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Thursday, September 23, 2021

Local modesty campaign ‘reflect your respect’ to relaunch in Qatar

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City Center mall

A grassroots campaign to encourage men and women to dress more modestly in public places in Qatar will be relaunched next month under a new name, the campaign’s organizers have told Doha News.

Previously called “One of Us” when it began in 2012, the campaign has now been renamed “Reflect your Respect,” and will restart in June, with a weekend of leafleting in public parks and malls.

Speaking to Doha News, spokeswoman Umm Abdullah explained that the name had been changed because many expats had responded to the previous slogan by arguing that they did not feel like they are part of Qatari society.

Reflect Your Respect

She explained that the new slogan was simply calling for expats to “respect” local cultural values by covering their shoulders, midriffs and knees, adding that she believed many Qataris now avoided public places because they were offended by the clothes many expats were wearing.

“People say they don’t meet enough Qatari people, but this is because we don’t want go to these places and see these things,” she said.

“Our kids as well, we don’t want them to end up imitating this – we want to preserve our traditions and our values. They (expats) have their own places where they don’t have to be covered – but we have the right to go to hospitals, to the market, to the malls, to the beach, without seeing these things.”

Umm Abdullah explained that on June 20, groups of Qatari women and children will begin visiting public places – venues will be announced a week in advance – to hand out leaflets explaining the campaign to expats. She said many simply aren’t aware that they are causing offense.

But some expats have pushed back against the idea. In 2012, one commenter on a Doha News story about the modesty campaign said:

“I have never seen in my life (and I’ve traveled in many, many countries) such abuse of make-up in plain daylight, such high heels that I wonder how come they do not stumble, such abuse of perfume that sometimes the smell in the lift is unbearable (even after they left)… I think this campaign should be fair and expended so as to cover what being modest should mean for all of us living here.”

And more recently, on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/ebaaelmelik/status/467902501178466305

To avoid offending people, Umm Abdullah said that the group plans to hand out chocolates, flowers and shawls along with the leaflets, and hopes to engage with people in a friendly way:

“I will just speak to them quietly by myself, with my little daughter who is only seven. It’s embarrassing to be preached at in public places.”

Abdullah is also aware that some would argue that Qataris have no right to demand that foreigners adhere to their cultural norms. In response, she said that when she travels, she makes an effort to fit in by not wearing a niqab in France for example, and expects expats in Qatar to do the same.

She explained that June 20 had been chosen due to the approach of Ramadan at the end of next month, and because it signaled the end of national exams, giving Qatari families more time to devote to the campaign. Leafleting campaigns would however continue throughout the year, she added.

‘Lack of support’ from QTA

In November 2012, the “One of Us” campaign organizers announced that they had received backing from the Qatar Tourism Authority, which they said had promised to display the posters in public spaces, and on their literature.

Umm Abdullah said that these promised actions however have not materialized, so the group had decided to continue without support from the QTA.

“We applied to them because without their approval, it’s illegal to distribute leaflets” she told us. “But nothing else has happened. But, we think we are enough. We think women are best to deal with this. If they are not to do it, we will do it.  It’s in constitution, we have the right, so why not. If you want something done well, do it yourself.”

The QTA did not respond to a request for comment.

The law

The campaign’s organizers argue that this call for modest attire is enshrined in Qatari law. They point to article 57 in the Qatari constitution, which states that “abiding by public order and morality, observing national traditions and established customs is a duty of all who reside in the State of Qatar or enter its territory.”

However, there appears to be no specific element of the penal code that targets dress code, although many malls and parks have their own clothing rules, which are enforced by private security guards.

For a brief period in October 2012, for example, Aspire Park introduced unofficial dress code rules that mandated sports clothing or Qatari national dress only, effectively banning most expat families from the park. However, these regulations were dropped just weeks later, and Aspire Park authorities denied they had ever existed.

Additionally, men have also reported being turned away from Traffic Police buildings for wearing shorts instead of trousers, and there’s anecdotal evidence that similar dress codes for both men and women exist in other government buildings in Qatar, although these are patchily enforced.

Thoughts?

243 COMMENTS

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Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago

“effectively banning most expat families from the park”

because most expat families cant afford sports clothing?

