The shape of the world a generation from now will be influenced far more by how we communicate the values of our society to others than by military or diplomatic superiority. William Fulbright, 1964

Sunday, September 08, 2013


BTW: Putting women in their place
Let’s get this straight:  News of schoolgirl virginity tests is a splendid sign of progress.  Only an education authority that’s created a world-class learning system would have enough time left to put the carnal ahead of the cerebral.
So watch out for a flowering of PhDs and Nobel Prizewinners from Prabumulih, South Sumatra, every one intact.
Is it jealousy of young women, their vitality and power, that so arouses our leaders - or the revenge of the impotent?
In Amsterdam they’d be wearing dark glasses in De Wallen, nervously fidgeting under the red lights, but here they’re the saluted, chauffeured self-appointed custodians of other folks’ morality.  
Like Governor Rusli Habibie who’s banned women secretaries in his province’s public service.
Seeing a khaki-clad posterior makes staff focus on bottom lines beyond the accounts.  The edict is to stop affairs, - but suppose the bureaucrats are gay?  Silly thought – this is Gorontalo, not Gomorrah.
Misogyny yarns keep us from worrying about politics and poverty and we haven’t had a good one since Banda Aceh banned ladies straddling motorbikes. So thank you, provincial prudes, for revving up the debate about the proper place of women in society as decreed by us, masters of the universe.
Remember the story in the Good Book:  Sage Adam was happy in the garden reflecting on higher matters when Eva sashayed past with the apple.  And the world has gone to custard since.  If she’d just stayed in the kitchen we’d all be living in harmony, brothers in arms, not armed. 
Women are delicate creatures as every bruised husband knows well.  The term ‘fairer s*x’ relates to skin color, not justice.
 It’s up to us gentle men to suggest laws that will protect their sensitivities and ensure we are not seduced into sin. Here are some more:
Extend the straddle ban to bicycles. How does a woman cycle side-saddle? That’s not our problem.  We just pass the edicts. When it comes to s*x we just can’t help ourselves so you must control yourselves.
Back to the list: Women should be banned from Merdeka Square so they can’t see Monas.  Mockingly known as Soekarno’s last erection, the 132 meter tower thrusting into the sky is a Freudian challenge to lesser lads. 
Only men should work in fuel station forecourts pumping gas. Cars are male and should not be treated like women.  This is a straight society.
The front seats of bemos are to be reserved for men.  A woman sitting alongside a driver who constantly plays with his gear stick is clearly in a perilous situation – particularly if he withdraws and selects reverse while hurtling forward.  We won’t even mention pulling on the handbrake.
And while talking about traffic there has to be a total ban on women wearing seatbelts. It’s true the law requires belts to be used, but it’s secular and therefore wrong.  The strap goes across a woman’s, er, upper torso and separates her, er, feminine features.
This gives them prominence and causes distress to male passengers who are otherwise studying worthy texts, learned writings or playing Angry Birds.
What happens in an accident?  Thank you for asking, that shows your caring nature. Don’t worry – we men will belt up and be safe.
Some women like music.  That’s halal.  But playing a double bass is absolutely haram. The sight of a large instrument in such an intimate position can drive male concert goers into a frenzy when we came to be stimulated intellectually, not emotionally.
Another job on the banned list is piloting aircraft.  Grasping a joy stick, sitting in the cockpit and then heading for heaven is not right. It’s true angels have wings but you’ll never see one commanding a 747.
So if you hear the pilot welcome you aboard in a feminine voice, leave the aircraft immediately to preserve your honor.  Even if it’s at 10,000 meters.
I could go on, but you get the drift. Women and men are different and the latter must always be on top.  Otherwise we’ll feel insecure and start doing improper things to the economy and the running of the nation, and it will be all your fault.

(First published in The Sundayh Post 8 September 2013)


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