The Most Important Legacy Of Qatar 2022 World Cup Finals – OpEd

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The World Cup has come to an end and what a wonderful show it has been. From the mesmerizing stadiums, the enthusiastic live fans and the near-perfect live coverage worldwide. To top it all, giving Messi the perfect environment to claim his destiny of winning the last title that had eluded him for two decades. It is natural for me to be happy for Messi and Argentina but what is more interesting is the fact that even fans of rival teams are happy to see, the arguably best player ever, finally win it. 

I fully agree with the FIFA president, Gianni Infantino, hailing it as “the best ever”. This coming from a Westerner makes me solute him as much as I solute Qatar for standing its ground in the protection of its values which are values of millions and millions in the Arab and the Muslim world. Being hailed as one of, if not the most, successful World Cup in the history of the tournament is one legacy of the Qatar World Cup but the side legacy that it has left in my mind and millions of other fans is that we can choose to differ but still leave in peace and engage in various fun activities in spite of our differences. That it is ok for the West to have its values that differ from those of the East and therefore the West’s virtual signaling has to come to an end. The US, Europe and Australia must now come to terms with the fact that the rest of the world has a choice on which Western values (most of which are good) to adopt and which to avoid.

Yes, Qatar does have low paid laborer’s but it gives opportunities to people who would otherwise have far less prospects in their own countries and in fact most of them willingly work hard just to get their friends or family members to Qatar or other GCC countries to work. Can the conditions be improved? Of course, they can and they are being addressed gradually but not by being forced by the virtue-signaling West but by choice.  Another example of where the West holds double standards is the issue of polygamy. So much noise about why Qatar allows polygamy while ignoring its own stance on active promotion of promiscuity in its own borders. And we all know the fallout of that from broken hearts to broken families to delinquent children who come as a result. 

The other supposedly pressing issue is the LGBTQ rights in Qatar. In that too, the West needs to come to terms with the fact that not everyone sees it as they do. Every country has its own laws in as much as its inhabitants agree with it. After all, democracy means ruling by the majority not ruling by minorities’ wishes or by semi-anarchy as is clearly the case in the West. As I speak, there are teachers in the USA wearing massive prosthetic breasts while teaching 5-year-olds kids and yet others are advocating for teaching children as young as seven-year-old about sexuality. If that is what the West wants that’s fine. What is not fine is to virtue-signal and attempting to force it unto other cultures. 

Examples of differing values are too numerous. The reason I chose the examples above is because they are among the most contentious. 

In the end, I reiterate that Qatar like many other nations, can and must make changes and improvements where positive changes are required but I congratulate the Qataris for standing firm for their values for their ideals go far beyond Qatar’s borders. 

Zaher Mahruqi

Zaher Mahruqi follows world events, and seeks to shed light on the Arab and Muslim perspectives on regional and world events. The author can be contacted at [email protected]

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