Monday, May 2, 2011

Reflection and poorly thought out rant

My campus backs onto wonderful botanic gardens that also connect to the city, as an apprentice chef I remember sitting in the gardens gazing at the massive buildings in awe of the whole thing tainted with just a little bit of jealousy and sadness that I was not and I thought, would never be smart enough to be a part of it.

Today I took a walk through the gardens and I remembered those feelings, they are not so dissimilar to the inadequacy I still get from time to time still. Maybe, just maybe they are not always justified? Nope still feel like an imposter.

On a different note: Culture clash, when is it OK to impose the new culture on the immigrant?

The Story.

I work with some wonderful Indian women, they subscribe to a religion that imposes very, very strict moral codes. That’s all very well and good. In the past 3 years they have grown soo much, carving out an identity that works with their culture and the freedoms enjoyed here, there are some exceptions.
One lady came into work with a slight rash on her neck, one of the other staff members and myself asked if it was a hicky (knowing full well it probably was not). After explaining what a hicky is (she went bright red) she giggled and we all continued on with our work. The next day she came in all bruised up because she had jokingly told her fiancé it was a hicky, he then slapped her so hard she fell to the floor. This is OK as far as she was concerned, this man has hit her on number of occasions that we know of for things such as holding his hand (they are not permitted ANY contact before marriage), and even cutting her hair.

It is never OK to hit a spouse. I cannot look at this man without seething about the low creature he must be to hit this sweet lady.

Australia like many western cultures is dealing with spousal abuse, it happens and we know it does, there are campaigns working on raising awareness of the problem. I would like to sit her down with the other staff member (we are all close friends and meet outside work) and try to explain to her this behaviour is not acceptable, but I feel like I would be crossing a line and offend her, not what I want to do.

In the same veign, the burqa was recently banned in France.

This disgusts me. In some circumstances, such as when driving or entering a bank I think it is justified, the law should not cater to a group for religious reasons and the safety of others should not be put at risk for it. But the government should not impose on an individual’s right to worship.

Stopping religious violence is different to forcing individuals to conform to the majority. Yes it is oppressive to women and I do not agree with women having to submit to the patricidal rule, but I do think people who want to, should have the freedom to worship in whatever way they see fit as long as no harm is caused to others. The move France has made is cultural discrimination on a huge scale. What if Catholics were banned from attending worship in a western country – imagine the backlash.

If I has more time I would do a much better thought out and supported post, but I don’t so all you get is an emotional half-baked rant.


Off to the next mental flogging that is commercial property law – Obiter.

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