Waveydavey
Waveydavey
7 years ago

If I was taking my children to the park on the weekend I probably wouldn’t be wearing sports clothing, I’d be in jeans and t shirt…nothing inappropriate, but not sports wear either…maybe that’s why it got dropped? Seems a bit daft that you’d have to wear a track suit for your kids to go and see the ducks!!

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago
Reply to  Waveydavey

Jeans and t shirt not a problem…but depends on how tight or loose it would be…this would cause a problem…until and unless it does not show a lot of skin and not body tight then it should be fine

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago

Jeans and t-shirt WAS a problem, that’s the point. Families were being kicked out of the park unless they were either wearing sports clothes OR national dress. Jeans and t-shirts are neither sports clothes or national dress, so they had to leave. Thankfully that rule has now been removed.

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago

See here for how stupid the situation was in the past: https://dohanews.co/residents-express-confusion-frustration-at-dress-code/

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Waveydavey

yeah thats fine, but saying being asked to wear a track suit is effectively banning you and your kids from the park is just retarded

Pete
Pete
7 years ago

A track suit in summer…that’s not only inappropriate but a danger to your health.

Waveydavey
Waveydavey
7 years ago

I absolutely agree!! As long as people look respectable, then it really shouldn’t matter what’s worn IMO.

Sarah
Sarah
7 years ago

expats aren’t exclusively western with well paying jobs. That particular reference was most likely applying to expats from South Asia who dress in their local attire, many of whom don’t own any western sports clothing.

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago

Good one sister UMM…but at the same time, this is based on my observation…Nowadays many arab girls (dont know if local or expat) are also wearing inappropriate dressing..for example many times seen women wearing the abaya (the black dress) half opened below showing tight dressings inside….also many young girls wearing the abaya only but not the head scarf…..so please let us start not only with expats but any one who is wearing in indecent way

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago

🙂

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

Why so focused on oppressing women? Where are your comments about the men?

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

What about this trend of the young guys wearing shorts that are only a few inches below their butt, and baggy singlets which cover little more than the navel. I don’t want to see half naked men when I visit the malls.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Andrew

That’s is their problem but that is not the point, these campaigns always focus on harassing and oppressing women. She got raped because of her clothes! What nonsense.

karwa
karwa
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

I’m so glad to see you have been taking my feminist pills! 😉

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Which men MIMH

Chris
Chris
7 years ago

This is the perfect comment reflecting the belief that it’s always the women’s fault when a man is tempted. There are as many inappropriately dressed men as there are women, but you only see one side.

I vote for a change of law specifically banning men in short shorts and/or string vests….in ANY country!!

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
7 years ago

you’re right let’s start with indecent men, plenty in this country both locals and not!

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago
Reply to  fullmoon07

fullmoon..ur right..hence i mentioned in my comment “ANYONE”

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
7 years ago

yes but you addressed to women/girls more than once!! I want to include men always so no difference of sex.

Aaron Smith
Aaron Smith
7 years ago

Stepping back from being culturally, religious or “when in Rome” about this…. Does more conservative clothing really lessen the sexual tension? Psychologically speaking, is the primary reason to hide skin to make you think less about it?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjSh_esW9W4

@ 1:45

Why would Arab women be at the most desirable?

SullyofDoha
SullyofDoha
7 years ago

And the sign said “Long-haired freaky people need not apply”
So I tucked my hair up under my hat and I went in to ask him why
He said “You look like a fine upstanding young man, I think you’ll do”
So I took off my hat, I said “Imagine that. Huh! Me workin’ for you!”
Whoa-oh-oh

Sign, sign, everywhere a sign
Blockin’ out the scenery, breakin’ my mind
Do this, don’t do that, can’t you read the sign?

🙂

AlanSDK
AlanSDK
7 years ago

i believe it is important to respect the local culture. However, I wonder is it necessary for men to cover their knee too ?

osamaalassiry
osamaalassiry
7 years ago
Reply to  AlanSDK

yes. 🙂

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  osamaalassiry

Hey, my knees are great, the world should admire them!

MisterSandman
MisterSandman
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

My knees are great too. In fact, when I was at school I even attended a “special knees” class. At least I think that is what it was called….

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  AlanSDK

Yes cause we may be catchin’ the eye of someones wife and the man be jealous and we be gettin’ in a fight or something.

