torsdag, april 22, 2010

Ban on veils in Belgium and France?

In Belgium and France the two governments are now finally discussing when and how to implement a total ban on veils totally covering a woman, worn in public.

In France - where I live - this discussion started long ago and I have earlier written about this debate and what I think of it.
Here I would just like to show some pictures (taken from BBC News) displaying different kinds of veils and how they differ from each other.

As I've written before I find this being somewhat of a pseudy-debate.
The number of women in France wearing a burka or the like, is estimated to not more than 2000, if even that amount.
In Belgium we are talking about 200 women!
One can't say that this constitutes a real serious problem, can one?

Of course I understand the discussion of people being able to recognize and identify someone in the street and when meeting a muslim woman in any public environment where it's essential to know who you are talking to etc.
On the other hand this could be solved easily with different kinds of technical equipment, identifying a woman dressed in a veil of any kind.

And again: We don't accept people being masked when coming into a bank or a store, as this is interpreted as a threat.

Others say that this is also to prevent suicide-bombers and different kinds of terrorist attacks using these clothes as a hiding place for explosives.
This is very exagerrated. Of course this could happen but in that case we should ban all kind of clothing as it's fairly easy to hide explosives under 'ordinary' clothes to, taking into consideration that these kind of equipment doesn't have to be bulky, on the contrary very small and sophisticated.

Finally I would like to say - as I wrote before - that if a muslim woman by her own decision and not forced by fundamentalistic men, wants to wear a burka, well aware of that this is nothing essential for the muslim faith and not at all linked to a 'divine decision' but more linked to the fact that men in all religions always have imposed rules more harsch against women than against themselves, not least concerning sexuality, she shouldn't be denied this right.
However if a certain job (in a hospital e.g.) requires other clothings she should abide by this decision or not work within this specific sector at all.

Another question is of course whether or not a majority of muslim women believe that this constitutes an important trait of the muslim faith or if most of them, through social pressure, are forced to wear these clothings.
If they would be forced to wear 'ordinary' clothes, would this prevent them to leave the house and if some of them did, would they be persecuted by muslim fundamentalists?

Below we see different kinds of veils, their names and how much they cover the body and face of the woman.
Judge for yourselves concerning what you could accept and not.

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