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Burkas, niqabs, hijabs and France

Volkov
Posts: 9,765
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6/22/2009 11:09:25 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
"Full-body gowns that are worn by the most conservative Muslim women have no place in France, President Nicolas Sarkozy said Monday."

He said the burka — an all-concealing traditional dress, with built-in mesh covering the eyes — is "a sign of subservience, a sign of debasement."

"I want to say solemnly that it will not be welcome on our territory," he said."

- http://www.cbc.ca...

No matter how much I tend to agree with Nicolas Sarkozy, I learn to hate his government more and more every day.

France is moving to ban women from wearing burkas, or more commonly 'niqabs', in public. If you're unaware of what a burka or niqab is (or what the difference is), the article linked above will explain. In general though, they are full-bodied gowns that cover every part of a woman's body. In Islam, burkas are believed to be the standard "modest clothing" for women, as it covers all of their bodies except for their eyes. A woman is supposed to wear a burka any time she is out in public, and must only take it off when returning back to the 'sanctuary' of her home.

My own belief is that Sarkozy is very, very right. Burkas and niqabs are a sign of subservience; the niqab/hijab even more so than the burka. Why I believe this is because the niqab is specifically designed to cover the face, and is required even some of the more liberal Muslim nations, such as Turkey. Covering up a woman's face can be equal to covering up who she is as a person. Stifles individuality and encages a woman's will in that black cloth. It isn't even recommended in the Qu'ran or any hadith. It is just a form of oppression over women.

I believe this article can explain it much better than I: http://www.altmuslim.com...

Anyways, this isn't the first time France has done this. In 2004, France banned the hijab for students in schools, as well as any overtly religious symbol. This is because France is one of those countries that feels secularism is above all else - even personal freedoms.

Now, there is support among the traditional (aka Caucasian) populace of France for this ban. I can even see why, though I think it does go a bit deeper than just over-secularization. Western countries, especially a country like France, are afraid of Muslims, Chinese, Indians and Mexicans. They're afraid of having their culture drowned in a sea of immigrants and change. I personally don't think thats true, and I welcome immigration and new cultural attitudes.

Nevertheless, despite the clear oppression of the burka/niqab/hijab, government legislation of what people can and cannot wear is an absolute disgrace to a country that I personally admire for some of its convictions and history. What real right does the Sarkozy government have to say to women that they cannot wear what they wish to? Does the burka somehow pose a treat to public decency? Where does Sarkozy and his UMP government cross the line? Do French citizens have to wear bland, numbered uniforms next? This is a very bad step for democracy and personal freedom, in my mind.

What does everyone else think? Is Sarkozy doing the right thing, is the niqab a sign of oppression? Or do you believe that this is one step too far for government interference in their citizen's personal lives?
JBlake
Posts: 4,634
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6/22/2009 11:56:53 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
I agree with your sentiments. Yes, the burqa can be viewed as oppressive. At the same time, the answer is not to respond to oppression with more oppression.

Plus, a nationwide, government-sponsored regulation of clothing is a dangerous precedent.
mongoose
Posts: 3,500
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6/22/2009 3:42:33 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
I think that the best they would be able to do is outlaw wearing them at times when it could be dangerous, like driving. Wearing things that block you view to the sides can cause car accidents.
It is odd when one's capacity for compassion is measured not in what he is willing to do by his own time, effort, and property, but what he will force others to do with their own property instead.
Lexicaholic
Posts: 526
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6/22/2009 6:36:32 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/22/2009 11:09:25 AM, Volkov wrote:
"Full-body gowns that are worn by the most conservative Muslim women have no place in France, President Nicolas Sarkozy said Monday."

He said the burka — an all-concealing traditional dress, with built-in mesh covering the eyes — is "a sign of subservience, a sign of debasement."

"I want to say solemnly that it will not be welcome on our territory," he said."

- http://www.cbc.ca...

No matter how much I tend to agree with Nicolas Sarkozy, I learn to hate his government more and more every day.

