Founded in 1974, the Women’s Center was established to:
Dismantle, from a feminist perspective, all forms of oppression, including but not limited to those based on ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Advocate for an equitable environment free from violence and harassment based on gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Create an anti-racist, non-sexist, queer-affirmative space where all people can feel valued and safe.
Facilitate and strengthen connections among people across lines of difference through programming and educational campaigns.
Integrate an appreciation of Women's Gender and Multicultural Studies across the disciplines.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Alleged Honor Killing

By Women's Center Program Coordinator Ashley Cummings

January 25, 2011, Police arrested family members of 21-year old Pakistanian Saima Bibi. She was electrocuted by family members for going against there demands of a pre-arranged marriage. Police arrested Bibi's father and three other relatives after being tipped off by an anonymous caller, said police official Muhammad Ismail. She had defied her family demands and instead ran away about one month before this to the southern port city of Karachi to marry a fellow villager, police official Rao Zahoor said. Bibi's family told police she committed suicide on Friday in their village in the district of Bahawalpur in Punjab, but a medical report showed signs of torture and electrocution on her hands, legs and back. It was told to police that they had traveled to Karachi to make her come back home and when she didn’t listen they tormented her. A 2009 study by the European Journal of Public Health showed one out of every five homicides in Pakistan was an honor killing. Some Baluch communities in Baluchistan province and parts of Sindh and Punjab provinces still justify honor killings.

These so called honor killings has been a growing problem in Pakistan areas, the murder of a women accused of committing adultery, and behaving in dishonorable behavior. They are seen to bring shame to the homes of their family members and in order for the family to diminish this stigma they gain they must kill the bad seed out of the bunch to bring back honor. This term they state to make it seem as though it is justice to kill these women in honor of the family. I am not the one to judge and diminish their beliefs, but I believe this is horrid. To treat these women with no self-entitlement and to release their rights to life away from them is immoral. I however recently have learned that a lot of countries outside of the U.S., very seldom give women rights. It is unfortunate to think as hard as women in America face issues of discrimination these women have not even a right to state an opinion. It is time for a change, this is not the first nor will it be the last time I state this. I just wish for Saima sake her family would have understood that.

“The right things to do are those that keep our violence in abeyance; the wrong things are those that bring it to the fore”
Robert J. Sawyer

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