Price of Honor: Muslim Women Lift the Veil of Silence on the Islamic World

While women can be mistreated by individuals in any society, Islam, at least extreme Islam, sanctifies the systemic abuse of all women.

“A man loves first his son, then his camel, and then his wife”
Arab Proverb

This book, written in 1995 by Jan Goodwin, describes the sometimes gruesome position many women find themselves in just by living in many predominantly Muslim countries. It lays out a theory wherein the rising popularity of militant, extreme, Fundamentalist Islam is the main reason for the deterioration of the rights of Muslim women, as these Islamists increase they’re power base at the expense of women’s rights. Goodwin goes on to say that there is little or no basis in the Koran (the Islamic Holy Book) for the deteriorating position of women in many Muslim countries. The scope of women’s disenfranchisement varies from mild to severe from country to country as Goodwin addresses conditions in the ten countries she visited. It also varies according to the beliefs of branch of Islam to which the woman’s family belongs, Fundamentalist being the most oppressive. She also describes how this creeping tide of militant fundamentalist Islam in a danger to mainstream Islam and moderate Muslims. Though life in moderate or mainstream Muslim societies is very hard on most women it borders on slavery under extreme societies.

“There is no fun in Islam”
Ayatollah Khomeini

In the Peoples Islamic Republic of Iran, Khomeini lowered the marriage age for females from eighteen to thirteen (ya hear that Jerry Lee), but permitted girls as young as nine, even seven in some cases to be married if a physician signs a certificate agreeing to their sexual maturity. (pedophilia heaven). However, to the Ayatollah’s credit, he drew the line at seven, stating that it is forbidden to have sex with girls under seven!

“If a man and woman are alone in one place, the third person present is the devil”
Prophet Mohammad

“Under the law as it stands in Pakistan, women who have been raped can be charged with adultery or fornication. The proof required for zina (sex outside of wedlock including rape) is that there be four Muslim adult males of “good repute” present who can attest to the act of sexual penetration. No male witnesses of good repute, of course, are likely to stand and watch a rape in progress without trying to stop it. And because of this requirement it becomes impossible to punish the rapists. Instead the victim is prosecuted. Her legal complaint of rape is considered a confession of illicit sexual intercourse.”

“The majority of Muslim women find their lives controlled by their closest male relative. They are the daughters whose future marriage partners continue to be determined by their fathers. They are the brides who must be virgins on their wedding nights in a culture where, if they are not, honor killings are common and often carried out by the girls own brothers”


Muslim Irony

Fundamentalists restrict women from working, leaving the house unescorted and unveiled, being clergy, driving, reading the Koran, marrying an infidel, going to school after the sixth grade if at all and more.

The Irony of this treatment is in this Quote: “Such restrictions on women are necessary. They are to protect women’s honor and they are also a symbol of our enormous respect for women”

CONCLUSION

This book and several others like it document the ugly, onerous, abhorrent living conditions perpetrated on many Muslim women by Muslim men in the name of Islam. In fairness, The Author has on numerous occasion stated there is no basis for this treatment in the tenets of Islam. In Islam, especially the fundamentalist version religion is power. The Clergy gain power by elevating their male adherents, as do the adherents, over the females. They also gain power by espousing enmity toward a common enemy as Khomeni did toward the U.S. This is the politics of Theocrats. (The last three sentences are my observations)

As for the book, I highly recommend it. It’s 358 pages is well written, easy to read, compelling and chuck full of insights. The author, Jan Goodwin, did a tremendous amount of research, visiting and living in some ten countries, interviewing hundreds of, sometimes shy and reluctant, women to publish this very comprehensive book. Many of these women gave interviews, even though it endangered them. A couple observations I came away with is that the exception of Saudi Arabia, the holy seat of Islam, the quality of women’s living conditions increased with the wealth of the country or in large countries the area. Also it seemed to me that for the average Muslim male, appearances took precedence over the welfare of his womenfolk.

There are so many other things I would like to bring out, like how many Muslim women are malnourished by getting only leftovers, while doing three times the work of her counterpart but you really need to read the book.

July 27, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Atrocity, Islam, misogyny, religion, review, Sharia, Shiite, Sunni, Terrorism, Wahabism. 9 comments.

Secret Things – A Softcore Movie Worth Seeing.

Secret Things, French name – Choses Secretes, is the kind of movie one either loves or hates. I happened to be a lover. Even the fact that the movie was French with English sub titles did not dampen my enjoyment.

