Archive for September, 2015

Our Mission is Protest! Our Weapon are bare breasts!” – This is the Mission Statement of extreme Feminist group FEMEN who for the last few years have appeared in many Media Outlets flashing their breasts and scrawling bold statements across their mostly naked bodies to promote women’s rights.

Lets be honest, their official mission statement almost sounds like a parody. Yet these girls take themselves very seriously. They claim their “God” is a “Woman” yet also simultaneously state their FEMEN “Ideology” is Atheism. It almost appears that this group even today is unaware of what exactly they are and what exactly they stand for.

Let us first give you a brief history of this feminist group. The group was founded in the Ukraine in 2008. The group carries about 170 “active protesters” across Europe and boasts a “social support group” of approximately 25,000 people. Given these facts and figures, the numbers are quite underwhelming yet the bottom line is these controversial ladies are stirring societies pot, yet the question one must beg is- “Are their protests actually useful?

A couple of days ago the FEMEN group attended a “Muslim conference” in France of which Men were up on stage talking about the rights of women in Islam. Moments before the men get up to speak the two women take over the stage with their bare breasts shouting “Nobody Makes me Submit!“. The Men giving the speech backed away and let the women take the stage- moments before being shoved and even kicked off the stage by one man. In typical FEMEN style the women are carried away as they leave desperate screams in the background, not leaving without a “fight”.

FEMEN protester crashes Muslim Conference in France.

FEMEN protester crashes Muslim Conference in France.

Yet further evidence that these women are confused as to what their goal is lies in the message they were promoting that night. “Nobody Makes Me Submit!“. Who is asking her to submit? And to who exactly? Is she talking about Muslim men making them submit? Oddly enough they are not Muslim so nobody is asking them to supposedly submit and never is the word “submit” issued for Muslim women in regards to how they treat their husbands. Is she talking about Muslims making them submit to Allah? Very unlikely to happen, especially in France.

So the end result with this protest is that it makes them look like a couple of crazy women screaming about nonsense flashing their breasts to a bunch of unsuspecting Muslims- it doesn’t appear the point hit home this time. It almost appears to me that the FEMEN group tend to much favour controversy over tackling genuine issues and doing productive things to actually make a change to Women’s rights around the world.

They have protested against some good causes- misogyny, unfair pay, domestic violence, religious extremism and more. Yet simply because they tend to protest against some unjust causes it doesn’t mean their way about it is reasonable. Appearing in public and private events and functions, being loud and disruptive, being mostly naked and using profanities and vulgarity in front of Men, Women and Children are actions that speak louder than the cause. Their “message” is wiped away by their sheer loudness. They tend to scream “Look at me!” instead of “Look at my cause” and that is why i deem FEMEN to be a failure in the world of protests and activism.

FEMEN protester hacking off a cross in a park.

FEMEN protester hacking off a cross in a park.

There is absolutely no evidence, in their 7 years of “service” that their means of protest has birthed any actual change to the causes they are supposedly fighting for. There is no evidence that their fight has yielded a reawakening of minds when it comes to the plights of Women’s rights and feminism. On the contrary many see FEMEN as a public nuisance- a bunch of self righteous women who simply bring attention to themselves, rather than their causes.

Oddly enough, if they were to protest (with their clothes on) in regards to Women’s rights, they’d find that their cause would shine brighter because people wouldn’t be too busy tackling them into police vans or taking screenshots of their breasts. There are many respectable, proud, strong and defiant Women’s rights groups that fight for women and do so in a dignified fashion. They make their cause their aim and their aim their cause. This is how awareness is given- not by the less you wear but by the more you say. When FEMEN make their statements shouting 5 word slogans and painting 5 words across their bodies they are doing more than simplifying many Women’s right issues around the world.

FEMEN protesters always quickly find themselves in this position.

FEMEN protesters always quickly find themselves in this position.

They are making the plight of Women’s rights more difficult because their methodology puts a negative light on the understanding of true Feminism. They put a massive blot on the hard work many other Women have done in regards to combating issues facing women in today’s societies. Let me give you a wonderful example of a WOMAN who has done MUCH for womens’ rights in a humbling, respectful and defiant matter.

Angelina Jolie. 

Angelina Jolie. This woman does activism right.

Angelina Jolie. This woman does activism right.

Whilst Femen are out shouting at the Pope, burning crosses and painting each others breasts, we have this Celebrity who has done more than they ever could. Angelina Jolie has traveled to the World’s most impoverished nations, she has spoken to Women of all cultures and religions, she has spoken with pride at the United Nations fighting for the rights of the poor, women and refugees. She’s all class and FEMEN are all crass. The sooner we all realize this, the better.

Peace, Salam- Ramey

You may have seen the image floating around social media as of late. The harrowing and disturbing image of a three year old boy, laying face down on a Turkish Beach, lifeless and bloated after having drowned along with his Mother and Brother whilst their boat capsized, headed for Kos, Greece.

His name is Aylan Kurdi, i use present tense language because in my view a child never dies, he’s an Angel in my eyes. His parents left the War torn Syrian town of Kobane to flee for a better life. A risk that obviously had to be worth dying for. When we see the situation of the Syrian war we come to realize safety for many people is no longer a viable scenario- anything is safe but their homes.

