Saudi Cleric Says Women Who Drive Risk Damaging Their Ovaries

"A conservative Saudi Arabian cleric has said women who drive risk damaging their ovaries and bearing children with clinical problems, countering activists who are trying to end the Islamic kingdom's male-only driving rules."
"In an interview published on Friday on the website, Sheikh Saleh bin Saad al-Lohaidan said women aiming to overturn the ban on driving should put 'reason ahead of their hearts, emotions and passions'."
Yes, let's give reason a chance, but that would lead us in the opposite direction of bin Saad al-Lohaidan.


Paul's picture

Don't we already have enough Muslim-bashing going on these days? How is this any of our business anyway? In a free world, there would still be Muslim clerics, and there would still be people who pay attention to what they say.

mhstahl's picture

I agree, Paul. Particularly since we can generally count upon poor or outright deceptive translations that are taken out of context. I'm quite certain his comments were not limited to the quoted sentence, at the very least.

Of course, I see no redeeming qualities to the Saudi regime-but that is no different than my disdain for any other regime.

Speaking of mistranslations, and out of context reporting, it seems to me that there was a similar arguement made right here in the in the good 'ol judeo-christian usa about the risk pregnant women face from the state mandated seat belt in case of an accident. It is absolutly possible-perhaps even likely-that a pregnant woman involved in an accident while wearing a strap across her abdomen and slamming her belly into a steering wheel could miscarry and even suffer future reproductive damage. That's not crazy. Indeed, most of the pregnant women I've been close to have tried to avoid even riding in cars late in thier term for this very reason...

I'm certainly not defending this guy, but simply pointing out that context and translation matter, and in this case we know only what Yahoo news choose to share.

There are plenty of monsters much closer to home to challenge if one wishes to save damsels (who, in my humble expierience, rarely need saving.)

Emmett Harris's picture

You don't know me, Paul, so I'll forgive the Muslim-bashing comment.  Suffice to say, Muslim-bashing -- or bigotry in general -- is not something I'd do.  State-bashing and/or bashing those who advocate ignorance, however, is right up my alley.  As a cleric, he is free to say what he wishes.  He is trying to ensure the continuation of government rules that favor male-only driving.  That is advocating force, not persuasion.  I also don't think his claim that women who drive risk damaging their ovaries and bearing children with clinical problems is based on fact, which makes it the opposite of placing "reason ahead of their hearts," so I was drawing attention to that bit of foolishness on his part.

Jim Davies's picture

A free society will become a reality only after superstition has been replaced by rationality, so this manifestly ridiculous piece of religious pontification may, perversely, actually help our cause; even the heavily suppressed ladies of Saudi Arabia may be able to see the nonsense for what it is.
Such is the grip of Islam over young minds male and female, though, that societies where it dominates may well, alas, be a deal slower to escape government domination than our own. Religion and government have always been close allies, but in Islam they join at the hip.