Too little, too late for Sarah and Amina Said

For months before their father allegedly murdered them, Sarah and Amina Said confided in their friends about the threats he had made against their lives. Classmates remember the girls showing up to school with “welts and bruises”, getting in trouble for talking to non-Muslim boys and for acting “too Western.”

Despite these signs of danger, no one intervened before the girls were found dead in their father’s taxicab in Texas. Shot to death on New Year’s Day, the girls had already tried escaping when their father threatened them with a firearm earlier.

In December of 2007, the girls and their mother temporarily fled when their father, Yaser Said, was enraged to find out that the girls had non-Muslim boyfriends. They were lured back home by promises that no harm would come to them upon their return.

Now, the FBI is calling the murders a possible case of a double “honor killing” – making the deaths of Sarah and Amina Said the first time the FBI has used the term. The FBI’s recognition of honor killings is significant in at least one respect: understanding “honor” could help law enforcement officials better identify the motivation behind slayings like these.

But how does this help Sarah and Amina Said? Theoretically, understanding honor killings would increase community sensitivity about the kinds of threats the Said sisters were experiencing.

Unfortunately for Sarah and Amina, this is a case of too little, too late. While I believe that it is crucial for law enforcement officials at every level to understand cultural motivations for murder, it seems that the issue here was not that their community didn’t understand honor killings. The issue, rather, was relativism in the face of obvious abuse.

I’ve often called out the Muslim community for not doing enough about honor killings. This time, however, I take issue with my fellow Americans. A Muslim man may be to blame for the killings of Sarah and Amina Said – but it is not just his hands that are bloodied now. Indeed, those who knew of the danger the girls were in are guilty as well.

The girls arrived at school with welts and bruises. Friends and family knew that when Sarah and Amina said their father was “going to kill” them – it was very likely that he was serious. The girls’ non-Muslim family members now champion themselves as knowing “all along” that the girls would eventually be murdered by their father, and that it would in fact be an honor killing.

Whose “culture” is to blame this time? Texas law requires anyone who suspects that a child is being abused to report the case to the Department of Family and Protective Services. This document, on display where the girls attended school, provides the contact information necessary to anonymously report cases of child abuse. Further, according to both Texas law and the school policy, anyone who fails to report a possible case of child abuse is committing a crime.

So, what gives? It seems that everyone knew that the girls were in danger. They weren’t isolated from extended family – including non-Muslim relatives who were concerned about their father’s violence and railed against his “culture”. Why didn’t these informed individuals stop at nothing to get the girls out of there? It can’t be possible that any reasonable individual would call this a “cultural” or “family issue” and step aside.

Unless, of course, they were engaging the very worst of American culture: relativism. It got the best of us when communities and authorities called domestic violence a “private matter” and when we waited to intervene in Bosnia. It makes us lazy cowards when it tells us that we have no place in the conversation about female genital mutilation, even when it happens on our own soil. And now it’s cost Sarah and Amina their lives.

Many are ready to make “other” cultures out to be evil, dangerous or scary. But if we can’t take action to assist those in danger right here – it is our attitudes and our inaction that are dangerous and even deadly.

It is too late for Sarah and Amina. But it needn’t be too late for other young women in danger – if we recognize and heed our responsibility to help them. We have every resource before us and no reason to remain silent.

Take action:

* Learn about the International Campaign Against Honour Killings

* Check out the resources available in your area. If you’re in Maryland, a new Muslim women’s shelter has just opened.

* Find the right person to call by seeing lists like this one, provided by the Feminist Majority Foundation.

37 thoughts on “Too little, too late for Sarah and Amina Said

  1. so sad an such a shame.. the interesting part.. when a muslim kills its either for hounor, or deen or terror. When a non muslim, western kills he is out of balance, sick or the whole episode is called a “family tragedy” This man is obviuosly sick in his head. But what does that have to do woth the fact that his muslim? He is a sick individual. Im muslim and live in Norway and we have the same problem here. When a dude shoots his whole family and he is norwegian its a family tragedie. When a muslim does the same, its honor killings. And these classifications are made by norwegian media, many non-ethnic norwegians like myself, try to work againt this. Interesting to see that u as a muslima contributes to this and to make islam and muslims look crazy basically

