The Daughters of Happy Alleys and Safe Streets/The Daughters of Murderous Cities and Blood-Spattered Land / Mansoureh Shojaee - The Feminist School
     
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The Daughters of Happy Alleys and Safe Streets/The Daughters of Murderous Cities and Blood-Spattered Land / Mansoureh Shojaee

Translated by:Mina Zand Siegel

Thursday 9 July 2009

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Feminist school:My mother went through the depressing and frustrating aftermath of the shameful 1953 coup and ran after the 1978 revolution with hope and cheer.

My mother and I bore the despair and hopelessness of the period of the Iraq–Iran war and will not forget, but somewhat forgive, the frustrating years of suppression in the 1980s, for the joyful presence of people in June 1997, and the hope of promises.

My mother and I and many others of our people in our land and country turned our disappointments resulting from eight years of reformist government into a silent isolation in the 2005 election.

My mother and I and many of the women of our land and country, by passing four years full of horror, brought our civil tolerance to the social awareness and action under severe pressure and limitations and took the difficult journey, in the enthusiastic crowd, to demand our just and legal rights in the 2009 election.

Many of our parents, along with their brave daughters and bold sons of our land and country, walked through the forgotten streets of happiness and security of the days prior to the election dancing, and singing, but ended up in the blood-spattered and murderous streets after the election, shocked, fearful, and dumbfounded, seeing the violence and brutality of the police forces in the spring of 2009, but still stayed in the streets! We would never forget these bitter days of our history even if we forgive!

Yes, we will never forget nor forgive how they answered the voice, “Neda”, of the movement, which was heading for life, with death, and the natural movement which was based on law and justice was treated as unlawful and unjust. The happy and youthful presence of the young men and women of our land and country was met with the presence of grim armored men who dragged this happiness through the mud and blood.

Yes, we will neither forgive nor forget those who deliberately diverted the natural movement towards life and civil society of those women and men, old and young, of our land and country to a fate heading for suicide and death.

Yes, we will not forget the behavior of those who do not survive except through repressing popular protest movements, whether the movement is headed for life or for death.

Yes, once more they chose violence as their policy, and we, who do not know any other way but to continue our civil and natural and independent way… This time, again, we will continue our legal and civil movement side by side, without doubts, independently. This time we have said all we had to say. This time no woman will get lost among the protestors. They will be found and be seen among their fellows who seek to achieve the demands which they have been screaming for years, and particularly these past four years, in different ways, and confirm their independent presence in the midst of popular and activist groups of the civil movement, the mothers, wives, sisters, and groups of millions of people of the alleys and streets.

People rushed to the voting booths in pursuit of their demands and cast their ballots in accordance with their own ideas. Their insecurity set in motion a surging wave of independent protests of various women, men, students, blue-collar and white-collar workers, and craftsmen.

This time it is no longer the 1953 coup, which left behind the name of only a few women associated with struggle of that generation, nor February 1979, in which women were in separate ranks, usually behind the men, and were dragged into the streets in an imposed, involuntary appearance, in a movement which did not pay any attention to their civil rights and received, as a reward for their participation, cooperation, and sacrifices during all those years only more suppression and more denial of their rights.

This time, millions of women, young and old, have their independent presence not behind the men but side by side with them; their presence was not imposed on them, but quite voluntary. This time, women willingly, of their own volition, independently, and freely, in body and soul, raised their voice against the present situation and the lost vote which they had cast in the hope of diminishing their inequality.

This time, the symbol of this vast public protest is a young woman, “Neda”, the Voice for freedom and justice to proclaim and reaches the deaf ears, with the hope that eventually a suitable response.

“ One day that there will be nothing left for writing, or for reading, except for untranslatable things about the life of this youth who died so young, a youth who was prepared to scream.” (1)

(1) Margaret Doras, Death of a Young Pilot

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