Sixteen Year Old Girl Murdered In Toronto Area Over Religion and Culture Clash With Her Family

In Mississauga Ontario yesterday a sixteen year old girl Aqsa Parvez was murdered, she was allegedly choked to death by her father. According to news reports Aqsa Parvez’s father Muhammad Parvez has now been charged with murder. Mississauga is a suburb of Toronto its a part of the greater Toronto area. The senseless murder is very chilling, depressing, and very sad. Aqsa’s older brother has been charged with obstructing police.

The teenage girl was a Muslim and there was a culture, generational, and religious clash with her family. The story according to Aqsa’s friends is that she did wear the hijab when she left her home for school. However, once the Aqsa arrived at school she removed the hijab . Family members followed Aqas to her high school and found out she wasn’t wearing the hijab.

The mainstream media are framing the young girl’s death as an “honor killing?” What do you think? Do you think the murder was an “honor killing” or is this just mainstream media sensationalism? Or a mixture of both? Will the press be culturally sensitive or paternalistic? Paternalism will not bridge the miscommunication gap between the Muslim communities and the rest of Canada. Will blaming occur and the mainstream press state that Muslim Canadians are not “assimilating” into Canadian culture? Will more finger pointing and blaming take place?

The Ontario government has a critical role here in this case. Once again the question has to be asked, where are the services for women of colour?Some women’s shelters due to inadequate funding have difficulty dealing with the cultural, racial, religious issues that relate to women of colour. Will the Ontario government step up to the plate and address this very important issue or not? Or will Premier Dalton McGuinty provide a politically correct speech and do nothing. The money is available Ontario is a rich province there is no excuse. Premier Dalton McGuinty has a responsibility here and he must act accordingly.

We cannot just sit and watch young women die and say its none of our business just because our cultures are different. We cannot just say we don’t understand Muslim culture and allow another life to perish due to our apathetic attitude and indifference. If we remain silent to misogyny then we are condoning it. I guess the question is now what can be done? What can the public do?

I think there needs to be more studies conducted, more research, and instead of just talking action needs to take place. The Ontario Government needs to realize domestic violence is a top five issue. Why are we so complacent to violence against women?

In Canada we have laws and violence against women. It is clear there needs to be more social services available for younger women and teenaged girls across racial, cultural, and religious lines. I believe not enough money is being spent on domestic violence services for women of colour. Maybe if there was a social safety net available this girl’s life could of been saved?

It is important when these tragic news stories occur to not jump to conclusions or make generalizations. The mainstream media should be careful to not “frame” and make stereotypes about an entire religion and focus on the news. However, I hope “othering” does not take place here and the mainstream media will utilize caution. However, it is well known when tragic news occurs outside of the mainstream community there is a tendency that “othering” may occur. The news here is that a young girl was terrified of her father to the point that she even left her home a few days ago.

My perspective is that religion should not be used as a blanket to conceal misogyny. The teenager obviously wanted to fit in with her classmates. It is normal for a sixteen year old girl to want to belong and be just like her friends. The murder is a tragedy a young life is now lost and a family is shattered.

If you want to voice your concerns to Premier Dalton McGuinty here is his info:

Dalton McGuinty Main Legislative Building, Room 281,
Queen’s Park, Toronto, ON, M7A 1A1
416-325-1941
Fax: 416- 325-3745

Link: http://www.mississauganews.com/article/9341

http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSN1151774720071211

http://toronto.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20071211/Mississauga_murder_071211/20071211?hub=TorontoHome

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20071212.GIRL12/TPStory/National

About orvillelloyddouglas

I am a gay black Canadian male.

3 responses to “Sixteen Year Old Girl Murdered In Toronto Area Over Religion and Culture Clash With Her Family”

  1. Baby Please says :

    I have nothing bad to say about Islam and if someone practices it, fine. But sometimes, it seems so unforgiving and stringent. They were going to kill a woman last week cuz she allowed one of her students to name a doll, Mohammed.

    That story, and stories like the one you point out, gives rise to anti-Islam sentiment. And people will just label muslims as.. whatever they’re going to label them as — and no one will want to explore the virtues of the religion.

    Calm down. Calm down. Everything is not an affront to Mohammed.

  2. riki cooper says :

    When you think how often this happens in Muslim based countries its scary.

    If Muslim is such a great religion, why do Muslims have to leave their countries and immigrate to christian countries.

    Hasn’t their god provided for them?

    I would say definitely, no!

  3. orvillelloyddouglas says :

    I think there are a lot of issues here such as patriarchy, misogyny, and domestic violence. I don’t believe religion can be used to hide misogyny. It is clear to me Aqsa just wanted to fit in and be like her friends but her parents kept on insisting that she is “different”. Aqsa wanted to “belong”. This tragedy is more than just the hijab.

    However, I do see your point people use a stringent interpretation of religion to express their misogyny and that’s just not right. I don’t think comparing and contrasting religions is the issue here. At the end of the day this is about murder. There is a lot of misogyny in a plethora of religions. The news here is an innocent young girl tried to escape domestic violence she felt powerless and the Canadian system didn’t help her. Canada failed Aqsa Parvez.Misogyny and domestic violence crosses all races, cultures, religions, and ethnic groups. The root issue here is misogyny and violence against women. The Ontario government needs to do more to reach women of colour that want to flee domestic violence.

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