  2. marrakchiya, are you seriously calling out the writer of this blog for not sanitizing or not excusing the motive of Yaser Abdel Said’s crime by labeling it simply a ‘family tragedy’ and moving on when all the evidence clearly indicates that ‘honor’ was the motive? ‘Honor Killings’ are well established as a ‘cultural’ norm in many Arab societies where laws are in place to recognize these killings as less severe than other murders and protect the murderers.
    You can’t stop these crimes unless and until they are exposed for what they are: Overbearing men using cultural (and yes ‘religious’) excuses to abuse and control the women in their lives. The events detailed in this blog and in the articles linked to it sadden me (I find these ‘family tragedies’ truly heart-wrenching & unbearable) however, I find your response to it shallow & unforgivable. There is no denying that there are people in this world who are built messed-up and wrong. True, not every man who kills his child is a Muslim. However, your blind denial (as well as the blind denial of people like you) of the religious & cultural significance of these ‘honor crimes’ are what allows them to continue. Wake up!

  3. I think the FBI have backtracked from this position and are now *not* calling it HK anymore, due in part to the sensitivities expressed by marrakchiya up above. However, I would suggest that this is a wrong and even a dangerous move: HK is not solely associated with Muslim communities, but with communities which are a) patriarchal, b) are collectivist rather than individualist c) permit non-consensual marriage d) fetishise virginity and sexual control of women. As such they used to be widely practised, from China to Italy, but the fact remains that the majority of communities that exhibit factors a-d are currently Muslim ones — and India, particularly in Punjab.

    HK needs to be recognised as a crime in its own right: as someone dealing largely with survivors and potential victims I beleive there definitely needs to be recognition of their requirements when seeking their protection and the prosecution of their persecutors: to do this there needs to be much greater awareness about the phenomenon and effective methods of dealing with it, which cannot be done if we are too scared of being called racist or Islamophobic to name it.

  4. slicnic5150.. I think you need to wake up. Im arab, Im a muslim and I have studied my deen, religion. Killing is NOT accepted in Islam.. Its a sin! Why does his muslim background have to do anything with this??? In Norway a priest killed his entire family. But no1 talked about Christianitys role in this. Because it dosent matter that he was a christian. He is a sick individual that needs help! But everytime a person that happens to be a muslim or arab does something criminal its always linked to their religion or beeing arab.. Why cant they be recognized as sick people that do something worng regardless??? tel me that… And what you talk about is what we call “ukultur” a cultural feature that ahouldt exsist.. Again, it hasnt anything to do with islam. U might think im blind n ignorant… wich im not.. What you are is far more dangerous. Ur knowledge obviously isnt very updated in this area. And U need to wake up and see the difference between religion and old cultural matters! This problem dosent only exsist in the arab world, also in rural Turkey, parts of rural Asia have the same problems. REGARDLESS IF THEYRE MUSLIMS OR NOT! get it? Religion isnt the issue nor is it the triggering factor. Killing girls was a part of human history BEFORE Islam. When Islam came it forbade parents to kill their daughters for this and that and what not! If a person consider himself or herself a muslim she cant hurt another humanbeeing! Killing 1 person in Islam is like killing the whole humanity – from the holy Quran. So maybe before u go around wasting ink, calling ppl ignorent.. u urself need to check up on some facts.

    But then again Europe isnt 1 country..


  5. Marrakchiya:
    1st – For the Record: If you review my first post (from 19 Oct) you’ll see that (while it is admittedly somewhat heated) I NEVER called you or anyone else “Ignorant.” Name calling has no place in civilized public discourse. Only through Civil and Honest communication can a true exchange of ideas be achieved bridging the gap in understanding between people.
    2nd – Congratulations on your comprehensive study and understanding of Islam. You are to be truly commended for the passion with which you write in condemnation of killing and recognition that it’s a sin. Inspiring…really. However, I can’t help but believe your time and energy would be better spent reinforcing that message among those who consistently MISUSE the teachings of Islam to justify the subjugation and abuse of women or would lash out violently against “the western world” by crashing plains into buildings full of people whose only crime was paying their taxes and voting…instead of blindly denying the obvious.
    3rd – Let me re-iterate that “…many Arab societies [in the present day] have laws in place recognizing Honor Killings as less severe than other murders…” It’s a fact, not an “old cultural matter.” The connection between Arabic Tribal Culture and the misinterpretation/misrepresentation of Present Day Islam is undeniable.
    However, all this dickering back and forth about the relationship between religion/culture and this “family tragedy” distracts from the true heartbreak of the issue raised by Ms. Saraswati in her blog: Muslim and Non-Muslim family as well as community members surrounding Sarah and Amina Said who (rather than risk backlash from the family or being labeled Culturally Incentive or Racist) apparently stood by and did nothing in the face of what they clearly suspected was abuse and (quite correctly perceived) a threat to the lives and safety of 2 young girls. Had just one of them voiced their concern or taken action in their defense…we might not be having this ridiculous debate right now!

