I just came back from watching the play “Beneath the Veil” by Mary Apick, which I left feeling disturbed and very confused. From reading reviews about the play and Ms. Apicks work I was expecting a play which portrayed the oppression of women by the Islamic Regime and other Islamic Countries.
The play focused on three individuals and their stories. The first individual was Zahra Kazemi, an Iranian/Canadian journalist who was arrested while taking pictures of the Evin Prison and was murdered by the Islamic Regime. The second individual was a young 16 years old Iranian girl who committed suicide after being humiliated in school and having her hair cut off, because she was in possession of Michael Jackson pictures. The last character was a Saudi Arabian woman who had a very rich husband, and had everything imaginable, but did not have her freedom. Her husband had four wives and many lovers, which had led her to take on a lover. During the play she pointed out that if it were found out that she was having an affair she would be stoned to death.
What disturbed and confused me was the second part of the play. At some point one of the actresses who was playing the role of the 16 year old Melody came on stage and made a speech about how she grew up in the US and had freely decided to cover her hair with the hejab. What is important to keep in mind is the fact that while one woman in 100’s or even 1000’s maybe able to make her own decision about wearing the hejab or even the Burka, there are 1000’s more women who do not have that choice. Islam does not give that freedom of choice to women; neither do their religious fathers, brothers or husbands. Women in Iran do not have the choice to wear what they choose, they must wear the hejab or face imprisonment, fines, beatings and flogging, because they live in an Islamic Country.
The part that was most disturbing to me was the bit which I saw as the attack on the new law which was passed in Quebec recently, which requires that women who are working for the government or receiving any type of government service must reveal their face and can’t hide it behind a burka. The play portrayed a young woman with a burka covering her entire face and body trying to take a picture for her licence and she wasn’t allowed to do so. The young woman calls her lawyer and then states that she will be suing the government. As a Canadian/Iranian I was very much offended and very confused as I could not figure out how this was related to “Beneath the Veil”.
Number of other people felt the same way as I did and some walked out of the theatre in the middle of the play. I was tempted to do the same but I wanted to watch it to the end so that I could write about it.
I would personally give this play a 4 out of 10 only because it was dedicated to Zahra Kazemi, but I would not attend this play or any other play but Ms. Apick again as I felt the advertisement and interviews leading up to it was extremely misleading.
Last but not least as many may be aware the mouth piece for the Islamic Regime (disguised as a human rights activist) Shirin Ebadi will be in Toronto on April 26th for a special event, and tonight’s play was full of advertisement for Shirin Ebadi, which speaks for itself. I won’t be getting into that issue here as I will write something else about Ms. Ebadi, but sufficient to say Ms. Ebadi has stated on numerous occasions that Iranians are not ready for a secular Iran and is an open promoter of reform rather than Regime Change. All in all an extremely disappointing evening, I would not do it again.
Down with the Islamic Regime
Long Live Freedom in Iran