ubna Ahmed Hussein's crime was wearing pants, said Jenice Armstrong in the Philadelphia Daily News. In Sudan, the authorities say that constitutes a violation of public decency laws, so Lubna Hussein and 12 other women were arrested at a Khartoum restaurant July 3. Most of the women accepted 10 lashes, but Hussein and two others chose to face trial and, if convicted, 40 lashes—making them champions in the fight for freedom being waged against "religious extremists."
This is not about the right of a Christian like Lubna Hussein to wear pants despite a law reflecting Muslim tradition, said Nesrine Malik in Britain's Guardian. The real issue is the defiance of these women in the face of the authorities in Sudan. "As with all self-declared Islamic governments, what a woman wears becomes no longer an issue of religious modesty but one of audacity and defiance to a regime's raison d'etre and authority."
To the men who enforce the rules in Sudan, said World Have Your Say, Lubna Hussein is "an enemy of public morals, to be denounced in the letters pages of newspapers and in mosques." She did, after all, defy the "law of the land" and waive her immunity as a United Nations employee so she could make her point in court, daring the government to flog her. That makes her a "heroine" or a criminal, depending on where you stand.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why China's Communist Party is headed for collapse
- Why Texas Republicans may want to cool the anti-Obama land-grab talk
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- How to make perfect fried rice in 6 easy steps
- Why the poor's investment of choice is so alarming
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Obama doesn't have a manhood problem — but conservatives certainly do
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- Why we need a maximum wage
Subscribe to the Week