  6. Salam
    This was a tragic incident, however I understand why the father killed his daughters. I’m also a male and if I was a father and my daughters were acting “too Western”, were talking to Muslim or non Muslim boys which was not relevant to education, have non-Muslim or Muslim boyfriends I wouldn’t know what to do. I believe that the father killed his daughters because he loved them too much, You might be asking HOW THE HELL WOULD SOMEONE KILL THEIR DAUGHTER BECAUSE THEY LOVE THEM TOO MUCH?? The answer is simple the father didn’t want his daughters to sin any more and he was probably afraid that Allah would punish his daughters and himself because how they acted. Every father loves his daughter even if it doesn’t seem that way, In my opinion I would probably moved to a different country if my daughters acted that way. However it’s still his fault for bring his children up in America, in UK particularly in London the children/teenagers are getting worse. I’m a 17 year old male from East London and I believe that most Muslim’s are becoming westernised, I once use to do most of those haraam acts however I changed. Now a days Muslim’s are becoming “modern Muslim’s” they believe that the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessing Be Upon Him) time was long time ago and that we need to update ourselves and they change some rules and regulations, for example Ed Hussain he made a book called “The Islamist” and it talks about the appeal of extremist thought, how fanatics penetrate Muslim communities and the truth behind their agenda of subverting the West and moderate Islam. I think I waffled too much so I will stop here.

  7. As a mother of girls approximately of the same age, my heart is in anguish – but I will have to say if the father of my daughters ever decided to take on the responsibilities of Allah SWT I would be hard pressed in my sanity. When we even for a moment think we have any right or responsibility to destroy another living breathing person we become in humane; when we kill our own siblings, offspring we are monsters without souls.

    No amount of rationalizing, qualifying or justifying takes away the fact that a man thought so little of the viability of his daughters’ lives that he would kill them rather than find appropriate help – a thought doesn’t constitute an action.

    And as much as the West has been accused so should the East accept responsibility for its own influence.

    I wonder what the Prohet SAW would have to say about killing a person because one loved them too much?

  8. Marrakchiya, perhaps you can channel your passions for the sanctity of human life toward Belal.
    With comments like:
    “I understand why the father [allegedly] killed his daughters.”
    “I believe that the father [allegedly] killed his daughters because he loved them too much…”
    “…the father didn’t want his daughters to sin any more and he was probably afraid that Allah would punish his daughters and himself because how they acted…”
    I think he would unquestionably benefit from your clearly comprehensive study and understanding of Islam and its teachings. Especially the part about, “…a person consider himself or herself a muslim she cant hurt another humanbeeing! Killing 1 person in Islam is like killing the whole humanity – from the holy Quran”

  9. To slic nic 5150,
    The comments I made about the father wasn’t justifying his actions, I was just saying I understand why he could’ve done a horrific act like that. Imagine a father who thought the world of his daughters and loved them to his very best and then he finds out that his daughters have been going against his back and talking to boys (Muslim or non-Muslim), also he finds out that his daughters are in relationships with non-Muslim boys. The father would psychologically get harmed because he just found out that his angels have done bad stuff. He would be blind saying it can’t be them, it wasn’t them. He would make himself believe different things until one day he believes that they are not his daughters and kills them. By the way I am fasting so whatever I am saying may be rubbish but I don’t know

  10. Belal,

    Perhaps a sandwich, then?

