can we all just acknowledge that she’s the real person of the year?
I have to disagree with you all not because Malala isn’t an inspiration for many but because your consistent spotlight on this child is proving to be extremely dangerous for her and those who were injured along with her (but conveniently forgotten). Schoolgirls injured with Malala Yousafzai fear becoming symbol for women.
I’m Pakistani. Hear me out.
There must be a course on ethics when it comes to reporting on children in war zones. This obsession with this young girl and her rightfully strong views is proving to become detrimental for those in Swat, Pakistan. This symbolizing renders these young girls into targets.
Furthermore, you have Laura Bush - of all the people - cheering for this child. Laura Bush is the same woman who used women’s rights and feminism as an excuse to talk over Afghan and Iraqi women and to gain more (liberal) support for the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq. I am thoroughly disappointed to see otherwise well-to-do individuals using this cover and issue so irresponsibly. If you want to support educational programs in South Asia and the Middle East, you must stop using images and voices of children to further this cause. They become targets. More girls will be seen as “evil” because of this.
It is also extremely important to see how Malala’s case is being used to justify other forms of violence to “correct” the patriarchy in Swat. This kind of support is co-opted by imperialist forces. Jadaliyya notes: “The hawks of war have seized on Malala not only as the symbol of a cause to be championed, but also as a means of legitimizing their own policies and tactics.”
If you genuinely want Malala to be the Person of the Year, stop using her as a symbol. Work on her cause. Stop using her as a symbol of resistance; It turns her and her kind into targets for more violence.