Do men regard family law as threat to their freedom?
Vol XXVII NO. 219 Monday 25 October 2004
By AMIRA AL HUSSAINI
Why am I not surprised at all that the majority of those against having a written family law to protect the rights of women and children are men?
According to a study commissioned by the Supreme Council for Women and conducted by the Bahrain Centre for Studies and Research, 64.38 per cent of those who turned down the proposal to have a family law were men.
The sticky question here is: WHY?
Why does the looming family law seem to be a threat to them? Is it because it may, in a way, curtail the unlimited freedom they have on the fate of children and women who fall under their wing? Would it perhaps give those women and children rights and privileges, which will be protected by law and give law-makers the right to intervene and make decisions in 'family affairs'.
Would it maybe, as the study suggests, curb some of the malpractices against women and children, practised mostly by men who feel that their only way of proving their manhood is through terrorising their helpless families?
I am also equally surprised that there were women against the proposal to draft the law. Once again, why? Why are women their own enemies?
I don't see a single reason why women would object to having a law, any law, which may draw a line under what they are entitled to, what their rights are and what their duties and obligations should be.
Over the centuries, I feel women have struggled mostly because of man-made laws which are totally devoid of the message of equality and humanity found in Divine Law. Men made their own rules and interpreted religious doctrines to suit their own selfish needs. They have continued to oppress women and in turn their entire families, even in this modern day and age.
There should be a law to define relations within the family for each and every single person, man or woman, to know what is expected of them and what they would get in return.
It is a shame that the time has come for everything to be set in black and white, even within a family. One would think people get married and start families for peace, stability and tranquillity, for achieving a sense of fulfilment and bringing unlimited joy to their own lives and that of people around them and not the contrary.