I know I don’t ordinarily post things of this nature but I am absolutely sickened by the news of the murder of 26 year old, Pakistani social media icon, Qandeel Baloch. Murdered by her brother in what is being referred to as an “honor killing.” (What an oxymoron that is! As if there could ever be honor in killing! It should be known as coward killing!) I am not only sickened that these acts of violence against women are tacitly allowed to take place but that I had to accidentally happen upon the news on Instagram. How is this news not being plastered all over CNN and other major news programs? If it were an american “reality star” or other celebrity, the news would clog the airways. I would never wish harm on anyone no matter what their station, but I am particularly outraged that something as atrocious as a young woman’s silently sanctioned murder by her brother because she refused to conform to cultural and religious ideas of a woman’s place as an inferior member of a society, hasn’t created worldwide public outrage.
An Act of Terrorism?
Many of us are appalled by the terrorist acts around the world that seem to be occurring more frequently–crowded gatherings and populated cities are of particular concern for all of us. These acts of violence are indeed terrorizing and unbelievably tragic but the definition of terrorism needs to expand to include “honor killing” and the threat of “honor killing.” These women live in fear that if they don’t conform to cultural expectations for women or are even raped they could easily be killed, not by some crazed madman or group but by their own family with no protection from authorities. These women have no place to turn for protection and their murder is even often applauded. This could certainly be considered a terrorist act to say the least.
Let’s NOT turn a blind eye to these women’s plight.
There are some reports that Qandeel’s brother strangled her to death but others report that her mouth and nose were pinned shut, cutting off her airway. She had urgently requested protection from authorities as she feared for her life and received none…clearly. What if this were your sister, your friend, your mother, daughter…or you? Where can these women turn? How do these things still occur in our world today and how is this not headline news! Let us not just turn away because this is not happy news. Let’s at the very least spread the news with the hopes that worldwide outrage might press upon those who still turn a blind eye to these things at best and support them at worst, and might finally put an end to this and other atrocious acts of violence against women and girls in the world of every religion and race.