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 France's ban on the burqa....

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meetme7
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PostSubject: France's ban on the burqa....   Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:48 am

which came into effect today.

I think the French government has got it very, very wrong with this burqa ban. Today is a real day of shame for France marking the start of the use of the criminal law to tell grown women how to dress. One would hope this is precisely the sort of thing that an independent judiciary charged with protecting the rights of small politically unpopular minority would strike down. However, I am not optimistic the European Court of Human Rights will do this as all evidence is that it has very poor quality judges.

The ECHR got it wrong on votes for prisoners for example. It is legitimate that those who break the law are denied some of their rights in order to protect the rights of society. Prisoners lose one of their most important right ... their liberty to go where they please ... because of the high probability they will use it to repeat offend and cause further harm to society. I think it is legitimate for those who break the law should lose the right to vote to decide on those who make the law.

If the burqa ban goes to the ECHR, the court itself will be under trial.

What do you think? Is France right to ban the burqa?
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PostSubject: France's ban on the burqa....   Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:03 am

I have just been talking with a South African Muslim friend who now lives in Hove, England

This is what she had to say...

It's a bit long, but required. Read it…its interesting:

The burqa is an Islamic piece of clothing worn by many (but not all) Muslim woman in the interests of modesty. It is worn to cover the body and hair in a way that prevents unholy gazes and glances. Across the world, the burqa is deeply and utterly misunderstood for many reasons, the main reason being bad media. It is a beautiful, misunderstood piece of clothing that has protected and raised woman in modesty and inner beauty.

Wearing a burqa gives someone a very interesting identity. They are showing themselves to be Muslim. Woman who are wearing the burqa for the right reasons are covering themselves for their Lord, protecting themselves against unholy glances, and being brave enough to be able to walk the streets in a burqa.

Islam believes that every woman is precious. Islam believes every woman is a queen in her own right, and every queen must remain dignified, and gracious, and what is a queen without her crown? Muslim woman believe in the power of a beautiful queen, that every woman deserves to be a queen.

Wearing a burqa isn’t just a piece of cloth that covers your body. It’s a symbol. It’s the symbol challenging people that the woman wearing the burqa can’t be judged by how pretty she is, or the way she looks, but people are forced to listen and see her mind, her opinionated views, instead of her body.

Wearing the burqa gives someone identity and belonging because in wearing such an important and amazing piece of clothing, you become an ambassador for your own religion. People see you, clearly, as a Muslim, so everything you do, represents your religion, before it represents your own personality. It gives you an identity to respect and it gives you the responsibility to live up to Islamic standards. Wearing a burqa means setting an exemplary role-model for good Muslim woman everywhere and to defeat the stereo type that has surrounded woman in Islam in the 21st century for a long time.

It makes woman who wear the burqa feel belonging, because they belong to such a beautiful yet misunderstood religion. They are protected by Islam, because of the fact that Islam tells them to be modest but to have their own views and opinions and to be educated in order to develop those views and opinions. This gives you a religious identity, and this religious identity shapes your own personality. After all, Muslims are Muslims before anything else. If asked who they are, they should reply I am Muslim, and then everything else.

Some may argue that wearing a burqa restricts a person in helping them develop through experience, and that freedom for woman and men alike to wear whatever they want without having to worry about unwanted looks, but then what identity does that give? One that shows people are brave enough to walk without a burqa, or women who aren’t brave enough to wear a burqa?

As well as Islam, Christianity also encourages woman to cover their hair, and dress modestly for mainly the same reasons as Islam has. Instead of being judged by the way you look, you are judged by what is in your mind, which is how it should be, and modesty is another word for protection when it comes to clothing.




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spacemariner26
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PostSubject: Re: France's ban on the burqa....   Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:02 am

I must admit I struggle a little with this issue. Do I think France is wrong in imposing a legal sanction on what people wear? Of course I do! It seems utterly preposterous that a state can determine the very clothing that people choose to wear. Think about the Chinese Cultural Revoultion - Mao's vision of everyone dressing the same or the Hitler Youth in their brown shirts etc. Totalitarian States are defined by the desire to control individuals to the very point of determining what they wear. Then comes 'Thought Crime' -- it's not a significant leap.

However...I also take issue with a piece of clothing that subjugates women. Despite the numerous women (and they are numerous) who stand in support of the Burqa, I can't help feeling that this item of clothing is a symbol of men's view of women as their property. I don't know about Islam enough to comment accurately on what the burqa represents, but my understanding is that it is a manifestation of men's control over women which has somehow become entwined with religious belief.

Could France be acting properly here? The ultimate vision would suggest so. With the implementation of this 'Law', women of the Islamic faith would have a good reason not to wear the Burqa - without fear of reprisal from a male dominated society. I can imagine that a lot of Islamic women may openly state that they want to continue wearing the burqa -- but many of them would now have good reason to be free from this type of 'Bondage'. Islamic women would no longer be an object of ridicule for the clothes they wear...they may end with employment opportunities that they have been hitherto excluded from. In short, this ban may go a long way towards greater community cohesion -- helping Muslims to assimilate and integrate better with Western society.

Unfortunately, this idea depends on too many variables. In the first instance, it suggests that President Sarkozy is thinking of a bigger picture with regards to community cohesion and that he is in support of better standards of living for the minority groups in his country. His form would suggest otherwise - as a right wing politician who is pandering to a right wing electorate, his motives have a more sinister ring to them. Similarly, the idea also dismisses the depth of feeling of the numerous women who want to wear a burqa. I did a little research and found that the large majority of women who oppose the burqa ban are actually Western converts to Islam. Surely they have a right to choose?

In the final analysis, I feel it comes down to this: although I don't like the burqa and what I think it represents -- I am in no position to dictate what another person is entitled to wear. In fact, I like difference. I enjoy seeing people dressed in 'odd' clothing -- it gives me something to talk about. I would hate to live in a country where people couldn't choose what they want to wear. I revile the concept of people going to prison for wearing certain clothing. I do not find the burqa offensive.

To conclude on a personal note...as a father of two teenagers...I am more concerned about a society that promotes young children wearing sexually provocative clothes. Boys and girls that wear their clothing half way down to their ankles - showing off their underwear - is far more offensive than a woman who wants to cover herself right up.
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PostSubject: France's ban on the burqa....   Fri Apr 15, 2011 7:06 am

Lets all wear masks as a statement of solidarity. In fact.. lets wear iron masks so we can't physically hurt each other. Or how about masks made of jelly... so we can suck each others face LOL. I want a mask made of LEDs so I can make a few pounds advertising.

I saw a guy wearing a mask of bees.. boy that was weird.

In the end.. a mask is a wonderful thing .. it is a sign that Utopia has arrived and all is well.
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