I find it interesting how Muslim feminists are up in arms about the Muslima being featured in the “gentlemen’s” magazine. How can you not recognize the fruits of your labor?

Muslim feminists have been telling the world that “Only extremists care about what a woman has on her head.” Yet, can’t that easily be extended to “Only extremists care about what a woman has on her body”?

Muslim feminists have been telling the world that “What a woman decides to wear is her choice and no one has the right to control that.” Yet, now we are told that an adult magazine where all the women have willfully chosen to appear in various forms of undress is objectionable.

Muslim feminists have been telling the world that “Hijab has nothing to do with protecting women from male harassment and no matter how scantily a woman chooses to dress, the onus is entirely on men to behave respectfully.” Yet, now we are told that there is something inherently problematic about women baring it all and that women, like Nour Tagouri, have a moral responsibility to not appear in such media.

Shouldn’t these Muslim feminists stop “shaming” Tagouri and instead focus their energy on telling men not to read the magazine? Why should Tagouri not do what she wants to do just because lecherous men read that magazine? The responsibility is SOLELY on men to abstain, lower their gaze, be respectful, right?

Muslim feminists have been telling the world that “Women are empowered by being visible, by breaking into patriarchal institutions and changing the system from within, shedding backwards gender stereotypes and old-fashioned ideas about the place of a woman.” Yet, now we are told that certain institutions and media are inherently “exploitative” and (too?) “patriarchal” and that Muslim women should bar themselves from entry even if they will break stereotypes, since their mere participation legitimizes those institutions.

Ahh, the sweet, sweet irony!


By the way, Islamically we know that what goes around comes around. The activist Muslim feminists who have been outraged by Tagouri are part of the old guard second-wave feminism of the last century that sees things like pornography as exploitation and commodification. The intellectual and spiritual heirs of those feminists are modern day third-wave feminists, who like teenagers rebelling against their parents, have embraced sexualization, pornography, etc., as empowering and liberating. And just like the old guard Muslim feminists called the rest of us backwards, oppressive, insensitive, etc., those same aspersions are being cast against them today!

Puts a smile on my face.

Also note that this same exact debate happening on Tagouri also happened 8 or so years ago regarding Muslim participation in beauty pageants. History repeats itself and so does inanity.