CAST
Coralie Revel – Nathalie
Sabrina Seyvecou – Sandrine
Roger Mirmont – Delacroix
Fabrice Deville – Christophe
Blandine Bury – Charlotte
Olivier Soler – Cadene

DIRECTOR
Jeanne-Claude Brisseau

THE PLOT
Roommates Nathalie (Coralie Revel) and Sandrine (Sabrina Seyvecou) compose a strategy to dispense sex strategically to manipulate men into submission for financial gain and advancement. They commence their plan at a large prestigious Paris brokerage house. After initial successes and rapid advancement, they meet their match in the company CEO, Christophe (Fabrice Deville) the handsome amoral son of the company’s founder.

THE STORY
A shapely woman reclines on a day bed. She is restless and she is NAKED. A spotlight seems to highlight her gyrations and machinations. She sits up and slips into high-heeled sandals. She leans back and puffs out her chest. She places one hand upon her breast and kneads her nipple. The hand moves down across her midriff to her sex and she massages it. Suddenly she stands up and deliberately struts across the hardwood floor. After a dozen or so purposeful steps, facing the camera, she lowers herself to her knees and bends back once again. The spotlight is still on her as she masturbates and as she masturbates, the camera pans right. After panning about ninety degrees, you start to see people sitting at tables and the more it pans, you realize you are in a nightclub and the woman is an exotic performer. The woman is Nathalie.

Nathalie and Sandrine a recently hired bartender were fired that night because Nathalie would not allow the owner to force Sandrine to sleep with a customer. Tossed out on the street with nowhere to go, Sandrine accepted Nathalie’s offer to spend the night. At her apartment, Nathalie urges Sandrine to loosen up after she admitted to admiring Nathalie’s nerve and lack of inhibitions.

Nathalie, with her dry humor and strong will, made Sandrine laugh and eventually coerced her to do in front of her what Nathalie had done in front of an audience. With that, the bond was sealed and plans were laid, based on Nathalie’s distorted view of love and sex, to manipulate all men and make a place in society for themselves. After the women’s initial successes and having compromised their boss Delacroix, (Roger Mirmont), their plan begins to devolve into a whirlpool of ruthlessness, unrequited love, group sex, lesbian sex, three-way sex, and masturbation, in which the only way out appears to be suicide or murder.

CONCLUSION

The highly charged erotic opening scene set the theme for the movie so well, that I was mesmerized for the rest of the movie. True nothing that came after, with the possible exception of an “Eyes Wide Shut” style orgy scene late in the movie, was quite as electric but I still enjoyed the movie immensely. You see Secret Things had a story. It had a plot. A good story, a good plot, and the overall acting was very good. Secret Things is the closest I have viewed to a commercially viable, mainstream, erotic movie.

The movie Secret Things is appropriately named. The storyline is structured on secrets, deception and the duplicitous side of human nature. It is a reflection of a murky, lascivious side of life, which rarely is truly, captured on film. In fact the movie seemed to touch on one form or another, at one point or another, on all of ‘The Seven Deadly Sins’ – pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed and sloth, obviously a perfect sinister erotic movie.

May 20, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . erotic, five stars, intercourse, naked, Nude, review, romance, satire, sensual, sensuous, sex, sex scene, sex scenes, sexy, Softcore, women. Leave a comment.

Zany Softcore from Playboy, The Fast Lane to Vegas

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Ahh! Fast Lane to Vegas! My kind of movie.

Of the few (scores that is) softcore movies I have viewed, Fast Lane to Vegas would have to be near the top in a list of my favorites. Fast Lane to Vegas is lighthearted, whimsical, sexy and erotic.

Fast Lane to Vegas is a sexual farce and doesn’t pretend to be anything else. The story is ably portrayed by the main characters, Zach (Stephen Harvard), Brian (Steve Curtis), Monica (Renee Rea) and Ashley (Tracy Ryan) and a plethora of attractive supporting cast members.

The Plot

Brian and Monica have a large wedding planned in Las Vegas. Monica, along with her best friend and Maid of Honor, Ashley, are already in Las Vegas, waiting for her fiancé, Brian’s arrival, who along with his friend and Best Man will be driving down from Los Angeles.

The Story

Before leaving for Vegas and his wedding Zack talks Brian into detouring to a showgirl party where Zack has a bachelor party lined up for Brian. Afterward, already late and hurrying to Las Vegas, Zack gets lost and they run across a couple sexy humanoid aliens. Then, trying to find their way back to their destination, they keep running into opportunities for sex with gorgeous horny gals, including in Mexico, where the bartender/mayor/judge decides to hang our boys for their indiscretions.

