Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Why Men are Scum

Yesterday I was discussing boys with a friend of mine, and so we arrived at a conclusion. Namely, men are scum. I fully realize that this is a sexist post. But you know what? I think it's high time that I posted something sexist. Because damn, men have been sexist for way too long and we've allowed it.

Oh, what's that? You don't agree with me? Well let me give you a short excerpt from a fellow Muslim male blogger:

Twenty minutes later the exercise was over. As I paused for a minute to catch my breath and reset the machine, the Stairmaster next to me became empty.

And then the most gorgeous looking Indian girl, with long silky hair, lovely eyelashes that hid her shiny green eyes, soft smooth skin and a brilliantly toned figure got on that Stairmaster. She turned to me and said, “Hi.”

I picked up my jaw from around my knees and meekly muttered a “hi” back.

“I don’t know how to work this thing.” She made a face and looked at me. “Could you please help me here.”

“Oh sure,” I replied. Help you? Oh baby, I am ready to build a Taj Mahal for you.

But that's really not where my anger ends. The worst part is that many females commented on the post saying things like "oh that's so funny, haha" and "nice post" and other incredibly idiotic things like that. Why is it that women don't have a problem being treated as objects? Why do we accept it quietly?

Now I'm not calling out anyone specific in this post. I just used the above example to illustrate my point. And I'm not just talking about irreligious men here either. Even men you think are oh-so-good and God-fearing turn out to be scummier than the other scum. But seriously, the stories I've heard about how men treat women sometimes just makes me want to smack any random guy that happens to be walking my way. Dammit.

I'm going to eat breakfast now.

43 comments:

Humairah Irfan said...

Dammit. I agree.

'liya said...

Aww, I love Haleem's blog! I think he's absolutely hilarious and I found this post of his to be especially funny - so when I wrote my "oh that's so funny, haha" or "nice post" or whatever "idiotic" thing I wrote, I really meant it :)

I hate to bring this point up but you have to remember that a guy is a guy before he's anything else - that's why the gaze is supposed to be lowered aint it? So he was star-struck by some random girl's beauty. In the quest for a wife, that happens! I think he was just giving us a creative but honest retelling of his experience, I don't think he meant any harm.

MT said...

hmm...

switch the guy and the girl and the resulting story would still be quite plausible.

Men aren't the only ones who think as such

Your post could easily have been titled "Why Women are Scum"

*tariq runs away as fast as he can*

Umar said...

"But seriously, the stories I've heard about how men treat women sometimes just makes me want to smack any random guy that happens to be walking my way."

Note to self: keep a safe distance away from Asmaa at all times.

Anonymous said...

to be quite honest. if you knew what guys REALLY were thinking all the time. you'd stay, far, far, far from any boy.

what you have there is a much controlled version of what a guy would think.

sounds scary? too bad its the truth!!

Asmaa said...

Humairah, thank you!

Liya, I don't care if a guy is a guy. If a man thinks that way about women, he doesn't have to make it public. That's extremely distasteful, no matter what. Yes it's "honest," but what good is honesty without tact and without limits and common sense? Anyways, again, I wasn't calling him out specifically, just using it as an example.

Tariq, there is a huge huge huge difference and you know it! Because women have been exploited by men for centuries! And then we claim we're in the "forward" age of all this feminist thought, when in reality women are STILL being exploited and made into objects. And women accept it! They don't fight it, they think it's flattering to have a man drool over them. It's disgusting.

So you definitely cannot turn the finger around, because there isn't that same historical suppression of men as there is in the case of women. You'd better watch yourself at the msa meeting.

Umar, good note.

Anonymous, I like the way you think and I agree with you! Grrr

olde woman said...

Assalamu aleikum,

While I do think, Asm, that you were generalizing too much and being too broad in your categorization of an entire gender as - how did you put it? - scum, I can understand the underlying motivation for this statement.

I would only concur with the fact that, mentioning one's lustful infatuations and trysts in public is rather tasteless. I can forgive - nay, perhaps even sympathise - with a sentiment, but it really is a poor show of humility and good character to broadcast it in public. Truly the ungrateful ones are those who, when God shields their sins, do not rest until they display them to the world.

sara said...

I applaud this post because men have been able to get away with so much crap for so long.

Sure, this post is a huge generalisation but it's high time for it.

I sound bitter, and maybe I sort of am.

ilyas said...

