Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Children And The Cultural Divide

I was pleased to see a blow against Sharia law in this morning's paper. An Iraqi man living in Phoenix was convicted of second degree murder for having run over and killed his daughter in an "honor killing." She refused an arranged marriage, had the audacity to go to college and had a boy friend. She was 20 years old. Her life should have been ahead of her.  Her father thought she had "dishonored" her family.  Now she is dead.

Did you ever disappoint your parents when you were young?  Embarrass them?  Anger them?  I surely did. I was not the best kid on the block. My biggest problem was I questioned everything, including authority. And often challenged it. Had it been against the inbred tenants of my father's religion I'd have long ago been dead under Sharia law. Catholicism was bad enough. I'm sure I'm doomed to at least purgatory for near eternity for my life's choices.   If it exists.  Which I doubt.  See?  I haven't changed much.

Take religion out of the equation, we, as what we consider as civilized people, tend to love our children. Through thick and thin. I read a column written by a local psycho therapist, telling of a "boot camp" for parents he'd be conducting for those at their wit's end with problematic children. No, I never drove my folks to quite that extreme. But kids do. And parents don't kill them. They try to do everything they can to help them. Raising them to be happy, educated, productive citizens is a religion of it's own to most parents. Forget the headline grabbing horror stories we are witness to. I'm talking about the millions of others who never make the headlines because they're too busy trying to do right by their children.

Of all the things that make us different from those who follow Islam,  I think the ability to kill  your own child explains it all.  Children are supposed to be created out of love.  You bear them, they are born.  You cherish the experience and the wonder of a new born.  You nurture them, feed them, support them and guide them.  They are your flesh and blood.  You do not encourage them to put on a suicide belt and go out and blow themselves up in the name of your religion or the hatred of another.

And you don't run over them with an SUV because they didn't choose to be what you wanted them to be.  In our culture we tell children they can be anything they want.  Hard work and focus help.  And we try to help them get there.

That is the cultural divide.  It is one to which there will be no compromise.  At least not from our side of the divide.  I'd not have it any other way!  Unfortunately, it seems, neither will they.

1 comment:

Margie's Musings said...

Only the Islamic extremists do those things, Mari. Most Muslims do not. We have Christian extremists who do such horrific things too.