Port De Soller Mallorca

Port De Soller Mallorca

Friday, 23 September 2011

How do you feel about the Niqab?

Niqab women fined by French court | World news | guardian.co.uk:  'via Blog this'

So, two French women have been fined the derisory sums of £105 and £70 for ignoring the legal ban on wearing the Niqab.

Now I am neither Muslim nor female and I have really never been drawn to this form of 'dress' as something that draws a man's attention to a woman in the way that other forms of dress or clothing do, and maybe that is the intention of the Niqab as the wearer does not wish to be ogled by others and men in particular! The Wikipedia page on this goes into the history of the covering and goes some way to explain the history of it.

I do know plenty of women both Christian and non Christian and Muslim and Non Muslim and of the latter I don't know any who do wear one and I suppose like other westerners  I am at loss to understand why anyone would want to, but, that some do is clear, walk down any street in the UK and they are evident .

I am neither a scholar nor a philosopher so my take on this matter is purely a personal and probably an uneducated one.  I can only tell you that I have listened to various debates on TV, probably like most average people in Europe this is where we get our understanding from (or lack of) on this matter.

From a modern perspective, where we have so much mistrust and where apparently we are at war in a semi clandestine fashion with Muslims I can and do see the need for security measures where 'people' wearing a Niqab must allow themselves to be identified when going near or entering 'target' zones such as airports, and official government buildings and there may also be a need for this in busy shopping areas as we do know that suicide bombers target the soft target rather than the hard target, so it is a problem!

But is the outright banning of the Niqab and other coverings the answer.  Men and women of all races and creeds and colours go about their business on a daily basis.  Christians and non Christians, Muslims and non Muslims.  Each country town and village wherever it is on the planet has its fair share of criminals, murderers, rapists etc., but we do not brand those communities with the same degree of collective guilt as we appear to be doing to woman who choose to wear a Niqab.

Now it is only the French, so far, that have taken this action and I understand that a number of woman have defied the ban and yet it is only these two who have appeared in court, although I believe others have also been fined, presumably on the spot!   I also understand from the report in the Guardian that they had no problems lifting their Niqabs to have their identities verified. so it does seem as if it is a bit of an unenforceable and unnecessary law unless every country in the European union adopts it!

While the bleeding heart brigade may protest at my next suggestion I'll proceed with it anyway, why don't we go the whole hog and ban all Muslims from Western society and they can do the same with westerners, Christian or not, We could also send all Africans back to Africa and all white Americans back to the land of their ancestors.  Of course we here in the United Kingdom  could end up anywhere from France or Germany to the Nordic countries as we all probably have a bit of all of them in us.  Now you know I am being ridiculous here, right, you do know that don't you?  But the same thing applies to the above it just seems ridiculous.

It is a sad state of affairs that we are in today where we need to be considering such measures of banning people from wearing 'traditional' clothing whether we fully understand why they would wear it in the first place or not.  And of course it is both tragic and sad that we are where we are today with suicide bombers and whatever.  Do you remember that Arnie movie 'Total Recall' where, when he is escaping from the baddies down into the underground/metro station and he goes through the x-ray machine and all you see is his skeleton and his big gun?  Well sadly that is what we need in every transport hub and shopping mall.  The sooner they introduce it the better, then we can leave women and anyone else who wishes to dress the way they want to and let them get on with their lives, and the rest of us can get on with our lives  knowing that at least every single one of us will have been treated the same!

What do you think?


  1. Ive lived in Saudi Arabia where the boot was on the other foot, as a western female I was obliged to wear head to toe black covering, (but not the full face veil) I was hissed at and spat at if I didnt.But that's an aside...

    Many sins are committed in the name of religion and it is sad that ordinary people feel obliged to wear the niqab or be damned!

    It is surely an anachronism left over from less 'civilised' times when it was de rigeur to steal yourself women!

  2. Hi Morig,

    I wan't defending the Niqab per say and I most certainly do not condone some Arab/Muslim treatment of women, particularly western women, who choose to, for whatever reason,go those countries and are obliged to then wear that form of dress, far from it.

    But, it is also true that some Arab/Muslim women wear these things by choice and that is why I asked the question, is it right that they should be penalised for it?

  3. I think there are several issues in play here. On one hand you have women's rights, then you have freedom of expression and religion and another is security.
    The French women in this case are wearing the Niqab by choice, in fact they are trying to make a point. I'll not go into women's rights here, I'm sure you know where I stand on countries like Saudi.
    This is an issue of the state dictating what a group of people can and can't wear. With regards to security, a bomb can be hidden under a verity of clothing and there is no problem asking a women to remove a face vail when reasonably required.
    Do this really is nothing more than a discriminatory policy, that is shameful in any democracy.


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