In one chapter, I have used a word ‘to liberate’, to describe how blogging give some Indonesian women freedom to speak out.
My professor, a male, has questioned it – whether it is correct to use ‘to liberate’. He said: “Indonesian women are free. They are not like women in Saudi. Indonesian women drive, do not wear hijab”
Then I recall Undang Undang Pernikahan tahun 1974. The 1974 Marriage Law describes women as household caretakers and men as heads of households and family breadwinners.
To me, that is why ‘to liberate’ is important. To me, as an Indonesian woman, ‘men as heads of households and family beadwinners’ may lead many aspects. Good. Bad. Both.
There are cases that men do not let ‘their’ women to work, to speak, to meet others, to decide, to have access to economy and to education.
Yes, Indonesian women do not have to wear hijab, it depends on many factors. BUT, this marriage law is a hijab for women’s soul. I think.
You cannot compare women’s freedom.
You may say: Women in Saudi are oppressed. They have to wear hijab. They cannot go outside. They cannot drive. Then, try to find what women in Kongo are facing.
Hijab, not driving, not going outside the house – could be a heaven full of freedom for women in Kongo.
So, if you want to compare, Sir, please to compare it with YOUR OWN freedom. As a man.