Inspired by my thoughts of how women from all around the world face the same issues whether it be times from the war, times from the past or times from right now.
So many images that inspired me that I have seen through the media of Middle Eastern and Afghanistan women (less now of the former) huddled and masked.
Masking themselves by law, by force, by tradition and by their own decision in some cases…I speak for myself.
I do not know how they feel, I do not know what truly compels them to make such a decision as to relinquish their rights or to stand up for themselves.
I only know what I feel when I view women in such a condition as I have told you in my previous work in my Our War artwork.
I only know that women and their children are being treated in such a way as to be harassed and assaulted by their own government and the Taliban from the news that I have read which comes from their own country.
Yes. Some news does come out…some do speak out for themselves at risk of life.
I do know that NATO and our war soldiers are doing special work to aid women and children to help in building their health and basic needs…the idea may sound simple but really I have found it is often forgotten in my country that once one has their basic needs met they are capable to then address other needs such as their dignity, their ability to seek opportunities, their strength and self-esteem can now be increased.
This is my opinion and it may be culturally biased but I believe it is not because all human beings have a right to stand up and not be shrouded and treated as if they are less than any other human being…is it only in Western Cultures that this is honored?
It did not used to be that women were honored in my country…it did not used to be that people who did not “fit” a stereotype were honored or respected. My country is young compared to Iraq and Afghanistan.
I hope that the women of Iraq and Afghanistan are able to take full advantage of the opportunities being offered to them now while our soldiers are there offering assistance to give them education, health care, and guidance.
I hope for their strength just as I am reminded of the women from the United States had the strength to make so many changes and had to face so many obstacles and had to make so many sacrifices in order for the women of today in my country to enjoy the freedom we have now.
© 2010 Cara Schingeck