Open up your mind and your potential reaches infinity…

Are we lollipops?

It is a matter of pride that I was born a girl, despite knowing very well how tough life continues to be for women from birth till their death, and from east end of the globe to the west.

From parental upbringing  to interaction outside, from  house chores to professional job, from  status at home to  dignity at work, women are given second class treatment in most places. We form more than 50 % of the whole world’s seven billion, but still struggle to make ourselves being perceived as more than an object.

Whether in the name of faith, culture, or physical vulnerability, women are shown their worth  merely as an Adam’s rib.

A few days ago , I came across a picture which got me nauseated.

It had an  added  caption ” Would you like to be a covered lollipop or an exposed one?”

And to add more to my horror, many women and girls seemed to be nodding in agreement with their comments.

Do we really have to compare ourselves to lollipops ?

Does a lollipop have a mind of it’s own ?

Does a lollipop become a scientist like Marie Curie or a Prime Minister like Benazir Bhutto or an astronaut like Kalpana Chawla ?

Do lollipops even become strong caring mothers, supporting wives or sincere friends ?

But we women folk do. So we better stop this idiocy about covered or uncovered lollipops, please.

Everyone has a right to choose what should one wear, or not to wear, and so does a woman, whether she chooses to wear a hijab or not. Many women willingly  choose to wear it as a part of their religious duty. But there are many who go for  it because they consider themselves safer wearing one. Sadly, that is a myth.

If it was just exposure, or physical attraction, which made girls vulnerable, why would girls as young a ten years, two years or even six months  be abused, molested or raped ?

It may make one feel less exposed physically, but the real safety comes from a strong mind. A strong mind comes from awareness.  And awareness comes from quality education.

It is naïve to expect that things will change, only when men will change. They need to change too, but if women get empowered, men will change themselves.

If women really wish to make women abuse a history, they need to empower themselves with right education and independent thinking.  And then they need to pass on that information to other women folk .

Challenging oppression does not mean to be a rebel. It does not mean to hate men folk, nor does it mean to detest womanhood. It simply means to have your own mind and stand on your own two feet, with hijab or without.

P.S. In this  16Days of campaign of Violence  against Women, try to teach at least one weak woman to become strong  through Education, for herself and for her family. 

Comments on: "Are we lollipops?" (12)

  1. well written !! i’m glad there are people share the same thoughts like me i remember when i showed my disagreement with the comparison people started to get really offended for just stating my opinion ,everyone must spread the awareness against violence and abuse towards women

  2. Fantastic article! Im so glad I came across this!!!! Such an important issue covered. Im glad someone did it!

  3. Thank you for writing this.

  4. ilmanafasih, I admire your strength and your voice. Sometimes the love and respect of women begins at the home for we who are men. My mother was instrumental in my upbringing. I saw in her a woman who had little “material” means, but strong in love, direction, faith and kindness; something she shared with her 3 sisters. I was raised mostly by women, a maternal willful grandmother, mother and aunts, and a very highly educated older sister. They all possessed wisdom, and guided me. My only child, my daughter Lady, who passed away at age 33 this year, also was a reflection of all those attributes.

    It is a blessing to be a woman, because she knows how to lift up the world of men.

    Thanks for the wonderful memories your post gave me

    Let us keep up the struggle for equality and a right to a better life for all.

  5. And bless you ilmanafasih…..

  6. jbuchleitner said:

    This is so true! That ad is tasteless! Who in their right mind would publish that? GREAT job once again!

  7. ever heard of the word “Metaphor?”

    Well just to tell you, the Lollipop reference indicates the appeal of a sweet thing to a bee, like that of a beautiful woman to a man.

    then again, when a guy looks at you, the first thing he sees is how beautiful you are, and not what degree you’ve graduated with.

    So yeah, sorry to burst your bubble, but you’re a lollipop ma’am.

    Quick! Send it to the tribune. They’ll publish it!

  8. Couldn’t have said it better myself. What’s even worse than men comparing women to lollipops is women actually concurring with these men. You don’t oil the very machine that’s gonna strike you down.

  9. there are four categories of men and women as per our deen.. Momin, Fasiq, Munafiq, kafir..and all four will have their different point of view as per their level of thinking…one will surely say the other is wrong and will find ways and means to justify their stand..Let our Allmighty and his Rasool say what is right or wrong..only satan can think of revolting against them and the consequences will be bared by each soul who follow him…may Allah Subhan Huwa Ta’ala give Hidaya to all Muslim Ummah…Ameen.

  10. Asak Ilmana anty,
    It has always amazed me why their is always a conflict between hijabi -non hijabi, cover dont cover. For me it is as simple as salah or praying, it has nothing to do with intellect, or beauty, or grades of piousness, its just something that Allah has asked to us to do like salah and we have to do it no matter what kind of person we are or in other words wearing a hijaab is not a ticket to piousness. Here, I would also like to point out that hijab is linked to haya and I dont understand how someone wearing a hijaab with tight jeans and fitting shirt can be better than a girl who is wearing normal non provocative clothes with her head uncovered. As far as the lollipop picture is concerned I think its just a metaphor to explain things and not meant to demean others, Initially, the prophet asked muslim women to cover themselves properly so that they may be distinguished from other street women on whom people used to pass comments on the streets and by covering muslim women be considered as noble. I think there are grades of covering also these days and although what you have said is true I think it is also a fact that a woman , all covered in loose clothes is less likely to be a target of eve teasing in a bazaar than a woman with figure hugging , flashy clothes, head covered or not.
    I think what is really needed is to understand the ahkaam from the roots and do it to please Allah just like salah which is between man and God. As a muslim it is important to talk about it and tell others but thats it we can not make anyone do it nor can we think as lowly those people who do not.

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