U.S. Court orders Lindsay Lohan to the morgue over DUI
Iran cracks down on women over freedom
January 21, 2008
U.S. actress Lindsay Lohan has been ordered to work several shifts at the county morgue in Los Angeles as part of her sentence for driving under the influence (DUI). The work is part of a court ordered program created to show motorists the ramifications of driving drunk or while on drugs. And Iranian woman Nahid Keshavarz spent two weeks in jail for trying to collect a million signatures on a woman’s rights petition. Iranian authorities have clamped down on “immoral behavior”, including women flouting the strict Islamic dress code and expressing a desire for equality. Keshavarz says her campaign is not focused on what they wear, but about fairness. Fairness, freedom and the nature of personal responsibility continues to be debated around the world.
“It’s not fair that I should have to see the bodies of people killed by drunks, or people dead from over-doses,” said actress Lindsay, a free American woman who occasionally protests against personal responsibility. “I should be free to do what I want and that includes risky behavior. But seeing dead people that aren’t playing pretend in the movies isn’t something anyone should be able to push on me. Never mind that I almost put some people in the morgue myself.”
Having things pushed on them against their will is a theme among some women in Iran too. “The Iranian government not only tells me what I can and can’t wear; it has institutionalized discrimination making women ‘second-class citizens’ when it comes to divorce, inheritance and child custody,” said activist Nahid, a less than free Iranian woman who occasionally risks her life by protesting injustice; something she sees as a personal responsibility. “Our government says it’s legal for a man to beat a woman if she displeases him and she just has to take it. How fair is that?”
UPI reported last week that Lindsay Lohan has been ordered to work several shifts in an LA emergency room and a morgue as part of her sentence for driving under the influence. As part of her plea deal, Lohan was placed on probation for 36 months and sentenced to 24 hours in jail. Lohan served 84 minutes in jail, earning an early release due to overcrowding.
Nahid Keshavarz says two weeks in an Iranian jail didn’t deter her from helping try to collect one million signatures for a petition urging more women’s rights and, if anything, prison showed the cause was worth fighting for. Keshavarz is one of dozens of women who campaigners say have been detained since 2006 when the drive was launched. Western diplomats and rights groups see the detention of women activists as part of a wider crackdown on dissent, which they say may be in response to Western pressure over Iran’s nuclear work. In December, the U.N. General Assembly passed a resolution that invoked the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and expressed deep concern over the human rights situation in Iran.
The U.N. resolution cited “ongoing, systematic violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms” of the Iranian people. It spoke of “increasing discrimination and other human rights violations against persons belonging to religious, ethnic, linguistic or other minorities.” It noted the “arrests, violent repression, and sentencing of women exercising their right to peaceful assembly.” It cited the “systemic and serious restrictions of freedom of peaceful assembly and association, and freedom of opinion and expression, including those imposed on the media and trade unions.” And it cited “the persecution of political opponents. . . .from all sectors of Iranian society.”
Not everyone agrees Iran has it wrong. “Women are better protected in Iran than in the West, where they are often treated as sex objects,” said Ayatollah Mahdi Hadavi, a senior Iranian cleric who likes Sudoku, controlling the lives of women and world domination in general. “We don’t allow them to have jobs that men should have and won’t give them the same kinds of terms that men get in jobs, divorce settlements, including whether they get custody of the kids. These are all for women’s benefit. And we expect them to wear tarps over their heads so we won’t accidentally treat them like sexual playthings in public. In private of course, we can treat them like that because it’s men prerogative. It’s all part of fairness and freedom that only male Islamofascists truly understand.”
In related news, personal freedom and Iranian nukes continue to be debated with the question centered on how much is too much?
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