Why Bad Hijabi?
It's a satirical name, mocking the ridiculous notion of "bad hijab"–an actual crime in countries ruled by deranged Islamic regimes, such as Iran. Women receive punishment for being bad hijabis. On the other extreme, in 1936, under Kashf-e-Hijab, women were punished by the state for WEARING hijab and some even committed suicide because of the Western-backed Shah's forced unveiling laws.
As usual, women, in particular Muslim women, cannot win. Sexism exists universally, and forced hijab/bad hijab is the eastern version of sexism. The east wants to cover women up, the west wants to strip us. Either way, humanity seeks to control female bodies. It's obvious why. I hope I don't have to spell it out.
Anyway, I would be considered a Bad Hijabi, I'm rebellious, I wear brightly coloured headscarves and western clothing. Sometimes I wear a beanie or a turban instead of a headscarf. I swear like a sailor sometimes, I don't care what others think, I don't wear hijab for anyone except God and me and if anyone dared to criticise my hijab, you know, call me a sinner because a strand or two of hair is showing, I might be obnoxious enough to whip my hair out in full fro floof to shut down their haram policing. Because ultimately I believe a woman's body is her own and no other human has governance over it—men need to get over it and remind themselves that the Quran (24:30) instructs them to lower their gaze FIRST, before women. If we do need a World Hijab Day, I suggest it would be for the men, because they seem to have horrific trouble exercising self control and lower their gaze. Seriously, why aren’t we haranguing men about their failure to hijab, because that is really the cause of much suffering and chaos around the world!
I'm not quiet or subtle–I won't wheesht, I will speak up and I will call out lies and injustice. I’m the Black Sheep of my family. I don't do tribalism or group think authoritarianism. I regard defending the truth and humanity and speaking out for the truly oppressed as a high form of worship. I would, no doubt, be a witch burned at the stake in medieval times because I simply refuse to obey! I'm exactly the way I'm meant to be–disobedient and fierce women get things done. In today's culture moral courage is often seen as disobedient and dissidence. I'm happy to embrace that in my crone-hood to set a solid example for my daughter and all women who follow in my footsteps or walk beside me. If you ask me what side I am on, I would answer the side of truth—God’s side. However ugly, bitter, smelly, I seek truth.
So, that's the story behind "Bad Hijabi".
This space has evolved as I have grown emotionally, spiritually (ie in my relationship with myself), and intellectually, finding my own footing and voice as a Muslim intellect and writer and activist. Bad Hijabi reflects the dynamism of human existence and my attempt to make sense of it. You may see that my views and position on issues sometimes change—I hope so, because only ideologues and cultists are unable to change their minds when they encounter new information, and I am neither of these!
Grown Up Stuff
Paid subscribers—$10/month or $100/year—gain access to my lengthier planned pieces, with an accompanying original digital illustration and audio narrative, posted 1 to 2 times per week. Current topics of focus include the follow—
Dezinformatisiya and the role of media
Bacha Bazi abuse in Afghanistan and the west’s role (vis a vis military invasion and occupation) in its explosion
The general rise in extremism.