Monday, April 26, 2010

Of Boobs and Quakes

Russell Blackford is for it; Jerry Coyne is against it; Amanda Marcotte splits the difference. I speak, of course, of today's baring of chest flesh intended to mock the Iranian cleric who blamed women's sexuality for earthquakes:

The prayer leader, Hojatoleslam Kazim Sadeghi, says women and girls who "don't dress appropriately" spread "promiscuity in society."

"When promiscuity spreads, earthquakes increase," he says in a video posted Monday on YouTube, apparently of him leading Friday prayers in Tehran, Iran, last week.

"There is no way other than taking refuge in religion and adapting ourselves to Islamic behavior," he adds in the video.
Let's assume the idiotic cleric is right, and we can either have a world without earthquakes or a world without sexually-autonomous women. Does anyone consider this a difficult question?

Yes, earthquakes are terrible events, as we have seen recently in Haiti, Chile, and China, but we have plenty of ways to mitigate their dangers.*

Meanwhile, we have a good idea of what it's like for women to live, or try to live, inside the boundaries of strict sharia.

This is an easy choice: dump sharia, enforce sensible building codes.

* I will thank the reader not to return to this post in a 'told you so' spirit when the Cascadia subduction zone, on the orders of Allah, gets fighting mad at boobs and levels the entire Pacific Northwest.


Sheldon said...

Well I don't know. As far as cost is concerned, especially for very poor countries like Haiti, enforcing Sharia law is more viable than mitigating earthquake damage.

Dale said...

Sheldon, maybe. Maybe, but I don't think so.

It takes relatively few building code inspectors to cover the necessary work -- there are only so many buildings -- whereas it is VERY labor-intensive to send out squads of morality police making sure that every boob is properly covered. It hardly stops there: sharia-educated goons must ensure that every instance of adultery, women driving cars, women going to school, women unaccompanied by a male master, homosexuals existing, prayer mats pointed not quite directly at Mecca, etc. is followed by a proper execution. They must ensure that every private stoning and/or honor killing is conducted in keeping with Koranic teaching. Records must be kept and goons sent to ensure that every girl of 8 or older is married off to a man of 30 or older. Her wedding night virginity is deeply, deeply important to the sharia state, and thus must be ascertained. Every suicide vest must be inspected to ensure it is adequately powerful to terrify the infidels. And so on.

Even organizing all the necessary anti-cartoon riots and public fatwas requires a considerable amount of legwork and, no doubt, countless Arab-language forms in triplicate filed in the central office on the dome of the rock.

All of this calls for an enormous state apparatus, unless you want to be half-assed about it, in which case we'll end up with a continuation of earthquakes.

Domestically Challenged said...

My boobs did their part in yesterday's experiment and I am happy to report there were was not much rocking in the CSZ. Perhaps I should be offended?

... though I did receive an unusually high number of offers of help yesterday at the grocery store.

Sheldon said...

Ahhh shucks Dale, I guess you won that argument! Good job mate! :)

But of course what we should really being putting our efforts behind is tectonic plate control, however that might work. Somebody ought to ring up Dr. Geoscience Engineer and get him on that ASAP!

Dale said...

Sheldon, I would like to hold your comment up as a model for all future people who argue with me in any context. Well done.

THIS is exactly what I have been talking about, people!

DC, well done on the boobs. I saw, I approved. I didn't want to comment because commenting on others' boobs is almost always a no-win situation.