Ahhh, wonderful, forward thinking Kyrgyzstan; a country where lobbing around a decapitated goat carcass is the national sport. If that’s what they do for fun, you may not expect their interpersonal skills to be top notch and Bristol fashion either. And you’d be right. In this mountainous dust bowl, young, randy men who haven’t managed to bag themselves a bride through civilised tactics have a back up plan. In a nut shell, they kidnap the girl of their choice and take them back to their village. Once they’ve been dragged kicking, screaming, spitting and biting, the womenfolk from the husband to be’s family coerce the young, petrified women in to putting on the bridal veil. The unlucky girl’s family is then notified and the couple get married that same day. Bang, simple as that. From the perspective of a third world, misogynistic culture this seems like a pretty cool idea, but from the female’s point of view it’s more than a little bit dog turd.
Apparently up to half of all Kyrgyzstan marriages involve kidnapping and, unsurprisingly, within those marriages divorce and suicide are notably higher. Bit of a no brainer really. What about Police intervention? Well, most don’t see it as illegal (even though technically it is), so there’s no real point in crying out to them, they’d probably lend a hand if anything. Villages in this area of the world pretty much govern themselves and the act is seen as a traditional rite, and as such, it’s above the law. The funny thing is, they are predominantly a Muslim country and it’s certainly not condoned in Islam, and their’s no mention of it in their ancient, historical book of Manas which governs much of their morality day to day. So, really, what is actually happening, is that blokes have been getting away with stealing and shagging girls for hundreds of years, and they aren’t likely to stop anytime soon.
Here’s a video Vice made about the subject, Vice tend to make pretty decent videos so check it out, especially if you like being enraged and confused: