The burden of reform and why we do it

The burden of reform and why we do it

Arshia Malik “The 21st century belongs to women of Muslim heritage,” said Jimmy London [Sedaa contributor Jimmy Bangash] in a Facebook post/thread. He is right. When we expose or talk about our lives under Muslim culture, we are not just doing it out of spite, we do it for our mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, cousins, scores of neighbours, friends and relatives whose troubled lives spilled before us while growing up and getting conditioned into our culture. We could do nothing except watch and listen and observe as the adult women consoled,…

Women smearing Ayaan Hirsi Ali are ‘carrying water’ for Islamists

Women smearing Ayaan Hirsi Ali are ‘carrying water’ for Islamists

By Arshia Malik   For us women in India, carrying water signifies courage, fortitude and surviving amidst insurmountable odds, considering the country still has parts where drinking water is not available and women have to walk miles to get two potable vessels of water for the cooking of the day. Compared to the slur of “carrying water” which the dictionary defines as “performing menial tasks for or to serve; to assist; to be forced by politics or pragmatism to endorse or promote a belief”, this act has become symbolic of…

Islamophobia is a convenient word to shut down a debate

Islamophobia is a convenient word to shut down a debate

By Arshia Malik   Islamophobia is a term branded around very casually these days on anything and anybody who stands up to the regressive practices in Muslim culture and denounces their oppressive characteristics. The first to scream Islamophobia are the practicing Muslims themselves at ex-Muslims, or agnostic Muslims, or liberal Muslims who feel they should speak out against the various shortcomings in their culture, their religion, their text and their fellow Muslims. A disclaimer first – I am aware that many cases of discrimination and abuse against Muslims are on…

The likes of Nazimuddin Samad cannot die in vain

The likes of Nazimuddin Samad cannot die in vain

By Halima Begum   Nazimuddin Samad, a 28 year old law student, was brutally murdered on 7th April, 2016 by Islamists in Bangladesh. His ‘crime’ – being critical of Islamism. He is the sixth Bangladeshi atheist/secular blogger to be killed in the last 15 months. The horror of what happened to Nazimuddin has sadly become the norm these days. It is almost an accepted form of hatred and resultant crime because he was provoking the delicate Islamists in his nation. Some asked, what did he expect in return? He was…