TW For Assault/Death
Shaima Alawadi, a 32-year-old Iraqi woman living in Southern California, was taken off life support today, succumbing to injuries sustained in a brutal tire iron beating on Wednesday. Shaima was found in her living room, and according to her daughter Fatima and the police investigating, a note was found near her saying “Go back to your country, you terrorist.”
Shaima was a mother of five who has been in the US with her family since the mid-1990s. She was described by her friend Sura Alzaidy as “respectful modest muhajiba.” Her daughter tearfully addressed her mother’s attackers during a media interview, saying “You took my mother away from me. You took my best friend away from me. Why? Why did you do it?”
This week is International Anti-Street Harassment Week, because spring is here for many of us and so are the catcallers. Read Holly Kearl’s Feministing guest post on what the week is all about and how you can be involved. And be sure to check out the official website for Meet Us on the Street, especially the page that gives you downloadable logos, posters and flyers in a number of languages for your posting pleasure.
Street harassment and catcalling are not an acceptable part of life, nor should they be considered complimentary. They are disrespectful, shaming and controlling and there should be no permissive public forum being made for the sexist rhetoric embedded in the gendered public harassment received by women and members of the trans community with disheartening regularity.
We drove for many miles into the mountain ranges to find a place where I could be totally naked in nature. It had been a bit of a bucket-list thing for us. We walked past this gate and a little further up we found a clearing, spread out our picnic blanket and had sex under the sky: parrots, pardalotes, finches and fruit-doves our only witnesses.