"And women accept it! They don't fight it, they think it's flattering to have a man drool over them. It's disgusting."

Doesn't that make women the scum? After all, they're encouraging the behaviour.

If it's the "honesty without tact" that you (Asmaa) find distasteful, what does that have to do with those who are only tactfully honest?

I haven't been able to figure out what a history of exploitation has to do with this. Since women (presumably) didn't historically exploit men, are they allowed to objectify men without being scum?

Apart from these questions I have, I must say I found your post quite enlightening. :)

Travelling Stranger said...

You know what's strange? I agreed with everything that was said in your post and its comments.

I can't deny it. The thoughts that run through my head aren't pretty. And it's true, this is why you should stay from males. None of that "He's like a brother to me" crap. Even if I am your brother, I'm still scum!

But at the same time, I found the behaviour to be quite normal for a guy.

mezba said...

Pshaw! Cut him some slack - I have been reading him for sometime and don't find him offensive at all, even when makes fun of Bengalis, whatever.

Doesn't the Quran describe the Houris' eyes?
Isn't there a verse about young men being there to serve the Paradise goers?
Isn't there a hadith where the Prophet said a woman is married for four things?
Isn't there a hadith where the prophet asked a younger Sahaba why he married an older woman and not a younger one?
Isn't there a hadith where the prophet advised a woman against marrying a certain Companion because he was poor?

Yes, yes ... and yes. It's not because the Quran or the Prophet objectified women (audhubillah) but they recognized certain realities of life and unlike other religions, Islam doesn't hide away from the realities of life, it controls them. This is why Islam says for men to provide for their family is the best way to spend money, and makes it obligatory to look good for your spouse and makes sex an ibadah.

Travelling Stranger said...

Mezba, very well said!!

Arif said...

This video has your name written all over it:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=z8SYHxlH9mI

Faraz said...

I'm surprised at what a lot of Muslims write on their blogs, going into really personal details about their married or unmarried lives. Then readers cheer them on for being "honest", and accuse others of "pretending these things don't exist". This was the same reaction people gave to the second episode of Little Mosque on the Prairie - saying that anyone who was surprised by the sexual nature of the episode is living in ignorance.

I don't think anyone is denying that people have carnal desires or whatever. I certainly don't deny it, though I dare not write about these things. Not because I'm "hiding from the realities of life", but because there's just no benefit for me or anyone else in broadcasting my feelings. A lot of Muslims believe, rightfully so, that some things are best kept private. I think olde woman above said it best. And really, it is a blessing when Allah hides our sins and keeps our private lives private; for us to expose ourselves is to deny that blessing from Allah.

Leaving out intimate details of one's life is not dishonesty, it's modesty.

Faraz said...

All that being said, I think it's somewhat futile to go around "policing" the blogosphere. Save yourself the frustration; there are too many "idiotic" comments out there to get worried about. And what's idiotic to one person is not necessarily idiotic to another.

Relax.

Anis Malik said...

Salaam

This incident reminds me of the following hadiths and it also goes to the crowd that is cheering the looser Zarqa Nawaz's third-rate production.

"When there is no haya left, then do as you please." -Bukhari

"Indeed haya (modesty) and Iman are Companions. When one of them is lifted, the other leaves as well." (Baihaqi)

"Every way of life has a unique/distinguishing character. The character of Islam is haya." (Abu Dawood)

"Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should say something good or keep quiet." [Bukhari]

Ahmed said...

You could easily switch the genders in your story and everything would be the same. There are TONS of muslim girl blogs I stumble upon talking about guys or drooling over actors like that guy from Prison Break.

Looking at centuries past doesn't make sense. For every negative example there can be found a positive example. For both men and women. You need to look at everyone individually.

Also, theres a lot of questions about the story too. Boys like girls, girls like boys. Its normal. Its not great to advertise your feelings everywhere but if its an anonymous blog in which the person maintains their anonymity...well... I don't think its as bad. His comments weren't even lewd or anything.

Anonymous said...

Dear sister,

"The worst part" is that you copied this (I assume?) from his blog without him knowing. That's not nice, not nice at all. In fact, to me that's more "vulgar" than anything the blogger in question said.

A lot of people have personal blogs. If you don't know anything about them or their lives, and don't care to know but just jump to your own conclusions about the type of person they are (or the type of people their readers are), perhaps you should find some other reading material?

Asmaa said...

