The following is an excerpt from an article by Phyllis Chesler entitled, Forced Marriages in Our Own Backyard:
On February 22, 2011, Jessie Bender, a 13-year-old southern California girl, ran away from home. No, Jessie was not into “sex, drugs, or rock n’ roll.” On the contrary. Jessie was terrified that her American-born mother, Melissa, a convert to Islam, and her mother’s Pakistani boyfriend and acting stepfather Mohammed “Mo” Khan, had decided to send her to Pakistan to be married against her will. Had Jessie gone, her mother and “Mo” would have received $3000.00.
Europe is plagued by many more such cases of forced child marriage. According to the BBC, the police in South Wales have dealt with 49 cases of forced marriage in the past year (2010) alone.
Child marriage is opposed by the Convention Against All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). It is a toothless document. The United Nations does not enforce individual rights over the objections of its member nation states.
Child marriage is an abomination. Think of the girls you know who are 10, 12, 14 years old. Can you imagine how a forced, arranged marriage to a much older stranger, probably one who believes it is his absolute right to rape and beat his wife, would psychologically cripple them for life, stunt all growth, demoralize them forevermore?
We should not want to consign young American girls, Muslim and non-Muslim, to such cruel fates.