Pakistani Parliamentarians Defend Mass Honour Killing: 5 Women Buried Alive… But What About Bajan “Traditions” About Women?

Child Bride

40 year-old Husband and his 11 year-old Child Bride (This happy couple is from Afghanistan)

“Part Of Pakistani Tribal Traditions”

Five young Pakistani women who wanted to marry for love rather than mate with their family’s choice of a husband were murdered last month. After being tortured, the young women were buried alive.

Last week, two Members of Parliament spoke in defense of the tradition, and in defense of the police who did nothing, but (ho-hum) have now “opened a file” on the case.

You can view a video report here (content warning – shows bodies being dug up) or read about it on CNN here.

Do We Need Signs Like This In Barbados?

Do We Need Signs Like This In Barbados?

Barbados Traditions About Women

There used to be a time on this island when people – even women – would whisper that a rape victim had somehow “asked for it” because of how she dressed or acted. When a woman showed some bruising to the face, some folks would blame her for not looking after the home and homelife as she should. When a woman had a strange man kick down her door and assault her, the waging tongues would say that she had been out too late at night with a bad crowd and this is what happens to bad girls.

I’d like to think that those days are gone, but we know that Bajan women have a long way to go before they are considered full persons when it comes to being afforded all the protection and respect that this society gives men.

I haven’t quite decided if women are making progress or not on this island. When we ran an article on the Jippy Doyle child-sex trial, several commenters openly stated that the 13 year old girl was at fault for being alone with “Pastor” Jippy, or that she had dressed provocatively.

Consider BFP’s article about a woman named Ronja Juman – whose home was raided in the middle of the night by police using a blank search warrant. Juman was terrorised and strip-searched by thug police in an effort to intimidate her to pay up back rent owed to the Director of Private Prosecutions. “She deserved it” said some commenters, because (they said) she had been seen with a few men.

Over a year ago in April, we told you about a neighbour of ours who couldn’t break free from an abusive man. I am sorry to say that it ended very badly. We can’t get into the details, but you can read our original story here.

Last year too the island was not particularly shocked when officers of the Royal Barbados Police Force failed for four days to answer calls from a woman who was a victim of spouse abuse. See our article Beat Your Wife In Barbados? You Are Protected From The Police If You Live In A Gated Community!

Now we see that three police officers have been charged in separate incidents involving abuse of women…

More cops charged

THREE MORE LAWMEN will stand in the dock of the District “A” Magistrates’ Court later this month to answer criminal charges against different women.

One of those lawmen has been accused of assaulting a woman with a cutlass and threatening to chop her up…

… continue reading this article at the Nation News.

Barbados Is Not Pakistan

No, this island is not Pakistan – but we shouldn’t be so smug when we hear of such horrors against women… because the disrespect and abuse that Bajan women sometimes face comes from the same darkness that produced the honour killings in Pakistan.  Our cultural standards mostly limit the extent of the abuse – mostly.


Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Culture & Race Issues, Human Rights

28 responses to “Pakistani Parliamentarians Defend Mass Honour Killing: 5 Women Buried Alive… But What About Bajan “Traditions” About Women?

  1. The scout

    It seems that you are protraying all women as angels and all men as devils. Well the true be told, there are some very vicious men out there but let’s face facts, women are becoming very agressive too. Men don’t walk around and talk about the wicked things women do to them but women are very quick to shout foul.Women have come a long way in this society and sometimes I believe some of them would like to eradicate men if they could. The problem is that we were made for each other, not to compete against each other. There is a role for men in society and there is one for women but there is a reason why God made man first.

  2. Tell me Why

    It seems that you are protraying all women as angels and all men as devils. Well the true be told, there are some very vicious men out there but let’s face facts, women are becoming very agressive too.
    I am not dealing with the Pakistani’s traditions since I am not part of that culture. However, I will deal with issues within our country where I saw in today’s pares of three officers charged for beating women. This is a sordid affair that was in our system but now coming to light. How can we have officers who are there to serve and protect can be so crude exhibiting such behaviour on our fairer sex. If these officers can beat females, don’t you feel that males will receive some of these blows. We need to start weeding out these bad appleswithin our uniformed law enforcers before it is too late.

