Tuesday, 20 July 2010
Burqa banning bonkerness
So the French are moving towards banning the wearing of the burqa in public. last week the French National Assembly passed a bill prohibiting the wearing of full faced veils in public. The legislation will have to be approved by the Senate before becoming law - there is a vote scheduled in September. Apparently there is a large degree of public support for the ban in France where it is being positioned almost as feminist measure, empowering Muslim women to throw off the shackles of their oppressive male relatives. While I am sympathetic to that view, the ban in my view is bonkers. French law makers assume that this form of dress is being adopted as a result of coercion when the evidence would suggest that in France at least the few women who do wear full veils are choosing to do so on their own volition. It may be inexplicable to many of us, but that doesn't stop it being true. The fact is that lots of people wear lots of thigns which we find inexplicable. The pre-pubescent teens wearing micro-minis, the men who are old enough to know better trying to get away with low slung jeans, clogs - I don't get any of these but there is no justification for banning them. Just as there is none for banning the burqa.