“Women don’t deserve to drive because they only have a quarter of a brain.”
According to the head of religious fatwas (edicts) in Saudi Arabia’s Assir governorate, a woman shouldn’t be allowed to drive because “she has a quarter of a brain.”
You heard that right.
In a now-viral video that started making the rounds online late on Wednesday, Sheikh Saad Al Hajari is heard making the statement to a group of people during what appears to be a sermon.
“A woman isn’t equal to a man when it comes to brain power and this is how she was created,” Hajari said.
He then explained that because women have “half a brain,” Saudi Arabia’s Road and Traffic safety authority shouldn’t allow them to drive.
“If a man had half a brain, would they issue him a driving license? They wouldn’t.”
Hajari’s insults didn’t stop here, he went on to explain that when women go shopping, they lose another half of their existing “half brain” and end up with only a quarter.
“Women don’t deserve to drive because they only have a quarter of a brain,” he reiterated.
Hajari’s comments come at a time when the debate about women’s right to drive continues to intensify.
Under the country’s current law, there is no official prohibition on women driving, however, officials have yet to issue driving licenses to women.
Outrage on social media
As soon as a video of Hajari’s talk started to circulate online, it sparked outrage on Saudi Twitter.
Many wondered how a person who calls himself a religious cleric could make such statements, while others called on authorities to take immediate action against him.
People were angered by the statements
A few couldn’t even watch the entire video
“I congratulate those who watched the video till the end for being able to handle it.”
“Don’t they feel shame, talking about their own mothers like this!”
Many raised this issue
“The real problem is that a few of these clerics explain and interpret religion as they please and use our religion as an excuse to do the worst things.”
“A quarter of a brain contributes to the continuity of humanity, and a full brain contributes to its regression”
A few women shared right-on-point responses
She lacks a brain, she lacks spirituality, she lacks an arm, leg, or even a head… all your bullshit won’t work… women are going to drive sooner or later.”
Many called on the authorities to take action against Hajari
“This person is offending and denigrating Saudi women, authorities must take action against him and fire him from his position.”
Watch Hajari’s full statement here: