Criticizing Islam isn’t something you see every day but this Muslim singer isn’t backing down. And to be honest, it’s rather refreshing to see someone take a stand against it even if she does fear for her safety:
FOX NEWS – Pop singer Omnia Hegazy isn’t one to keep quiet about inequities she sees in her Muslim religion. The young artist is working to draw attention to issues in her homeland of Egypt that she says that many would rather ignore, while treading a fine line between critiquing her community and defending it.
The New York-raised recording artist said it was a recent visit to her home country that sparked songs which upset some of her friends.
“I have always been the person at the dinner table to argue with you about politics and I will not shut up,” Hegazy told FOX411’s Pop Tarts column. “Music is an avenue for me to express that.”
“There are a lot of issues, like honor killing, that go on,” she said. “For instance, we were at a beach, and it was extremely hot. All the women were covered up head-to-toe in black, and all the men were wearing Speedos, and that’s how I started writing my song ‘Grace.’ We are all covered up and you men are not, what’s going on here?”
“Grace,” which Hegazy says celebrates female empowerment and beauty in all ages, shapes and sizes, is featured on her sophomore album “Judgment Day,” released earlier this month. Indeed its lyrics are quite direct:
Cover your face
Before you poison all our souls
Cover your mouth
Before it tells us something we don’t know
Cover your body
For your skin incinerates
The will of weakened men who just might lose their faith
Our heads our full of color inside
Why is it that we should hide
Who ever gave you the right to step on our pride?
The next topic she wants to tackle is Muslim women being forced to wear a headscarf, known as a hijab.
“A lot of the women on my dad’s side wear the hijab, and I have no problem with someone choosing to wear it,” said Hegazy, whose father is Muslim and whose mother was raised Irish Catholic. “I grew up believing it was a choice, but I think there is a lot of pressure on young Muslim girls to wear it, and it is becoming not a choice, which I don’t think is right.”
But Hegazy says being outspoken comes at a cost.
“There are a lot of people, not just even traditional Muslims, these are everyday Muslims and friends I have had, who have said, ‘I disagree with what you said,’” she told us. “It’s the point that there isn’t a lot of debate in that community and we’re all supposed to think the same… I can’t really do that.”
Hegazy says the criticism goes beyond just a difference in opinion.
“I will admit I do get nervous, I try to keep my family out of things when people ask. I need to start budgeting for security,” she said. “But I won’t stop doing what I do because of a few crazy people.”
Here’s the song from above where she criticizes the fact that women must cover their bodies to protect Muslim men from ‘sinning’: