On September 16, 2022, a young woman, 22 years of age, Mahsa Amini, died while in a hospital in Tehran, Iran. This news is always tragic, especially for someone so young, but there is much more to this story. Amini was arrested on September 13, while visiting Tehran. She was from the Kurdistan province in the northwest region of the country. Her crime, wearing her hijab too loosely.
In Iran, they have an entity called the morality police. Their job is to enforce strict dress code rules as well as monitor how men and women mix in public. This police force arrested Amini and took her to a detention facility, where they proceeded to provide her with training on their morality laws. This included instruction on how to properly wear a hijab. While she was there, she collapsed from what Iranian authorities say was a heart attack. She fell into a coma and at a local hospital in Tehran, she died on September 16, three days later.
According to reports, Amini’s father was not permitted to see his daughter’s body. He did, however, get a glimpse of her foot, which he said was bruised. Questions started to arise. Amini’s father began talking to Iranian press, saying eye witnesses saw his daughter being brutally beaten, while in a patrol vehicle. He suspected that the Iranian police accounts were false, and she did not die from a heart attack. AP confirmed his suspicions, reporting that she died from blunt force trauma to the head, resulting in a fatal skull fracture.
Word got out, and after Amini’s funeral on September 17, in Kurdistan, protests erupted. A groundswell grew and protests reached a boiling over point in Tehran, spreading over 80 cities in the country. Women took to the streets, and the Iranian forces met them with violence.
Reports state that Iranian authorities were armed with tear gas, batons, metal pellets, and guns, resulting in at least 41 deaths. With more and more fury and anger over Iran’s official response, women started taking to the streets and to social media sites to show their rage over the tragic events.
Some women cut their hair, while others burned hijabs in solidarity and in protest. These outcries flooded social media, and here are some of those demonstrations, posted on TikTok.
The account below includes a video of a woman destroying a passport, before proceeding to cut her hair.
@astrokrizk #istandwithiran #iran #womensrights #mahsaamini #iranwomen #fyp #foryou #iranprotests2022 ♬ original sound – em🤍
This post shows a woman cutting her hair in solidarity at a peaceful demonstration on the streets of Iran.
@m0rr1gu Replying to @nolaskippysue this is one of the most profound acts of solidarity and resistance that @masih alinejad has posted tonight and I had to share it #justiceformahsa #mahsaamini ♬ Only Love Can Hurt Like This (Sped Up Version) – Paloma Faith
Lastly, here is a video of women burning their hijabs in protest of the tragic death of Mahsa Amini.
@thedaaal Please share this videos and be the sound of Iran. Meanwhile the president of Iran is in United States for United nation and he’s denying everything. #mahsaamini #mahsa_amini #iran #justiceforiran #justice #war #civilian #Iran #iran🇮🇷 #sharethis #viral #viralvideo #fyp #fypシ #fypシ゚viral #iraniangirl #iranianprotests2022 #protest #dictatoship #fightingfreedom #womenpower #power ♬ original sound – em🤍
Sources used for this article: Associated Press, The Economist, The Washington Post, and Time Magazine.