people they must abandon their faith is literally just another form of western imperialism.
“The Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and nothing to learn from them is not just. A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: "This way of settling differences is not just." This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation's homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into the veins of peoples normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice, and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.”—
Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence
Declaration of Independence from the War in Vietnam
Delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr
At Manhattan’s Riverside Church
“The limitations of the standard liberal attitude towards Muslim women wearing a veil are visible here, too. Women are permitted to wear the veil if this is their free choice and not an option imposed on them by their husband or family. However, the moment women wear a veil to exercise a free individual choice, say in order to realize their own spirituality, the meaning of wearing a veil changes completely. It is no longer a sign of their belonging to the Muslim community, but an expression of their idiosyncratic individuality. The difference is the same as the one between a Chinese farmer eating Chinese food because his village has been doing so since time immemorial, and a citizen of a Western megalopolis deciding to go and have a dinner at a local Chinese restaurant. This is why, in our secular, choice-based societies, people who maintain a substantial religious belonging are in a subordinate position. Even if they are allowed to maintain their belief, this belief is "tolerated" as their idiosyncratic personal choice or opinion. The moment they present it publicly as what it is for them, say a matter of substantial belonging, they are accused of "fundamentalism". What this means is that the "subject of free choice" in the Western "tolerant" multicultural sense can emerge only as the result of an extremely violent process of being torn out of a particular life world, of being cut off from one's roots. ”—Zizek, Violence, Tolerance as an Ideological Category, The Effective Universality, page 145.
it is completely absolutely entirely different to criticize christianity than it is to criticize islam. COMPLETELY. ABSOLUTELY. ENTIRELY.
this is because christian hegemony and christian missionaries and christian imperialism have taken over this world even in areas where small communities of christians might otherwise be marginalized. there is nothing like the force of oppressive christianity in the world today, and this oppression reaches basically EVERYONE.
however, due to the christian hegemony and its very violent and imperialistic current position in the world and also due to western imperialism in general, islam does not occupy such a globally oppressive force. for example, islam does not oppress western christians. islam does not oppress all muslims. there is violence sometimes done in the name of islam, but it’s definitely not as extreme or widespread as the western media tells you, and also, christian imperialism oppresses muslim societies and cultures.
furthermore, the position that islam occupies in the world currently, especially in the west, especially post 9/11, but also as a result of european/western imperialism particularly in the 19th and 20th centuries, is one of being widely oppressed/hated/marginalized/demonized, you name it. this is evidenced by the rampant islamophobia in all western countries.
so when you criticize christianity, you’re criticizing a very powerful, very oppressive, very imperialist system. when you criticize islam, you’re criticizing a religion that is already widely demonized for no particular reason, and this demonization is supported by and in turn supports western (christian) imperialism. i once read a comparison to the criticism of islam currently with the criticism of judaism or jewish people in nazi germany in the 1930s. this comparison might not necessarily be 100% on point, but it brings up an interesting and not inaccurate thought.
so when you say “HEY RELIGION IS OPPRESSIVE, LACI GREEN (and others) ARE ONLY CRITICIZING WHAT IS RIGHTFULLY OPPRESSIVE” you are failing to grasp the historico-political context and the current realities of how fucked up it is for a white western woman to criticize a religion like islam in any particular way. some of you are also saying “HEY ISLAM IS OPPRESSIVE, YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE MUSLIM TO KNOW THAT” but yeah, you kinda do. i can speak to the oppression of christianity because christianity actively oppresses me. islam does not actively oppress white women living in the west no matter how many muslim family members they may happen to have.
if you’re not muslim, get out of the conversation about islam. period.
“On the other hand, citizens in this country, especially famous ones, who continue to broadcast, quite often out of ignorance or out of more sinister reasons, the fable of Israel as a cultured Western society or as the “only democracy in the Middle East” are not only wrong factually. They provide immunity for one of the greatest atrocities in our time. Some of them demand we should leave culture out of our political actions. This approach to Israeli culture and academia as separate entities from the army, the occupation and the destruction is morally corrupt and logically defunct. Eventually, one day the outrage from below, including in Israel itself, will produce a new policy — the present US administration is already showing early signs of it. History did not look kindly at those filmmakers who collaborated with US Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s or endorsed apartheid. It would adopt a similar attitude to those who are silent about Palestine now.”—
Ilan Pappe, The Necessity of Cuktural Boycott, on The Electronic Intifada
On the other hand, citizens in this country, especially famous ones, who continue to broadcast, quite often out of ignorance or out of more sinister reasons, the fable of Israel as a cultured Western society or as the “only democracy in the Middle East” are not only wrong factually. They provide immunity for one of the greatest atrocities in our time. Some of them demand we should leave culture out of our political actions. This approach to Israeli culture and academia as separate entities from the army, the occupation and the destruction is morally corrupt and logically defunct. Eventually, one day the outrage from below, including in Israel itself, will produce a new policy — the present US administration is already showing early signs of it. History did not look kindly at those filmmakers who collaborated with US Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s or endorsed apartheid. It would adopt a similar attitude to those who are silent about Palestine now.
Pappe spurting out truth bombs