Cayman Net News
   Welcome to Cayman Net News Online: Today's print edition 
Search: web our site     

News from the Cayman Islands for
Prev    Next

Letter: The problem is patriarchy, not religion

Published on Wednesday, April 21, 2010 Email To Friend    Print Version

Dear Sir:

Are D. Stacado and C. Miller related? Or is it a mutual admiration society of two? What a load of biased bunkum! Okay, let's get a principle on the table -- though why I am trying to reason with such prejudiced ignorance is beyond me, but I'll try -- because education is a marvelous thing.

All societies, including Cayman, a country of Christian heritage, are violent against women. Generally it is known as domestic violence, but there are other names too, like rape, beatings, abuse, murder, abduction, bullying, and sexual discrimination. It is as rampant in Cayman as it is in many other nations -- Cayman residents don't particularly go for so-called honour killings, but we have a shameful list of dishonouring women of our own.

Thus, the problem is patriarchy, not religion or religious culture for that matter -- except human culture in general -- where it is believed that women are somehow less, weaker, subservient, and second class to men and boys. Religion doesn't help of course; especially patriarchal religions, of which Christianity is a sublime example. But religions and faith do progress; thank God, they are not static, they modernise and learn that the human cultural ignorance of the past is not, in fact, God's way, and women all around the world now have legislation, at least, to protect them from such ignorance.

But let's get back to honour killings in India. Yes, to Indian national shame, they exist. Mostly in Pakistan amongst some Muslim communities according to known statistics but they do exist amongst other Indian groups, including some Hindus. But such killings are predominantly committed amongst the ill-educated. That is no excuse, of course, and it is a problem that India continues to rectify through their legal and justice system. It takes time for human ignorance to dissipate. Just like it takes time for religious people to grow up and realise they, despite their Holy books, are not God and only see partially, in a poor reflection, as St Paul might have put it.

Now these letters about honour killings and Indians and Hindus and Muslims: I am glad they have been printed because education can only occur if people are prepared to air their fears and prejudices. But let's make something clear: whatever religion or culture comes to the Cayman Islands abides by the laws of the Cayman Islands, so domestic violence of any kind will not be tolerated if it is brought out into the open.

But please let this be an opportunity to bring out Cayman's own shameful present history of discrimination and violent acts against women. Let's not turn a blind eye to husbands and boyfriends beating their partners; let's not turn a blind eye to rape, to incest, to discrimination and harassment in the workplace, to demeaning talk about women and girls. Cayman does not tolerate these things officially; but in practice. Who are we kidding -- there is too much cover up, too much silence, too much turning the other way.

I think the thing that saddens me most about these two letters of Stacado and Miller, is they have the air of holier-than-thou religious zeal that claims their own religious and national tradition is without human corruption, and beyond the same criticisms they dole out, but the truth is all of human society has to humble itself and recognise the most divine of principles. We are all equal, even though we do not all have the same advantages, we are all equal and our cultures, our laws, and yes, even our religions, including our Holy books, must keep changing until that divine truth is a realisation on Earth. Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be here.

F. Lopez
Reads : 993


No comment for this topic yet. Be the first one to give comment.


Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article for publication in our Readers' Forum or as a Letter to the Editor. All fields are required and in the interest of openness and transparency we will no longer accept anonymous submissions. We therefore request that all submissions include a name for publication, regardless of content. We will in special circumstances protect a writer's identity only after we have established good cause for anonymity, otherwise we will not be able to publish the submission.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, it will be a waste of your time typing your submission because we will never see it!

Your Name:
Your Email: (Validation required)
Enter Validation Code *

Click here for the latest print edition