Violent images are everywhere; now let’s see the power of love
An Istanbul court on Sept. 25 ordered the release of veteran journalist Kadri Gürsel in the third hearing of the case into Turkish critical daily Cumhuriyet.
His release came after 330 days in jail.
What was most talked about and most commented on that night and the day after was a photograph taken by Yasin Akgül from the AFP agency.
In this photo, Kadri Gürsel and his wife Nazire are seen kissing each other after Gürsel’s release.
You can see the longing and the excitement of being reunited just from the photograph.
The soldier standing next to them has turned his head aside with an embarrassed expression but at the same time he is smiling with sweetly.
Connecting kissing to ‘national values’
As soon as the photo went on the internet, society immediately became divided into two on the topic of kissing.
According to some, it was neither the place nor the time to kiss each other on the lips.
You can see similar comments if you look at the web forums entitled “Girls are asking.”
They call it “shameful” and say: “Kissing has its own proper time and place.”
And according to them, the streets, especially the exit of a prison where cameras are flashing, are not the place to kiss each other on the lips; nor at all the time.
There were those who asked, “Does it suit this country to kiss each other on the lips in a situation and an environment like this?”
“I did not like that kissing photo. I would prefer a photo where they hugged each other very tight,” was the opinion of some.
“People who kiss each other openly have no respect for the values of this nation. Those who do not respect the values of the nation also have no respect for the nation,” some said, even taking it that far.
The passion of kissing united with compassion is probably the most meaningful state of love.
And there probably cannot be anything more natural than for a person who has been under arrest for months than to kiss the person he loves. But there are times when it is not considered natural in our society.
Meetings always have to be embarrassing for us. Instead of living our affection to the fullest, we have to hit the brakes due to “shame” and “decency.”
There are people who were shot over kissing
Six or seven months ago in the southern district of İskenderun, a man with a motorcycle stopped upon seeing a couple kissing on the roadside. He fired away at the couple asking, “What are you doing?” Upon receiving the response that they were married, he shouted, “Give me your identification cards.”
“This is Turkey. Here we have something called ‘shame.’ Have some decency!” were his last words.
There are some others who have picked quarrels with couples for kissing each other in a shopping mall … Others who have yelled “Hold yourselves” and “There are children here” at couples kissing in the street.
In this country, there are people who have been shot and killed for kissing each other in a cafeteria by the owner.
In this country, there are people who are kicked by security guards for kissing each other in a park.
In a place like this …
Kissing each other in public is almost a revolutionary action.
Besides, in our lives that are decorated with violent images, we need to see images that show the power of love like this and images like these now more than ever