    What you’re suggesting is that murder is a reasonable way to deal with disappointment (which all parents feel at one time or another) and anger. We can’t claim our faith to be a reasonable and just one if we’re adopting those kinds of ideals. Parents will of course find out that their children are doing things they don’t approve of – it is part of parenting. Murder cannot be the answer to that, Belal.

    Here is a paper by Al-Azhar University about the rights of children in Islam:

    Click to access Egy-homepage-Childreninislamengsum(1).pdf


  11. Belal I do wonder what would have happenned (and obviously didn’t happen in your case as you pointed to your own haram past doings followed by repent) if boys were murdered for doing haram things- would the punushment have fit the crime? Would you be saying from your grave to the Angels interrogating you that your father killed you because you understand that your doings got him crazed and believed you were no longer his son and killed you and his legacy to save himself the trouble of helping you out in your troubled and difficult moment because he loved you too much? Would you truly understand the reasoning then? And would you do the same for your sons one day- killing them without much thought to their precious lives?

    I wonder if a goose would truly believe they should get what the gander got?

  12. 1st. to slic nic 5150, my bad, u called me and my kind blind and in denial. great.. whats the differense from being ignorant?
    I have debated with people that have the same type of agrumantation and way of thinking like you do. Trust me we will not agree. The fact that I dont agree about how the case is represented dosent mean I dont condemnd the act. U have to learn to see the differense. And why should I respond to Belal? Beacuse we are both muslims.. does that automatically make us have the same ideas n opinions? Thats his opinion and as much as i dont like it.. he stil can have 1.
    I dont see why a persons feelings or psycological errors has anything to do with religion. And im tired of defending my religion on behalf of ppl that do and say things that isnt compatible with the religion Islam, just to make ppl like slic nic 5150 happy. If it bothers u so much, pick up a book n read about it. Then u can debate and tel ppl that: Hey I have red about this and you are wrong! Islam dosent say this. Belals opinion is his poinion. What he THINKS and MEANS are a personal matter, not the matter of Islam. He is not reading it out of the Quran. Actually if he was reading it out of the Quran he would know that killing is Haram. Imagine me finding a catholic and making him or her saying: TEL ME WHY SO MANY CATHOLIC PRIESTS ARE PEDOFILES??? Go on defend u’r religion!! is that right Can we blame a whole community or religion for some individuals acts or thoughts?
    We will all stand before Allah taalaa alone, yet as a father a man is responsible for his family, but killing is hardly to solve something. I wont comment too much about this tragic incident without knowing the whole story. Like, was his mental situation known before this happend, was this a broken home, what was the situation between mom and dad, where is mom and so on. But its too easy to blame it on Islam or the fact that he is arab. My father didnt kill me for marrying someone he didnt approve of… The rest Mrs Inal and Ms Raquelevita have said already.

    Read and spread the word of Allah right, dont make HIM responable for ur word.. u r responsible for HIS.. if u dont know, its better to keep still, or to say: I speak on the behalf of my personal opinion: this and that is what I think.


  13. To the seventeen-year old fasting psychologist: Son, wait until you are at least twice as old before analyzing a murderer’s psyche. Also, let’s hope that you’ll not inflict such devastating love on your future daughters.

  14. I think everyone heard me wrong, I DON’T BELIEVE WHAT THE FATHER DID IS RIGHT, however I understand why he killed his daughters and if I had daughters and saw them do these haram acts I would not personally kill them or hit them. I said it once I’ll say it again I DON’T BELIEVE WHAT THE FATHER DID IS RIGHT, I’m only 17 and I haven’t gone through marriage and haven’t had children so I have a different perspective than all of yous and you all have different perspective than me so we shouldn’t be debating about this we should pray for Allah to grant Sarah and Amina jannah and also pray to Allah to make the father repent for what he did wrong. I have done a lot of haram acts before and I have repented and I believe that the father should also have the right to repent. By the way nice description of me Eva!!