Vanessa
Vanessa
7 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

My husband’s pair look so temping that starting tomorrow, I will make sure he covers them up! Ladies, keep your peeper’s off my husband’s knees! 😉

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Vanessa

No fair. What about if I let you look at my hubbies knees ( no touching mind), you let me look at your hubbies knees. That’s fair, yes?

Vanessa
Vanessa
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Witch

Sounds fair to me. (I always knew our type existed in Doha!)

Adeem Sartaj
Adeem Sartaj
7 years ago

A much needed initiative for the sake of culture and for the sake of humanity…..

to preserve our future generations from immorality and obscenity.

May Allah bless sister Umm Abdullah and make her successful. and also I would like to appreciate and thank every member of this campaign and the ones supporting it and helping to make it happen

A_qtr
A_qtr
7 years ago
Reply to  Adeem Sartaj

for real ?

Mobstar Doe
Mobstar Doe
7 years ago
Reply to  Adeem Sartaj

It’s hard to be tolerant with people like this in the world.

Rosemarie
Rosemarie
7 years ago

Respect has nothing to do with the way you dress (this is just superficial)…Respect has something to do with how you deal with other people (rich or poor) and by not stereotyping them….

osamaalassiry
osamaalassiry
7 years ago
Reply to  Rosemarie

It seems you’re judging using your own filters and norms… “this is just superficial” to you, it may not be so for others…

KK
KK
7 years ago
Reply to  Rosemarie

Agree. Too often, ‘culture’ is (mis)used as an argument telling you what not to do. At the same time, this misuse happens to be very convenient for the master.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  Rosemarie

So, would you wear shorts and a tank top if you were going for a big job interview or to meet with the, say, the Emir?

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Can you arrange either for me please Mr Abdulrachman? Better still both? Please.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

The Emir should be easy enough; big job interview though can be tough. How Blond are you? Blue eyes, or at lest green. British accent? Those would help :p

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Hahaha. Blue eyes only sorry, so I fail the short listing.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

I can go blonde.

Yacine
Yacine
7 years ago

Though I have no problem with this kind of initiatives (I actually encourage them), I think the topic is very sensitive and should be approached in a very diplomatic way. I am not sure handing chocolate and other gifts while telling a woman that she should dress modestly will make the whole experience less embarrassing for her. And I would expect that some offended women will respond in a rude way regardless of whatever gift you offer them.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

It’s not sensitive at all, they should not go around harassing women. It’s none of their business.i also disagree with banning the Niqab in France if a woman wants to wear it and is it being forced it is her choice. If you don’t like it tough

KJD
KJD
7 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

I have no issues with the campaign, but do think that rather than targeting only women who are dressing inappropriately that they should approach all people — men and women even if dressed appropriately. I wouldn’t mind a nice chocolate, flower, or shawl but I’m not willing to dress like a tart to get it. 🙂

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

Alternatively, if I’m down at CC mall in June and fancy someone bringing me chocolates I’ll just whip off me woolly cardi and dare to bare. Hehe.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago

I do dress appropriately, for instance I’m about to head the Wathnam mall so out of shorts into trousers. My wife always dresses within the accepted cultural norms. We understand the cultural significance of dressing respectfully in Qatar. We also support it as it is the nations culture that we choose to come and live amongst.

However the problem is with so many expats being imported it is difficult to not have change in public spaces and public space behaviour. On a sociology scale this is the very simple version of what Qatar is battling.

It is also hard to ask for respect in one space then not show any common respect in another, ie driving behaviour. Respect is a two way street and is earned not demanded. Therefore a lot of expats I talk too don’t bother as they believe they are not shown common courtesy or respect within the public space that is the roads, so their attitude (not mine) is that why bother. Where my attitude is 2 wrongs don’t make a right, so pants it is!

Chipper fluffypants
Chipper fluffypants
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

I was harassed by a guard at Wathnam mall last year. I was wearing a below the knee full skirt and a long sleeve shirt that was high necked. Luckily, a local woman saw him harassing me and she verbally kicked his butt until he shirked away. I thanked her profoundly and that was the last time I bought my groceries there. My issue is that often I find women in tennis skirts, spaghetti strap tank tops with cleavage spilling out, or wearing swimsuit cover ups at the mall. Seriously??? I also have to laugh at those who wear a hijab but are wearing jeans so tight they are painted on with 4 inch heels. No one’s looking at your hair, darling….

