Proof of this is that I became aware of the said conference thanks to a taxi driver who insisted on showing me a video received on WhatsApp, which showed a brief passage totally decontextualized from Abdellatif Ouahbi’s speech, with all the usual decorum : tragic music, visual effects…
I was also entitled, being sentenced to a 10-minute journey, to the outrageous cries of the driver, who accused the Minister of Justice of encouraging our wives to adultery.
Taking my troubles patiently, I carefully avoided fruitless polemics on this subject, contenting myself with replies like “Wayli! Men niytak?(“Ah! Seriously?”), while simply inviting him to watch the intervention in its entirety to avoid any ambiguity.
A piece of advice that I hastened to apply to myself.
Result of the races: my intuition did not fail me, at least in this case, since indeed, the remarks were completely taken out of context.
What exactly does Abdellatif Ouahbi say? And does it encourage adultery as some imply?
The answer is of course no. The minister’s remarks can be broken down into two parts.
Firstly, he points out the fact that some citizens set themselves up as guardians of the temple of morality and as religious police, by filming women and men without their knowledge or against their will, in compromising situations, or simply in moments of intimacy like at the beach, to make these photos public. This voyeurism, which has nothing to do either directly or indirectly with morality, must, according to the minister, be severely punished by law. Because it is the role, above all, of the police and not of the citizens to intervene if ever a person directly harmed by another (in the event of adultery for example) were to file a complaint.
Secondly, photographing, filming and publishing videos of people, even in situations of fault or crime, seriously infringes the rights of innocent people, such as, for example, their children.
Thus, it is not adultery that is promoted, but this disgusting voyeurism and bigotry of pseudo-moralists, who thrive on the networks, which are strongly condemned.
Similarly, if all citizens were to be moral militiamen by systematically denouncing each other on the grounds of morality and privacy, believe me, very few would come out unscathed.
“Let any of you who has never sinned cast the first stone at him”. This Christic wisdom dates from two thousand years ago, but it bears an eminently eternal character.
But beyond the micro-polemics that punctuate the public debate, a fundamental question must be raised. That of the necessary dialogue between beliefs and ideologies on the one hand, and reality on the other.
Take sex outside of marriage as an example. We have every right, depending on everyone’s beliefs, to consider this phenomenon as being morally reprehensible or not. But Islam being the state religion, as mentioned in article 3 of our Constitution, the moral judgment which has preeminence is that of moral condemnation.
However, if religion decrees the “lawful” and the “unlawful”, positive law decides what is “authorized” and “forbidden”. The difference is size. Because the “licit”, from the religious point of view, can quite be prohibited from the point of view of the law, if the conditions of realization of the licit are not met, or if the context at the origin of the licit has changed profoundly. . Take for example the marriage of minors. Its “lawful” nature, from the formal point of view, cannot be used as an alibi to authorize it legally, given the eminently contextual and historical nature of this practice. The same goes for the “unlawful”. And there, I do not even approach the hermeneutic dimension, that of the interpretation of the Koranic text, which always remains possible, whatever some say.
Let us now return to sex outside marriage, and begin a dialogue with reality.
According to data from the High Commission for Planning, the average age at first marriage in Morocco in 2018 is 31.9 years for men and 25.5 years for women. Compared to previous years, Moroccans tend to delay the age of marriage more and more.
So, unless all these Moroccan men and women were, before their marriage, Franciscan monks and nuns with cornet, and it’s a safe bet that they weren’t, many have very likely already had sex outside marriage, before the said wedding.
Turn the case any way you want, the facts are the facts. And for some, before you take offense at my words, I invite you to take a deep breath, drink a large glass of water, and ask yourself if you, or people around you, have not already had sex. sex before marriage.
In this case, three postures can be adopted.
Either we formally cling to beliefs in a total negation of reality, by continuing to send young people to prison, or at least by hanging a sword of Damocles above their heads, with all the harmful consequences that this entails for their psychology and sexual fulfillment.
Either we favor the real by making it normative. This amounts to denying the immoral as well as illegal character of sexual relations outside marriage, in the name, for example, of individual freedoms and human rights.
Or, and this is my approach, to start from the idea that what is expected of a State and of the law is not to be my moral guardian, but not to hinder my quest of morality.
And this goes as much through education and the cultural environment in which we live as through the socio-economic dimension.
Because, let’s say it openly, morality is expensive in Morocco. To get married today in Morocco, you literally need, and I’m hardly exaggerating, a concrete CV, and a few million centimes for the dowry, wedding expenses, housing, furnishings…
A marriage proposal to a potential future in-laws is, in many ways, comparable to a job interview. Thus, encouraging marriage requires the removal of economic, cultural and mental barriers.
Add to this paradoxical injunctions, since young people who today watch a Korean or Turkish series on Moroccan television, with romantic stories outside the framework of marriage, if it occurred to them to reproduce this in the street with a furtive kiss or by holding hands a little too carnally, it’s not at the restaurant that it risks ending, but at the police station, after a not very romantic little ride aboard a police dispatch rider .
Thus, if we want, from a non-Manichean perspective, to make morality and reality converge, the solution does not lie in the law, but in the minds of people, who, it must be remembered, will be individually judged before God.
Let each one cultivate his own morality, carefully avoiding pretending to remove the speck that there is in the eye of his neighbor, before having to remove the beam that there is in his own.
Virtue is cultivated by example and not by a prison approach.
We wish to thank the author of this write-up for this amazing material
“Let him of you who has never sinned…”
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