  3. Geo.

    There is a role for men in society
    and there is one for women
    but there is a reason why God made man first.

    Where on earth
    did you get the silly idea that god somehow ‘made man first’??
    That doesn’t even make sense!

    but there I go again, taking you too literally..sorry.

  4. Rohan

    “There is a role for men in society and there is one for women but there is a reason why God made man first.”

    Here is an answer for several of the questions asked in this piece.

  5. Pat

    God made man first. What a joke. If that were the case, men would be giving birth.

  6. Straight talk

    Are you questioning Genesis, Pat?

    Or just ribbing the weaker sex.

  7. crossroads

    Men vs Women. Not at all. Its Mankind vs Mankind. That billboard above reminds me of the adds we see in the press teaching people about cruelty to dogs. WTF.

  8. The scout

    Until any of you can tell me convincingly who was created first, I would stick to what I was taught as a little child. i don’t know if a god made some of you by GOD made man first. If God had make woman first there would have been BIG PROBLEMS. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, then he created man and he rested. Then God created woman, since then neither God nor man have rested. In genesis they said God rested, in psalms they said God neither slumbers or sleeps. That was after he made woman. Women you have a mighty role to play in this world, do it don’t try to be man, it can work it would just confuse things

  9. Eddie

    BFP – Yes, female domestic abuse still thrives, but I don’t think it is fair to use Islamic cultural/religious models to get the point accross.

    Those who contend that God did not make man first (not being sexist) clearly have little regard for, or confidence in the Bible.
    Trying to convince such persons would be akin to trying to fill a bucket with holes.

    However, male gender supremacy has no place in the family unit; but there must be an overall leader.

    If males and females were to respect each other more, there would be less problems

    Before we marry (for those of us who still believe in this institution) I believe we should:
    1. Carefully select and “vet” our partner.
    2.Marry for the “right reason.”
    3.Pray (unendingly) that God provides the
    right partner for you.

  10. Thomas Gresham


    Congratulations again for once more tackling a sensitive subject head-on.

    West Indian women are performing far better than West Indian men in education. So, we should worry about young West Indian men as well who seem to be opting out of the conventional routes to economic success and freedom.

    However, despite this superior educational performance, discrimination against women means that women are not filling the top executive positions in the private sector. Elsewhere there is evidence of a significant and sustained income gap between men and women doing the same work. Money and jobs are a good and tangible reflection (though not the only reflection) of hidden attitudes and prejudice and the evidence sends a message that we still have a long way to go to walking the walk of sex equality and not just the talk.

  11. True


    A couple decades ago, an R&B group used to sing a song entitled: “That’s the way, of the world”
    The late James Brown also sang “It’s a man’s world”

  12. Rohan

    Thomas, true, true, true. It’s the same in the U.S. Women graduate college at higher rates than men, and the gap is even larger in the black community.

  13. Avatar Girl

    OK, Scout, Rohan and all the other men-lovers…

    Why don’t you go MARRY a man, since you seem to think so highly of them?

    I’m sure YOU’D love to see what the honeymoon would be like! Oh boy, and sexual relations! My, oh, my…but then, you MIGHT enjoy it! I don’t know which side of the fence you’d be on! But I can tell from you comments…!

    Oh and another thing…try to have offspring, if you can! If you want children, and don’t like women, go do it on your own! Ahhh, not so easy, IS IT?

    If it weren’t for us, YOU wouldn’t be here!

    And I, as a woman, RESPECT men! However, I DON’T respect YOU right now, because of what you said!

    So please, enough with the sexist hogwash! It isn’t about who came first, it’s about CHERISHING each other for the beauty we BOTH have as man & woman! Not use & abuse, by EITHER sex!

  14. Rohan

    You must have misread what I said. I was being sarcastic when I quoted the “God made man first” drivel that someone said. I quoted it to point to the fact that religious teachings are one of the strongest sources for discrimination against women and the person who said “God made man first” just proved my point.

    I didn’t want to spell it out since we just had a long religious discussion that I don’t care to kick off again…LOL

    Anyhow, just wanted to clear up that misunderstanding.