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago

Exactly, I agree, some people just don’t care…Villagio seems to be a haven for dressing how you please. Get back to Wathnam you wont find cheaper and better quality groceries anywhere else!

Chipper fluffypants
Chipper fluffypants
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

I know…. They have a great bakery for a grocery store.

BBCA
BBCA
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Wathnan is a terrible place to shop. when I walk in people stop what they are doing to look a the freak that is walking through the vegetable section. I’ve had groups of children follow me through the isle ways because their parents have taught them no manners. Although some of them are so cute with their little Thobes on. But I get so annoyed by the little Indian guy behind the counter that only stars at me and does the Indian head bobble as I ask for spices. He doesnt even hear what I am asking because he is entranced in a stare. Wathnan is horrible! LOL! 2 years and I still have not gotten used to it!

Chipper fluffypants
Chipper fluffypants
7 years ago
Reply to  BBCA

I was always the only western woman there… I never saw another any time I went.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago

I’m always the only western man in there but it doesn’t bother me. Besides I can get there without hitting a main rd as I am very close so avoiding driving is the big bonus as well.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

Am I the only one that finds the abaya and hijab sexy? I’m not talking about the tight ones only….

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

it is not the abaya or hijab the sexy…it is the woman who try to make her self in a fashionable way forgetting what is actually right for her or wrong for her…it is called fashion as per them and god know where did they learn that kind of fashion

Jimjam
Jimjam
7 years ago

She is forgetting what is right and wrong for her? Can’t she make up her own mind?

Mayette
Mayette
7 years ago
Reply to  Jimjam

She made up her mind. As long as the fabric is on the head she’s safe from society’s bickering

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Jimjam

No she’s a woman remember? So right and wrong has to be decided for her!!!….

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

You’re right, she should be stoned to death for even going outside her house and exposing herself to men

Mayette
Mayette
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Are you living in Qatar or Pakistan? This isn’t Taliban you know… I think you’re making Qatar seem too abckwards

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Mayette

I was being sarcastic but there are some in Qatar would like to see this happen.

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

MIMH in the country that I’m coming from, in one particular city, 4 young, innocent, women were sexually assaulted and murdered and their bodies left in the street. All were International students (a Korean, Japenese, French, and Chinese woman) and were walking around at night on their own. This was in the space of three months. Do you think this would have happened if they had been accompanied by someone else? In particular a male? I doubt it. So before you make your ridiculous comments, please consider the roots of particular religious requirements. Try to resist the urge to make your sad comments, and realize that it’s not always about restricting/oppressing women…sometimes..it’s about protecting precious women.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Rose

Yes and Putin was protecting the poor people in Crimea when he annexed it and the Americans were protecting the world from terrorism when they invaded Iraq.

That is the defence of the oppressor, claiming to protect but in fact controlling and dominating.

If men get raped and murdered, should women be accompanying them wherever they go to protect them?

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Ah these are all relatively new points in modern history. Covering has been part of monotheism since it’s revelation (ie. Judaism, Christianity and Islam). Nothing new, and certainly consistent as it has stood the test of time. My grandmother would cover her head with a veil before entering the Catholic church. JFYI Muslim women cover so that we can emulate one of the most perfect women of all time- who just happens to have an entire chapter on her in the Holy Quaran: Mary or Mariam. How many statues have you seen of Mary wearing a swimsuit??? How dare you compare human, flawed oppressors to Divine Revelation. You’re running dangerously close to overstepping some serious boundaries. I appreciate you’re trying to raise awareness to the plight of the laborers in this country- you’re awesome in this respect. Perhaps you could donate some of your wages to them???

