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The next time you update your Facebook status

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Dallas Boyd
Dallas Boyd

The next time you update your Facebook status, remember that in September, a mother was dragged out of her home in front of her husband and three children, tortured for 5 days and then publically executed for updating hers. She must have had something really important to say. (She probably wasn’t uploading a selfie). Or, like, whatever.

I try to remain abreast of the news and current events, (I particularly enjoy the “Week in Celeb Instagram Snaps”). This story of an intelligent human rights lawyer, murdered over a Facebook status by a group of politically powerful extremists, (responsible for ethnic cleansing on a "historic scale" according to Amnesty International), is very sad. However I think it goes without saying that Samira Saleh al-Naimi was no Joan Rivers, who also very sadly passed away in September, around the same time. 

Joan Rives tirelessly trail blazed the way for many modern day feminists. Her death was mourned appropriately as both tears and laughter flowed on the E Channel. Her star-studded funeral was hilarious, moving, and covered by all the world’s most important media stations. And rightfully so.

Another woman’s death made the news this month, and she wasn’t a rabble-rousing feminist, activist, or attention seeker. In comparison to Joan Rivers, she certainly wasn't very fabulous. I bet she didn't even have Facebook. But lovely 27-year old Farkhunda was beaten to death by a huge mob of psychotic men (and then, just for good measure, run over, set on fire, and thrown off a bridge).Oh, and they filmed it. Some articles had the ridiculousness to speculate that she was mentally ill. As if that would have been a factor. And I think not.

Farkhunda’s coffin was carried to the grave by women, a strong and appropriate “fuck you” statement in itself (as only men are supposed to be pallbearers in Afghanistan - in addition to many other "men only" tasks. In 2011 Afghanistan had the honour of being named the World's Most Dangerous Place for Women - Cheers!)

For Farkhunda, there was no red carpet like there was at Joan River’s funeral in September. But mourning women did paint their faces red, like blood, to reflect how Farkhunda’s face look when she died. We know this murder has received global attention, because according to CNN, the movement for justice is “complete with its own hashtag.” Let me repeat that for effect - it's own hashtag. Shit just got real. 

The women who carried her coffin, and many others at Farkhunda’s funeral, were referred to as “activists”. Does being outraged at violent hatred and murder make you an activist? …I thought it just made you human. Can we write “compassionate humans carried Farkhunda’s coffin and mourned”? ... How about “humans now rally to demand justice.”

Wait, I know what we need: #humansrally4justice

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