First the minaret.The Swiss see the sharp pinnacle as an ominous bird of prey ever ready to pounce on them and devour them in a flash.Couldn't figure out where the threat came from.Now, the French see the purdah or niqab as a threat to their culture and have decided to impose a total ban of wearing the Islamic veil.
Would there be backlash violent in nature? Muslims are easily ignited by thing like this, by thing they see as an attack on the religion.A backlash from the extremists wouldn't be far-fetched.
Although, I don't agree with the French on the ban as it is an encroachment into a person's personal liberty, I also believe Muslims should try liberalise some of the negative aspect of their practices if they were to fit into the society they live in.As they say 'when in Rome do as the Romans do'.It is fine to use the purdah in the desert of Arabia when the desert storm is blowing in your face but why must women be forced to use this most uncomfortable attire in less harsh environment.
I can feel with the French people's discomfort with the purdah.Can you tell what's under the dress, a man or a woman?
Only a small fraction of Muslim women wear the purdah, either forced by the husbands or forced by peer pressure.
The French is taking a big risk imposing the ban.With so many act of terrorism can we blame them for being jittery?
Nicolas Sarkozy's cabinet approves bill to ban full Islamic veil
Despite warnings move could be anti-constitutional, French president gives it his full backing
Nicolas Sarkozy defended his ambition to impose a total ban on women wearing the full Islamic veil today, despite warnings that such a move could be anti-constitutional and socially incendiary.
As interior minister Michèle Alliot-Marie presented the bill to the French cabinet, the president reiterated his determination to crack down on a garment he considers to have no place in a secular society committed to women's rights.
"We are an old country anchored in a certain idea of how to live together. A full veil which completely hides the face is an attack on those values, which for us are so fundamental," he told his ministers. "Citizenship has to be lived with an uncovered face. There can therefore be absolutely no solution other than a ban in all public places."
The rightwing government is determined to push through legislation for a total ban and hopes to make it enforceable by spring of next year. Declaring that "no one can wear a garment in public which is aimed at hiding their face", the bill approved by the cabinet today envisages fining any woman in a niqab or burqa 150 euros.
As an alternative or possibly supplementary measure, they could also be made to take a course in the values of French citizenship. Husbands or partners who make women wear a full veil face a fine of 15,000 eurosor a year in prison.
The legislation, the product of almost a year's discussion and research by French MPs and the government, has focused attention on the country's estimated 5 million Muslims, in particular the small minority of around 2,000 women who are thought to wear the niqab.
This week has seen tensions flare over the issue: last night the police had to be called in to break up clashes during a debate organised by the women's rights group Ni Putes Ni Soumises (Neither Whores or Doormats) and disrupted by pro-Palestinian protesters.
In the western town of Trignac, according to a report in the local newspaper Presse Océan, a shopper tried to snatch the veil from the face of a Muslim woman who had allegedly hit her after hearing derogatory remarks being made about her niqab.
Although it has the support of the Elysée and most members of Sarkozy's rightwing UMP party, the total ban is likely to come under fire from MPs of other political colours when it is debated in parliament in July.
Many opposition figures, while favouring a ban of some kind, have argued the proposed legislation is inapplicable and advocated a more moderate measure that would still allow the niqab on the street.Read more..