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The Women Of Afghanistan Essay

1021 words - 4 pages

Today in the United States, freedom is taken for granted by almost all citizens. People think that because of the way our government is structured, not having freedom will never be an issue. This thought of peace and safety was similar to that of the women in Afghanistan prior to the Taliban reign, and before the government in Afghanistan was overthrown. Their fortunes would change in 1996 when the Taliban ended up controlling Afghanistan, and denying women of all their rights such as work, education, health care, and many more. The lifestyle women were accustomed to be forced to be drastically changed, and the country they once felt love for, they felt fear. Even though their regime only lasted for about 5 years, the Taliban took a severe mental, emotional, and physical toll for the women whom they had power over. Laws and restrictions, punishments by the Taliban, and life after the Taliban was overthrown will all be discussed throughout this essay.
When the Taliban first took over in Afghanistan, women were forced to dramatically change the way they lived, and many were forced to leave their careers, education, and money behind. Women were forced to leave everything they had worked for behind. Education was prohibited, their right to vote was terminated, the only job they could have was to cook for their family, clean, and raise the children, and they were denied of any medical help they were in need of (James M. Ryan). Another law that had an effect on women was that they didn’t have the right to choose their spouse. Also, a new law was created saying that women had to keep their body covered at all times, including their eyes. One of the most stressful laws that were created was that women had to have a male escort with them if they wanted to leave their home. This meant that everyday errands, or simply being outside to enjoy nature, were no longer allowed. Khaled Hosseini displays these ridiculous rules in his novel, The Kite Runner, through the eyes of a man who spent his childhood living in Afghanistan. Because most of the storyteller’s ties were to Afghanistan, the reader finds out about how devastating the rise of the Taliban was to Afghan citizens. They saw a once thriving country free fall into one that has a corrupt government, and an overall depressed state of mind. (Afghanistan Online)
As odd as the restrictions women had, the punishments for violations were even more unbelievable. To humiliate the women, most of the punishments were available to be seen by the public. The penalties for broken laws were often held public in sports stadiums, town squares, or other densely populated areas for everyone to see. For a minor infraction, oftentimes the one who committed the transgression was often beaten until unconscious. A woman once had her thumb removed because her thumb nail was exposed, and when the Taliban guard saw this, she was taken into the town square to have her exposed thumb taken off. The things that the Taliban do to...

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