Meanwhile in Las Vegas, Monica, following Ashley’s example makes hay with a room service waiter and a male stripper. There are a couple side stories as well such as Brian’s future father-in-law hiring Biker Babe (Mia Zottoli) to follow Brian and Zack.

Credited Cast
Stephen Harvard Zack
Steve Curtis Brian
Renee Rea Monica
Tracy Ryan Ashley (as Tracy Angeles)
Nick Pellegrino Barkeep
Flower Juanita (as Flower Edwards)
Tera Patrick WiB #2 (as Tera Hopkins)
Mia Zottoli Biker Babe (as Ava Lake)
Bill Ferrante Mr. Sweethome
Sarah Kalla Heather
Dee Ginger (as Dee Summers)
Kelli McCarty WiB #1
Sasha Peralto Marina
Kelly Alane Chastity

Movie Data
Year: 2000 Indigo Entertainment/Playboy
Directed by: John Quinn
Version: Unrated DVD

Report Card

Story – B
Acting – B+
Directing – B+
Cinematography – A
Cast – A
Eroticism factor – B-
Entertainment factor – A
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Conclusion
For softcore presented in a zany, slapstick style, Fast Lane is very good. The misadventures of Zack and Brian are madcap, goofy and hilarious, especially Zack, who seems to be able to talk Brian into mischief. The ladies are essentially an all-star cast of soft and hardcore stars, as Renee Rea, Tracy Ryan, Angela Davies, Flower Edwards, Tera Patrick, Mia Zottoli, Kelli Mccarthy and Sasha Peralto, all show what they have.
This is the second “Fast Lane” movie that Indigo/Playboy released, the first being “Fast Lane to Malibu”, which featured almost the same cast and much the same concept. Both movies were originally featured on the Playboy channel and both movies are available together as a package. Personally, I didn’t appreciate “Malibu” as much but I will review the two movie package at a future date.

Both films are touted as ‘interactive movies’, where the viewer can choose at certain points either of two scenarios. I tried it a couple times, but I thought it was more a gimmick than something that added to the enjoyment of the movie. After choosing a scenario both ways a couple times and ending up at the same juncture after two or three minutes, I decided not to worry about this marginal feature.

For those wondering, the sex scenes were all well done though obviously simulated and honestly, more amusing than steamy. Still with the attractiveness of the cast involved, the sex scenes are still quite erotic. There were a total of nine sex scenes, including a fairly intense one with a girl pleasuring herself..

Since this movie is offered in both R rating and unrated, I made special effort to make sure I was buying the unrated version. I haven’t viewed the R rated version, but from my experience, unrated versions give me much more of the reason for which I watch softcore movies. Final Rating, 4.4 stars.

April 2, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . erotic, Hollywood, Las Vegas, naked, Nude, review, satire, sensual, sensuous, sex, sex scenes, sexy, Softcore. 1 comment.

A BOOK REVIEW 4 U – SMOKE SCREEN by Kyle Mills

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“Good morning ladies and gentlemen and welcome to another edition of Book Review 4 U. Today we will be reviewing a book by Kyle Mills called Smoke Screen. Mills, you may recall startled many readers with his initial novel, Rising Phoenix, with the novel idea of poisoning the nation’s illegal drug supply in order to curtail it’s use. Smoke Screen is Mill’s sixth book and whereas his previous books were all mystery thrillers, this one shoots off in a new direction.”

“With us this fine Saturday morning our usual panel members ET and Pamela Anderson. Et of course is our resident Science Fiction expert and Pamela doesn’t know that much about books but she sure is nice to look at, right ET. Gimme three! That a boy! The gentleman in the middle is of course ET’s long time interpreter Hailey Comet and last but not least is our two guest panel members, Film Maker, Michael Moore and Comedian Jerry Seinfield and Mike, please don’t worry about that chair. I of course I am your host, If you don’t recognize me, my name is William Jefferson Clinton. I used to work for the government but now I’ve got a real job and I’m loving it.”

“As usual I’ll read the fly leaf of the book, giving everybody a feeling for the book and then we’ll have our usual comment from our resident Epinionator Dee Dawning and then we’ll open things up for discussion by our panel. Sorry ET but this one isn’t your favorite, Science Fiction but it is a good book, isn’t it? You haven‘t read it yet but you‘ll read it on the commercial break.”

