One of the dangers of the blog is hinted at in the rhythm of the nomenclature: BLOG. As in, “He’ll blog just about anything.” Say ‘blog’ like you’d say ‘say’ in the same sentence and you’ll get the idea. Or even just say ‘BLOG’ with the same mouth and upper body movement you’d use making a ‘BURP.’ Or, in French, ‘N’importe quoi.’ Enhancing this tendency is that anyone thinks they can write a blog — no journalistic training needed.
You’d think that as a trained journalist of 30 years experience I’d be less likely to BLOG/BURP N’importe quoi but I just did it in my previous entry, The road to jihad is paved with veils. Fortunately, as a trained journalist with 30 years experience, I actually know some other journalists who often know better than me. One of these, a colleague who not only is Turkish but actually lives in Turkey, sends this corrective:
“I just read your writing. I wanted to tell you my side. Currently the Turkish government is trying to make a law that basically lets the people who wear a veil study at the universities with their veils. Currently in Turkey the people who wear these veils enter the university with a wig or they just open their heads while they are at school and wear it when they leave.
“If I was a person who was looking from outside and who believes in democracy (in which I strongly do believe) I would think that it is completely unfair for these people to be not let into the universities the way they are. But the situation in Turkey is completely different.
“First, some of these women are being forced to close (we use this term to explain wearing a veil) by their fathers, brothers or husbands. So it is not their opinion but it is forced on to them.
“Second, there is a strong Islamification movement going on in Turkey unfortunately which basically puts a lot of pressure on people. In some areas it is already considered that if you are not closed you are not fully Muslim and you are missing women’s virtues. In those areas people think that a closed lady is much more honorable than an open one.
“And the Islamist government which is currently in power is using all this pressure to build up power and votes. It is the worst government we have ever seen and harming Turkey greatly. Under the table it offers families money and help if they close up the woman in their families. The government gives guys job opportunities if their wife closes. It is unbelievably corrupted.
“And on the other hand now that people like me are not closed they see us as people who don’t have faith.
“So the EU Human Rights Court is completely right when they say that it would be some kind of discrimination if they let the headscarf into universities. You just would not believe how ugly things are here at the moment. People say that they wear these veils for religion and no where in the Quaran is there a comment like this. Quaran says ‘cover up’ but for me this means cover up like human beings. And no where in his comments does the Prophet say ‘women’s heads should be covered.’ And some of these closed women on the other hand are wearing lots of make-up, very sexy coats, coats with deep slits and lace underneath.
“The country is shaking really bad and I’m so happy that some of the other countries are supporting secular people like us and they don’t want the new law to come out.
“Government wants to turn us into Iran and they are doing this very slowly. Basically now in some of the primary schools where the headmaster supports the religious political party, he allows the girls to wear headscarves. If someone had put that scarf on me when I was six, I don’t think that I could take it out when I was 20 even if I didn’t believe in it. It becomes a part of you and you just start to think of it as your honor or even if you don’t think of it that way it becomes a habit.
“I’m really sad and extremely upset about this situation. I have always been very democratic and usually think that the solution is always in discussing but you wouldn’t believe how brainwashed these people are. There is just no way to educate them or discuss anything with them. Turkey is going to shake hugely in the near future and hopefully it is going to get into a better path. And if the only way becomes to go out in the streets, I will participate.
“We can’t be Iran or like other religion-based countries. The mentality which aims to bring the headscarf to the universities also aims that one day women would not be allowed to show any skin out in the street and if they do wherever the skin is showing will be beaten. (Like the way it is now in some Arabic countries.)
“I know that it has been a very long email. I’m sorry. 🙂 It is just that we are in terrible shape currently. They have spread their web everywhere, last night they made sure that even the president of the soccer league is one of their supporters. They are just taking over everywhere. I’m very very sad….”