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Let Girls Learn: The Taliban Education Ban and What We Can Do to Reverse It

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

The recent Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has sent its female population into a state of worry and fear.

Following the U.S. military departure, Afghanistan was immediately taken over by the Taliban. This takeover has led to a slew of changes being made to the country, which has ultimately impacted women and girls greatly. One change that is being presented is girls’ education. On Friday, September 18, the Taliban issued a statement allowing male teachers and boys to go back to secondary education, however, this statement made no mention about girls. This means that girls seeking secondary education, those in the 6th through 12th grades, were barred from attending school. Since that order, girls have been forced to stay at home, while their male counterparts seek education.

When questioned on these matters, the Taliban stated that they were planning to lift the ban once they established secure transportation for these girls and a way to segregate them from their male peers. Additionally, the Taliban pointed to the fact that girls below the 6th grade can still attend school and that certain universities have allowed women to keep attending. However, the majority of the Afghanistan population is skeptical due to the fact that women were barred from working or going to school under the Taliban’s previous rule.

Since September 18, girls have still been kept from going to school. In response, women’s rights activist Malala Yousafzai has called on the Taliban to lift this ban and allow girls to continue their education. Malala, who was shot by a member of the Taliban for speaking against them, has been a pioneer for women’s education throughout her life. So, it is no surprise that she has taken great strides to reverse this ban.

Personally, Malala has been an inspiration in my life ever since I read her memoir, I Am Malala. However, her courage and activism made me, as an American college student, wonder what I can do to help the cause in Afghanistan.

First and foremost, we can educate ourselves. By learning about the atrocities that are occurring elsewhere, we can bring better awareness to them. Additionally, we must take the time to spread the word and let the people in our lives know that these problems are very real. Too often, Americans get stuck in our little bubble of freedom and refuse to acknowledge that we have benefits that other people do not. Therefore, we need to use our freedom to bring awareness to the plights of others, especially these girls in Afghanistan. Finally, and arguably the most important, we can sign petitions and call upon leaders to take action. By limiting education, the Taliban is limiting prosperity not only for Afghani women and girls but the country as a whole.

Here is the link to the petition created by Malala and her team: https://secure.avaaz.org/campaign/en/get_afghan_girls_back_in_school_loc/

Hi! I'm Emily Costantino and I am a Journalism and Digital Content major at Susquehanna University. I work as both an on-campus member and a national writer for Her Campus.
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