Mrs. Halima 'A., the mother of three children, went to the Office of Identification to obtain ration cards for her family. Because her husband works in the United Arab Emirates, she arrived having finished all of the necessary paperwork to obtain a book of ration cards – coming to the office to pick up the book was the only remaining step for her in this long process.
On the designated day Mrs. 'A went to the place designated for the distribution of ration books, but the clerk responsible for this work refused to give her the book of cards. Why … ? Because she is a woman she did not have the right to pick up these cards! She tried to convince the clerk that she desperately needed to pick up the cards because her husband was not in Syria at that time and would not return until the summer. She reminded him that she was the mother of a poor family that needs the generous aid of the government. However, all of her efforts were in vain, for the clerk was too fastidious and the law is clear.
Mrs. 'A. says, "I really experienced the way in which our society views women as inferior. I have taken care of my children in the absence of my husband for many years, and I put great efforts into their education and upbringing. And now a clerk came and spoke on behalf of the law to tell me that I can not be trusted with three kilograms of sugar! Really, I was torn between my legitimate legal right to get the cards and the clerk's insistence to apply the law and make me into a nobody because I am a woman."
Mrs. 'A adds, "I was thinking that I would go with my children this summer to visit my sister in Lebanon. However, after this incident, I changed my mind. If the law makes me unable to receive their ration cards, does it permit me to take the children with me through the Lebanese border? I do not suffer from any disability that makes me unable to care for my family except for the fact that I am a woman."