“Gee Bill, I wish I could read that fast. It took me a week of solid reading to get ready for this one”

“Well baby you know you don‘t have to contribute. You just have to sit there like you do, doing your thing.”

“I know Billy boy but I want to contribute for a change.”

“Okay, let’s move on. Here’s what the dust jacket, fly leaf has to say.”

“Through an inexplicable series of unwanted promotions, Trevor Barnett has become the lead spokesman for the tobacco industry just as it’s on the verge of extinction. Plaintiffs’ attorneys have finally found the weakness they’ve been searching for and filed a $200 billion lawsuit that the industry will be unable to appeal.”

“America’s tobacco companies react by doing the unthinkable – they close their plants and recall their products from retailers’ shelves. Trevor is charged with the task of going on national television and making the announcement: Not another cigarette will be manufactured of sold until the industry is given ironclad protection from the courts.”

As the economy falters and chaos takes hold, Trevor becomes the target of enraged smokers, gun totting cigarette smugglers and a government that has been off from one of it’s largest sources of revenue. Soon it becomes clear that this has always been his function – to take the brunt of the backlash and shield the men in power from the maelstrom they’ve created.”

“There’s more but I think the audience gets the idea. We now have Mr. Daumco on the phone to get his analysis. Good morning Mr. D. I hope it‘s not too early for you back in Arizona, after all it is six o’clock there isn‘t it?”

“No Problem, I’m up with the quail and cottontails”

“Good, if I may get right to the point, what did you think of Smoke Screen?”

“Well Bill, I really loved it. Up until this book, Kyle Mills has been a serious novelist but on his latest novel, Smoke Screen he has displayed a latent jocularity and borrowed from the masters of tongue in cheek humor to put out a subtlety droll and amusingly clever book. He succinctly tells an excellent, witty story, doesn‘t get too detail oriented doesn‘t try to foist his superior vocabulary on the reader, so you don‘t need a dictionary next to you”

“What I like about Kyle Mill‘s books, which I like to varying degrees, is that he comes up with some seriously different and interesting plots. He‘s not the only one that can do that, of course but it seems like some major authors rehash the same plots only on a more massive scale.”

“I read a bio on this guy and he doesn’t even have a background in writing, he just tried it, managed with difficulty to get his first book published and now he’s off and running. I’m impressed and I‘m impressed with his writing as well. He doesn‘t waste words. His writing is direct, he doesn‘t meander off in other directions and he‘s smooth. This book is less than 350 pages, when 500 plus is the apparent norm.”

“Great, thanks again Mr D for your insights. How’s that book of yours coming along?”

“We’re getting there. Thanks for asking, Bill”

“You’re welcome, good luck. So what do you rate this book?”

“Sorry Bill, I thought that was obvious – Five big ones!”

“Wonderful. We‘ll take a break now and when we come back we‘ll hear what our panel has to say”

_______________

“Ok Panel, let’s talk about Smoke Screen.”

“Yes Pamela.”

“I loved it, it was humorous and droll and clever and ah…………..oh yeah succinct and I give it five stars.”

“Hmmmm, ok ET how did you see it”

“Mr ET thought it was very good but he would like to have seen some sex scenes and for it to take place in space but he still gave it five stars”

“I see, sex scenes huh, I thought you guys were unisex, oh well Mike what did you think? Mike, hello Mike!”

“Sorry Bill, I was just noticing a spot of dirt on Pamela‘s ……..never mind. What did you ask me Bill?”

“What we‘re here for, your evaluation of Smoke Screen.”

“Oh sure, I thought it would make a great movie, though I wouldn‘t let the bad guys, I mean tobacco guys off the hook. You know there are so many bad guys. Everywhere you look bad guys. Look what happened to you, scandalous,”

“Michael!”

“No no, not you, the way you were treated. You‘d think you started a war or something.A”

“Michael!”

“Yes, yes, sorry I digressed. I thought the book was super. I really liked the union guy. I laughed so hard at what he said about Trevor‘s father that I lost my cigarette and burned the couch. Five Stars, definitely five stars.”

“Thank you Michael. How about you Jerry?”

“Good book Bill, but I don’t think we’ve said enough about the characters and the excellent character development. Michael mentioned the pragmatic Union leader, Larry Mann but we also had Trevor’s anti tobacco activist, love interest Anne, the calculating corporate guru, Paul Trainer, Trevor’s always partying, fair weather friend Darius and of course Trevor’s suppressive, conniving father Edwin Barnett.”

