A man having sex with a woman.
A male politician having sex with a woman, a model.
A millionaire male politician having sex with a model.
A married millionaire male politician having sex with a model.
A married millionaire female politician having sex with a male model.
A millionaire female politician having sex with a male model.
A female politician having sex with a male model.
A woman having sex with a man.
What differs between all these cases? How would we deal with each of these situations? How would society view the act if we change the genders of the participants? Even for the least privileged, the man comes out ahead of the most privileged woman.
By contrast, a few months ago , religious men and 'protectors of the faith' summoned a female parliamentarian to Dar al-Fatwa (Lebanon's Sunni authority) to berate her for participating in a Christian sermon, calling for the resignation of the same parliamentarian because she was seen sipping coffee during the month Ramadan. The 'electronic armies' did not move to call for the punishment or stoning oft a married man who had sex outside of marriage, as they did when a woman chose to take off her hijab two weeks ago.
Why is it that the private lives of female politicians in #Lebanon are always public, while the $16 million men whose "personal lives" affect our public lives, get to keep their private lives private?
In Lebanon, Women’s private lives are public because men have decided that we are their property, and so they have the right to decide what we do with our bodies.
I cannot claim that I read all the comments and seen all the reactions on the saga of the $16 million affair, but I did not see anyone passing negative moral judgements on him because he had sex outside of marriage, I am not yet concerned with the amount exchanged during that relationship and the dire circumstances of his commercial companies in Lebanon today.
While I write this article, I read that his office proposed a document to solve the economic crisis in the country. In other words, he doesn't bother to respond to the case against him with all its dimensions, and continues his life in politics and his "personal life".
So the question is, where is the boundary at which our personal lives stop being private and become public life? And why is it that the private lives of women are always public and available for all, while the $16 million men whose "personal lives" affect our public lives, get to keep their private lives private despite their overseeing of the squandering of public money and the abused of citizens’ rights; why is their public life always private?
Our private lives become public because men have decided that we are their property, and so they have the right to decide what we do with our bodies - and not the other way round. What we wear, who we have relationships with, where we can move and what the available spaces are for the movement of that body.
A woman is beaten because she says she can't carry out all the household chores by herself and needed help. A woman is detained in her family's home and prevented from leaving because she met someone she loved in a public place. A woman is killed because she had sex outside marriage. A woman is raped because she dared to go out wearing a short skirt. The perpetrator in these incidents is not anonymous; he is a man, in all of these cases. The perpetrator is a man, who was previously elected on several occasions and will elect another man in future. The perpetrator is a man, prepared with all of his weaponry in their various forms to repress a woman, whether it be his wife or mother or a woman he doesn't know but considers to be of his concern for some reason, because she had sex or wore a bikini.
Yet he was also the one who elected the aforementioned female parliamentarian, because she was part of the electoral list of the man who had sex outside of marriage and because the latter asked him to do so. He would not have elected her if she ran alone, and she does not deserve to be elected in any case, but do the rest of the men deserve to be elected? He elected her, but opposed her choice when she attempted to participate in a different religious ritual. What are your standards?
Hypothetical scenario 1: a journalist writes an article about a Lebanese female politician who had sex with a male model from South Africa. What would the result look like? Did she send him a large sum of money or did she not? Is she married with children or is she single? Is she in her forties while he's in his twenties? What are the type of comments that we would have read? Would we have stopped at the comments on social media and some articles, with the politician returning the next day to her office as usual to propose an 'austerity' budget for the next year?
Non-hypothetical scenario 2: a woman is beaten by her husband who is also married to another woman, for many consecutive hours in front of her family, preventing her from seeking medical aid and continuing to abuse her until he killed her, because someone told him that she was in a relationship with another man. She is in the grave, he is in prison: a "television star".
Non-hypothetical and repetitive scenario 3: a man sleeps with a women who is not his wife because his wife doesn't satisfy his needs. He is a "man” whose wife is delinquent in her duties.
Hypothetical and repetitive scenario 4: A woman sleeps with men she likes. She is a "whore", they are "men".
Non-hypothetical scenario 5: a millionaire married male politician has sex with a female model, she became a millionaire.