Friday, June 3, 2011

Saudi Women Drivers

In response to the call for a day of solidarity with the right of Saudi women to drive, and the commentators who dismissed it as trivial:
Not the most urgent issue, no more urgent perhaps than the right to ride in the front of the bus or drink from the same fountain, but important anyway. An egregious little symbol of Saudi tyranny and backwardness, and an affront to women everywhere.

Saudi Arabia is the heart of reaction in the Arab world, a land of freedom for no one but wealthy men, of less than none for the migrant workers and their children and grand children and great grandchildren who make up more than half the population. A land where corruption disguised as tradition is the system, fanatic priests are the judges and terror is the law. A land which funds the spread of a violent, backward, twisted, anti-female distortion of Islam around the world, which sponsored the mujahadeen led by Usama Bin Laden who waged war in Afghanistan by killing the doctors and teachers and burning health clinics and schools. The land which provided most of the 9/11 terrorists (the patsies, anyway) from among the addled children of its idle rich.

The land which sent its army into neighboring Bahrein to crush and murder the demonstrators who were overthrowing that tyranny, which imprisons and tortures doctors for daring to treat wounded demonstrators.

All freedom-loving people everywhere are watching Saudi Arabia, hoping and wondering when it's going to blow, and this issue is a toe in the door. A little pen-light shining into a filthy closet. Maybe even a spark in the powder-house.
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