Wearing a hijab does not prevent women from participating fully in sport, fully developing their intellects, and being productive and valued members of the society.
Contrary to popular belief, the Moslem women I know, have chosen to wear a hijab themselves, as a physical acknowledgment of their commitment to a benevolent form of God and Islam, not one that matches the negative stereotypes and values of Isis extremists and those with psychiatric disorders who choose to piggy-back on a cause, identifying with violence and vengeance, rather than justice and tolerance. To wear an hijab, is a rarely, if ever a decision made for them, solely by the men in their lives!
Wearing high heels may prevent a woman from participating fully in sport, but does not negatively impact upon her intellect and being a productive and valued member of society.
Contrary to popular belief, the Christian, Jewish, Moslem, agnostic and athiest women, I know, have chosen to wear high heels themselves, as a physical acknowledgement of the dictates of fashion, definitions of femininity and concepts and constructs of sexual desireability within Western culture and belief systems. It is rarely if ever a decision made for them, solely by the men in their lives.
Little known facts:
- A woman, comfortable in what she wears, and able to move freely, usually feels, thus looks more attractive than one restricted in any way by her apparel. If she is covered from head to toe and comfortable with and within what she wears, she will continue to be sexually desirable. So too if she is accustomed to wearing excessively high heels.
- No woman has ever competed in an olympic marathon wearing high heels.
- No woman has ever lost the capacity to think for herself as a result of wearing a hijab,
- No woman wearing either an hijab, or high heels, or both, has ever become a mere reflection of the men in her society because she has chosen to conform to these modes of dress.
- Hijabs and high heels are not mutually exclusive.
- High heels and hijabs can both be fashion statements. Both can be discerningly "modest".
- Neither hijabs nor high heels have ever in themselves been responsible for oppressing women. But concepts that created, supported and advocated the wearing of them may be flawed or subject to misinterpretation.
- High heels make very effective instruments of long term torture. They they distort the posture, eventually causing curvature of the spine. High heels cause pressure points, bunions and blisters. Some heels can be used as a weapon in their own right, against an opponent, either on, or, removed from the foot.
- Women in all societies conform to the dress conventions of their times and the circles in which they move, with few exceptions.
- Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake, not because she was a witch, but because she refused to wear "womens' clothes".. Instead, she preferred the practicallity of men's military wear of her time and valued her own identity and right to choose. She was willing to die for her convictions.
- Men may hold considerable influence over what women choose to wear. They are often head business and religious and advertising heirarchies. They are designers, fathers, brothers, boyfriends, husbands and sons. They may choose to harass women they believe are not maintaining the conventional dress codes of their society, or sub-culture, for any number of reasons. Many men also hold financial power over the women in their lives and encourage the purchase of high heels or hijabs and other fashion items, linked with their own beliefs and values. Good reason for womens' financial independence!
- Very few societies have ever encouraged cultural diversity to flourish. The dress codes of the dominant culture have literally been fitted upon the minorities. We thankfully live in new and potentially transforming times, where difference is valued more often than it ever has been previously in history!
- We have so many opportunities to travel and communiate beyond our own borders today. Yet many people have never met their own neighbours, let alone befriended them.
- The hoop petticoat ceased to be a desirable fashion item, when women were increasingly losing their lives and burning to death. Their "hot" mode of dress aided the ferocity of the flames. Once alight in a hoop petticoat, the flames were near impossible to extinguish by either quashing or water.
- Up until the invention of the brassiere last century, women in Western cultures wore corsets. These restricted both their breathing and ability to move freely. Some women, died of punctured lungs when their ribs pierced through, due to extra tight corset lacing. A big price to pay for a tiny waist and ample bosoms!
- Many adults continue to wear uniforms of one kind or another, well beyond their youth and even into old age. Uniforms always make us visible to "people like us", as well as marking us out as "the other" to anyone else who views us as "different".