Iran’s #MenInHijab campaign shows true understanding of gender equality


Men, when you say you support equality, do you just say it to avoid arguments, or do those words truly mean something to you?

Well, if you’re confused, take a look at these Iranian men who posted photos of themselves wearing headscarves to Facebook and Twitter, rocking their #MenInHijab looks.

The #MenInHijab campaign fights sexism by protesting the compulsory hijab in Iran that has been enforced by law since Islamic Revolution of 1979. This particular protest began in 2015, when the Iranian government gave the police and “voluntary militias” greater power to enforce the hijab requirement.

This year, an online social movement called My Stealthy Freedom encouraged Iranian women to share photos of themselves without hijabs to exhibit freedom. The campaign influenced many women to walk freely without hijabs, stimulating public opinion successfully.

My Stealthy Freedom campaign

My Stealthy Freedom campaign (Picture Credit: My Stealthy Freedom)

At the same time, men in Iran have been wearing hijabs to show their solidarity with women and highlight the unequal standards of dress for men and women. “Forcing anyone to wear any sort of clothing is an insult to [anyone’s intelligence]. It is cruel, unjust, and humiliating,” says the campaign.

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Citing the Iranian government, Vox news reports that 3.6 million women were warned, fined, or arrested in 2014 for “Crimes Against Public Prudency and Morality,” which are “most often linked to dress code violations.”

In November 2014, acid attacks were carried out against more than 14 women in Esfahan. Campaign for Human Rights in Iran stated, “In a number of attacks, eyewitnesses reported that assailants proclaimed they were confronting improper hijab as they flung the acid.”

Iran’s religious authorities often reinforce the dress code for women. Last month, senior Shiite cleric Seyyed Youssef Tabanabi-nejad claimed that women in western outfits caused Iran’s rivers to dry up.

Similarly, a group of 25 men in Bangalore, India, wore skirts to show support for India’s women in an ongoing activity that began to protest the December 16, 2012, gang rape of a 23-year-old student on a bus in New Delhi. The activists showed that wearing western clothes does not invite sexual assault, according to a Facebook post about the event.

men in skirts in Bangalore

“Skirt the Issue” gathering in Bangalore (Picture Credit:Huffingtonpost)

These men who participate in women’s movements by wearing hijabs or skirts pose a great example of support for the equality of genders. We’re proud of them.

Feature image credit: Twitter

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