Aylan, despite passing away, has become the still living, still breathing “face” of the current refugee crisis facing Europe at the moment. Many thousands are attempting to enter Southern or Eastern Europe so they can make a passage to nations that have welcomed them with open arms, like Germany. Many of these refugees are women and children and the constant barrage of blockages is sending them in a desperate array of madness. It is understandable, these people have traveled in treacherous seas with their lives packed in a couple of bags, carrying children on their shoulders. They must be restless from a lack of sleep and deprived of standard hygienic rights.

Aylan Kurdi- The 3 year old refugee that drowned.

Illustration: Aylan Kurdi- The 3 year old refugee that drowned.

For these Syrian refugees the constant blockages they are facing by countries they are simply trying to pass through is a true test of patience. Sitting in the pouring rain with a lack of proper food and shelter whilst being blocked by barbed wire and intimidating police cannot be a sight they were expecting to find in such democratic and liberal lands. Some refugees cracked under the pressure and questioned authorities, tried to skip lines and attempted to force themselves into trains and borders. Sure enough, from our perspective it might seem like a bad idea to engage in such behaviour yet we must understand these people are on survival mode, they have been ever since they left their once glorious nation, which now lies in partial rubble. Constantly under threat by “Allied” warplanes or Barbaric terror groups.

As is the case in every situation that involves war, it is always the innocent that pay the price. Let me get political for a moment because this information is important. The Syrian situation isn’t only a Syrian issue. It isn’t only a Middle Eastern Issue. The Syrian conflict has had many different hands in play to the current dilemma. Hands that come mainly from The United States, Europe and the Middle East. The Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is about to make a decision on whether he will join the United States request to begin military strikes in Syria, so we will soon enough find out if Australian hands will join this list of War meddling.

The fact of the matter is that Syria has had a relatively stable history in the Middle East. Prior to the civil conflict that soon turned into an International one we find that Syria had a huge influx of tourists, culture and relative safety. Yet now it is a place that mirrors its once great neighbour Iraq. What we find is that one by one, many formerly great Middle Eastern Nations are toppling and crumbling due to predictable dictators, foreign invasions and civil unrest. It’s a recipe for disaster and just as it happened before, it is all happening again.

Hungary building its barb wired fence to block refugees access to pass.

Hungary building its barb wired fence to block refugees access to pass.

So why is the current Syrian refugee Crisis everybody’s responsibility? It is a Humanitarian Issue. These people need our help and it is as simple as that. The Earth is a vast place. Borders and barriers are an excuse for us to be exclusive and to shut off and shun people in our attempts to “preserve” our culture. Yet isn’t our culture in humanity more important than our materialistic culture? Is it not our duty to wear the boots of perspective and try to understand it from the angle of the people fleeing? They didn’t start the war! They want out.!

Believe it or not some people are trying to dismantle the refugee status of these people, claiming that their protests and demands to get to “richer” European countries prove they are “Economic Immigrants”. This is a crude statement that fails to look at the reality. The reason all of these immigrants want to flee to “Rich” Germany and not “Rich” Iceland is the fact that Germany has ALREADY announced it is willing and ready to take in 800,000 refugees, without harsh camps, without months of waiting to only be rejected. They are aiming for stability, not money.

This explains why they are not fleeing to the Rich nation of Iceland – Who have offered to only take in 50! Refugees. 
This blasts the conspiracy theorists who are trying to undermine the struggle of these people. They are unhappy with being “blocked” by these other countries who are stopping them from going to a destination that will give them that safety and security every human being should have the chance of having.

Yet there is a huge pressure on Europe at the moment as they were not expecting this huge influx of refugees in such a short time span and no, this is not exclusively Europe’s responsibility. Yes, i am looking at you rich countries of the Gulf. Whilst the Modest Middle Eastern Nations like Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon have welcomed Syrian refugees in huge proportions we find that the most well off countries in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE have all turned a blind eye on their fellow brothers and sisters. They have no formal resolution or proposition to help these refugees. What a shameful and shocking display of ignorance and a callous display of indifference to the suffering of their fellow humankind, who happen to share the same creed as them.

Arab Gulf States have done less than Europe. Offering NO assistance to Syrian refugees.

Arab Gulf States have done less than Europe. Offering NO assistance to Syrian refugees.

This is why i am being slightly more lenient with the current situation and Europes handling of it. We must understand- refugees must and should be welcomed, worldwide- yet it must be controlled immigration. These people need to be identified, they must be catered for and counted. There cannot simply be a “Free for all” system where people aimlessly run around settling to a place foreign to them. I believe every country should take responsibility for these refugees, yet get their act together and have a plan to support them and help them recover from their living hell they fled. This all needs to be controlled and documented migration, it is truly the only civilized way to do this.

We must look at this situation from all angles. Europe should help the refugees just like the Gulf states in the Middle East should. We all should have a plan for these people and a moral compass. Help them help themselves and find their feet again. These are Human beings, families like you and i. How can we deny them safety and asylum?

It disgusts me that even given the clear sadness of this situation with Aylan Kurdis’ photo being shown world wide we still have Neo Nazi scum burning down refugee shelters in Germany, we still have flag waving xenophobic bigots yelling “Fuck off, we’re full” and indeed we still have ignorant Morons vilifying these people calling them “Welfare cheats” before they even step foot on their lands. This is where we see the sickness in humanities heart and how we cannot see past race, religion or borders and look at the basic core of the issue. They are humans, so start treating them like they are!!

Humans, that's all they are.

Humans, that’s all they are.

Peace, Salam, Ramey.