Olde woman, you said it quite nicely and a lot more...tactfully than I did. Thank you.

Sara, word!

Ilyas, I'm going to let you off lightly because you're a teddy graham look-alike, but for no other reason. I'm simply commenting on the state of men, I'm definitely not legitimizing the innapropriate way that some women act. However, it is very different when a woman acts immodestly than when a man does, clearly. Exploitation and its history has everything to do with what I'm talking about. Because women have almost always been seen as the slaves of men, and STILL are. So the fact that women accept this degredation is horrific! And when was the last time that you saw a woman objectifying a man? It happens much less often than vice versa.

And being tactfully honest is the exact meaning of "modesty" :) (as Faraz explains lower down).

Traveller, glad to know you agree.

Mezba, pshaw right back at ya. You're just another man who simply does not understand the sensitivity of issues like these. I think it's incredibly shameless of you make those Qur'anic and hadith references in this context. You are attempting to legitimize immodesty! You're right, Islam does not hide from the realities of life! And that's why it's so beautiful. But what does that have to do with my post about men objectifying women? I mean, do you think it's OKAY for them to do this? Or are you just so insensitive that you can't understand what "objectification" means?

Traveller, sellout.

Arif, that was a brilliant clip. Very violent :)

Faraz, thanks for the valuable perspective. I'm not trying to police the blogosphere, I'm just venting some of my rage :)

Anis, I don't know, I like Zarqa Nawaz's show and work. Yeah, it's not accurate and it needs some work, but overall it's a good initiative. But thank you for your comment.

Ahmed, do you really think we could switch genders in the story and it would be exactly the same? Come on, what a bunch of nonesense. Why can't you accept that some men are like this and it's perverted and lame? I mean, seriously, what's with all the denial? I can accept that the way some women act is disgusting - especially drooling over some random "man candy" (I shudder at the phrase). And I've written previous posts on this issue! I can accept that, but apparently you can't accept that men are at fault int he least. That's pretty damn unfair.

Dear "Anonymous," thanks for your comment. I made it clear to the blogger in question that I severely disagreed with his post. My sentiments are not unknown to him. I don't care if people have personal blogs. That doesn't give them the right to spew whatever nonesense they want without having to answer for it. Perhaps you should find other reading material if this blog offends you so.

**NOTE: I reiterate, the quote I used from a fellow blogger is simply an EXAMPLE. It's not the main focus of my post. The main focus of my post was to make an unfair and sexist generalization about men - something that men often do to women. And guess what? I've definitely succeeded. But why then are so many males upset at this post, while females often ignore the sexist remarks made about them? Because their voices are silenced. And that's sad.

'liya said...

Wow, a lot has been going on here since I last checked! Just to note, I didn't find his post sexist, and I don't think my voice was silenced at all, so I certainly hope you aren't just assuming that about all of his readers. I'm quite sure some actually did find it funny and weren't just jumping on the bandwagon :)

M&M said...

i read ur blog

i read his blog

i can sort of see where both of your comments came from. i found his post funny but i also see the deep meaning you took out of it. u put into words a stark reality of the general concept of objectifying of women by men which is quite true and happens a lot.

"the stories I've heard about how men treat women sometimes "
i know, and i agree with you here. it is quite sad actually. just look at the huge number of women that live in abusive relationships.

obviously women with their "eye candy" are no better.

but interesting discussion here though.

mezba said...

Uff!

First, I am not insensitive to women's objectification, in fact I wrote a whole post about it called Women in Ads.

Second, I think you just picked the wrong battle here. A blog post where a man describes how silly he behaved when a beautiful woman stood next to him in the gym is not your ideal post of a male chauvinist pig.

And third, the reason I included those references is for you to ponder. Not everything that talks about a woman's body or a man's wealth is "objectification".

Ma'salama!

Ahmed said...

Pardon me but where have I denied anything? I read the tone of your response to quite judgemental and I do not appreciate that at all.

And yes, you can easily switch the gender roles and people would believe the story. That was my point, that men and women both think these things. You basically valiated my point by stating how you've written about girls that drool over 'eye candy'. And I at no point said men never think this way or that its good thing for either men or women.

What I did say was that you can not look at the behaviour of people throughout all of history to judge a single individual today.

I think your example quote was poorly chosen. I don't think his post is sexist. Its a person acting silly because they are attracted to the person beside them. But from reading it I read an attempt at humour. I can see how it can be objectification but really there are better examples of that. Much would depend on what he said to her and how he actually treated her.