France is moving to ban women from wearing burkas, or more commonly 'niqabs', in public. If you're unaware of what a burka or niqab is (or what the difference is), the article linked above will explain. In general though, they are full-bodied gowns that cover every part of a woman's body. In Islam, burkas are believed to be the standard "modest clothing" for women, as it covers all of their bodies except for their eyes. A woman is supposed to wear a burka any time she is out in public, and must only take it off when returning back to the 'sanctuary' of her home.

My own belief is that Sarkozy is very, very right. Burkas and niqabs are a sign of subservience; the niqab/hijab even more so than the burka. Why I believe this is because the niqab is specifically designed to cover the face, and is required even some of the more liberal Muslim nations, such as Turkey. Covering up a woman's face can be equal to covering up who she is as a person. Stifles individuality and encages a woman's will in that black cloth. It isn't even recommended in the Qu'ran or any hadith. It is just a form of oppression over women.

I believe this article can explain it much better than I: http://www.altmuslim.com...

Anyways, this isn't the first time France has done this. In 2004, France banned the hijab for students in schools, as well as any overtly religious symbol. This is because France is one of those countries that feels secularism is above all else - even personal freedoms.

Now, there is support among the traditional (aka Caucasian) populace of France for this ban. I can even see why, though I think it does go a bit deeper than just over-secularization. Western countries, especially a country like France, are afraid of Muslims, Chinese, Indians and Mexicans. They're afraid of having their culture drowned in a sea of immigrants and change. I personally don't think thats true, and I welcome immigration and new cultural attitudes.

Nevertheless, despite the clear oppression of the burka/niqab/hijab, government legislation of what people can and cannot wear is an absolute disgrace to a country that I personally admire for some of its convictions and history. What real right does the Sarkozy government have to say to women that they cannot wear what they wish to? Does the burka somehow pose a treat to public decency? Where does Sarkozy and his UMP government cross the line? Do French citizens have to wear bland, numbered uniforms next? This is a very bad step for democracy and personal freedom, in my mind.

What does everyone else think? Is Sarkozy doing the right thing, is the niqab a sign of oppression? Or do you believe that this is one step too far for government interference in their citizen's personal lives?

I think it's regrettable that young Muslim girls will not be able to dress up as ghosts or ninjas for Halloween.
http://mastersofcreationrpg.com... - My new site and long-developed project. Should be fun.
mongoose
Posts: 3,500
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6/22/2009 7:49:57 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
You had to quote all that?
It is odd when one's capacity for compassion is measured not in what he is willing to do by his own time, effort, and property, but what he will force others to do with their own property instead.
Lexicaholic
Posts: 526
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6/22/2009 7:53:24 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/22/2009 7:49:57 PM, mongoose wrote:
You had to quote all that?

I did. My point is a simple summation of the absurdity of protecting the concept of freedom by restricting free actions. You could say it is Volkov's statement distilled.
Also, I was feeling lazy. :)
http://mastersofcreationrpg.com... - My new site and long-developed project. Should be fun.
mongoose
Posts: 3,500
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6/22/2009 8:51:24 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/22/2009 7:53:24 PM, Lexicaholic wrote:
At 6/22/2009 7:49:57 PM, mongoose wrote:
You had to quote all that?

I did. My point is a simple summation of the absurdity of protecting the concept of freedom by restricting free actions. You could say it is Volkov's statement distilled.
Also, I was feeling lazy. :)

Then you shouldn't have quoted anything at all.
It is odd when one's capacity for compassion is measured not in what he is willing to do by his own time, effort, and property, but what he will force others to do with their own property instead.
Lexicaholic
Posts: 526
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6/22/2009 9:00:10 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/22/2009 8:51:24 PM, mongoose wrote:
At 6/22/2009 7:53:24 PM, Lexicaholic wrote:
At 6/22/2009 7:49:57 PM, mongoose wrote:
You had to quote all that?

I did. My point is a simple summation of the absurdity of protecting the concept of freedom by restricting free actions. You could say it is Volkov's statement distilled.
Also, I was feeling lazy. :)

Then you shouldn't have quoted anything at all.

