Banning the Burqua

It was a difficult decision for me to decide whether or not to write this blog post.  I don’t want this blog to be political in nature, but I do think I am in a unique position to share some current events with you in an objective, bias free way.

Most recently, France’s prez Nicolas Sarkozy has decided he wants to ban the burqua in his country, for safety reasons. There are about 2000 Muslim women living in France who would be affected by this decision.  Is this fair to them? I want to let you decide. Here are some articles with different point of views.

First, a general article from The Peninsula, which talks about the basics of the possible ban.

Next, Al-Jazeera’s article with two very different points of view.

And lastly, a Yahoo news article with more about the forthcoming decision.

Again, I just post these so you can know the story and decide for yourself! It’s relevant to us here in a Middle Eastern, Muslim country, so I wanted to share the debate.

Feel free to discuss in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “Banning the Burqua

  1. Jen says:

    Thanks for this post, I am interested in hearing your thoughts on this!

    First, I want to note that France makes a really big deal of its secular culture. There is a belief there that if you are a citizen or want to be one, you must be “French” above all else, any other ethnic identity comes second. This often results in little true “integration” among immigrant groups, because most do not want to give up their own ethnic identity to be truly “French.” Secondly, in a country where Muslims make up the second biggest religious/ethnic group, there is a lot thinly veiled racism and distrust towards them, no pun intended!

    I don’t think France has any business telling people what they can or can’t wear in this context, nor do I think that this will have any effect on the lives of those who want to or are forced to wear it beyond marginalizing them further and perhaps letting them into the public sphere less. My own feelings about the burqa or niqab and the commentary it often makes upon women notwithstanding, this law doesn’t seem fair. Switzerland passed a ban on the building of minarets this year; this proposed law doesn’t seem very different in character to me.

    What do you think?

  2. kay says:

    I have mixed feelings about the French proposal. On the one hand wearing a burqa seems so degrading for women. It seems to imply that women are evil and must be hidden from view. On the other hand – banning a religiuos dress seems very discriminatory. Some women may choose to wear a burqa others may feel forced to wear it. I am not sure what a government’s role should be in this.

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