Who among us doesn't want the best for our children? Often, parents are certain they know what's best for their progeny, even if their offspring don't. And, of course, if the children rebel, they need to be brought back in line. A long and proud tradition which dates back to Bronze aged middle eastern cattle and human sacrificing nomads who were enjoined to publicly stone a rebellious son to death. (Deuteronomy 21:18-22).
In Islam, this tradition is known as honor killing. If a child, especially a female, brings dishonor on the family by falling in love with a man to whom her parents have not betrothed her, the obvious remedy is to kill her. Even a suspicious hint of anything romantic or flirtatious is enough to trigger a trip to the local quarry to stock up on rocks for the public stoning. She has brought dishonor on the family, and the only way the males of the family can heal their wounded pride is by brutally taking her life.
This tradition still lives in all its bloodthirsty and brutal glory. Yesterday, in the city of Lahore, a woman was stoned to death for having the audacity to marry someone not approved by her family. This was not, however, a private family affair done in a remote mountain village. The woman was murdered with rocks, bricks, and clubs, by her family, on the Courthouse steps of the second largest city in Pakistan. And, done in full view of a crowd, of whom not one single individual lifted a finger to help her. And, considering it was done in front of a Courthouse, you would think there might be a police officer or two who would intervene. You would be wrong. Everyone of the killers got away, except for her father. And, the only reason he is in custody is because he voluntarily turned himself in.
It is estimated that last year alone, there were over 900 'honor killings' of women in Pakistan and Afghanistan. This, of course, does not include those done in Europe and the US, which are falsely labeled as something other than honor killings. (Read Ayaan Hirsi Ali's book Nomad, for an in depth discussion of Islamic honor killings in the west).
Religion. Promoting loving family values since 3,000 BCE.
And the murdering assholes that did this call Islam a religion of peace. Her father may pay a small fine and released.
I saw that story, I think in the PD. What struck me especially was that the father stated boldly that his daughter had done wrong in his eyes and that he had no remorse for her fate. What that tells me, above and beyond anything else, is that we're dealing with an established social norm here as much as we are with religion, and overcoming that kind of social inertia will be a far more difficult task.
That a father would sanction the stoning of his daughter under ANY circumstances goes beyond the pale for me. I have a daughter whom I love dearly ... and anyone wanting to get at her would find me a determined and unrepentant BUZZ-SAW!
You're undoubtedly correct about the social norms.Question is, where do those norms (if you can call them that) come from, if not from religious belief? I mentioned Ayaan Hirsi Ali's book, Nomad. After leaving her family, and publicly declaring she was an atheist, she not only had to watch her back from the same people who murdered Theo Van Gogh, but from her own family. And guess what the Moroccan murderers and her Somalian family all had in common?
The murder of the first wife I hadn't heard. Put a fence around the place, with warning signs that one is about to enter an insane asylum run by the inmates.
Pat, what an apt phrase "an insane asylum run by the inmates."
Honor killing? The father should spend the rest of his life in prison. He should be reminded daily of why he is there. Use him as the example to turn others away from this crime, and show him pictures every day of his slain daughter while you remind him of why he is there. Bring this entire thing forward to the Islamists and tell them often that things like this is murder. You will be punished. We do not care what your holy book says.
I have seen crimes like this in America brought to TV where the family lied about their "honor killing" to protect themselves. They were found out and went to prison. Good! If you lied about it, then you knew it was wrong in the first place.
I wish we could make the murderers -- and the bystanders who did nothing -- frequently experience and "relive" the daughter's terrified last moments, and the grief of her friends.
That would fit the crime much more than the father and others sitting in prison as a "martyr" for their family's "honor". Still, given present technology, life in prison might deter quite a few other "honor" killings.
I like that idea GC.
I would genuinely like to know where there is ANY semblance of honor in an "honor killing." The term as applied here, certainly, is a complete oxymoron.