Yesterday about 20 women defied the clerics and the fatwas and got behind the wheel. Saudi Arabia is the only country that bans women from driving. There is no actual law in Saudi that mandates this. Instead it is the edict of the mullahs that has held the government hostage in enforcing this.

In the kingdom, women have little choice about their lives. They must wear an abaya and they cannot go anywhere on their own accord. They must get permission from their male guardian — usually a husband or a father — in order to travel or obtain work.

Women with means employ drivers. Those who can’t afford one simply must wait for when, and if, their male relatives has time to drive them around. In 1990, a group of women flouted this ban but were quickly arrested, booted from their jobs and defamed as “harlots” and the like for years afterward.

I only saw mention on Twitter of one woman saying she was detailed in yesterday’s drive, which seemed positive. But today I see that the Twitter account of  @LailaSindi comes back as “This user does not exist.” I certainly hope that’s a technical glitch.

In the meantime, please look at the joy on this woman’s face as she’s driving as part of the #Women2Drive campaign.

 

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