Speak out against gender-based abuse

Gender-based abuse has many facets: so-called honor killings, acid burning, female genital mutilation, sexual slavery, and other manifestations of domestic violence against girls and women.

The horror of this abuse hit me fully while watching Bill O’Reilly last night (Monday, March 28th, 2011). His Personal Story Segment featured a young Libyan woman who risked her life to bring her story of rape to the media. (Legally she’s an alleged rape victim, but I have convicted the unnamed assailants based on her frantic outcry.) On camera she was man-handled into a vehicle, whisked away, and has apparently disappeared.

I also wept in shame for the state of humanity as I read Burned Alive by Souad.

If you think these things do not happen in the U.S. and Canada, think again. Read about Aqsa Parvez, Noor Almaleki, Daniella Erica Munoz, Hatice Peltek, and Sarah and Amina Said for starters.

The U.S. has a law passed by the 110th Congress, H. Res. 32 in 2007, denouncing gender-based persecution. But we need to do more.

First, forget cultural sensitivity. Then, join efforts like International Campaign Against Honor Killings. Check out http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/1255 Follow blogs such as European Foundation for Democracy to raise your awareness about honor killings. Support efforts such as those by Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-Texas) to counter the terror.

We (the international community) need to become outraged enough to make the atrocities stop. 

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