Open letter to Ayan Hirsi

Dear Ms Hirsi,

I don’t know you. You don’t know me either. However, in today’s world of internet and what not, it’s hard not to know of you.

Let me start this off by saying that I have not read any of your books. Just a lot of reviews and interviews. I don’t know if that gives me enough authority to respond to you. But ever since I was asked about my opinion on your thoughts few weeks back you have been on my mind.  I feel that I owe myself and many others like me an answer.

But first let me tell you a bit about myself.

I am a Muslim woman by birth.

By that I  mean that I was born into a Muslim family. And my parents like all other Muslim parents made sure that I was educated in the matters of my religion. And as you know, Islam is a religion that is entrenched in the culture. So I was raised in an Islamic environment as well. I suspect this is more or less the kind of upbringing that you went through while you were living in Kenya

Second I’m a Muslim woman by choice.

This is the most vital part of my letter. According to what I’ve read, you are fighting against Islam and it’s subjugation of women. How if women in Islam had a choice she wouldn’t choose a life of cover up and modesty. Well I’m here to tell you that I made a choice. I’m not going to pretend that I am perfect in my religion. But I choose to be a Muslim every single day. And guess what Ms. Hirsi, I am not alone. My cousin used to be what you would call a “westernized” woman. One day she changed her life. And I envy the kind of contentment she got. She made her choice. And there are thousands even millions of women all over the world who make this choice.

The aim of this letter is not to try to paint perfection in the way matters of my religion are handled. All I’m saying is that women like me are tired of being constantly portrayed as weak and brainwashed with no sense of self-worth. We are proud of who we are.

So, Ms. Hirsi,  you want us to let you live your choice? Then please allow us ours!

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  • ahmed  On August 6, 2010 at 7:34 am

    she is the one who is brainwashed….disowned by father and family. but lets us respect her decission only God will Judge her.

  • iCon  On August 13, 2010 at 7:06 am

    While I generally like to turn a blind eye to misguided statements, I’ve found it hard to ignore Ayaan. Alas, as Ahmed said, the judgment is Allah’s to make.

  • jj  On September 6, 2010 at 9:37 pm

    ok…so i wont deny it i read infidel…and as a muslim woman ….and a open minded intellectual person. I read the book with A) no biases B) no expectations c) understand why she wrote it. As a woman who has seen a lot of unjustice from men in our cultures due to missinterpretting the quran for their pleasures and such. I disagreed with her on many issues but also agreed with her on other stuff. For example , Men in our religion have translated some of the quran content to their benefits, they made these verses into thier own words that have created a hardship or missguided people.

    yes, she didnt have to write some of the stuff she wrote. i tried reading a caged virgin but it was bullshit and stopped. but her books are also based on her life, from somalis to dutchland.

    My point is i dont agree with her and niether disagree with her.

    • bintimswahili  On September 7, 2010 at 8:03 am

      JJ.. I understand where you’re coming from in regards to people distorting religion to mistreat women, case in point the Taliban in Afghanistan.

      But my issue with Ayaan, is the way she blankets all Muslim women as a backward, oppressed people. Like we couldn’t have possibly made a choice to become Muslims.

      Have your opinion, believe what you want because as Icon and Ahmed have said Judgement is Allah’s to make, but please allow me to do the same!

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