  15. Marrakchiya,
    In Answer to your 1st question: There is only 1 very important difference between Ignorance & Denial – that is Willfulness. Ignorance can be cured quite effectively w/ information & education. Denial on the other hand results from WILLFUL rejection of facts & is (in MY humble opinion) inexcusable.
    As for Belal – I agree that he is entitled to his opinion. However, his opinion appears to be based on not only a double-standard but also either faulty logic, misinformation or perhaps malnourishment. In any event, new & correct information had to be introduced. Your religion gives you a common starting place to begin a dialogue that could (hopefully) prevent more needless death & destruction in the future. If you truly believe in the sanctity of human life as you claim, it is your obligation to speak in the face of obvious faulty logic (once again, it’s just MY opinion) or are you only interested in rabble-rousing here? Either way: Mrs. Inal & Ms. Saraswati have quite articulately and effectively handled our young misguided friend in the absence of your contribution.
    That just leaves the Catholic Pedophiles: Disturbed perverts were (and possibly still are) drawn to the priesthood because of a fundamental flaw w/in the organization known as the Catholic Church. The Church’s desire in the face of this obvious and odious wrong doing has been to consistently try and protect the Institution rather than the Children. That attitude created a perfect atmosphere to perpetuate this attraction for deviants. As a Former Catholic, I have openly condemned the Catholic Church for the unforgivable attempt at self-preservation that allowed these horrific crimes to occur and continue. Unlike you however, I recognize & freely admit the misuse of Power and Religion as contributing factors in these atrocious events. I also steadfastly refuse to defend their actions.
    As for standing before Allah….sorry, I don’t believe that happen either. If I am wrong about the existence of God, I will surely rot in hell. If I am right, I will simply rot in my grave…

  16. Amina was my best friend when we were in 7th grade and her and her sister’s murder hit all of us here very hard. I was so dissappointed and hurt that some people expressed no sympathy what so ever. They felt that the girls got what they ‘deserve’ for having boyfriends. No one deserves to be shot and left to bleed to death by their own father. I wish people, and especially muslims, would get off their high horses and see that this way of thinking is just plain wrong.

    Thank you for writing about this, we should never forget what happend to them.


  17. As an educator in New Jersey we are bound by law to contact the Division of Youth an Family Services if we see any visible signs of abuse. We do not have a right to question or interpret we must make the call. If these teachers worked in New Jersey they would be in jeopardy of losing their teaching certificate. I think that it is horrible and I cannot imagine anything like that happening to any child. Our civilization must redesign our social construct that defines how we live.

  18. Okay maybe I’m the only one who could hear Belal in a non-biast way. I haven’t got any attachments really to this story. And, sadly enough, murdering of family members is pretty common in the U.S. as much as it doesn’t seem to be. So I’m used to these odd murders.. it’s so common that it, sadly, becomes even of the norm. Everyone’s going to die someway, and some people will kill others. It’s just how it is. This was done by a Muslim so obviously it got way more attention than usual.. Anyways I understand Belal was saying the first time.. I can understand why the father did it. Just like I can understand why Cho, Harris, and Klebold did what they did. I mean, you have got to completely open your mind to the situation in their point of view (in this case, their fathers pov). Many of you can’t even do this because your vision is clouded with mind-sets and bigotry so it’s futile for you to even try. For those of you who have got a chance of understanding and think you can open your mind then read on by all means (:

    Belal, I understand what you mean (probably going to be the only one) I think that it does have to do with raising your kids in a Western world.. but not only that. You can be born and raised here and still be very religious. It’s about how you raise your kids I suppose. Obviously, comparing their father to other Muslim fathers in the U.S., he was really lenient on his kids. Most fathers assimilate anyways, so they honestly are proud their daughters are wearing such-and-such clothes and hanging out with non-related boys, etc. But if he had them dress more.. modestly (?) as they were growing up and taught them other basics AS they were growing up, nothing really would have happened. I’ve noticed as well that Muslims are becoming more Western. Even in the Middle East people are becoming Western. In Pakistan, they changed their traditional loose trousars into tight capris? In Afghanistan and Egypt they wear shorts and miniskirts regularly now. Just examples. But it shows how everywhere people are becoming more Western. If they think that Islam is too “old-school” for them then why don’t they all convert to Christianity or something? There’s total freedom for doing haraam if ever! And I hear it’s updated every decade or so to fit with the latest trends lol. Just kidding kids, don’t get your panties in a bunch (: But seriously, kids should be taught Islam, not simply born into it without it being explained to them. And that goes with all religions. I don’t think Jannah is even in the equation for them.. lol no offense.

