Monday, October 26, 2009

International Update: Saudia Arabia

An anthropologist would say, who are we to judge the norms of another society? But then, you hear stories like this and wonder if it is not a basic human rights violation. A Saudi Arabian man was sentenced to five years in jail and 1,000 lashes for bragging about his sex life on a popular Saudi television show. He was charged with "publicizing vice", not to be confused with the 80s show Miami Vice. In the US, such a guy would just be made fun of at his neighborhood tavern.

Al-Jami, a 'fixer' who books guests on the show, got off easy. She was sentenced to 60 lashes and a two year travel ban. So much for freedom of the press. This is a country that still gives lashes to rape victims. I love it when people criticize this country. I wonder how many lashes critics like me would be sentenced to? I hardly doubt they would waste their time with lashes.
Saudi journalist sentenced to 60 lashes -*

In a similar story, 20 foreigners face lashing and prison terms for attending a party where alcohol was served and men and women danced. Wasn't this the premise for the 80s movie Footloose? Maybe a Saudi Arabian version of the movie is in the works. Remind me not to leave New York state.


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