Prompted by the absurd comments of Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi that scantily-dressed women cause earthquakes, small numbers of women hit the streets yesterday in an attempt to disprove the holy man's theory.
US student Jen McCreight organized 'Boobquake' as a way of dealing with the idiocy of the immorality of women argument. We've always supported 'guerilla actions' among women and are beyond trying to deal rationally with the global religious morality police.
At the same time, we understand the thinking behind 'Brainquake', launched on Facebook calling on women to show off their résumés, CVs, honors, prizes, and accomplishments. The goal is to get conservative Iranian leaders quaking with fear at "women's abilities to push for change and to thrive despite gender apartheid."
This is the classic women's rights conflict between women who believe their problem is one of being endlessly sexualized by men and media and other women who may agree with them, but also believe that the psychological inability of religion to deal with women is fundamental to women's suppression.
Anne of Carversville is in the latter camp, believing that fundamentalism of every religion -- from the Vatican to the high mosque of Iran -- cannot deal with sexuality generally, and women pay the price for what is essentially a male problem. I've written volumes on this topic.
Boobquake on Facebook (76,861 'likes'). Blaghag weighs in on the scientific results of Boobquake, arguing that the almighty cleric is wrong. Brainquake on Facebook (0 'likes' but about 10,000 interested persons)
Personally, I regret that the Brainquake Facebook page doesn't allow for comments, because I would have raised valid questions regarding their statements. I will reprint the Iranian women's point of view over on Anne of Carversville.
The fact that Brainquake chose to control their message, even on Facebook, is symptomatic of what's wrong in their thinking and unwillingness to face the reality of their situation.
Making Western culture the problem for Iranian women is not a valid argument. The great cultures of this region preceeded America, and there's an unusually long and almost demonic history of the suppression of women's rights in this region of the world.
Meanwhile, American women have their own women's rights issues. Our country is sliding backwards on all global indicators.
Many Muslims and people of every faith in Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and a host of countries around the world are in agreement that while we endorse less sexualization of women and a focus on making brains sexy, we understand that fundamentalist religion is perhaps the greatest oppressor of women worldwide.
Almost every week, a new respected voice stands up to embrace this fact. We track this conversation on Anne of Carversville. My comment isn't only directed at Islam. The Vatican is front and center in this discussion.
When women and men unite around the real problems for women, ones that transcend modesty and morality, then we will progress together. The chopping up of the women's rights movements into regional, cultural discussions is the biggest reason why women have made so little progress in the world.
In the case of women's rights, the motto 'divide and conquer' has worked effectively. Meanwhile, the Taliban has again begun gassing young girls trying to go to school in Afghanistan. We all must keep our eye on the real problem here, which is NOT the women who participated in Boobquake.
Watch this video from the women in Washington, DC and you will hear intelligent women discussing modesty, morality, moms and women's rights. Anne