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Let’s Rescue the Heroes By: Phyllis Chesler
Pajamas Media | Tuesday, July 21, 2009


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Today, Britain granted political asylum to a married Saudi princess who had an out-of-wedlock child with a non-Muslim British man. The unnamed princess, married to a much older man, feared that she would be honor murdered, probably stoned to death, back home in the Kingdom.

I recall the 1978 fate of another Saudi Princess, Misha, who dared to fall in love with a commoner. They married secretly, she disguised herself as a man, and was about to flee the country when they were both apprehended; both husband and wife were publicly and gruesomely executed. Two thousands Saudi princesses were forced to watch this sickening spectacle.

Neither Saudi princess was a fighter for others. Each sought personal happiness which, as women, was utterly denied to them. They were—and are—desperate rebels, perhaps even tragic role models.

President Obama has recently promised to allow ” battered” women from other countries to apply for political asylum here. If so, I previously wrote, we will soon find ourselves flooded with such applications.

One might ask: Why doesn’t the fabled “international community” solve such problems where they exist? Why must Americans alone bear this burden? But more important: Aren’t we forgetting something?

Here’s my suggestion. Let’s rescue the endangered heroes first. Why not grant political asylum to dissidents, secularists, humanists, feminists, journalists, and intellectuals, who have endangered themselves by telling the truth and by fighting for freedom and justice for others.

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Dr. Phyllis Chesler is the well known author of classic works, including the bestseller Women and Madness (1972) The New Anti-Semitism (2003) and The Death of Feminism: What’s Next in the Struggle for Women’s Freedom (2005). She has just published a new edition of Woman's Inhumanity to Woman (2009). She is an Emerita Professor of psychology and women's studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969) and the National Women's Health Network (1976). Her website is www.phyllis-chesler.com.


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