What’s going on in Iran?

A protest spreading all over the world

What’s going on in Iran is appalling and cannot go unnoticed. It’s about women, and it’s about human rights. And so, we cannot turn our heads.

In early September, the morality police arrested Masha Amini, a 22 years old Kurdish girl. Why? Because she didn’t wear her hijab properly. Just reading this news feels insane and gut-wrenching!
Led to a re-education camp, she had a cardiac arrest and fell into a coma. Three days later, she died.

Witnesses said Misha Amini was brutally beaten by the authorities. As a consequence of this horrible death, Iranian people started big riots on the streets. Also calling for the fall of the regime – the Islamic Republic – a dictatorship that has subjugated people for decades.

In Iran, there’s no freedom of expression or association. Women, LGBTQ people and minorities are discriminated against and abused. And women are forced to wear a hijab from the age of nine.
Indeed religion is the tool in the hands of the dictatorship to suppress freedom and control people.

Iran protests
Marco Melgrati Illustration

Despite the regime’s atrocity, to protests over Mahsa Amini’s death, women in Iran started cutting off their hair. Soon the protests spread everywhere. In fact, in solidarity with Iranians, women around the world have cut or shaved their hair in public.
Also, Iran’s national team wore plain black jackets over their uniforms in Qatar.

Protesting in democratic countries plays a role as an expression of democracy. But rioting where people risk the death penalty really means having guts.

Therefore, what happens in Iran is something we need to share and discuss in order to spread awareness and solidarity.

Even though we cannot add new pieces of information, we cannot stay silent. And what really counts is that we all can contribute to giving voice to the Iranians.

Fashion and Politics

How fashion outlines a political view

Fashion and politics are connected, indeed some people in the field release straightforward statements.

The Italian elections, held yesterday, caused concern about the risk of undermining what our parents and grandparents have tried to achieve so far. Something that still was a work in progress but now looks more like a “work in regress.” A political and cultural setback considering it is the first far-right government since Mussolini. Yes, it sounds scary.

Politicians shouting out loud worked to exacerbate a climate of hate. And since people don’t learn from history, repeating mistakes looks like the outcome. So, in this panorama, we found it interesting reading the thought of Pierpaolo Piccioli. One of the most prominent figures in the fashion industry took a clear stance on politics and Italian elections.

Can fashion be political?

Let’s start with a premise. When fashion pinpoints words such as inclusion, diversity or genderless, it envisions a specific worldview. And that vision of the world has a lot to do with politics, indeed.

So, in a time when some acquired rights are at risk, and that worldview based on ideas that bring people together, accepting all the differences may be swept away. And individual freedom and choices can vanish, it’s good to see people in the fashion industry who aren’t afraid to speak up.

Fashion politics

Pierpaolo Piccioli (Valentino’s designer), from his Instagram account, released a very on-point and heartfelt statement. He spoke in support of freedom, women’s choices on independent decisions about themselves and their bodies, and gender that doesn’t have to be only male or female. Indeed, he released a political statement calling himself “a man of the left.”

Perhaps, using words lightly when the world goes insane is not enough. Therefore, we must speak up to support the world we want and put our face on.

Whatever happens, we share what Piccioli wrote. We promote a world that values different cultures. And inclusion, diversity, human rights, women’s rights, and LGBTQ rights. Indeed we must respect everyone’s rights. It’s the worldview for modern humans.

But, in the end, we wake up today with a lesson to learn: never give our rights for granted!

The end of an era

Queen Elizabeth II dies at 96

Queen Elizabeth II’s death marks the end of an era because of the depth of her eminent figure.
Sadly, prestigious leadership, authority and reputation seem to disappear in our times.

By the way, we are not here to retrace her history as the UK’s longest-serving monarch. In a world that seems to move backwards, we want to pay homage by quoting The Queen’s words when she gave the royal assent for marriage equality in 2015:

“My government will make further progress to tackle the gender pay gap and discrimination against people on the basis of their race, faith, gender, disability or sexual orientation.”

“Who’d have thought 62 years ago when I came to the throne, I’d be signing something like this? Isn’t it wonderful?’”

Queen Elizabeth

In 70 years on the throne, always devoted to service, Queen Elizabeth reformed the monarchy, committed to supporting human rights.

Also, her unforgettable style, made of bold colours and staple pieces, represented a constant throughout her reign. A recognisable and reassuring trademark.

A steady presence and a great leader, one of our favourites in the world.
indeed she will always be The Queen.

Enemies of the women

How the Taliban erases women from the public scene

In Afghanistan, the intent to erase women from public life is back at the centre of the Taliban’s barbaric activity. Indeed, recently they released a new decree which states some utterly regressive points: first, women are not allowed to travel alone for long distances. Second, women aren’t allowed to work outside the healthcare and education fields. Third, women cannot receive a secondary education.

In addition to that, the Taliban government ordered women to cover their faces in public. And you may think that the horror stops there, but it does not! If that isn’t enough, male relatives would be fined or jailed if the women go uncovered.
In other words, they are suggesting women should stay home!

So, in the end, not only can Afghan women not study and receive an education, but they must follow the Taliban dress code, which forces them to cover their faces fully.

We tend to have many things to say about patriarchy in the western world. But if in our culture, we still have to do a lot of work in order to reach gender equality, being a woman in Afghanistan is a nightmare.

For instance, how can a journalist give the news with her mouth covered? Again, this is a clear invitation for women to stay home.

As the news was released, some male tv presenters covered their faces with face masks in solidarity with their female colleagues. And they launched a campaign on social media with the hashtag #FreeHerFace

These people are so brave that we should support them and share their cause.

How the Taliban wants to erase women

No rights, no freedom, no school, no work. Nothing without their male guardian. A male guardian?!
These are acts of despicable misogyny. Troglodytic and brutal oppression.

Afghan women, you are so brave! #FreeHerFace