Tag Archives: guest blog

The “Burka Ban”

22 Sep

Hello everyone! This is Lilipop here. I wanted to talk about banning the niqab and burka because a college in Birmingham (read more here) did just that and it seems to have kicked off a national debate and most recently the far right party UKIP making a policy vowing to “ban the burka”.

Straight off there are the recurring problems that seem to happen when any marginalised group’s rights are “debated”. I am seeing and awful lot of white male politians opinions but not a whole lot of Muslim women’s opinions  even though they are the only people this is really going to affect! Sigh, sigh, sigh. This reminds me so much of when abortion is “debated” by white male politians; your opinions do not really matter unless you are a member of the group who’s rights are being restricted. Of course it would be massively hypocritical of me to say that and not have the opinion of a muslim women here and also my opinion doesn’t really matter so my friend Anisha very kindly wrote a bit for this blog about what she thinks of the “burka ban debate”:

Recently in the headlines there has been a consistent reappearance of political matter concerning the possible ban of the burqa.

The burqa commonly referred to as ‘chadri’ in countries located in Central Asia is a symbolic garment within the Muslim culture; it acts as a facially concealing garment allowing a less fabricated/ sheer section around the eyes to allow sight for the female.

549585_531751686903865_884203299_n

Anisha

Alongside the burqa there is the niqab in which the ‘veil’ us attached onto one side transforming the head scarf into a niqab, this is the okay commonly worn  version of the ‘veil’ in London, which political leaders are

mistakenly confusing for burqas which are fully fabricated garments with a sheer fabric located in the position of the eyes.

Never the less back I my opening statement, there has been a constant appearance of the burqa and the niqab in the news regarding the ban of the Islamic based garment.

As a Muslim teenager who has grown up my whole life in London I would like to say I completely disagree with the ban of the burqa/ niqab it is unnecessary, disrespectful and without a doubt degrading to the people of the Islamic community. I am in a state of disbelief with the MP’s and hope they take into account the possible effects this ban could have on the Islamic community alongside the people of Britain who are supporting Muslims through this terribly distressing period of time.

2 hours later  after the decision of the Muslim ‘veil’ ban being reversed:

After hearing the news I have decided to write up on this morally degrading issue which I was previously frantically ranting about.

Following the news of UKIP reversing the ban I am thrilled with the fact that they have had a change of mind set and have decided to completely scrap the ridiculous ban 3 years after proposing the total ban of ‘covering faces in both public places and buildings ‘.

I wish to believe that future MP’s will not make any drastic bans related to the publics religions and beliefs, such as the disgusting ban on burqas / niqabs.

-Anisha Namuli, 15.

Here is a list of other piece by Muslim women on the “burka ban”:

http://talatyaq.wordpress.com/2013/09/13/burkha-banning-an-insult-to-freedom-and-feminism/

http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2013/09/the_veil_debate

http://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/dani-garavelli-niqabs-in-the-public-eye-1-3105790

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/21/dont-ban-veil-in-uk

I also just wanted to point out some very disturbing arguments that are being made for banning the burka and niqab which I have seen a few white non-muslim women who call themselves feminists using. One of these arguments is that the burka and niqab is a symbol of female oppression and that many women are forced to wear them, this is despite the many women speaking out against the banning saying they want to wear them. This is a huge and ignorant case of taking agency away from Muslim women. These people are ignoring the voices of the Muslim women, the people who will be effected by the ban, and instead imposing upon them their own theories on what these women are experiencing. They are ignoring lived experience! They are also refusing to acknowledge the fact that Muslim women, and here’s a crazy idea, MAY ACTUALLY BE ABLE TO MAKE THEIR OWN DESISIONS *gasp*.  Another argument that is so so so so so WRONG is that people “want to be able to see their beautiful faces” and so should not be able to wear burka’s or niqabs OH MY JAM LIKE SERIOUSLY! I have heard this from women as well as men. I wonder if they realise they are saying that they think their perceived right to see and essentially turn women into objects is more important than these women’s right to wear whatever the fuck they want. This is usually called the Male Gaze I think and it is hugely sexist as it is basically dehumanising the women on the receiving end of the Gaze. It is also quite ironic as one of the points of wearing a hijab, burka or niqab is to control what other people can see and stop people judging and objectifying women based on their appearance.

