Wed, 05 Sep 2012 7:00p.m.
If art is meant to create debate then a Lower Hutt exhibition has probably done its job before it even opens.
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11/09/2012 12:43:14 p.m.
My issue is with the privileging of religion & the undue social pressure brought to bear by the proponents of this exhibit, for the NZ public to display exaggerated respect for religion, over & above ordinary human respect, over & above the fundamental human right that men have, like women do, not to be discriminated against based on gender in NZ.
The implied threat here, based on recent history; Islam's fatwah against Salman Rushdie, and the Danish Cartoonists—is, as individuals, as a society we're literally demanded to accept under threat of violent physical retaliation that the values of Islam trump anyone else's, especially those values of secular liberals i.e; for the equality of women, against discrimination on the basis of gender, race, removing religious bias from the law, & for social equity.
I take exception to the fact that if we don't take the veiling of women seriously or accord it proper 'respect' we're at risk of being physically threatened, on a scale that no other
faith has aspired to since the 1400's. Why is such violence necessary?
I note that the Dom Herald's website, stuff.co.nz has been offline for the past 48 hrs since this story broke. The difference between this fact & a significant proportion of the Free Press in New Zealand being effectively muzzled—I can't tell the difference.
Decent liberal media will no doubt deplore any opposition to the exhibition & made token noises about free speech. While at the same time they'll express 'respect' and 'sympathy' for the deep 'offence' and 'hurt' that Muslims will 'suffer' as a consequence of not complying with their male gender ban. The 'hurt' and 'suffering' here consists not in any person enduring violence or real pain of any kind: nothing more than a few Moslem women being seen without veils.
I'm against offending for the sake of it. But why such excessive privileging of religion in our secular society?
What's special about Islamic veiling that we grant it unique privileged respect?
10/09/2012 4:55:08 p.m.
The clash here between the absolute moral certainty of religious dogma & the shifting sands of liberal moral relativism is an example of how our society suffers political distraction over such issues—where our Secular society is challenged or demanded by well-educated and otherwise well-intentioned people, to be tolerant even of belief systems that promote intolerance.
The imposition of Sharia Law-like gender discrimination at the Dowse is an offence against the moral foundations of our secular society, an offence that's enabled by liberal “tolerance” of moral difference.
There are practical concerns following the glib idea that anyone is free to value anything—most causal being that's just what allows educated, & otherwise well-intentioned people, & broadly compassionate societies like ours to pause thoughtfully before condemning practices like compulsory veiling & other similar products of alternate forms of “morality” found elsewhere in the world. Moral relativists never seem to realize what the stakes are, & they don't appear to recognise how abject failures of compassion are enabled by the intellectual tolerance of moral difference.
The essence of women's secondary status under Islam is life fully veiled.
It's a failure of liberalism that we hear sanctimonious appeals to religious sensitivity with regard to the subject of women fully veiled. It's couched as politically incorrect to criticise this practice—when there's no sensitivity for what life is actually like for women forced to live this way. Our sensitivity's misplaced if we're worried about defending the men who want their wives/daughters/sisters to live this way. We should be concerned about the women forced to live this way.
Forcing half the population to live veiled, & if they refuse to comply beating or killing them—obviously that isn't a good strategy for maximizing human wellbeing in any society.
7/09/2012 8:04:24 a.m.
thanks so much,our family has had 2 funerals,the 1st was a ghastly funeral home experience with an expensive,ostentatious coffin we all despised,the 2nd one we tried to do as much as we could ourselves and with more information we would encourage others to do the same
6/09/2012 10:45:39 p.m.
Frances Harrison wrote:
Why no mention of eco funerals? The idea of pumping noxious cuds of heavy metals into the air appalls me.I'd rather be buried 75cm below a tree and return my atoms to the planet. Return to Sender create playwood caskets which have interesting designs. I believe Waikumete has a section for this and you end up with trees the families and planet can benefit from.Sensible recycling and doing some good. Embalming can be an option for the family but I'd prefer to be at home to be viewed until my bloating made that undesirable. natural, eco, cheap, satisfying.Suits my values. Give me a cuddle and send me to nature where my atoms originated, Elegant solution.
6/09/2012 12:31:39 p.m.
Although I'm not Muslim i think you need to do your research because your so far off the mark apart from the equal opportunity part.
6/09/2012 8:33:00 a.m.
The burka or abaya has nothing to do with cultural or religious views, it is about female oppression. We should not support anything that oppresses anyone because of their race, religion or sex. This is an equal opportunity country and we should not be supporting separatism.
6/09/2012 8:27:32 a.m.
Whena lost the plot on this story.To much time wasted on talking to a cross-dresser,a befuddled gallery curator and telling the cameraman he couldn't view the film(who would've guessed!)
But not enough time asking hard questions of the Muslim women present.For example,why are so many Muslims in western countries intolerant of our way of doing things?Why do they take advantage of our democracy to do things that many westerners find offensive?Wheres the respect for our culture?
If whena had done some background research she would have know a spokes person for a New Zealand Muslim Womens group had said such issues will become more common as the Muslim population grows in New Zealand.Surely the implications of that comment should have been explored.
In my opinion, Islam by its very nature, is not compatible with western values, as this issue shows.That the gallery does not comprehend the slight to our culture they are encouraging is breathtaking.
Am i being to critical of Muslims?Well consider these two latest outrages.Many Muslims in Egypt want the pyramids destroyed.And in Libya, commonwealth war graves are being desecrated.Thats something that never happened when the so-called beast,Gaddafi was in power.
Poor piece of journalism Campbell Live.
5/09/2012 11:16:32 p.m.
New Zealand has a non sexual discrimination policy, so the most this artist and the gallery can ask is a "request" that men do not view the work. End of story.
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