Sparking equal amounts of outrage and confusion, Egyptian actress Ghada Abel Razik takes to social media with a joke about last week's brutal sexual assualt in Tahrir.
Not only does Egypt have a sexual harassment problem, but it seems to suffer from people that don't even know how to responsibly talk about the very sensitive subject. The latest person to grossly misspeak about the horrific sexual assault that took place in Tahrir on the night of Sisi's inauguration, is famous Egyptian actress Ghada Abdel Razik. President Sisi made a very strategic and popular move when he personally visited the victim of a horrendous sexual attack in Tahrir. Jealous by the visit Ghada Abdul Razik decided to express her envy on Instagram.
Abdel Razik posted a photo of Sisi visiting the woman on her Instagram account, alongside the comment: "Yesterday I saw this scene when I was on set and I told them how lucky the woman is [to be visited by Sisi], can't anyone harass us? You really are a respected president and we are glad we chose you."
The comment immediately sparked outrage from her followers, but surprisingly some of her fans came to her defense, suggesting that her comment was only a joke. One follower commented on her account saying “You all have a really bad sense of humour, Ghada is obviously joking. I hope Sisi visits you, Ghada. You deserve it.” While another commented that: “She didn't mean it in that way at all, she was being funny.”
There is absolutely nothing funny about sexual harassment, and trying to deal with the slew of negative comments Razik took to Instagram to explain herself saying “By the way, I'm the first person in Egypt who created a Facebook page to execute harassers. Don't pretend to be more respectful than I am. If you want to take it as a joke, you're welcome. If not, you're free to take it as you want.”
Sexual harassment is no joke, and the exponential rise of of sexual harassment and violence means that Egyptians need to wise up and take every incident seriously, instead of turning them into punchlines.
You cannot justify the actions of criminals because they were happy, which is equally as offensive as wishing you were the victim. Reporter Maha el Bahnassy, was held accountable and was suspended for her remarks, as such Ghada Abdel Razik should also face some kind punishment. Perhaps establishing a fine for reckless remarks will in turn help Egyptians understand what a joke is.