AMERICAN IN ARABIA: Saudi's Shopping Loudspeaker Divorce

Published March 29th, 2012 - 12:59 GMT
'This a public announcement: You're divorced and I hate your choice in soap operas. 'Fatma' is obviously a superior choice to 'Rubi'. Never again!"
'This a public announcement: You're divorced and I hate your choice in soap operas. 'Fatma' is obviously a superior choice to 'Rubi'. Never again!"

Al Bawaba loves nothing more than a good laugh. And our American in Arabia, Brett, definitely agrees. So, it should come as no surprise that he picked up on the Saudi 'Loudspeaker Divorce' and broke it down in the comedic way that he does.

There I was, minding my own business and along came this gem of a story that fell from the sky, directly onto my lap:

A Saudi husband used a loudspeaker to divorce his wife at a busy shopping mall after seeing her take a note from another man bearing his phone number.

Aside from the obvious injustice we feel for the wife and her children, this story is dripping with satirical juices. How could I resist?


    * The most confusing aspect of this situation is why a Saudi even needs a microphone to be heard throughout the mall.

    * You’ve heard of Karaoke? This was a variation called “Not Caring-oke’.

    * If she had taken the coupon from the vendor for KFC instead of McDonald’s, since her hubby loves their spicy wings, this would be a whole different story. (It should be noted that there is severe gender segregation in Saudi society, which can lead to a climate of suspicion and male domination. - ed.'s Note)

    * Immediately after his announcement,  75 women started wailing and another 10 were seen cheering and slapping each other high-fives because they all thought it was their husband making the announcement.

    * To add insult to injury, the man went on to say, ”And the person with a Black Toyota SUV, you left your lights on in the parking lot.”

    * Later reports say this was actually a Punk’d show gone awry. Ashton Kutcher was unable to stop the prank because, since he was disguised in a burka, a Saudi prince accidentally took him away as a second wife.


And finally,


What else can we do to such a ridiculous story but jest in amazement? Of course, we don’t know all the details, but from what has been written about the 'Loudspeaker Divorce', (Bear in mind, the oral aspect of instigating divorce proceedings that exists in some facets of Islam consider it to be the first step of filing for divorce. Sunni practice requires no witnesses, and allows a husband to end a relationship by saying the triple talaq -ed.'s Note) the husband seems more insecure than an armless cop. He treated marriage like a child does a toy--- ‘Ok, I’m bored; let’s do something else.’ (It should also be noted that some followers of Islam choose to practice temporary marriages that forgo the long-term commitment clause. - ed.'s Note)


The moral of the story is clear and a lesson to be handed down from generation to generation: Women shouldn’t ask their husbands to go shopping with them becuase we will find any excuse to leave the mall after an hour.

By Brett Weer


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