Headscarves and hijab

Scarves Istanbul

The annual World Hijab Day fanfare came and went and I barely noticed this time.  I guess if you’re not checking Twitter or Instagram, these things tend to pass you by.

I’m not yet sure what I really think about World Hijab Day, and the need to create events around solidarity and decreasing Islamophobia.  Should our actions and conduct speak louder than words and clothing?  Plus the concept of hijab is meant to be more than just a headscarf and more than just about physical covering, so there must be a deeper way to address and think about issues of Islam and its projection to the outside world.

Read this interesting article by Aaisha Dadi Patel in the Daily Vox: Muslim women, you don’t need to be validated by World Hijab Day.

She argues that the label “hijab” creates the binary of “good muslim/bad muslim” and that the focus on Hijab alone reduces the religion to a symbolic headscarf.

She ends saying “You don’t address a problem by dressing up. If you are an ally to a struggle, figure out a way to use your privilege to advocate for that struggle instead of making a mockery of it.”

What do you think?



Payback for the past

Like a lot of people, I do think our President is a dud.  It makes me sad that I really think he’s an idiot. If I just disagreed with his policies and didn’t think he was incompetent and a scoundrel, it might be easier to handle.

But that’s not the point of my rant today.  Even though JZee is corrupt and has been milking the system at the expense of taxpayers, what is really irking me today is this meme I saw recently.  Everyone keeps calling for JZee to “pay back the money”, some 20 million spent on his personal home in Nkandla.  But this image has stuck with me – the white lady smiling with glee because Zuma said that he is finally going to pay back the money.  “And you’re wondering when they’re paying back the land.”


We can criticise our government all we want but the inequities of the past were never properly righted, and even though forgiveness may have averted a civil war, there is still the question of those countless people who benefited from apartheid, made loads of money, gained tons of advantages, stole all the land, and never had to pay back any of it.  They get to keep that.

Damn colonialism and apartheid, and this mess that we are left with.

And then another cartoon that irks me because it’s true, about reverse racism…