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An open letter to the organizers of International Women's Day

by ALAH Fatima of Arab Lesbians against Hate Tuesday, Mar. 02, 2010 at 7:00 AM

The struggle of the Arab lesbian community

International Women’s Day

A friend forwarded me this notice. She knows how I personally, and my group, ALAH, communally, have been struggling to become more public with our viewpoints. We had an inaugural event in December, testing the waters so to speak, and most of us felt in the closet was the most comfortable place for us to be now. Why are we condemned as disloyal when we speak for equality and moderation? Why do we need to fear for our lives and our safety when we speak our minds? And where are our allies in this struggle?

So we're silenced and marginalized by our own, and we're silenced and marginalized by the feminists as well.

International Women's Day in San Francisco is most notable for what is not deemed worthy of protest:
Their announcement follows:

Mothers Speakout…with grandmothers, non-biological mothers & other women doing caring work… an action for Mothers March Globally!

Make our voices heard on * criminalizing poverty * racism * war and occupation * anti-mother, anti-caregiver policies * housing * welfare * valuing payment for caring work * pay equity * fighting for justice * immigration policies which attack children and break up families * prostitution & other struggles for survival * the right to home care by those of us who are older &/or have a disability * children unjustly taken from mothers by social services * healthcare * rape & violence * breastfeeding * childcare * lesbian/gay/bi/trans discrimination & violence ….The voices of women must be heard

Coups, wars and occupations continue from Palestine to Iraq and Afghanistan, Haiti and Honduras…and everywhere, as the economic crisis deepens and cuts are made across the board, mothers must pick up the pieces, to ensure everyone’s survival….

Whats missing, sisters? If you are tackling international issues, what about female genital mutilation? What about honor killings? What about child marriages? What about polygamy and its destruction of the social order?

Yeah, sisters. I'll be waiting for an answer, and until I get one, I won't be marching with you.
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