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“Harry Potter” Actress Assaulted, Under Threat of Honor Killing

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Posted on December 21 2010 9:00 am
Walter Hudson is a political commentator and co-founder of Minnesota's North Star Tea Party Patriots, a statewide educational organization. He runs a blog entitled Fightin Words. He also contributes to True North, a hub of Minnesotan conservative commentary. Follow his work via Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.
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It’s been a while since I read through the Harry Potter novels. One thing I recall is the ingenious way in which their content matures along with their characters. Author J.K. Rowling effectively conveys the transition from innocence and wonder to the world-weariness of adulthood.

You may recall a scene from the first book, The Sorcerer’s Stone, in which a newly ten-year-old Harry is introduced to the world of magic by the affable and enormous Hagrid. Between otherworldly marvels, Hagrid offers an understated warning.

First – and understand this Harry ‘coz it’s very important – not all wizards are good.

Indeed, a substantial number of wizards throughout the novels are bad. Not just bad, many are tyrannical, murderous, even genocidal. Rowling deserves credit for introducing young readers to the concept of evil.

Of course, the lesson is only worthwhile if applied to the real world. Many among us remain like the ten-year-old Harry, having to be reminded that not all people are good. To that end, a teachable moment has manifest involving a young actress from the Harry Potter films.

Victim Afshan Azad, 22, played Padma Patil, a classmate of the teenage wizard [Harry Potter], in the blockbuster Hollywood films based on the children’s books by JK Rowling(…)

[Azad] was assaulted [by her brother] and branded a ”prostitute” after meeting a young Hindu man, a relationship which brought anger from her father, Abul Azad, 53, and brother, Ashraf, 28, Manchester Crown Court heard.

Despite an apparent plea bargain which resulted in the two men being found not guilty of threatening to kill their kin, evidence submitted by the prosecution not only indicates that Azad was threatened, but why.

Richard Vardon QC, prosecuting, told the court(…)

”The reason for the assault, apparently her association with a Hindu young man, that apparently being disapproved of by her family who are Muslim.

”Specifically she spoke not only of assault but also threats to kill, made jointly by her father and brother(…)

”The father, having been awoken from his slumbers, with his son shouting: ‘Sort out your daughter! She’s a slag!’

”He continued to further assault her, in disputed Bengali, shouting, ‘Just kill her!’

”The assault continued. There was a discussion where she was being called a prostitute(…)”

Reading from the victim’s statement, Mr Vardon added: ”My father began saying he would do it, a reference to kill her, as he did not want his sons to have her blood on their hands and he would do time for it.

”Then she began to feel very scared.”

Take a moment to consider this Muslim father’s thought process. In his mind, whether his daughter deserved to die for carrying on a relationship with a Hindu boy was never in question. His only concern was taking the task of killing her upon himself in order to spare his sons the “blood on their hands” and the legal consequences.

Another report provides further insight.

In a statement given to the police, the Harry Potter star said that her father wanted to ‘force her’ into an arranged marriage and were unhappy that she was having a relationship with a man who wasn’t Muslim.

But she refused to testify and did not want any action taken against her family, saying that the arrest of her father or brother would put her in ‘genuine danger’.

This is what evil looks like. Unfortunately, we’re not talking about a dark wizard from a child’s book, but real villains living in accordance with the dictates of their faith. It is incumbent upon us to recognize such evil for what it is, condemn it, and adjust our worldview accordingly.

Walter Hudson is a political commentator and co-founder of Minnesota’s North Star Tea Party Patriots, a statewide educational organization. He runs a blog entitled Fightin Words. He also contributes to True North, a hub of Minnesotan conservative commentary. Follow his work via Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

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