Men in Iran Are Wearing Hijabs to Stand Up for Their Wives — Here's Why
In Islam, modesty should be equally applied to both men and women. This is not the case in Iran.
The "morality police," or religious police, have been enforcing strict religious dress codes on women ever since the end of the Iranian Revolution in 1979. Iranian women are required to wear the hijab, or headscarf, or be subjected to fines or imprisonment — and now men in Iran are standing up to say that this is enough.
According to the Independent, the #MenInHijab social media campaign features men wearing the hijab to combat the strict religious dress code that is enforced on Iranian woman. It was a project launched by Iranian journalist Masih Alinejad and My Stealthy Freedom, an online movement of activists challenging Iran's strict dress code.
"Most of these men are living inside Iran and they have witnessed how their female relatives have been suffering at the hands of the morality police and humiliation of enforced hijab, Alinejad told the Independent.
Men are participating in the campaign in the name of feminism and to make the point that women should be seen as more than just objects.
"This [campaign] is useful because it highlights the rights of women," the man pictured above said. "We should not be treated as objects. Simply, as women having a good level of education around the world, Iranian women should live in taking full advantage of their rights and being those determining themselves how they dress. The fact that they are forced to wear something against their will tarnishes, in reality, the image of Iranians everywhere in the world."
As for what inspired Alinejad to start the #MenInHijab campaign? She wanted to challenge the patriarchal structures of Iranian society with the help of men.
"In our society, a woman's existence and identity is justified by a man's integrity, and in many cases the teachings of a religious authority or government officials influence a man's misguided sense of ownership over women," Alinejad told the Independent. "So I thought it would be fantastic to invite men to support women's rights."