After the deputy prime minister of Turkey said women should not laugh in public in order to protect their “chasteness,” women around the world reacted by doing the exact opposite.
“Chastity is so important. It is not only a name,” Bulent Arinc said, according to Hurriyet Daily News. “It is an ornament for both women and men. [She] will have chasteness. Man will have it, too. He will not be a womanizer. He will be bound to his wife. He will love his children. [The woman] will know what is haram and not haram. She will not laugh in public. She will not be inviting in her attitudes and will protect her chasteness.”
After these and other comments made by the official about the falling state of morality Monday, women in the country took to social media to share pictures of them cracking a smile.
— Kadıköy Masa (@kadikoymasa) July 28, 2014
— Ceren Erkani (@cerennerkani) July 28, 2014
— Çağla Biçer (@cagla_bicer) July 28, 2014
— Azul (@banamidemis) July 28, 2014
— Arzu Bütüner (@arzubutuner) July 28, 2014
Canan Arin, a women rights’ activist, said it’s a shame that women even have to respond to such “silly comments” when Turkish women have more serious problems to deal with, including frequent male violence against women.
Public laughter was not the only thing Arinc criticized. According to Hurriyet Daily News, he encouraged women to share recipes and talk about other happenings face-to-face instead of over the phone. He also warned against the unnecessary use of cars, citing environmental ills.
The Peoples’ Democratic Party deputy parliamentary head, Pervin Buldan, tweeted that she would from hence forth “respond to all statements by Arinc by laughing,” the newspaper reported.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Front page image via @arzubutune/Twitter.