Sunday, October 23, 2016

Women only? Why?

On the touted segregated queue for Terengganu, the state MB has denied that move, saying he has only been considering the viability of such a policy - see MM Online.

in Kelantan

If segregation is on the demand and/or instruction of some conservatives who claim to speak in the name of god or who wave some quotations written by equally medieval conservatives, that both genders must not be allowed to be seen in close proximity, ie, to queue in the same line, by less than 1 metre or within the length of a camel's hindquarters (wakakaka), and that prohibition absurdly even in open public, then acquiescence by the MB to such a demand will be most lamentable.

advise the MB not to fall prey to such ludicrous policy of a misogynistic, don't-trust-women and bully-women policy, such practised by the PAS state government in Kelantan.

However, if the Terengganu state government instructs its state departments to organize a women-only queue (or two, if staff, facilities and space allow) alongside other ordinary uni-gender queues in the same department, then that will be okay, and in fact will be seen as considerate to women, rather than oppressing women once again by conservative forces. In other words, it's up to the adult individual.

Sometimes a women-only queue may be useful when the public members queueing in a busy department are generally numerous and crowded or even rowdy, when women, especially mums with babies may need some priority plus protection. That will be chivalrous but not welcomed in Oz (and probably in the USA) because modern Oz women in general resent being not treated as equal, wakakaka.

women-only queue will be different from no mixing of gender in an ultra-conservative context, the latter being demeaning, insulting and offensive to the general public and individuals.

If god had intended for such segregation he would NOT have bothered to create women but instead men who laid eggs without the need for fertilizations, hatched them and have breast to feed milk to the babies. Think about that and remember, your god is almighty enough to foresee and preempt all the PAS' human-introduced arguments - but be reasonable, he couldn't preempt all of men's connived bullshit.

that silly joker in shorts is likely to be horse-whipped

Schools of conservative yester-years segregated their pupils into single-gender type educational institutions which in many ways had ill-prepared boys growing up into men to be considerate, respectful and more mature in socializing and mingling with women in today's society, and vice versa.

Today schools, except for conservative/traditional Penang schools such as PFS, St Georges', MBS, MGS, Chung Ling, Peng Hwa, SXI and Convents (except for their sixth-formers) and Muslim schools, have become more unisex.

I believe eons ago Georgetown Secondary School, once in Batu Lanchang Road (wonder whether it's still there), or was it the original Technical Institution (also in Batu Lanchang Road - still there?), was uniquely the first in Penang to practise uni-sex schooling. Syabas. That's something to be said about being located in Batu Lanchang Road, wakakaka.

Georgetown Secondary School
Batu Lanchang Road, Penang

The exception for traditional and conservative (non-Muslim) schools in their sixth forms indicates the requirement for maturity (and thus consideration and mutual respect) in having unisex classes. Likewise in universities.

Women-only queues is thus okay provided there are other queues available for women who prefer to queue with men, like couples, husbands & wives, etc or Siti Kassim, Susan Loone, Marina Mahathir and Dyana Sofya, wakakaka.

Susan Loone, fellow Penangite and blogging matey

Women-only reservation is not unique to Islam but also in places such as the Kuan Yin Temple in Pitt Street, Penang, though admittedly the women-only reservation is not gazetted nor enforced by the temple authority but only respected by devotees through traditional practice, word of mouth and men's respect for women.

Kuan Yin Temple, Pitt Street, Penang
most beloved temple for Chinese Penangites

By practice rather than by temple-rule, Kuan Yin Temple reserves that small room or alcove for women so they could and can pray in peace even with their eyes closed, because the temple has been (still is) probably the most crowded Chinese temple in Malaysia. On festive days, there would not be any space for privacy and meditation during prayers.

Just immediately in front of the main Kuan Yin icon or the small altar and separated from the main prayer hall by the main altar is that small alcove. As a wee lil' kid I used to hang around there with mum when she kneeled there to pray to the Bodhisattva.

women praying in alcove behind main altar
notice young kid - could be kaytee eons ago, wakakaka 

Chinese culture which requires people to always wear footwear (shoes or slippers/thongs) especially in public thus do not require devotees to remove their shoes or slippers even in temples (only Chinese temples, not Buddhist temples which follow Sri Lankan, Thai or Myanmarian practice of removing footwear).

But uniquely, the women-only alcove in Kuan Yim Teng (temple - note in Penang Hokkien, the Mandarin name Yin changes to Yim) in Pitt Street is probably the only one place in Chinese temples, perhaps in the world, that devotees have to remove their shoes or any form of footwear when entering the room/alcove.

Kuan Yim Teng

bustling busy and crowded on festive days

But some "men" (ahem) did and probably still do pray in that alcove as well though they were (are?) not quite the same as most of us are, if you know what I mean. They were 'duckies' or as we Penang people used to (cruelly by today's standard) call them "Ah Ee". They chose to pray in the alcove because they believed they were women. But Penang devotees of Kuan Yim had and I hope still do, accepted and tolerated their presence in the women-only room.

1 comment:

  1. “We have forgotten that men and women are supposed to be different. As a result, our relationships are filled with unnecessary friction and conflict”. ~ John Gray in his book 'Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus'

    I think segregation is not the main goal. It is more to honour their privacy and to give them more attention. At the very least it offers more job opportunities to women.