In the past several days, I have spent a good amount of time browsing through the newly created directory of Saudi blogs. Some of the blogs listed are older blogs that have already found their way onto my list of favorite blogs around, like Farah’s Sowaleef and Saudi Jeans. A few others are newer blogs that are finding their way into my list of favorite blogs around, like Jaded Saudi and Wa2el. For the most part though, most of my visits to the listed blogs were first times, and I found myself surprised at the difference in mentalities and ideas of the different Saudi bloggers.
One of the hottest topics in the Saudi blogosphere is the issue of women’s driving in Saudi Arabia. As everyone knows, Saudi Arabia restricts women from driving on its streets. Naturally, not only being a feminist but also being moderately logical, I find this whole issue really depressing. Following is a translated blog post by one of the Saudi bloggers that depressed me even more. I am really shocked at the fact that people actually think like this. I will not comment further because everything I have to say is not very nice.
Quoted from a Saudi blog:
“These days, there is a lot of talk about the issue of women driving in Saudi Arabia and I am surprised that people see this as an important issue.
Outside Saudi Arabia people think we are still in the age of camels while inside it is as if a magical wand has solved all the problems of women except driving. I won’t delve too deeply into this issue but I would like to point out that I noticed that many who support women’s driving go support their claims by saying that millions of Saudi Riyals are being spent on foreign drivers, so if a Saudi woman drove her own car, they will cut back on a lot of costs. (…)
Argument worse than sin!
Housewives will not allow this to happen for each of them has her own appointments- Hisa is invited to X and doesn’t have the time to buy bread for the children’s dinner or even Indomi. Mazna is going to the coffee shop with her friends and she doesn’t want to be late because the kids want to go the bookshop. Rafia has set exercise times to walk across Prince Abdullah Street so she sends her son to the dentist with the maid. Haya can’t wake up early to take her children to school because she was at a late-night party in one of the rest houses outside of Riyadh and so she arrived close to dawn and “in these times, only drivers can drive”.
It doesn’t work out except with men. It is a man’s job to drive. The driver is the one who should buy the bread, get the groceries and the children’s needs from the bookshops and take them to schools and hospitals.
We will not solve the problem of the millions by allowing women to drive, on the contrary, because women will become “addicted” to driving for reason and without, and hold responsibility. Only a driver should do that, for men did it before!”
Fortunately, a different blogger posted an opposing post ridiculing the stupid rule and the even stupider logic behind it. Another blogger also ridiculed the comments posted on a news website that are along the lines of the blog post above. Saudi Girl, a different blog, posted contemplations and guess about the related issue of banning women from voting. I also really liked a blog called A Thought in the Kingdom of Lunacy. Although I didn’t read beyond the main page, Jo, the blogger, has some interesting views, and I must say, I like her header- “How fortunate for leaders that men do not think…” .
I also came across several blog posts that pissed me off, like a certain quite long one telling the story of how she – God forbid – had to obey her mom and feed the maid proper food, and talk and treat her like a human; “I became a servant for a maid!”
It’s really cool to have blog portals for the different Arab countries. Diversity is always good.