Thursday, 16 June 2011

Saudi Women Can Do It

Tomorrow, June 17, is the day that Saudi women are taking the wheel. It is not a one-day protest.
Their Facebook campaign, dubbed Women2drive, says the action will start on Friday and keep going "until a royal decree allowing women to drive is issued" in the ultra-conservative kingdom -- the only country where women face such a ban.

It was organized through social media and needs social media support.
Activists pushed the movement via Facebook, Twitter and other online outlets before some of those accounts were shut down. And al-Sherif was arrested and jailed after her YouTube video (pictured above) hit the web. Al-Sherif was eventually released from a women’s prison after nine days, pledging she would no longer drive nor take part in the Women2Drive initiative.

But online support for the campaign has lived on through copies of earlier Facebook groups. And people in other parts of the world have also taken up the cause. The Honk for Saudi Women viral campaign is one example, featuring videos of women and men from around the world, honking their horns in support of Saudi women who will drive on June 17. The campaign also has a petition on online activism platform, asking Oprah to make a similar video in a show of support.

So get out there and honk and tweet and blog. And follow on Twitter, #women2drive. Let's make Saudi Arabia the laughingstock of the world.

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