    Imagine how helpless both parties feel.. the father for having failed his daughters, and being so much in misery that he murdered his own blood – and then his daughters, who only knew American traditions and never Islam or even their fathers culture.. they didn’t see anything wrong in what they did. As ‘sick minded’ people think the father is, I think he was just helpless and lost. Trying to do what he thought was right. Trying to get his daughters to change, when they just wouldn’t (would you blame them? ALL they knew was America. The father should have balanced the beam of religion and a Western culture in the first place. But then think of WHY they were here in the first place? Their father wanted better for them. So people besides Belal can see my point of the father being helpless and lost.. To begin with before the girls were brought up with loose boundaries, the father wanted better for his daughters than they could have in his country. That’s why parents choose to raise their children here.. it just doesn’t always turn out the way they expected all the time. That’s why the father busted his butt all these years working as a taxi-person, so that his daughters could have better than they could in his country. Naturally, all parents make sacrifices, but those who drop down into a foreign land – it’s even more difficult for them. Think about it.. and really ponder upon it. If your parents are immigrants than imagine all that they left behind to be stuck here.. in the middle of nowhere [to them], and maybe they can understand English.. if they are lucky they can speak it.. All of this, just so YOU could have a chance to better your life and NOT end up like they are right at this moment. Think about it. Even if your parents aren’t immigrants, or even foreign. Just imagine. I’m just trying to get the concept of understanding the father and his side here since everyone only understands the daughters side. You’ve got to think of it from both ways if there is another side) So it isn’t simply that the girls grew up here, it’s how they grew up because perfectly well-brought up Muslims, male and female, grow up here.

    It SEEMS that for females it’s more difficult to be a Muslim and grow up in this society, but it is for males as well I imagine. I mean, how much haraam is there in one simple outing to the movies with your fellow male friends? Countless. So it isn’t just the girls, it’s also the guys it’s difficult for. It seems to appear as though it’s exclusive.. females only, but that is only because of the whole hijab thing. Honestly hijab (dress) isn’t the most important matter if the girl isn’t praying or fasting the obligatory. I personally love hijab, but what is the point of wearing one and having modest dress (or wearing jilbab) if you don’t do the mandatory. I believe hijab is mandatory so the last bit doesn’t make much sense.. What I mean is the stuff that is really important should come first. Like the five pillars of Islam, believing in the six pillars of Eeman, etc. Focus on the major stuff like that first-off then move on to recommending long skirts, long sleeves, not-so-form-fitting clothes, and just gradually working up. Just some advice for people who might feel their daughters are too western so they don’t feel like they haven’t got a choice. Don’t give up on your daughters or sisters and be upset with them and/or eventually disown them (what the father in this case could have done in like a year), because they might even open their eyes to your point of view. In the Quran it says there is no compulsionin religion (Surah Al-Baqarah I believe..) so we should act according to and not do the opposite if we are infact true believers.

    Sli Nic I don’t think it’s really necessary to attack Marrakchiya on every single thing she says.. I mean, there was nothing really to argue on. Especially in her initial post. She simply stated how when a Muslim does something they are automatically linked to their religion – as if it has got some answer for why this person did what they did. But when another does a “radical” act or even anything at all – they’re religion is never even mentioned. Maybe, maybe their race might be mentioned. But if you are “foreign” as in from a country in the East, it is always mentioned. That’s it. And that’s the truth. Maybe since now you are aware of it, you will notice it.

    Hopefully someone opened their minds.. and hearts. (:

  19. Btw..

    In a brief phone call in which she declined to comment further, his wife, Patricia, angrily rejected the notion that Mr. Said’s Muslim religion or culture had anything to do with the murders.

    Her son, Islam, 19, agreed.

    “Why is it every time an Arab father kills a daughter, it’s an honor killing?” Islam said. “It didn’t have anything to do with that.” He declined to answer other questions.

    Just wanted to put that out there.
    And that it isn’t the fact that the girls were going out with Non- Muslim boys.. It’s boys in general.

  20. He’s horribly sick. If you watch the documentary on CNN, his wife charged Yaser Said with raping their two daughters. In addition to this he married is wife when she was 15 and molested his wives sisters.

