it's too late for me to write anything meaningful tonight, have been busy with other things. so best to direct you to other places, such as this excellent post by russell brown on the situation in georgia, with some great links. and this interesting piece forwarded to me by janfrie wakim, written by a muslim woman in india. it may be a little difficult to follow, with the arabic words interspersed (talaq means divorce, ulema means religious scholars), but her conclusion is brilliant:
Sitting in that office, listening to the maulanas and sharing with them my own views, I realized the need for conscious efforts to be made to bridge the gap between the ulema and Muslim women. There is a desperate need for forums whereby Muslim women and the ulema can interact, exchange views and learn from each other’s experiences in a spirit of genuine sharing. From that dialogue, who knows, might emerge possibilities of helping bring Muslim women out of that ‘dangerous triangle’ that invisiblised and silenced all their issues and concerns by framing discourse about them simply in terms of arbitrary divorce, polygamy and the veil. Sadly, the need for that dialogue is too easily brushed aside by many of those involved in debates about Muslim women who refuse to listen to other points of view—and these include many women’s activists and traditional ulema alike.
finally, some useful points about child abuse prevention as an election issue are raised in this press release from dr annabel taylor from canterbury university:
“It is encouraging that notifications have increased, as this appears to indicate a growing intolerance of child abuse and neglect within New Zealand communities, rather than an increase in the incidence of abuse.
“What to do with the children suffering from abuse and neglect is the important next step to take. Early intervention is crucial. Working intensively with high-risk families is the most successfully proven method of reducing the risk, and therefore the incidence, of child abuse. It is the Family Help Trust’s experience that families want to do better, but they need support to do this,” she said.
According to Annabel Taylor, the next step is to ask how much New Zealanders are prepared to invest in caring for the most vulnerable children.