Global Quickies: Surfer Girls, Annulling Child Marriages, and Jesus’ Wife

“Sixteen-year-old Amrita knew what she wanted in her life – to get an education and become a teacher. She was able to stop her own marriage and continue her studies but many other girls in Nepal are not in the same position.”

Footage that appears to show a woman being assaulted in a Beijing hotel has sparked a massive debate in China. CCTV footage shows a woman being grabbed and dragged across a hotel corridor, in full view of bystanders.”

“The UN Human Rights Committee, reviewing Namibia’s compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, recently recommended that the practice of providing lobola [bride price] should be prohibited by law on the grounds that it is used as a justification to beat and mistreat wives.”

“The government in Switzerland has criticised a decision by a school in the north of the country to exempt male Muslim students from shaking hands with their female teachers. It’s customary for teachers in Switzerland to shake hands with their students before and after class. But two male students from Therwil in the canton of Basel, argued that Islam did not permit physical contact with a person of the opposite sex.” (autoplay video)

A self-styled prophet incensed many Christians saying that Jesus has a “young, hot” wife.

BANGLADESH (from Madfishmonger and Rebecca)
Bangladeshi surfer girls go against the cultural tide “For these eight girls ages 11 to 14, surfing has helped them reclaim a piece of their childhood. It is a sport that conjures up freedom, verve and sunlit horizons — attributes not usually associated with the life of a young girl in Bangladesh, an overwhelmingly Muslim country of 160 million with one of the world’s highest rates of child marriage.”

“Although abortion is legal in the rest of the United Kingdom, its ban in Northern Ireland remains in place. And as a result, a 21-year-old woman was almost sent to prison for self-inducing a miscarriage.”

INDONESIA (From Rebecca)
“On Saturday, police officers and members of ‘Islamic’ hardliner groups reportedly forced the closure of Lady Fast 2016, a festival of music, art and discussions for women that was being held at Survive Garage in Bantul, Yogyakarta.”

Chief Theresa Kachindamoto is impressive: “In the past three years, she has annulled more than 850 child marriages, sent hundreds of young women back to school to continue their education, and made strides to abolish cleansing rituals that require girls as young as seven to go to sexual initiation camps.”

Featured image: Amrita, 16, declined a marriage proposal as she preferred to study. Photo credit: Plan Asia


Born and raised in Mexico City, Daniela has finally decided to abdicate her post as an armchair skeptic and start doing some skeptical activism. She is currently living in Spain after having lived in the US, Brazil and Italy. You can also find her blogging in Spanish at esceptica.org.

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One Comment

  1. Concerning the story about Switzerland:

    “It’s customary for teachers in Switzerland to shake hands with their students before and after class.”

    This is simply not true. It’s complete bullocks.

    I guess it bothers me because the racists here in Switzerland are having a field day with that news item and there is so much bad reporting going on.

    I went to school in that canton (which Baselland and not Basel by the way). And there are many things to say about how people did not give a damn about many things happening in that school system until two Muslim boys were involved.

    And just to avoid any misunderstandings: Yes, obviously the boys are sexist assholes if the story is indeed true (in the meantime some news stories put that into doubt though). Still it is wrong to force them to shake hands (bodily autonomy and stuff…).

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