A little bit of martyrdom

An Iranian woman deals with a meddlesome clerk.

This is almost too good to be true, but I can’t imagine why the Iranian state media would have made it up. Apparently some hajatolislam encountered a woman he considered inappropriately dressed and ordered her to “cover herself up.” When she told him that he could instead cover his eyes, he repeated the order. She then pushed him to the ground, kicked the crap out of him, and put him in the hospital for three days.

Which reminds me: Whenever I see a poster that says “Violence is not the answer,” I always wonder “What was the question?”

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

10 thoughts on “A little bit of martyrdom”

  1. I can think of reasons *he* might make it up, though.

    When is the Spring going to happen there, anyway? Why mess around with an ignorant middleman?

  2. Iranian batwoman!

    More seriously, I’m glad to see push-back against the thugs that usually make up the religious police in Iran, even if I don’t really want it to come in the form of violent beatings.

  3. There are a lot of reasons why the religious establishment would publicize a story like this. You’re thinking about cracks in the facade of totalitarian omnipotence (and male strength and power); they’re thinking of a way to beat uppity women with clubs and call it self-defense.

  4. Regardless of the question, I’m struggling to think of a situation where women have a chance of liberating themselves from patriarchal oppression by principally violent means. (The one case I can think of is a community of mostly women who are tyrannised by a much smaller number of men, so collectively their odds of overpowering the men are pretty good if they band together. It’s a situation which can occur in polygamous cults that deliberately try to recruit as many women and as few men as possible, but not much otherwise.)

    1. I can imagine the Iranian media reporting stuff like this in order to show that women are wild and need to be controlled.

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