I agree with the points made about Modesty, Tact, and not revealing sins that Allah has allowed to remain hidden. I'm not sure what my view on it is if a person remains anonymous while making such statements....I suppose still not good.

Travelling Stranger said...

Yeah, I agree with your thoughts Asmaa, but the example was purely that of someone attracted to the opposite sex, which is natural.

Mars said...

Ok everyone, calm down..where is the love?

Ok granted guys can be really stupid at times (like 99% of the time), that doesnt mean all are scum of course. Struggling with one's weeknesses is part of becomming a better Muslim. Man or Woman.

On that note, these days I've been more annoyed at women than men. Like you know those air-headed-miniskirted-hijabis? Yeah those. Barf.

In other news, none of this opression/objectification would happen if people were following Islam's teachings.

Lower your gays.. oops, GAZE.

Anonymous said...

Asmaa, I'm proud of you for posting this, and glad to see the discussion that followed. I liked your post very much. As mars notes, once you have people follow the laws of Islam, things would not get as out of hand. At the end of the day, men are generally weaker when it comes to these things and unless they get in tune with the basics of spirituality, they, to me, are most often then not, scum. But us women, we are a guilty party as well - we allow men to be like that because of how many of us carry ourselves, and because many of us just sit silent and play along.
Kudos Asmaa.

Eye

asiya said...

Actually, I have seen women in the blogosphere do the exact same thing, and it's just as despicable. Reason being, we don't want to know your carnal thoughts. Allah put a veil over them for a reason, please don't lift it, it's kind of embarassing. Anis, bro, you put it best with those narrations. I think the real problem here is that people forget that just cause it's impersonal, doesn't mean you can say any old crap. We still have to answer for it.

That being said, let's hope for the best. Let's hope it's love at first sight, and he ends up hooking up with her and marrying her, and admiring her for the rest of their lives, and lowers his gaze after that.



What's a mini-skirted hijabi?

Asmaa said...

I don't want to reply to all of you. Except Mezba, don't ever say "uff" at me again. I find it extremely rude :(

maaz said...

asmaa, we anxiously await
another controversial debate!!!

don't wait till june,
please post soon!!

Sara K said...

haha. I liked that last comment.

:D

oOkay so everyone's bickering. I'm gonna join in.

firstly. Stop jumping Dear Asmaa, if she only posted that excerpt with that title and nothing else, an explanation might be warranted. Sure, only slightly though don't get me wrong. Notice the association being made, the history of oppression, sexism, sexism, and sexism. Oh and I find the 'put a girl in this picture and its all the same' -argument quite lame..it even makes ME 'Pshaw'..(actually it's really pronounced 'Psht')

Anyway, billboards, magazine covers, online advertisements, televised advertisements, newspapers, flyers, did I mention MAGAZINE COVERS. Try to understand the issue here, MEN are objectifying WOMEN, and WOMEN are willingly and quite happily taking part in it. A problem exists. Yes, it exists - so why be surprised when a reader takes offense? Oh and this bit is for the people that are questioning the legitimacy of reposting some1s online drivel.

Blogs are ONLINE accounts of one's thoughts. keyword here: ONLINE ..if he/she has his/her 'comments'enabled then he/she sure as hell wants a discussion. Let's even scratch all that, I and every other sound person has a full right to object to things that we feel are being wrongly said and dispersed. The fact that someone thought it worthy enough to be a blog-post says a lot in itself.

Oh and to the ones that want to take the 'Guys will be Guys' approach.. I find that statement extremely Gross. Oddly enough, it was today that I had an abstract thought of a hypothetical brother who, when witnesses such a scenario, thinks about how precious this girl is and how she does not realize her worth..and that if only she did, how much more beautiful she would be.

(Yeah those were my own thoughts towards um.. the gross and often spotted public display of affection-ers. I only wondered if Brothers too would feel as I did)

Brothers like that are out there Asmaa and you already know this and so Sara K. need not mention it twice.

Khulud said...