“The whole time I was reading Smoke Screen, I couldn’t help but remember another humorous book about the tobacco industry by William Buckley’s son, Christopher Buckley, titled Thank You for Not Smoking and the writing style also reminded me of Carl Hiassen’s work.

“All in all I thought it was a clever, slightly sarcastic story with some real funny lines. I may have to borrow some for my act. Just kidding. I‘ll make it unanimous, Five Stars.”

“Thanks Jerry. So there you have it, Smoke Screen by Kyle Mills. Buy it!”
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February 28, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . addictive, addicts, author, Bill Clinton, Books, celebrities, dealers, Humor, legal drugs, Novel, politics, review, satire. Leave a comment.

PRINCESS – A Shocking Expose of Misogyny Within Saudi Arabia

Princess was the first book that I’d read on the, shall we say, unusual treatment of women in Saudi Arabia. This led me to read other books on the subject which dealt with women’s precarious place in other Muslim countries as well.

Princess
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The story of Princess Sultana (a pseudonym) was written by Jean Sasson a twelve year resident of Saudi Arabia. It is the story of an anonymous Saudi Princess who grew up in a Saudi palace, her sisters, servants, friends and other unfortunate women she had heard about. Some have debated the veracity of the book but many things as I have outlined in my conclusion cannot be denied.

Princess Sultana was born into a Royal Saudi family of ten daughters and one pampered son. She was too feisty for her own good and managed to often manifest the displeasure of her father. Some of the things she did wrong were taking her toys back from her bratty, can do no wrong , brother and then trying to explain her side of things when she got in trouble, but as she and her sisters got older things became even more suppressive.

Supposedly an honor and a sign of adulthood, Sultana was forced to veil as punishment for standing up for herself a couple years before menses. She was saved from female circumcision, which her four oldest sisters endured when a foreign tutor intervened. Sultana goes on to describe how her favorite sister, Sara, was betrothed at sixteen to a man forty-six years older. Within five weeks Sara almost committed suicide due to her aged husbands sadistic and brutal sexual practices.

Sasson goes on to describe many practices and laws in Saudi Arabia that would make a westerner blanch, including the summary execution of a thirteen year old girl for fornication, who was most likely raped, a young girl drowned in the family swimming pool by her father for kissing a boy and girls who had been forced to marry as young as twelve, having four and five children before their eighteenth birthday.

Summary
Jean Sasson weaves a very interesting story. Her writing is easy to follow and extremely readable. The incidents she describe tend to stay in your mind for a long time and may cause indignation in the reader. She accomplishes a fairly good character development of Princess Sultana and other family members.

The book itself is 254 easy reading pages long and also contains four appendixes, The Koran and Women, The Laws of Saudi Arabia, a glossary on Arab terms and a Chronology of Key Events in Saudi History, all located in back. In addition there is a map of Saudi Arabia, the surrounding area, with facts on Saudi Arabia and the surrounding countries and a family tree of the House of Saud in the front of the book.

Conclusion

The conclusion I took from all the books I have read so far on the subject is, that while some, maybe even most, women in Saudi Arabia and other Muslim countries may be well treated, the underlying groundwork is there for the mistreatment, even killing of women.

It is hard not to notice than Muslims take exception to this and similar publications. They would like us to believe the conditions and incidents that take place in these books are fantasy and maybe they believe they are, but the undeniable facts that lie within, lend credibility to everything within the books.

I ask these people. Can women drive in Saudi Arabia? Are there modesty police? Can a woman get in trouble for not wearing a head covering, a veil, letting hair show, letting skin show? Has any women ever been executed for adultery? Have young women ever been killed by family members in honor killings? Can a Saudi man divorce his wife by saying I divorce you three times? Can a wife own property? Does a woman need three witnesses to report a rape? Can a Muslim man have multiple wives? Is a Saudi woman’s testimony worth only half of a man’s? Are many if not most of Saudi women’s husbands chosen by their father? Are Saudi women encouraged or even allowed to get an education? Can a Saudi women work in any field she chooses? Can a Saudi woman walk the streets unescorted? Can a Saudi woman date?

To be sure, women historically have had trouble in almost all societies but the second class citizenship that seems endemic in Saudi Arabia and several other Muslim countries is systemic and deeply rooted.

January 19, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . execution, Islam, misogyny, Overzealous, review, Saudi Arabia, Sharia, Sunni, Wahabism, women. 31 comments.