  15. ru4real

    How can we have officers who are there to serve and protect can be so crude exhibiting such behaviour on our fairer sex. If these officers can beat females, don’t you feel that males will receive some of these blows. We need to start weeding out these bad appleswithin our uniformed law enforcers before it is too late.
    How if the Police are self policing?

  16. .25

    Yes, we’re questioning Genesis, perhaps the silliest of all books in your bible.
    We’re taking it thru the wringer.
    questioning the bible -each and every silly phrase in it.

    So you were taught it as a child.
    Does that really mean anything, now we’re all grown up and intelligent?
    You’re a big boy now.
    Start thinking for yourself.

  17. khadija

    Whats all this story on men, love your men, treat them well, guide them, for with out you, they are lost, but they love you, so take good care of them. stop cheeting on them, stop lieing to them, they are god creation, and he comes first.

  18. The scout

    Avatar Girl
    Let me tell you something. Just over FORTY (40) YEARS ago, I married a beautiful young lady ( her beauty is more than skin deep), to whom I;m STILL happily married. From the start, it was always understood that I’m the head of the house. We always sit and discuss matters and try to reach a amicable decision. However, there are times when we agree to disagree and at that stage the ball is then in my court to make the final decision. Sometimes i go in my favor sometimes in hers but whatever way it goes, it’s supported by both of us. You might call that old-fashion but if more of you modern day women would understand that live is based on a mutual understanding between both sexes, the less divorces we would have. Yes, we have disagreements but they are solved before we go to bed, if either of us fall asleep with a matter unsolved, the other would wake you up and start the discussion until we reah an agreement. I hope she would be around for another 40 years or more. Incedentally, we have four nice children who are professionally educated and employed and three are happily married. the last son is expected to be married at Christmas this year. All my in-laws and I are very good friends, they are like my children. If any of them come to me to discuss a problem, I don’t take sides, I give my honest opion.

  19. The scout

    Men don’t like to talk about being abused. I know of a man that used to be beaten badly by his policewoman girlfriend he had, until one day he slipped out of the island and has never returned. neither man nor woman should be abusing each other. To me it shows a sign of cowardice.

  20. Underdog

    Well, Scout … God was just practising when he made man first …

  21. crossroads

    nice lol underdog

  22. CheapTing no good

    And after making man, Man complained to God that he was lonely and needed a mate.

    God’s proposal for an appropriate mate sounded rather expensive,
    so Adam questioned God as to whether he couldn’t get something that would cost him an arm or a leg.
    God agreed to a less expensive product, and Woman was created to be Man’s mate.

    Some years later, Adam complained again that this woman giving trouble.
    God chuckled and asked him
    “What the heck did you think you’d get
    for just a rib??”

  23. Just Me

    Um, those things like our attitudes to rape and wife beating are not ‘Bajan cultural traditions’ that equate with ‘Honour Killing’ those are the attitudes of most patriarchal cultures to women.

    Our traditions would be more along the lines of extended ‘visiting relationships’ and that sort of thing in the Caribbean. Yes,our attitudes to women are bad, but we should not confuse a worldwide phenomenon with a local tradition.

    btw… which of the two creation stories in Genesis were we questioning again? I think both are crap! Adam was Eve’s mother? Oh Please… that rib business was a Ceasarian was it? Right.

  24. Avatar Gurl

    @ Rohan,

    Well, it seems that i did misread what you said. I apologise, sometimes blogs can’t convey the essence of sarcasm unless they are explicitly typed out. By the way, who DID you quote? I’d like to shred HIM to pieces.

    Peace to you also. Again, my apologies.

    @ Scout

    That may be true, scout, that life is all about mutual understanding between the sexes; indeed, I respect & admire that. (And I’m very happy to hear that you’ve been married for 40 years, CONGRATS, and may many more happy years come to you both!)

    However, a lot of men would use that same “old fashioned” thinking to do violent things, then they turn around and say that the woman agrees with it, so it’s “mutual understanding.” Of course, I’m not saying that YOU do that, but I’ve heard that excuse millions of times before, so I’m making mention of it here.

