They want to regress.
Whenever something advanced happens in the Kingdom there will always be the people who want to drag things backward as much as possible by making people feel guilty and blaming them for "imitating the west" or being apostates. Many of the progressive issues that stir conflict involve women. Conservatives just cannot let go of their total domination over women. The excuses are always the same.
For example the female cashiers now working at Pandas and the commotion it has caused.
Some comments from public and clerics have included:
"this could lead to harassment because women will meet young men and that could harm both of them."
So lets see, so only when women are on the other side of the counter, they will get harrassed?
But if they are standing on the opposite side as customers, that wouldn't of course happen right?
The difference between normal interaction and gender mixing:
Also women and men don't really meet when the woman is the one buying and the man standing about half a meter away from her is checking her out while doing his job. That way it doesn't lead to any "harm". But if the woman is the cashier, then boy is that dangerous!
This is why supervisors are present to intervene IF someone started bothering the working woman.
I'm sure women would much rather choose the female cashier over the male one, why not give them that option?
Some Saudi cashiers will take the opportunity to check out women that are bending over to move their groceries to the conveyor belt.
"Abdullah Al-Amri expressed his dissatisfaction with the decision which he said is humiliating to Saudi women who might also end up working as maids and security guards."
Humiliating to Saudi women huh? How about the tens of millions of female cashiers of other nationalities around the world?
Being a cashier is a humiliating job? So how come Saudi men can do it?
According to this racist mentality shouldn't the job be open to Indians and Pakistanis only who are worthy of such "low" jobs. Not sure about maids but Saudi women do work as guards at hospitals and female only venues. They seem to be doing just fine.
"Sheikh Mohammad Al-Habdan, the CEO of Al-Osra religious channel, told a local online newspaper that this decision violates the law of the General Presidency of Scholarly Research and Ifta, which states that women should not compete by going into men’s jobs."
I wonder if Al-Habdan is aware that in most of the world cashiers are actually perceived as womens jobs. It's more suitable for a woman because it doesn't include any heavy physical activity. It's certainly not a "manly" job.
"Giving her that opportunity prevents men from having these job opportunities"
So men are more entitled to having jobs than women? What if she has a family to support, if she's a widow or a divorcee and the ex is totally useless and does not provide for her?
Perhaps it's just better for the women to continue to beg outside the Panda because that is all she can do to get money for her children.
Women worked along with men at the times of the Prophet, have the scholars forgotten? Or are they just picking and choosing Hadith again. Prophet Muhammeds dear wife Khadija was actually his boss and employed many other men besides him.
And the worst case of them all Sheikh Al Ahmed has really exceeded himself this time. He actually issued a religious ruling aka fatwa (King Abdullah FORBADE issuing fatwas like this last week) to boycott Pandas. The Sheikh said it's ok for the Hai'a aka muttawa to issue a lawsuit against the chain. This guy really is so frustrating! Does he think he can just overrule the Kings orders?
Read more o the subject from Saudiwoman's blog: http://saudiwoman.wordpress.com/2010/08/23/shiekh-al-ahmed-issues-a-fatwa/#comment-5338
Well I'm definitely going to shop in Pandas from now on just to support the cause of females working their!