PHOTOS: Kurdish men, start your engines, and may the best gender expression…wiiiiin! In Marivan County in the Kurdistan province of Iran, Kurdish men are getting all dolled up to protest what they deem a sexist punishment and to challenge outmoded concepts of masculinity and femininity.
The Facebook group Kurd Men for Equality has garnered over 7,000 likes after launching less than a week ago on April 18 in response to the punishment given to a convicted man: he was paraded down the streets of Marivan in a woman’s dress in order to humiliate him. While public humiliation is common, according to Gay Star News, this Drag Race-y form of punishment is unprecedented in Iran.
As a result, one hundred women took to the streets in a protest organized by local feminist organization, Marivan Womens’ Community and after one man, in a show of solidarity, posted a photo of himself in a dress — a campaign was born. Over 150 men have joined the Kurd Men for Equality campaign, which bears the tagline, “Being a woman is not a way for humiliation or punishment.”
The world, and more importantly, the government, has taken notice: 17 Iranian Members of Parliament have signed a petition addressed to the Justice Ministry which decries the sexist sentence as “humiliating to Muslim women.”