Does it cause you physical pain or make the remark any less understandable?
Does it violate a rule of which I am wholly unaware?
Does a post you find overly long require additional commentary about how it should be shorter?

If the answer is 'no' to the first two, there is nothing binding me to accept your proposal. If the answer is 'no' to the third, aren't you trolling?
http://mastersofcreationrpg.com... - My new site and long-developed project. Should be fun.
brycef
Posts: 156
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6/24/2009 8:06:10 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
Whether or not it's oppressive, the state should have no place in telling people what to wear. Forcing people not to wear something is much more oppressive than allowing them to wear something demeaning. If they're passing this legislation under the assumption that the girls would prefer not to wear the burkas but are being forced to by their families, then perhaps passing legislation which would protect the girls from their families' demands would be necessary. However, if the girls choose to wear this clothing, then their choice should be respected. What they wear in no way infringes on anyone else's rights, at least as far as the "your rights end where mine begin" motto is concerned. The state should have no right in attempting to protect people from themselves, especially when concerning something as harmless as an article of clothing.
Chuckles
Posts: 274
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7/1/2009 12:38:52 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/24/2009 8:06:10 PM, brycef wrote:
Whether or not it's oppressive, the state should have no place in telling people what to wear. Forcing people not to wear something is much more oppressive than allowing them to wear something demeaning. If they're passing this legislation under the assumption that the girls would prefer not to wear the burkas but are being forced to by their families, then perhaps passing legislation which would protect the girls from their families' demands would be necessary. However, if the girls choose to wear this clothing, then their choice should be respected. What they wear in no way infringes on anyone else's rights, at least as far as the "your rights end where mine begin" motto is concerned. The state should have no right in attempting to protect people from themselves, especially when concerning something as harmless as an article of clothing.

what he said.
Muslim girls and women have every right to wear these clothes if they choose. I'll admit, driving with them wouldn't be a good idea.
"Pumas are wretched beasts with enourmous salty genitals."-MadMonkey889

: At 5/5/2009 9:47:22 PM, rogerklotz wrote:
:That's obviously changed by the government. The Atlanteans probably had something to do with it.
: QUIT USING LOGIC

: At 4/25/2009 3:09:34 AM, DATCMOTO wrote:
:God is GOING to have His way with you.
: At 5/5/2009 11:41:18 AM, Volkov wrote:
:When both sides can agree and disagree without someone quoting Proverbs, then the debate comes worthwhile
I-am-a-panda
Posts: 15,380
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7/1/2009 1:23:35 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
The anti-burka law is not secularism. If France were a real secularist nation, it would allow everyone to express their religion publicly without biasing towards any religions. This creates religious support for the government. However, in trying to be fair, he is oppressing religions by not allowing them to show what religion they are.

The state interfering with religion is always dodgy unless the the religion is abusing peoples constitutional rights. Child molestation as an example.
Pizza. I have enormous respect for Pizza.
Onoma
Posts: 1
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7/3/2009 4:57:32 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 6/22/2009 11:09:25 AM, Volkov wrote:

France is moving to ban women from wearing burkas, or more commonly 'niqabs', in public. If you're unaware of what a burka or niqab is (or what the difference is), the article linked above will explain. In general though, they are full-bodied gowns that cover every part of a woman's body. In Islam, burkas are believed to be the standard "modest clothing" for women, as it covers all of their bodies except for their eyes. A woman is supposed to wear a burka any time she is out in public, and must only take it off when returning back to the 'sanctuary' of her home.

My own belief is that Sarkozy is very, very right. Burkas and niqabs are a sign of subservience; the niqab/hijab even more so than the burka. Why I believe this is because the niqab is specifically designed to cover the face, and is required even some of the more liberal Muslim nations, such as Turkey. Covering up a woman's face can be equal to covering up who she is as a person. Stifles individuality and encages a woman's will in that black cloth. It isn't even recommended in the Qu'ran or any hadith. It is just a form of oppression over women.
[...]

