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Bahrain: Polygamy as a national duty

We start this week with politics, or rather politicians, and the comments of one particular politician that have riled some of Bahrain's bloggers. An Islamist representative urged Bahraini men (some say in jest) to take four wives (three Bahraini and one foreign) to reduce the number of spinsters in the country, and encouraged his colleagues in the Council of Representatives to set an example. Mahmood wondered if the man meant to include his sole female colleague with this recommendation, but thought probably not. And he commented:

Thank you sir. Now go back to your cave. And take with you all of those morons who voted for you as well.

Soul Search also had something to say on the subject:

Women don't need men like you to live a dignified life, women are more resilient, more determined, more empowered to live an independent way of life, and don't need cavemen like you to marry them.

Go back to Riffa (his constituency) and see the misery that people there live in, the sewers are overflowing, the roads have huge craters in them, many houses are ready to collapse on the people living there, parking is a nightmare, the smell is unbearable, and the list can go on forever.


Redha Askander, also known as Concerned Citizen X, draws attention to another issue he feels Council of Representatives should be discussing rather than polygamy, viz. the current shortage of health professionals. It appears that 1000 staff will shortly be hired from the Philippines, ‘to boost services’, while Bahraini nurses will be sent to the Philippines for training. Redha says:

Lets get one thing straight, I agree that the health Care employees in the Philippines are better trained, not only because of the up to date education system but for the very fact that their population is around 72 million (1998 figures) and as such each and every Doctor / Nurse continuously get exposed to hundreds of different ailments and diseases leading them to become experts just by the sheer fact of being repeatedly exposed to the many diseases and ailments. … If we are going to send our nurses (must be Bahraini of course, of course) to get trained in Philippines, shouldn't we just pay their Government for the educational services and ‘on the job training’ which they will be providing rather than offering them the vacant positions which should go to the Bahrainis being trained or the new students that graduate each year.

While many are looking for work in Bahrain, Silly Bahraini Girl, currently residing in Canada, is looking forward to visiting home because then she won't have to lift a finger:

I will be able to eat without having to worry who cooked the food or who will wash the bloody dishes; go out without having to worry whether there is fuel in the car or whether it is clean or there is air in the tires or water in where ever water should go.. erm.. the wipers and that jug near the engine; I will have a clean house without having to vacuum and dust and sweep; I will be able to go out as I please without having to worry about whether I will freeze to death or not; I will not have to wear layers of clothes and I will be able to get as tanned as I want; I will have friends and family to talk to and won't have to go cooo coo coooo on a quiet morning to check whether my voice box still works; I will be able to get really angry in person instead of ranting and raving behind a screen; I will have a housemaid and a houseboy; I will not worry …

Finally, Mohammed AlMaskati is perturbed by what he feels is the hypocrisy of a dance that is in vogue:

It is one (with some folkloric origins to it of some sort) performed by two or more women as shown on the video with a background music of nothing more than continuous hits on drums with the lead singer chanting “Diqny.. Diqny” (which loosely translates to “Hit me, Hit me”), it is usually accompanied by what I can only describe as a weird outlandish belly dancing technique that relies on shaking the (behind) in a unique way.

The thing that I find very strange is the fact that most of those “dancers” that do this for a living, actually come out with a Burqa on, dancing exotically with other women (sometimes even in front of a male audience).

Now bear in mind that the dance comes from the very same society that takes Hijab and Abaya as a traditional/religious/honorable required dress. It comes from the very same society that encourages segregation between the sexes, and forbids premarital relationships and such. But still (and I’m speaking for my own personal experience) from what I see, is actually widely accepting such dances with sexual acts (be it this “Diqny” or even the traditional Egyptian belly dancing) within weddings or private parties, and encourages them.

Nevertheless, Mohammed doesn't object to the dance per se:

You see; I’m fine with models, I’m fine with pit babes, hooter waitresses, playboy dolls, those out there who do it for the money have made a conscious choice to do so whatever motivates them is obviously no more different than whatever motivates professional pole-dancers or exotic dancers.

What I have a problem with is the duality, what I have a problem with is the mentality, the fact that they are led to believe that if they look and move like a Pussycat Doll, or a dancer on one of those rap hit songs they will be sexy. Not understanding that they will be perceived as sexy, which is different than the confidence that comes from knowing who you are sexually.

He concludes:

The Diqny dance might seem innocuous to most people. To me, it’s just another way that our culture has distracted us from contemplation of one’s self, so that it can lure us with quick fixes and immediate gratification, even if it was in a disgusting and kinky way.

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