In Saudi Arabia

In Saudi Arabia, women were recently given permission to drive. Women had been demanding this right and some had gone to jail for it. Even though women now have the right to drive, those activists who went to jail are still in jail, presumably because of their objection to authority. After all, what they did is no longer illegal.

People who care about human rights don’t punish others because they object to authority and they certainly don’t seek to punish them using ordinances that no longer apply.


  1. And in the US, in many states where some forms of recreational drug use have been legalized, people (usually black men) convicted of minor nonviolent crimes related to that use are still in prison. :-(

  2. I’m not quite sure what point you’re trying to make. Are you comparing women jailed for driving to women who felt uncomfortable with the temple feeling judged by other Church members? Or are you implying that people have been disciplined in a Church court for suggesting changes to the temple (I haven’t heard of any such cases, but I may be wrong), should have the actions taken against them revoked? Your analogy is a little unclear.

  3. I’d use a stronger term than felt uncomfortable (harmed carries the right tone), but more the former than the latter, although the latter (not the specifics of it, though) may also apply.

  4. How about people who have had their temple recommend withheld or withdrawn, and people who have chosen not to even sit for a temple recommend interview, because they felt and expressed harm in the ceremonies as they were? Would an affirmative outreach make sense? How can that happen if we don’t talk about it—both the harm in the past and the changes?

  5. It is also entirely reasonable for women to continue to feel that the Saudi regime is repressive and sexist and should not be praised for allowing women to drive, and foot women to not celebrate being allowed to drive while they are still restricted and mistreated in so many ways. This is true even if they really wanted to be allowed to drive or even petitioned the Saudi government to be allowed to drive.

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