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

In response to your last comment, well now I’m lost for words. I’m seriously uncomfortable with people who regard women and men as the same. Not the same. Equal yes, but not the same. Are women known as the fairer sex for no reason? Seriously, though, I’m disturbed that you would emasculate men in this way by claiming that a woman could protect a man? I’m not sure what you prescribe to, but one of the things that attracted me to Islam was that the men are still Manly Warriors and the boundaries are still more or less defined.
Do you have any idea what disastrous effect your last comment could have on young men?
Having said all that upon arrival to Qatar my other half and I were involved in a road rage incident where my husband was attacked (by a local) I came to my husbands defense. I ‘defended’ him by stopping him from fighting back. In doing so, I saved him a three month prison term and expulsion from the country. To the monster’s credit (the other guy, not my husband!) he did stop when I yelled at him and he saw our daughter. But you know what, I( guess the answer is actually-YES. While we can’t protect them with our fists (actually I probably could) it would be our wits and common sense that would be protective.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Nope, my husband loves walking through Hyatt Mall. He thinks some Q Ladies are verrrry sexy.

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Oh dear, as usual MIMH you’re trying to be provocative and inflammatory. You’re not funny, and I’m sure you know very well that the hejab and abaya should be anything but sexy- even for the youth who are trying to assert their uniqueness through accessories and the like. I haven’t read too far down, but coming from the West the thing that saddens me the most is the disrespect for the ‘guest’ workers who have been away from their women, perhaps for months or years. Women who rock up and ‘parade’ themselves in front of these poor men have a lot to answer for. I believe (as a covered woman- sorry to bore you-but this is totally relevant) that people should 1)wear what they please; 2) must have respect and gratitude for the country’s law and culture; 3) but above all else, I worry about the exhibitionist and the fact that she spares no thought for the worker who does not have um..’access’ to female intimate relations while in Qatar. Is this healthy? It brings to mind a situation at a car wash I witnessed a few months back, where I saw a European woman drive into a Car Wash, full of men, in tight shorts and a singlet. These poor men were hyperventilating (and no, it wasn’t just the car fumes) and she was parading herself in front of them as though she were Angelina Jolie at the Oscar’s. What made me giggle though, was in the West the men wouldn’t have bat an eyelid at her vanity (she was not what I’d call a natural beauty- though I doubt whether these poor fellows noticed her pretty eyes-what she had eyes?!?!!) It seems as though here in Qatar she had a platform to be the most beautiful (or, you know a woman in the flesh and blood…) and she was going to flaunt it. Note to all female visitors to Qatar:sweetheart, you’re not that special/beautiful/irresistible you’re just a novelty at 25% to the 75% male ratio. Oh and MIMH , for you and the women you’re defending please know how much flack women cop in public in the West for wearing hejab and abaya. Over the years, I had lost count at the times I had been threatened with physical violence (sometimes in the presence of my small children) because of my ‘Muslim’ appearance. So now, to hear women come to Qatar, a Muslim country and whine or resist moderate, respectful dress, just doesn’t wash with me. As far as I’m concerned, respect is a two way street, you want respect-then please act respectfully.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Rose

Two wrongs dont make a right as they say, I am sorry you have been threatened in Europe for how you dress. That is wrong and I know it happens. (It’s part of the muslim backlash since the terrorist attacks in america and Europe in the name of Islam)
I also agree with you, some average looking women who get a lot of attention in Qatar due to the imbalance of the sexes suddelny think they are super models. However both points are irelevant in this discussion.

Respect is a two way street, you leave them alone and I am sure they will leave you alone. Don’t try to impose your “respect” or views on other people.

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Please tell me the ideal part of the world you live in. I’m sure the rest of the world can learn so much from it. You’re wrong and you’re wrong again. Although my parents are from Europe, the backlash I describe did not take place in Europe. In fact I did not get harassed at all when travelling covered through Europe.

Leave who alone? I have Muslim friends who are not covered and I would fight to the death to protect them if they were threatened as a result of their presentation. That’s not what I mean.

The threats in public (they were from women in the work place) were 100% from cowardly men. I harmed them in no way. They were not even on my radar. I don’t see why or how my hejab was so threatening especially when I had two small children in tow. I don’t care that they felt threatened. I just wonder why it never happened with my husband present- simply because they are cowards. It is inexcusable and nothing you can say can justify this.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago

Agree re the spaghetti straps etc. Not to mention the thong straps riding up over the spray on jeans on expat women. Drives me mad because I know the back lash is coming that will affect all of us.

jalong
jalong
7 years ago

Why not work on getting people here to drive a bit more “modestly” before they start worrying about this nonsense.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago

Someone better let the soccer fans know…. 😉

BBCA
BBCA
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

LOL they better send out a huge memo!

