Update: I got this on Twitter:
silentempire @TheArabObserver this was in 2007, according to this post http://www.jordanzad.com/jordan/news/117/ARTICLE/22579/2009-09-04.html
The article says that the spokesman of the Public Security Department Major Mohammad Khatib pointed out that this video is an old one and has been taken on 2007 in an incident where the man being beaten up has provoked the policemen in the video! And that the security department makes sure to monitor policemen so not to break the law.
I, personally, don’t think this is enough. I want names of those policemen to be published and for us to know how they were punished exactly, and what measurment has the security department take in order to prevent such events to occur again.
I really can’t believe that this happened in Jordan! Policemen CANT be allowed to act this way. Those bunch of policemen should be punished for what they did.
Move this forward and raise your voice so that authorities take actions in this matter.
Last week Batir Wardam, a Jordanian famous writer, blogger and human rights activist, published a post on his blog about death sentence in Jordan. What he said mainly is that he is a strong supporter for the international declaration of human rights and the associated covenants with it except for one thing he doesn’t completely agree with, which is the call to abolish death sentence absolutely.
Batir goes on in his article and try to justify his stand by pointing out Jordan’s specific cultural heritage of tribal laws where tribes are known of taking justice by their hands and kill the murderer – or any member of his family – in order to take revenge. He claims that if the law can give the victim its right by sentencing the murderer to death, then tribes don’t have to enforce their own version of justice.
I, personally, have a deep respect for Batir, and I do usually agree with most of his ideas and stands, but I found myself completely against the notion that he presents. I didn’t intend to write about this subject back when I read his post, but today I was reading July’s issues of Living Well magazine which features a comprehensive report addressing death sentence in Jordan, and was surprised to read that the same notion has been talked out by a Jordanian famous lawyer.
It seems that there is some pushing towards abolishing death sentence in Jordan (no death sentence applied since 2006), but it also seems that there is some pushing against it. Building a case on the particularity of the local social structure and heritage is a quite common approach that has historically been used in different occasions to fight the pressures of the global community to push human rights amendments in the country.
While it is true that tribes tend to take revenge, I don’t think that it justifies keeping the death sentence penalty. You don’t fix a mistake with another one. If we have a problem with our social heritage then we should come up with laws that enforce fixing the problem instead of building on it and violate human rights recommendations. If a member of a family murdered someone in retaliation of a murdered happened in his family, then an investigation should take place in order to find out who in his family supported and helped him to take his revenge. In the eyes of the law, associates and supporters of a crime are criminals as well and should be punished. That is what should be enforced in order to stop tribes from applying the law by their hands instead of supporting death sentence with all what it entails of violations of human rights recommendations.
Inspite of our cultural perception of the dirtiness and ugliness of pigs, I happen to find them really cute creatures. They certainly look better than hens and sheeps, no?
There is no red line in our society that matches the one drawn to highlight the seperation of gender roles. Men and women, simple binary entities that simplifies all the diversity of humans nature into two templates. Only two that are hard to fit by many. It is even worse when it comes to the classification of these simple two templates; one is superior than the other. Men enjoy the upper hand. They ought to emphasize on different superior attributes (strength, intelligence, education, …etc) in order to fill their gender role.
So what happens when someone’s nature fail to fit with those guidlines? What happens when someone blurs the lines between between gender roles and mess up with one of the major parts of which we define our gender identities – our clothes?
Hell break loose! no?
What really happens is that most people fail to realize the natural diverse aspect of human beings and lump it under mental disorder category.
It is worth noting that I am not talking here about homosexuals who blur gender roles in a different way. I am emphasizing on another group of people who blur the line of gender roles based on their choice of clothes rather than their sexual orientation.
I know that we tend to lump everything that we are unfamiliar with under the same category – queerness -. Many people – falsely – percieve homosexuals as cross-dressers and cross dressers as homosexuals. In reality: The great majority of cross-dressers are biological males, most of whom are sexually attracted to women. (this is taken from the american psychological association website – read further here)
Now that we no that most cross-dressers are straight men, does that help in making them fit our unique men template?
Ofcourse not, they fail in one of the prerequisites.
While the american psychological association tells us as well that cross-dressing is not a mental disorder, a lot of people tend to maintain their constructed inherited structure of false rigidity of gender roles and judge cross dressers as mentally ill people.
We tend to play experts. It is no uncommon for us to judge any unfamiliar behaviour to be a mental illness. “He is sick, or she is sick” may be one of the most used Jordanian terms. People are sick – this is also common – in our own definition of equating sickness to weirdness.
Would we ever realize the diverse nature of human beings? and would we ever learn that being weird doesn’t necessary being bad? I know that the internet opened the door for us, we may find a hard time at the beginning to capture unfamiliar things, but we all know that with time weird things become normal.
It is the second year where the Jordanian blogshpere celebrate this beautiful country. It is like a national holiday where sentiments of nationality and patriotism are spread in the air, mostly with appreciation for the achievments and prospects Jordan has.
For me, and yes you all know that I am an optimistic person, I have never felt this good about Jordan, and never been as hopefull as I am today. I can point up success stories everywhere, I can smell creativity in the air, I can see young people with dreams and ambitions, I can feel real motivations for achieving and building for the bened of everyone.
In my humble opinion, there are 3 reasons behind this achievment spirit in the country:
1. The stability and safety Jordanians are benefit of since we signed our peace treaty with Israel. Now energy and money are invested in getting this country forward rather than enticing fear and waste it on military equipments.
2. The huge efforts King Abdulla II and Queen Rania are putting in managing the different sectors that build Jordanian economical and social structure. A lot of initiatives have been set in the past couple of years, and a lot of sectors have been supported and raised up to build industries that we didn’t have before – IT, tourism and film are at the top of my head.
3. The state of the world today, with the internet and communication evolution that made things easier for people to connect and work togather like never before. Today a Jordanian young man has the same chance to make it big the same way Mark Zuckerberg – the creator of the facebook – have done.
Creativity can do miracles in this world, and we certainly have built a frutile ground for it to grow.