Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Burqa 2

Marianne points out that Jacques Myard (UMP) proposed a law to ban the burqa in 2006 (resubmitted in 2008). It attracted little attention at the time and was never passed. The text of the proposed law reads that "any person coming and going on the territory of the Republic must have the face uncovered to permit easy recognition and identification." Nothing there about defending women from oppression or equality between the sexes. "Recognition and identification."

6 comments:

Tom Holzman said...

A couple of years ago in Florida, there was a court case in which the court upheld a decision by the local motor vehicle authority to deny a driver's license to a Moslem woman who refused to remove her burqa for the photo so that she was identifiable. Makes sense at least in that context. It certainly might make sense from a safety standpoint to require a woman to remove a burqa while driving.

Unknown said...

This obsession with hiding women is unconscienable (but then it also exists among orthodox jews, see I am even-handed). Fundamentally, whichever way one cuts it, women living in 14th century tradition are a hundred times more likely to be oppressed (whether by their own will or not, don't underestimate the power of self debasement) than women living in 21st century tradition, and that is where the problem is: humanity has made some progress in this area over the centuries. Additionally, all religions are repressive, period. Even if some are so more than others.

eric said...

the point isn't the original source of the practice, but its force and meaning in specific places and times. So, for instance, the same piece of cloth, and the same demand to remove it, mean something different in a Florida DMV and in a French lycee. Neither case is, i think, cleared up by invoking either the 14th century or even the march of human progress.

Unknown said...

I beg to disagree. Oppression is oppression.

Unknown said...

Read this:
http://www.rue89.com/2009/06/23/burqa-les-diplomates-des-pays-musulmans-regardent-ailleurs

Seems the burqa was a 19th-c. import to Afghanistan from India and was originally an aristocratic affectation. Its political connotation dates from the 21st-c. Taliban. So what is this 14th-c. notion? And if "oppression is oppression," who is to be the judge of when it isn't? You've already indicted what you call "self-oppression." Is it "freedom" if the state tells the "self-oppressed" that they are deluded and cannot do as they wish? Before long we're in territory that only George Orwell could describe. "Like foie-gras? Sorry, you're self-oppressed, deluded, and cruel to animals to boot. A diet of seaweed and dandelions for you."

Anonymous said...

added to the new "anti-cagoule in demonstrations" law, I'm led to wonder about the white carnavale-like masks sometimes worn in demonstrations. it would be sad to see them be prohibited - they make a tremenouds effect when worn by hundreds in a procession.




Chris P.