Asmaa,
MashaAllah, you are brave. I was bothered but too timid to write anything about this type of bloody offensive posts. However, look at it this way: men like "this blogger" exists. Just because my father and brother have shown me the better side of men and just because I have been surrounded by men that show a tremendous amount of respect towards women doesn't mean that men like "the blogger" does not exist. I am rather thankful that "men like him" are out there, and also women like the commenters who find offensive things rather funny and "aw you're so cute" exist. Now you know what type of people, when in real life, you come in contact, will know just when to run away.
Remember, everyone will be held accountable for his or her own deeds. I am deeply bothered by this type of bloggers. I am more deeply saddened by their use of ahadith and Quranic verses to justify their shameless actions. But, if a person doesn't fear Allah, maybe he will care less about someone like you criticising or even worse.. offending some women. Because oh hey, he probably doesn't even know how to respect women.

Suggestion: let Allah take care of these people and be thankful that now you know at least this type of scums exists who boldly call themselves Muslims and USE ahadith and quranic verses to justify their acts.

May Allah guide our brothers and restore sense and brain in their empty skulls.

Asmaa said...

Sara and Khulud, thank you for your comments. Glad to know that a few people don't want to hurt me :)

Khulud said...

how could I hurt you if I agreed with you? HOwever, I will say this much: the paragraph you quoted is not nearly as offensive (almost not at all) as many other posts in that blog. I sometimes wonder what went wrong with our men in this ummah. And maybe that's why many commentors here were saying that you were over-reacting where if someone saw the whole blog s/he would know that it is more of a "last straw" thing. But if you quoted some other blog post from that blog, I am sure you wouldn't have to see that manyh hurtful comment.

but either way, make sure to make dua'a for brothers like him. THere are plenty of them out there, I tell you. I just hope the number reduces as they grow some sense. While I do want to make 70 excuses for them, I also wish to see some changes in many things they do concerning women.

Anonymous said...

hahahahhahahahahahahahha@tajmahal

im a guy :P and uhm an old friend of yours, now thats funny. Dont hate on da male race, besides he wanted to build her a tajmahal :P

Ahmed said...

I hope you didn't really feel attacked by anything I wrote. If so, I apologize. I just felt you were putting words in my mouth and then judging me on that and I was more than a bit annoyed by it.

Asmaa said...

Khulud, no no, I completely agreed with your comment. No worries :) And you're right about the 70 excuses, but it's just so hard sometimes.

Anon, you're an old friend? Well hi! Why don't you leave your name so I can say hello properly :)

Ahmed, I just think my post was kind of misunderstood. Which isn't new I guess. No worries, and accept my apologies as well.

Nusaybah said...

IT'S NOT VERY NICE TO FIGHT AND MAKE PPL MAD/SAD!

Anonymous said...

lol Asmaa. Whatever... i believe it was us who had that con and i firmly believe men are scum. like 99.9 %

any of you who are offended are probably male and are upset we found u out... lol

much luv asmaa ;)

Anonymous said...

SubhanaAllah.

It's not really about men being scum, it's just men aren't men these days.

Ama be the last one to comment and simply leave it as a sahabeya had said once at a time of passion, energy, love and anger

'WAAAAAAAAAA MUTHANAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA'

HC

Anonymous said...

Islam is obviously a mental disease.

Asmaa said...

Anon, if you think that, you're clearly ignorant about it. I don't like ignorant people commenting on my blog, so don't.

Anonymous said...

haha. l feel exactly the same way about how women objectify men as 'success' objects. It really annoys me when women get so obviously 'interested' after they do that indirect needling of information out of me like, what l do for a job (money), where l live (money), rent or own (money), what car l drive (money).

See, us men are just as weary and we too are tired of millenia of being used for what we can provide. Of course, men dont really complain about oppression and the such like, as we just take that for granted. We unconsciously internalise that on a pretty deep level. Complaining about it, is like complaining the sun is too bright when ya stare into it.

Yes, women do see themselves as bigger victims of... well pretty much everything. Frankly, revelling in that stuff is a competition men dont wanna enter into. You can have the self pity all to yourselves.

Life has its crap, gotta deal with it and get on with it.

Respectfully, in my experience, its only the insecure men/women, who dont have thelooks/money who complain about rich men/attractive women. Jealousy is a curse, dont wallow in it.

Asmaa said...

Anon #1, you're right about women objectifying men. It's wrong but not all women do it, just as not all men are objectifying scum. But your "Life has its crap, gotta deal with it" line doesn't really sit well with me. How can you just see something that's wrong and just get over it or deal with it? Change is important, otherwise you're just another speck of a useless human living on this planet.

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