Islam Respects Women as Equals
The Qur’an places men and women on equal foundation before Allah. Each person is judged according to his or her own deeds. Women have equal rights under Islamic law.The Truth:
Merely stating that individuals will be judged as such by Allah does not mean that they have equal rights and roles, or that they are judged by the same standards. In fact, Sura 37:22-23 implies that women will be punished on Judgment Day for sins committed by their husbands.
There is no ambiguity in the Qur’an, the life of Muhammad, or Islamic law as to the inferiority of women to men, despite the efforts of modern-day apologists to salvage Western-style feminism from scraps and fragments of verses that have historically held no such progressive interpretation.
After military conquests, Muhammad would dole out captured women as war prizes (1) to his men. In at least one case, he advocated that they be raped in front of their husbands. Captured women were made into sex slaves by the very men who killed their husbands and brothers. There are at least three Qur’anic verses in which Allah makes it clear that a Muslim master has full sexual access to his female slaves, yet there is not one that prohibits rape.
The Qur’an gives Muslim men permission to beat their wives for disobedience. It plainly says that husbands are “a degree above” wives. The Hadith says that women are intellectually inferior, and that they comprise the majority of Hell’s occupants.
Under Islamic law, a man may divorce his wife at the drop of a hat. If he does this twice, then wishes to remarry her, then she must first have sex with another man. Men are exempt from such degradations.
Muslim women are not free to marry whomever they please, as are Muslim men. Their husband may bring other wives into the marriage bed. She must be sexually available to him at all times (as a field ready to be “tilled,” according to the holy book of Islam).
Muslim women do not inherit property in equal portions to males. Their testimony in court is considered to be worth only half that of a man’s. Unlike a man, she must cover her head and often her face.
If a woman wants to prove that she was raped, then there must be four male witnesses to corroborate her account. Otherwise she will be jailed or stoned to death for confessing to “adultery.”
Given all of this, it is quite a stretch to say that men and women have “equality under Islam” based on obscure theological analogies or comparisons. This is an entirely new stratagem that is designed to appeal to modern tastes, but is in sharp disagreement with the reality of Islamic law and history.
The Myth :
Muhammad Would Never Approve of Rape
It is against Islam to rape Muslim women, but Muhammad actually encouraged the rape of women captured in battle. This hadith provides the context for the Qur’anic verse (4:24):
The Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) sent a military expedition to Awtas on the occasion of the battle of Hunain. They met their enemy and fought with them. They defeated them and took them captives.
Some of the Companions of the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) were reluctant to have intercourse with the female captives in the presence of their husbands who were unbelievers. So Allah, the Exalted, sent down the Qur’anic verse: (Sura 4:24) "And all married women (are forbidden) unto you save those (captives) whom your right hands possess." (Abu Dawud 2150)