I am, of course, talking from a position of privilege here so please, please point out to me the things I have said wrong in this. If you have anything else to add or another link to pieces by Muslim women feel free to share.

Advertisements

Creativity Week: Eloise

13 Mar

Hello! This is Lilipop and today I would like to introduce you to the amazing Eloise who, today, is showing us some of the fantastic thisngs she makes.

I’m Eloise and I’m 15. I absolutely love fashion and I think its a great platform to express your personality and individuality. I started making things from about age 10 after my Nan bought me a sewing machine for Christmas one year, I love customising old pieces of clothing and turning them into something completely new. I’d love to go into fashion as a career so I thought that trying to start up a small scale fashion business would be a good idea, and I enjoy making the t-shirts too! Because each t-shirt is completely unique you never have to worry about turning up in the same outfit as anyone else!

image    wpid-photo-3.JPG
wpid-photo-5.JPG     image

image

It would be great if you gals could comment on these posts, your opinions and maybe some suggestion or submitions (for another creativity week or for another themed week altogether!). If you want to get in contact with us or any of our lovely creative guests then email Jellypop at jelly.pop@live.co.uk or for more contact information go to the Contact Us page. Eloise’s clothing business, Stomp on the Moon, can be contacted at stomponthemoonclothing@hotmail.co.uk.

Creativity Week: Milly Castle

11 Mar

Hi, this is Lilipop. Today’s type of creativity is poetry. Milly Castle has kindly let us show you some of her amazing peotry. I don’t know a lot about poetry but I know this is beyond brilliant. Before you read the poetry, let me introduce you to Milly.

My name is Milly Castle and I am 15 years old. I have written poetry since the age of 7, and have won many competitions where my poetry has been published in books sold nationwide. My poetry really took off at the age of 12 after my mother passed away as I found a stimulus to base my poetry on. Hence, my inspiration for all my poetry nowadays is feelings about grief, and what I think those that have departed from us would like to say. To me poetry is easy to write ,and is a way of expressing the emotions you find difficult to speak of verbally. Within a poem you can say anything you like and will not be judged, for poetry is a form of art that stems from the poets experiences.

DEPARTURE
The brightest star in the sky,
belongs to those that had to fly.
Fly beyond the world we see,
departing from you and me.
Letting go of those they love,
and watching over from above.
Keeping as memories in our heads,
for in our hearts they are not dead.

ALIVE

Do not treat me as if im dead
For I am a memory in your head
I am the sparkle in your eye
I am the wind that blows on by
I am the stars seen at night
I am the sun that brings you light
I am the snowflake in the tree
I am your angel and always will be
So do not treat me as if im dead
For I am a memory forever in your head

It would be great if you gals could comment on this post, your opinions and maybe some suggestion or submitions (for another creativity week or for another themed week altogether!). If you want to get in contact with us or any of our lovely creative guests then email Jellypop at jelly.pop@live.co.uk or for more contact information go to the Contact Us page

Introducing… CREATIVITY WEEK

10 Mar

Hello! This is Lilipop and I would like to introduce a special CREATIVITY WEEK!

Creativity does not just mean painting but peoms, music videos and photographs. I want to see different and wonderful ways people express themselves, what people are passionate about, what they enjoy and why. So I asked some people to come and show us!

I will be uploading a blog post every day this week with a new person and a way that they like to be creative. It will start tomorrow and finish on Saturday. I HOPE to make themed weeks a regular thing but I don’t think I will unless I get some good feedback.

It would be great if you gals could comment on these posts, your opinions and maybe some suggestion or submitions (for another creativity week or for another themed week altogether!). If you want to get in contact with us or any of our lovely creative guests  then email Jellypop at jelly.pop@live.co.uk or for more contact information go to the Contact Us page.