  21. I’ve re-read Belal’s comments (w/ an open mind) & a couple of questions still arise:
    1st – what exactly is the difference between “understanding” (or “accepting”) a father’s reasons for (allegedly) killing his children & “excusing” them?
    2nd – what does Islam (or Arab Tribal Culture) have to teach us that makes one think it’s possible a father (allegedly) believes if he fails to stop his children from “sinning” (i.e. talking to non-Muslims of the opposite sex) Allah will punish them?

    ThinkClearlyForASecond: You say this crime, “…got way more attention than usual…” & yet this blog was the 1st I’d heard of it. This blog was posted 10 months after it happened. Further, from my perspective it appears that Ms. Saraswati’s purpose in writing about it was to take to task all the Non-Muslims involved in this case who FAILED TO ACT in the defense of these 2 young girls. People who could have prevented their deaths but decided these 2 lives were not worth the risks (i.e. back-lash or being labeled racist) by the Muslim members of the family and community. So they sat back & called it a “cultural” or “family” matter.
    You echo Belal in stating you “…can understand why the father [allegedly] did it.” Please, once again explain why.
    You say, “…he was really lenient on his kids.” Really?!? Ms. Saraswati stated quite clearly in her blog that “The girls arrived at school with welts and bruises. Friends and family knew that when Sarah and Amina said their father was ‘going to kill’ them – it was very likely that he was serious.” So, you consider child abuse lenient? Or do you simply consider him “lenient” because he didn’t kill his children sooner?
    You say, he was “…trying to do what he thought was right.” If not ‘culture,’ then once again, what made him (allegedly) think killing his own children was right?
    You say, “…all parents make sacrifices.” I assure you, I’m not blind to the sacrifices parents make for their children. My Mother (a 1st generation American) & Father (a 20 year Navy man) worked themselves into early graves keeping food on the table & clothes on my back. My parents believed in discipline so I was reared under a very firm hand & yet, neither of them pulled out a gun & shot me when I started to make my own decisions about religion & how to live my life. They gave me the moral tools to find my way & sent me out into the world…alone. I’m sure they would have disapproved of my husband for no other reason than because he is not Catholic. However, I doubt they would have KILLED me over it! They’d have accepted my choice – because he treats me w/ dignity & respect, because we love each other & he truly makes me happy. That’s all that should matter to TRULY loving parents. They’d have welcomed him into the family w/ open arms & they’d have loved him.
    In your 2nd comment you say, “…it isn’t the fact that the girls were going out with non-Muslim boys.. It’s boys in general.” Really? “It’s boys in general.” What part of that opinion isn’t linked to Arab Tribal Culture?

  22. I don’t understand, why these beauitful girls, had to die?
    What school did they go to?
    I’m was born lewisville, Texas.
    So tell me, and i can help.
    And that just wrong, killing is wrong, but killing your kids is the worse you can ever do.

  23. Why don’t you quit trying to cloud the issue about it not having to be a part of Islam. It is in fact a belieif that has been twiisted from the Quran. It is the Arab countries that don’t want to have a light shined on something that they have accepted for generations and anyone that is making excuses for it is just keeping the cycle of violence going, and this is true for all murders from whatever means they come from. Wake up and realize that a female is just as worthy of being a life that has , a mind , a heart, and a choice!!

  24. Amanda,
    Perhaps you can tell us who is clouding the issue here? Surely you’re not talking about the entry itself – and if you’re addressing me, I’m certain you haven’t read any of the other entries here. Let us know so your quite valid opinions can contribute to meaningful conversation. Also, I encourage you to read other entries here so you realize that this is fact not a place for making excuses.

  25. I’ve read enough of the replys that always give a way out of the problem by saying that the parents should of been more strict and that the father loved his children so much he murdered them. He was accused of raping them before, and although something is seriously wrong with the mother for not seeking protection for them, she is also a victim of a husband she got married to at the age of 15 years old.
    The father had said to one of the girls that he could carry out an honour killing in Egypt and it is acceptable.
    I feel like there are alot of reasonings being brought out by people as to what else could of been the cause of this killing. Its simple and yes westerners are an open society. We are not the cause of all the problems of other countries that want freedom. We have sick individuals living in our society as well as other countries its just hidden behind religion and that is any religion just as Cathothic religion has its very serious issues with pedifiles and homosexuality.

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