    That is why I have to ask, “Should there be only one Head of Household? Why can’t there be two?” Share the work, share the resonsibilites, share the joys, share the sorrows. Period. No one should be leaning on another for support unless absolutely necessary. And no one should be abusing another for any reason.

    Remember, God created us FOR each other. Not against each other. If certain men like to beat women so often, they should go & sex other men, since they seem to like them enough not to hit them! And yet, they proclaim, “We nah Botty Bwoy!” Yeah, right.

    To all those men who hit women, just think twice and consider, a woman gave birth to you! Be thankful for your women! And women who beat men, a man helped conceive you! Be thankful for your men!

  25. Zahrah

    I am not from the bajan culture so I cannot comment on the article (I am a non-resident Pakistani) though I can comment on your comments. I am a bit confused… ALL of you are portraying that either you believe man was created first and so men have the upper hand OR you don’t specify but NONE of you has expressed a belief in the fact that man was created first and yet both men and women are equals. I unconditionally believe Adam was created first and yet I believe women are the better of the two genders though for arguments sake I will say they are equal because otherwise I will be accused of being sexist. Scout, you are right, there is a reason that men were created first, it was to protect women but all of you (not specifically scout) who believe God REGRETS his decision or even think He is not totally pleased with it are limiting God, because God is all-knowing and so he would not do something that he would regret. He knows what will happen and what he will do. Thinking that we are Gods first great creations or his “experiments” is limiting his power. He has been there forever (which is a hard concept for us to grasp fully) and so it is reasonable to say that he has created creations (possibly thousands of times greater than humans) before. So he did KNOW what he was doing when he created women, he created men and women the way they are for a reason. Men were created to protect women because women are so precious. Would you keep your diamonds just anywhere? In the same way it was not in the justice of god to send such precious women out alone. (I’m going to rephrase that so I don’t get my head bitten off) God sent men to protect women. Also men rely heavily on women, women are the backbones to men. But this is if we are all good little children and life never works this way. You all were mixing religion and the way things are SUPPOSED to be with the way things ARE so I thought I’d put my little spin on things as well.

    Getting back to the nitty-gritty, it is true that you see all sorts of people in this world but let me ask you something… Is men abusing women more common or women abusing men more common? (that was a joke) ABVIOUSLY MEN ABUSING WOMEN!!!! This is happening ALL over the place and though there are those RARE HYPED cases of women abusing men, it is hardly heard of. And women are the more delicate sex and men the strong macho ones so men should be able to handle themselves but women cannot. In your story scout, you said that the man was being beaten by his girlfriend… why would he get into a relationship that shows signs of trouble? She must have been an aggressive person so he should have seen the signs…

    Another thing I am confused about, I always thought that mutual understanding was a fairly new concept (fairly meaning last 50-100 or so years) I always thought that before the women’s views were never listened to and the men always just controlled it all but I may be wrong.

    Overall men and women should live as equals, as avatar gurl said, no beating, share the work, share the resonsibilites, share the joys, share the sorrows but also they should rely on each other, trust each other and support each other.

    Going back to the whole topic of God, I am a bit confused about something else… you said that in genesis they said God rested, in psalms they said God neither slumbers or sleeps but isn’t that contradictory? It says he neither slumbers nor sleeps, as in EVER as in even after he created men. But also, wouldn’t that be limiting God by saying that he NEEDS to rest and wouldn’t that be thinking a little (or a HUGE amount) too much of human creation? God is this amazing entity that is way greater than our comprehension. Humans are unable to even imagine Gods greatness. Our minds are simply too small.

    But then again, this is only my opinion…

  26. Pingback: Muslim Honour Killing In Canada: Three Daughters & “First Wife” Murdered By Father, 2nd Wife, Son « Barbados Free Press

  27. 135

    who cares if man was created first or women just knowing that the two have to combine to make new life is enough.

  28. Pingback: Religio-Political Talk (RPT) Pakistani Parliamentarians Defend Mass Honour Killing: 5 Women Buried Alive ~ `Part Of Pakistani Tribal Traditions`