Art is the proper task of life











{September 17, 2007}   Models, Anorexia, Ramadan

Its not a closed secret that diss skinny models so before I shift my focus to matters which should be closer to heart in Ramdhan, I decided to revisit this topic one last time before Ramdhan goes in full swing. Its not just ironic but its rather strange that there are literally hundreds of millions of people on this planet who do not have enough people and there are now also tens of millions of people on this planet who are obese. Then there are of course those super skinny stick-figure models. Looking at these three groups of people on can see the reason behind the prescription for fasting. The obese, the skinny and even those models can learn something from the spirit of Ramadan. May be some of those models should try fasting instead of starving themselves to death. It just may work. As usual I leave you people with the following excerpt from the Forbes Magazine.

The furor began in earnest last year with the deaths of two young models from anorexia nervosa and has since escalated, prompting fashion-show bosses in Europe to ban girls under a certain body mass index from working the shows.

In mid-January, the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) issued its own “Health Initiative,” stressing voluntary measures to “create an atmosphere that supports the well-being of these young women.”

But that may not be enough to protect models — and the millions of girls and women who emulate them, critics charge.

Too often, “guidelines are things that people just hang on a wall,” said Lynn Grefe, chief executive officer of the National Eating Disorders Association.

While she’s pleased that the CFDA has “opened a dialogue” on the issue, Grefe said she’s waiting to see how these voluntary rules get implemented.

“Right now, I’m not sure how they are going to handle it if they have an anorexic girl in the shows,” Grefe said. Given that most eating-disorder sufferers hide the problem, “How are designers going to know about it? And who’s going to tell the girl?” she said.

The issue gained renewed prominence with the eating-disorders deaths in 2006 of two young models — Luisel Ramos, of Uruguay, and Ana Carolina Reston, of Brazil, who was 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighed 88 pounds when she died. Reston reportedly lived on a diet of apples and tomatoes in the weeks before her death.

The outcry over these deaths led to a move in September by government officials in Madrid to ban models with a body-mass index (BMI) of less than 18 from performing in city-sponsored fashion shows.



There are some stories which are sad and speak for themselves. This is one of those stories. Especially for people from South Asia, Philippines and even Indonesia who are poor and are working in KSA Muttawa can be a force to be feared not because they ‘enforce’ religious edicts but because of their harsh attitude and act as if they control everything. Here is an excerpt from a story at Yahoo!

A Bangladeshi man died of fright after being arrested by Saudi Arabia’s controversial religious police for washing a car instead of praying, a local newspaper reported on Sunday.

The unnamed man died last week in the holy city of Medina after being detained by members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, Al-Jazirah reported.

The Arabic daily said the man “convulsed in fear after he was arrested, leading to a drop in his blood pressure and causing his death.”

The man was arrested by members of the commission, commonly known as the Muttawa, for washing a car during a time of day when he should have been at prayer, the paper said.



{June 18, 2007}   The No Honor Killing

The source of the story is the good folks at AltMuslim.

On April 28, 2006, 20 year-old Banaz Mahmod Bakabir Agha’s body was found hacked to pieces and packed in a suitcase in a suburb of London. Her crime was leaving an abusive arranged marriage and wishing to marry a man of her own choice. Finally, on June 12 of this year, her killers were brought to justice when a British court convicted her father Mahmod Mahmod and her uncle Ari Mahmod of her murder.

So what’s really going on here?

Archaic and misogynistic cultural beliefs, on the one hand, reduce women to objects of ownership and control, whose family members have no qualms in obliterating them for imagined sins against tradition. On the other is a host foreign culture suspicious of a ghettoised and economically disenfranchised Muslim minority, and hence slow to provide protection.

The following really caught my attention. It makes me wonder that the Muslim community should stop worrying about the the “big” things and start thinking about the “small” things in life.

Finally, also blameworthy is the persistent silence of the Muslim Council of Britain, and other Muslim groups who jump to organise protests when Muslim women are denied the right to wear niqabs but choose to ignore their plight when they fall prey to the brutality of their own families.



Yes, you read it right. Appearently some self-appointed Mullahcrat thinks that “Only girls with bad character go to college.” This is yet another example of perversion of religion and shows that how self styled spokesmen (I can’t use the word spokesperson here since these people would certainly say that there is no such thing as a spokeswoman) lack the basic knowledge of Islam. Have they forgotten the hadiath about obtaining knowledge being obligatory on all Muslim men and women? May be I am being too kind when I say have they forgotten, may be they have not heard about it! Well, God knows best. Here is the excerpt about the absurdity.

The sisters allege their neighbour Mohammad Ali Nisar Ansari assaulted their parents and brother on May 11. Ansari allegedly asked the sisters’ father Yasheen Sheikh not to send them to college.

Ansari and other men in their locality believe that “only girls with bad character go to college” and did not want sisters to study after school. The family was told that Islam does not “permit” girls to study.

“They threatened me and abused my family. They beat up my father and brother so badly that there was blood all over the floor,” says Samina.

Samina alleges Nagpada police station officials refused to accept her complaint, the petition said.

Remember Logic 101, if not here is a primer.

Premises:

  1. “Only girls with bad character go to college”
  2. Aliana goes to College.
  3. Aliana is a girl.

Conclusion:

Therefore, Aliana is …. never mind. We all know that Logic is haraam.



What do I mean by this? FHM an the likes have arrived in the Middle Kingdom. As I have stated before women can wear what they want but promoting a highly sexualized image of women is just plain wrong.

However, some critics say what it proved most successfully was that sex and sexuality sell in China just as they do in other countries. In fact, the magazine puts pictures of scantily clad models on the cover and, of course, a lot more inside.

And when they talk about content, they really do not mean text or articles they mean pictures and not just pictures but that kind of pictures.

“We offer content that will interest men,” said Wang Xiaofeng, the executive editor. “Most of the staff are men. And they know too well what content they want.”

Regarding my last comment about the articles well I take it back, consider this.

With pictures that are considered quite “bold” by Chinese standards and with such topics as “having sex while standing up”, the magazine’s editors know too well that they ought to be careful.
“We censor ourselves in terms of how far we can go,” said Jin.

Censor ourselves? Excuse me but that’s not what it looked like?

Pan Suiming, a sociologist at Renmin University in Beijing, says the magazine reflects the overall trend in Chinese magazines toward sexual explicitness. He said the trend has been noticeably evolving and intensifying over the past five years. While acknowledging that Chinese women are more confident today in displaying their physical beauty, the trend is predominantly driven by commercialism, he said.

Commercialism, of course what else. Sometimes it feels as if commodification of the consumer will be the ultimate height of commercialism and consumerism. Rest assurred, all is not lost.

Another cover girl, Shao Yuhan, received much media attention because her mother became very indignant about the magazine after seeing her daughter’s pictures and wrote an open protest letter, criticizing the magazine for leading a promising singer like her daughter in the wrong direction. That protest eventually earned an apology from the magazine, which said it was not like Playboy magazine.



I was just channel surfing and the most $@#%^ important news in the world right now is that Paris Hilton is going back to jail. What the $@%^&? We almost never get to hear what’s happening in the ‘obscure’ parts of the world like Sri Lanka? Darfur is also kind of in the back burner. This only shows how $@!#$ up our priorities have become. I am just appauled by the fact that most people have not even heard of the recent conflict in Congo which was the deadliest conflict after WW II in which more than four million people died. $#@%^& up han?



et cetera