Q1: Do you have more rights as an American woman living in Jordan than other Muslim women?
Q2: Do you think Jordan will ever really make a moves towards democracy?
First of all, thank you Mike for your wonderful questions! I will answer them honestly and I hope that you understand that many people read my blog and therefore they read these answers to your question-I am happy for that. I use this medium (my blog) as a place of educating people about Islam and the Middle East/Jordan, as it is so wrongly understood in other parts of the world. I hope that you find my answers educational and insightful! Thank you again, Mike, for your great questions!
A1: As an American women living in Jordan I do not get any more rights than any other woman living in Jordan. That's because anywhere in the world, whether you are living there or visiting there, you fall under the laws of their land. Now that being said, of course there is an American Embassy available if one ever needs help from a legal situation; however, over all you live the laws of the land.
In Jordan, women have the same rights of a Jordanian men, it doesn't matter the religion. Women in Jordan have rights to education, work, property, children, and anything else that a man has right to. It is a misconception in the world and in the United States that Muslim women are not granted certain rights. In countries where Muslim women are not allowed particular rights it is do to cultural norms and laws, not by Islamic Laws. Islam grants women the right to own property, to work, to her money, to her children, to education, to vote, etc. All these rights were given to the women 1400 years ago when Islam became a religion.
For more info on the Rights Islam gave women check out this website:
A2: Jordan is a Kingdom as you know. There are no elections for His Excellency, King Abdullah. It is his job to be King until he dies or appoints thrown to someone else. However, Jordan does hold elections for Parliament. In fact they will be holding the elections in November. Is this a move towards democracy?! It depends on your definition of democracy. There are many democratic thoughts and practices in Jordan; however, the King is the King and I doubt there will be any changes regarding this issue. Really, a Kingdom, in my opinion, is not a bad thing-if you have the right King. The Jordanian King Abdullah, is a well respected man in the Arab, Muslim and Western communities. He is doing wonderful things for Jordan and it's people. I would prefer him to some of the recent presidents we have elected. All in all, what works for one country may or may not work for another. I don't think it is appropriate nor applicable to think that because it works for one it will work for all. Jordan is a Kingdom that holds elections and that's what works for them.