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  BBCA

Also better let the players know they need to wear long pants, also memo to tennis players for next years Qatar Open. 😉

Ocean Kairouan
Ocean Kairouan
7 years ago

Yes, please spread this campaign, we are tired of Expats showing no respect to our traditions.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Ocean Kairouan

How about showing respect to you fellow human? Live and let live me friend. You have the right to be offended but you do not have the right to ever be offended by anything.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago

Modesty is in the eye of the beholder;)

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago

I’ll bet we’ll get a lot of comments along the lines of “why don’t they focus on X issue (usually a negative behavior associated with locals). Funny how those same people are the ones often arguing about how 2 wrongs don’t make a right 😉

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

If anything the people complaining that there should be grassroots campaigns to take rude, rash, dangerous driving seem to be missing the point. Rude, rash, dangerous driving IS the local culture here, so rather than being discouraged, logically it should be promoted, right?

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  Andrew

Do you believe this would be a good idea? Even if as you say, rude, rash, dangerous driving is part of the local culture, I think it should be discouraged. What say you my fellow locals?

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Think you missed the sarcasm

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

Oh I didn’t, but you clearly did miss mine.

Mobstar Doe
Mobstar Doe
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

You’re not as smart as you hope to be or think you are.

Jen
Jen
7 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

See the words–fellow locals. Easy to minsterpret written text though.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago

“Wait, wait! You forget about me and my kind!!”

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

lol…u got my point bro 🙂

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Hehe

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

LOL nice one ;-).

PlanetCitizen
PlanetCitizen
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Yup…this sums it all up 🙂

Q reader
Q reader
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Is it illegal to distribute leaflets like Abdullah’s mother said ?

Or is it in the constitution right for Qataris only ?

dhanya jijo
dhanya jijo
7 years ago

it would be respect once again if the maids are brought to public places in modest dressing … They are also very much part of Qatar .. There were many instances when we had to feel sorry for them…guess.. we are talking about just one section living in Qatar …or are we simply ignoring them … food for thought ..especially for those who will be actively participating in the campaign …good luck !

Ola
Ola
7 years ago

Seems a good initiative on the surface as I have seen really scandalous dressing at the malls a few times. However in the face of real and deeper issues like the high fatality and accident rate among Qatari youth, the driving culture, the ‘what’s your nationality’ obsession in very field of endeavor etc; on a list of priorities this is the most insignificant cause and the modus, least effective.

A_qtr
A_qtr
7 years ago

i think us locals need to lead by example… we can’t expect others to adhere to our cultural norms if us ourselves choose to be exclusive and uncomprimising.. and if we we ourselves have tracked away from the soft center of what is acceptable and varied to opposite extremes of what is acceptable…

jb80
jb80
7 years ago

I think Qatar needs to decide whether they want tourism as they have stated in their vision, or whether they want to retain their culture in terms of a dress code, I don’t see it will be easy to have both. Tourists in the parks, on the beaches and in the shopping centres are not going to appreciate being given a shawl and a stern talking to by a woman and her 7yr old daughter no matter how many chocolates or flowers you provide!

Chipper fluffypants
Chipper fluffypants
7 years ago
Reply to  jb80

It definitely can be both. I’m not sure why so many women find it so hard to cover their shoulders and wear skirts to their knees. I dressed like that back home in the U.S. Why is a t-shirt and capri pants so difficult to put on instead of a tank top and a tennis skirt with your thong sticking out? (Like I saw at Starbucks the other day with 2 local men drooling at her backside.)

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago

Can you remind men to also cover their shoulders, and hairy, sweaty underarms? And would shorts past the knee be too much to ask?

Chris
Chris
7 years ago

I actually don’t think it can be both. You dress like that in the US because (I presume) you were brought up understanding that to be the line of respect and decency. But 100 years ago you would have been considered scandalous to be wearing anything tighter fitting like capris pants and a t-shirt. Times change, cultural views change. Being respectful means different things in different cultures. If you want to open the doors and let hundreds of different nationalities into your country for tourism, people who are here to unwind and have a fun or relaxing holiday, you also must accept that they will bring with them elements of their own culture, including their own definition of decency. That’s not to say the local definition should necessarily change, but that it should become accommodating to an extent. Perhaps when arriving at the airport, a “Welcome to Qatar” leaflet could be handed out with places to go, things to see, how to dress, some phrases in Arabic etc. Now, you could encourage respect from tourists, and tolerance from locals.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Chris

