A Gay Girl In Damascus 13.06.2011

This post has been dusted off and taken straight out of the "According to Matt Archives". I originally posted this content on my old blog "Crochet & Crafts According To Matt". I thought that it was a shame for creativity and inspiration to lay dormant, so I'm recycling the content from my old blog, keeping it available for you all to read, reference and use as you please.

A Gay Girl In Damascus 

Something has been on my mind a lot over the past few days, that is the fate of Amina Arraf.
Amina Arraf is the author of the blog "A Gay Girl in Damascus". An out half American gay girl living in Syria. Her blog has had a huge response by the media due to her frank opinion on civil rights issues in Syria.
Earlier this week Amina's cousin posted on her blog, revealing that she had been captured and that her family, along with the thousands of blog followers were very worried and concerned.

Now I'm not going to pretend that I am a wealth of knowledge when it comes to political issues. It couldn't be further from the truth. I am however, always touched to hear of someone that speaks out for human rights and their beliefs.
Media attention had been going crazy over the past few days. Especially as it came to light that the pictures she posted on her blog were not of herself, but were taken from somebody else's Facebook page.

News pages also reported that nobody has ever spoken in person to Amina and that there are no official records of her. The media were questioning if the blog was purely fictional?
Even if it were fictional, it made me realise how privileged I am to be living in a part of the world where I can be myself and express myself the way I choose.
I knew that today I wanted to mention this on my blog, it had really been swimming around in my head.

I went to her blog page to read once again.
There was a new post this time by Tom MacMaster from Istanbul. Tom was revealing that the whole blog was in fact written by himself and that he had written the blog to highlight issues that were happening in the Middle East.

Tom MacMaster has catapulted these issues to the western world and has made issues like this seem much more relevant to me and many others. Something he intended to do.
I had a sense of relief knowing that Amina was not real, knowing that she was not in harms way. It did make me realise that there are people that I can't put a face to, living this story. Something that I think we should all be aware of. It's definitely an issue that I am going to make more of an effort to understand.

This post was originally posted on 13th June 2011.
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