Ahhh, if I had a nickel for every time someone told me that Muslim women are never forced to wear hijab, they all voluntarily cover themselves that way. Usually, it's the converts who are so adamant that there is no coercion.
Their assertion was tragically disproved a few days ago in the cosmopolitan, multicultural city of Toronto, Canada. A young woman in Toronto - not some small village in Iran or Pakistan or Saudi Arabia - was murdered by her father for not wearing hijab. And her brother apparently helped the father.
"A Canadian teenager who was said to have clashed with her father about whether she should wear a traditional Muslim head scarf died of injuries late on Monday, and her father told police he had killed her."
"Aqsa Parvez, 16, was found without a pulse in her home in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga earlier on Monday. She was resuscitated by paramedics, treated at two hospitals, and later succumbed to her injuries, police said on Tuesday."
"Her father, 57-year-old Muhammad Parvez, has been charged with murder and was remanded back into custody after his first court appearance early on Tuesday."
"...The victim's brother, Waqas Parvez, 26, was arrested and charged with obstructing police."
"A classmate at Applewood Heights secondary school said Tuesday Aqsa had worn her hijab, the traditional Muslim head scarf, in a variety of ways. Then in September, she started to go bare-headed -- a decision which apparently grated on some members of her family."
A friend recalled Aqsa's fear about being seen without a headscarf:
"Krista Garbutt remembers walking down the street with Ms. Parvez earlier this year, when the two of them spotted Ms. Parvez's brother walking toward them. Panicking, the teenager quickly fumbled for her head scarf, trying to put it on. 'There were times when we'd be walking down the street and she'd see her brother and she wouldn't be wearing her hijab and she'd have to put it on,' Ms. Garbutt said. 'She said, ‘He'll kill me, he'll kill me.' I said, ‘He's not going to kill you,' but she said, ‘Yeah, he will.' And nobody believed it.' "
Very horrible ending for anyone, but especially a young person. Who can imagine a father strangling his own daughter? Say a prayer for Aqsa's soul. May she rest in peace.