Maybe they could start an ‘Avert Your Eyes. Save Your soul’ campaign and hand out these leaflets to Muslim men. After all they shouldn’t be staring at women in the first place thinking all those immoral thoughts.
Bad boys. Off to bed with you and keep those hands on top of the duvet. 🙂

Mobstar Doe
Mobstar Doe
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Witch

Why is thinking about sex wrong? Why are you immoral because you like it? Admiring someone’s body is natural.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Mobstar Doe

There is a fine line between admiring someone’s body and ogling or staring lasciviously at it.
Anyway the point was to elaborate how ridiculous the situation has become and that according to the Quran MEN and women are supposed to dress modestly.

KJD
KJD
7 years ago
Reply to  jb80

Tourists need to make themselves aware of the laws and norms of countries they visit before they get there, and abide by them. I wouldn’t go to Singapore and spit in the street. I wouldn’t go to Thailand and wear my shoes inside the shops. I wouldn’t go to the Vatican and expect to be allowed in to St. Peter’s wearing shorts and a sleeveless top. So why would I go to an Islamic country and think it’s okay to wear clothing that is deemed inappropriate by local culture?

Chris
Chris
7 years ago
Reply to  KJD

Not all tourists take the time to do this. Perhaps there should be more effort from the country to inform tourists on arrival with a handy “Welcome to Qatar” leaflet containing some interesting info, tourist sites, cultural norms etc.

Elkhorn
Elkhorn
7 years ago

Its actually funny. We seemed to have forgotten the Golden rule, “When in Rome, do what the Romans do.” Many Expatriates wants to push their culture to locals. But will actually complain when visitors and “tourists” are violating local customs and rules in their home countries. Its really ironic.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Elkhorn

But I don’t want to secretly drink in the desert or at home while being pious in my work place and tell my wife I’m going to Mecca when I’m really going to Bangkok for a boys trip.

KK
KK
7 years ago
Reply to  Elkhorn

I am not pushing my culture and I do not want to be pushed either.

Pearl
Pearl
7 years ago
Reply to  Elkhorn

Actually I thought the “Golden Rule” was Treat others as you wish to be treated yourself. That’s what I was taught. And that’s how I behave: with respect to others.

tarek
7 years ago

One minor comment – the sportswear rule does apply at Aspire Zone, but only to men who are not with their families.

Local dress is ok, normal clothes are ok for families, but if you’re a man alone or with other men, sportswear is required.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  tarek

Really I went there for a coffee in the cafe this morning on my own in non sports attire. Where is it written?

tarek
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Haven’t seen it written but that’s what I was told by 3 different guards at the weekend. Each one let us continue but told us not to come back without sports clothes.

Usually nobody seems to bother but sometimes, you’ll be out of luck and stopped.

Andrew
Andrew
7 years ago
Reply to  tarek

Did you sense that maybe this rule is enforced in different ways, depending on the nationality of the single man?

tarek
7 years ago
Reply to  Andrew

It was pretty consistent with us, each security guard we passed (the ones in thobe) stopped us. They were quite apologetic while explaining the rules.

I’ve never noticed anyone being given a harder time because of nationality, it’s a pretty diverse group of people who run/walk in the park.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  tarek

Security guards at a public park , I mean what for, if it was Central Park New York sure, but Aspire Park. Stopping people sitting on park benches , playing sports games and policing jeans wearing people..really it would be laughable if not true…

ZACK08
ZACK08
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Security guards does not always mean CIA or FBI trained people.Such a
huge park there needs to be guards to safeguard the property and help people if they
need them, what if there’s a fire?somebody falls into the lake?there is a
fight?or huge amount of noise?or any suspicious activity?etc,
etc,..these guys are for that.

Chris
Chris
7 years ago
Reply to  ZACK08

And do you think they’ve actually had any training in CPR, crowd management etc? How much authority do you really think they have? No disrespect to them, but the worst thing they can do is call the police, and they can only enforce against criminal activity

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  ZACK08

You miss the point ol chum. In any event there training in any response to those scenarios would be one line SOPS …Ring Police…

Chris
Chris
7 years ago
Reply to  tarek

That’s like getting a speeding ticket on a road with no posted speed limit. It’s unenforceable. I’ll comply with any law or rule written, but not ones made up by any rent-a-cop. If they want to stop me, they can show me the posted rules. If Aspire want to have rules, they can post a sign at the entrances.

