By Ed Straker
San Francisco has a street-by-street guide to human excrement. New York has a public urination map. But in Muslim countries, a more pressing concern is sexual harassment, sexual assault, and rape. That’s why many Muslim countries like Egypt, Lebanon, and Bangladesh, and even Palestinian territories, are creating sexual assault maps, so women can see where they are most likely to be sexually assaulted by men, even giving the ability to zoom in, block by block, to see where women are being violated.
Incidents range from unwelcome sexual comments to lewd behavior to actual physical contact. Here are some examples from Cairo:
Masturbating taxi driver : I got into a cab near Pro Centre Gym in Mohandiseen. After asking me if I was married and trying to make small talk the taxi driver started gesturing to his groin – as I don’t understand arabic very well I thought there was something lost in translation. A couple of minutes later I looked back and the driver was masturbating.
A Penis in el Mounira: In Mounira, at 1pm, the 09/01/2012, a driver was showing his penis in El sheik ai Yussef street.
Masturbating while ogling my ass! – On a Friday as the Sheikh is calling on people for prayers, a guy, wearing dark shaded sunglasses, parks his motorbike in front of me, unzips his pants, pulls down his underwear and starts masturbating while he is ogling every inch of me. It was purely disgusting. I looked behind me and saw him riding on his motorbike following me. Luckily I found a group of small children heading to the mosque so I walked BETWEEN the children and headed together to the mosque. I think I stayed for an hour before I had the guts to go outside again. So word of advice, in this area, never go out during the Friday prayer.
masaken nerco, Maadi, Cairo: I was running in the morning. Near the garden I cross during my run, a man was standing outside of his car, trousers and underwear around his ankles, watching me and masturbating. This was early in the morning, between 6 and 6:15. He followed me with his car, and got out at another point during my run and continued to masturbate. I lifted a large concrete slab, as I got closer, and thought about whether or not it would be a good idea to smash his car with it, and thought about how safe/ unsafe it would be to do so, and if he could/ would hurt me. As I came closer though, he got in his car again and drove away, waving to me out of his window as he drove off.
Questions for discussion:
1) Do you think the reason women have to be covered up in these countries is because a certain…culture, which shall not be named, has problems teaching men to show a little self-restraint?
2) The incidents above didn’t specify if the women in question were wearing hijabs or burkas. Do you think some guys in Islamic countries are so sexed up that they can get aroused by the hemline of a burka?
3) What parts of your brain would have to be damaged or missing to be female and desiring to take a vacation in one of these countries?
4) Given recent refugee trends, do you think we can expect to see more sexual assault street maps in places like Berlin, Paris, London, and Malmö?