Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Loop: Conversation between Two Normally Hopeful Women

They have been taught these things since they were children.

I don’t care. They are wrong.

Yes, I agree. But they believe they are right, honorable, even.

They are criminals and need to be punished.

Yes. Well, that may help deter some. Others will be more careful, commit their crimes less publicly, maybe, but they won’t stop believing that they are only doing what God, the one they believe in, condones, encourages, rewards.

Women have to be protected.

Yes, but at what cost, though? How many patrols, how many checkpoints, how many watchers will it need to protect the women who go out at night with their hair, with their legs, with their make-up?

Well, then. Borders. Close them and send the refugees back.

And what of the refugee women, children, and the many men who do not assault, rape, rob? Send them back to starve or be killed?

Only let women and children through, then. Or? I don’t know. I felt for them. I really did. But the gangs are too much. Too dangerous and their ideas about women are repulsive.

Of course, yes. But some believe in their rules to the point of death. In their homes, schools, villages, everyone speaks only of these rules, incredible, horrible ideas to us, about women. Even the women accept that their lives can only be honorable if they live by these rules.

I don’t care. They are wrong.

They have been taught these things since they were children.


david coyote said...

How can one win the argument when there is such an enormous gap in how each culture views women and their place in the society?

Societies laws insure conformity, as well as punishment for offenders. Some, humane - others barbaric.

You have clearly identified the problems. What's the solution?

Mathew Paust said...

A cultural clash that tests the best and worst of each. Only compromise can avert tragedy. You have boiled it down to its essence, Nonnie.

Elizabeth said...

Powerful poem. Conflict well framed. Impressive image. Nice one about difficult subject.