٩(͡๏̯͡๏)۶
٩(͡๏̯͡๏)۶
7 years ago
Reply to  tarek

Are you aware of Aspire Zone’s official definition of acceptable “sportswear”? I assume if one turned up in a freshly ironed pair of speedos that would be frowned upon, however what about cycling shorts, tennis skirts, volleyball outfits or golf shorts and a polo shirt for example, would they be deemed appropriate?

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

The campaign is extremely sexist and is used to oppress women. This is 2014, not 714 and human society has progressed.

I’d rather worry about the labourer who has not been paid for six months who is now desperate rather than seeing a woman’s shoulders. Come on people, get real. No one died seeing a bit of skin, stop following myths that are used to oppress and control.

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

they put pictures of men and asked them to dress appropriately as well, why is still sexist?

HalfManArmy
HalfManArmy
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

There’s pictures of men on the poster…

Maybe you need to look up the word sexist.

Mayette
Mayette
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Men arent supposed to show knees as well, so nope, though I agree it is more intended for women than men they still require men to cover their stuff.

True, no one dies seeing a bit of skin, but in an abaya and thobe clad culture hot shorts become pron

Desert Rose
Desert Rose
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

If you’re really concerned about these laborers then you might look at this from a holistic view. Part of a holistic view says that seeing a woman’s shoulders when you are not able to see your own wife, etc..is a big problem and hurtful psychologically to these men. So, do you ever think that maybe it is oppressing to the laborer to have a womans um..assets.. flaunted in their face? Did you ever consider that some parts of religion is once again, not to oppress women, but to protect many- including the laborer?

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Rose

Using your logic we shouldn’t let labourers watch TV just in case they see a women showing her arms.
I’m so astounded by your reply, I’m lost for words…..

Ms. Hala
7 years ago

I have to say, I may not agree with this campaign but I respect why it’s being presented. However, I think what Qatar needs is the fashion police more than a campaign. As an American Muslim, I have seen both sides of this situation and its not always pretty.

On the one hand, I have come across a few Americans dressing in a fashion they wouldn’t dare to dress in for a mall back home but think it’s OK in the most conservative country in the world. My favorite has to be the married couple in micro shorts and tank tops at Landmark Mall. Really? Yes!

On the other hand, I have come across Muslims who dress so poorly it just hurts to watch. My favorite has to be the extremely polite older lady whom approached me at City Center as to why I was wearing pants while her daughter was in a abaya showing her leopard print leggings and massive bangs. Really? Yes!

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Ms. Hala

Ummm…Bangs? Enlighten me please Ms Hala?

Ms. Hala
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Bangs, hair section coming down over forehead…

Marie
Marie
7 years ago
Reply to  Ms. Hala

Also known as a fringe 🙂

sarah
sarah
7 years ago
Reply to  Ms. Hala

Really? You are judging someone for having bangs?? Wow. That is a new low for this group.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  sarah

I think Ms Hala was just trying to explain the ignominy of the situation where in she was Being pulled up for what she was wearing but donning an abayah gives you license to thrill. Lol.

License to thrill. Haha. Did you see what I did there?
Oh dear, I kill me.

Ms. Hala
7 years ago
Reply to  sarah

hehehe It is a new low when we point fingers at others and not look at ourselves, hence my joke about the fashion police and observation at the dress of the person stopping me at a mall to tell me my pants were “haram”.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Slapped wrist for you dear. Immoral thoughts. Tut tut!
I know where you were going with that.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Desert Witch

I seriously didn’t know what it was but had shameful silicone thoughts I must admit ;-p

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Ms. Hala

Fashion police? Would that be gay men by any chance?

Ms. Hala
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

I’m from San Francisco so I’m all for it! hehehe It could also be Joan Rivers from E!

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Ms. Hala

I’d think it would be hilarious….

‘Oh darlin purlese…… What are you wearing? We really need to get you into something with that Middle East chic, after all you must be worth more than two camels….’

Ms. Hala