Nevertheless, despite the clear oppression of the burka/niqab/hijab, government legislation of what people can and cannot wear is an absolute disgrace to a country that I personally admire for some of its convictions and history. What real right does the Sarkozy government have to say to women that they cannot wear what they wish to? Does the burka somehow pose a treat to public decency?
[...]

What does everyone else think? Is Sarkozy doing the right thing, is the niqab a sign of oppression? Or do you believe that this is one step too far for government interference in their citizen's personal lives?

Hi, Volkov. Let me first point out that you have the terms a bit mixed up.

Burka: the head to toe cover with only a mesh screen to see through (you barely see the woman's eyes); the worst of the covers, seen primarily worn by women in/from Afghanistan.

Niqab: the black head-to-toe cover with a slit for the eyes, worn primarily by women in/from Saudi Arabia and other ultra-conservative so-called Islamic societies that follow a very puritanical version of Islam (known as Wahhabism), which is not based on anything in the Quran but rather ancient traditions started by misogynists, which are branded as "Islam."

Hijab: large headscarf and loose fitting garment. The face is completely visible. This is what you see most women wearing in Islamic countries. However, there is no command for a woman to wear a headscarf in the Quran, although most "scholars" will argue that it is required for dressing modestly. This too is based on old traditions.

So your statement that in Islam 'burqas' are the standard "modest clothing" for women is incorrect. I'm sure you probably meant the 'hijab'/headscarf with loose-fitting clothes. Let me also point out that 'burqa/niqab' is used interchangeably to mean a full-body cover, including face. When they say 'burqa' in France, they also mean the niqab, which can be seen more often.

I for one really do hope that this ancient, inhumane and non-Islamic practice is banned soon, and look forward to the day that it is banned in so-called Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia and others. This is a requirement created by misogynists. You might have a handful of women who are brainwashed into believing that it is a religious requirement and choose to dress this way, but the majority do not have a choice. They are forced by their families and societies.

I am all for religious freedom and freedom of choice, but most of these women do not choose this. This is not about choice but of the oppression of women by men, of their freedom and their rights. It isn't a simple piece of cloth, it's the concrete mark of the inferiority in which men want to maintain women, in the name of religious freedom. These girls and women are physically and morally attacked if they refuse to dress this way. They are among the most oppressed, least educated and abused women on the planet. Banning these prisons of cloth is a small step towards the liberation of these women and future generations.
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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7/3/2009 8:49:59 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Liberate by restricting amirite?

If their husbands are making them do it, and they can prove it, shoot their husbands (or imprison, w/e). Don't ban the option for the rest of them.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Volkov
Posts: 9,765
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7/3/2009 10:18:35 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 7/3/2009 4:57:32 AM, Onoma wrote:
I am all for religious freedom and freedom of choice, but most of these women do not choose this. This is not about choice but of the oppression of women by men, of their freedom and their rights. It isn't a simple piece of cloth, it's the concrete mark of the inferiority in which men want to maintain women, in the name of religious freedom. These girls and women are physically and morally attacked if they refuse to dress this way. They are among the most oppressed, least educated and abused women on the planet. Banning these prisons of cloth is a small step towards the liberation of these women and future generations.

I appreciate your clarification on the terms, as well as your deeply interesting post on the subject, but I have to go with R_R on this one.

If their husbands or family is forcing them to wear the burkas, then the women has every right to go to the police and tell them. The police have a duty to protect women from abuse and from oppression, regardless of what religion says what.

What this law effectively does is take away the choice of women to wear the burka, or any other article of religious clothing they deem fit. It may not always be the case that women are the ones choosing it, but banning it does not help anything effectively. All it does is put one foot in liberation, and another in oppression.

The best way to combat religious oppression isn't with more oppression - it is with offering the choice of freedom to the individual.
TomPenn
Posts: 21
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7/3/2009 12:01:20 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 7/3/2009 8:49:59 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
Liberate by restricting amirite?

If their husbands are making them do it, and they can prove it, shoot their husbands (or imprison, w/e). Don't ban the option for the rest of them.

Yeah! The world would be a much better place with harsh law enforcement. Kill those pigs!