Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Right of Women to Watch Sports Events

by Abeer Mishkhas from Arab News

In a situation truly the first of its kind, a 12-year-old girl managed to disrupt a football match in Al-Ahsa several days ago. The unprecedented presence of the alien “girl” was enough to trigger a long debate between the referees and the security guards concerning what should be done about the invader. After 36 minutes of discussions, the security guards asked the girl to leave the stadium ... It is a simple incident but it sheds light on an issue that has become one of the main concerns of Saudi society. I am speaking about a woman’s right to have a full normal life, one in which she is allowed to play sports and enjoy them. This is a very sore point for many women who would enjoy participating in sports but are prevented from doing so unless they go to private clubs — and even there the range is limited. This also brings us back to the illogical and twisted reasoning that has placed a ban on sports and physical education in girls’ schools.

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