HOW DO WE UNDERSTAND?

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The past 3 days the news picture here in Norway has consisted a lot about this man who expressed towards the newspaper that he wants people to understand child marriage. Apparentely, some refugees that showed up here last year are married children. Per Fugelli, whom this man is, wants us to understand child marriage is a tradition and something we must try to understand. I do agree that understanding isn`t the same as accepting, but there`s also a difference between knowing about something and understanding it.

People know the consequences of bullying, but do they necessarily always understand those? Nah. And to be fair, I don`t think it`s possible to understand every single thing here in the world. But, unlike many, I don`t believe that doesn`t mean we can`t do anything about the problem. People should try to understand that most Norwegians wouldn`t ever do that to their kids. It`s not written in our books. At least I hope it isn`t. Which makes it understandable why Norwegians think child marriages are disgusting. Saying that to those refugees won`t necessarily make anything better, but let`s face it. Or, I`ll face it. I`m sick tired of traditions which just keep ruining people`s lives. It might not solve the problem, but the first step is to tell these people what they`re doing is awful and horrible because clearly, they don`t completely understand. Of course in a proper and clear way, but the goal is to tell those people child marriages aren`t something we`ll allow here in Norway.

Or in my case: anywhere in the world.

The only thing I`m really struggling with, is trying to understand what we have to understand here. Do we have to understand a 1000 years old tradition? Do we have to understand that sometimes, 40 years old men just want to get married to an 8 years old girl and make her suffer to death? Do we have to understand that`s just a part of this tradition? Sorry, Fugelli, but you gave me a hard challenge. But. There`s a but here: Just because I don`t completely understand, I can know why it happened. I can help. I can know what happened and whom were involved, but understand? Not today.

Don`t forget that I pretty much come from the same kind of culture as them. I`m almost sure I “understand” more than this Fugelli. But that`s not the point. The point is that he gave his neighbours a challenge they can`t really solve. Forget them, I`m sure him himself doesn`t understand this sick tradition so why is he telling us to?

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