Guest Blog: The Pressure of Perfection

5 Feb

Hello! This is Lilipop and I would like to introduce our first ever guest blogger, Clara!

So hey! This is the first blog post I’ve pretty much EVER DONE so remember that as you read on. And thank you to Jelly and Lilipop for letting me ‘guest post’ on their brilliant blog.  

per·fect [adj., n. pur-fikt; v. per-fekt] adjective

1.
conforming absolutely to the description or definition of an ideal type: a perfect sphere; a perfect gentleman.
2.
excellent or complete beyond practical or theoretical improvement: There is no perfect legal code. The proportions of this temple are almost perfect.
3.
exactly fitting the need in a certain situation or for a certain purpose: a perfect actor to play Mr. Micawber; a perfect saw for cutting out keyholes.
4.
entirely without any flaws, defects, or shortcomings: a perfect apple; the perfect crime.
5.
accurate, exact, or correct in every detail: a perfect copy.    

For most people it’s the greatest compliment: to achieve perfection is to be complete, to be everything people aspire to be, to be perfect is to the best you can be. But ‘perfection’ is entirely objective. Of course, society has its ideals of what it is to be perfect: beautiful, intelligent, skinny, not too hairy, organised, nice hair, popular, confident, kind, sporty (the list could go on), and yet of course ‘perfection’ is the most abstract idea society can create.  

Nobody’s perfect. And that saying, though cliched, cannot be more true.  

I suppose I’m writing this is because I have, on occasion, been called perfect. And in all honesty, I love it. I do. But I simultaneously hate it immensely.  Whenever I am called ‘perfect’ I must immediately prove I’m not- I’m terrible at sports, I hate my toes, I have a slight monobrow and I don’t think I smell very nice- the list goes on and on. My self esteem hangs in a precarious balance- it’s boosted when someone gives me a compliment, but lowered when I try to destroy that illusion by pointing out all my flaws. And whilst thats works most of the time, I just have to make sure I don’t let that balance control my life.  

I feel pressure from most people to be what they deem to be ‘perfect’. Everybody is ‘labelled’, and I know what my label is (and yes, as far as labels go I suppose mine is pretty good.) But it also means there is an expectation of what I should be like: If I make a mistake in school everybody points it out with glee; if I have a strong opinion on something people disagree with me, or worse, think I’m weird. I feel too scared to do something spontaneous, something dangerous and unexpected- because if I do the way I am perceived might change. My whole persona might be shattered, and the fragments I’ll be left with will plunge me into confusion. If I do something out of the ordinary, if I have something I am truly passionate about I might lose my ‘identity’, my ‘image’. I’m too scared to break out of this cage of simultaneous self-loathing and contentment.

In my I-hate-myself-poor-me-I’m-just-going-to-sit-here-and-cry moments I also feel that if I’m not deemed to be ‘perfect’ by people I am nothing. I’m not a particularly outgoing, fun, interesting person, so if people don’t see me as ‘perfect’ or ‘clever’ or ‘attractive’ I am worthless. This is the complete wrong attitude to have, and whilst I am aware of this I am also aware of the difficulty I will face my entire life- recognising that ‘perfection’ is not something that will ever define me.  

The whole idea of perfection annoys me. It drives people to insanity trying to be perfect. There is too much emphasis on perfection, when really it is the most objective ideal we can create. Everywhere we go we are surrounded by this idea of ‘perfection’: the ‘perfect’ celebrity on the cover of a magazine, the ‘perfect’ model on the catwalk, the ‘perfect’ person on their blog. Society’s idea of perfection does not allow for differences, quirks or eccentricity. I know I’m not perfect- nobody can be- but I know that I can strive for my own equivalent of perfection (a state at which I am perfectly content and feel that it is not worthwhile to toil and cry and sweat and compare in order to improve myself), and although I’ll never arrive, I can hope to get halfway. That’s all anyone can ask for I suppose.   I didn’t mean for this to turn into some sort of diary. But it has, and I hope somewhere in there there’s a deep meaningful message instead of a messy teenager spilling out her thoughts onto someone else’s blog.    

%d bloggers like this: