Under the new French law, there's a fine of $216 for wearing a full-face veil, and a $43,000 fine and 1-year jail sentence for forcing someone else to wear one.
The fine is doubled for forcing a minor to cover up. You can see from the structure of the punishment that the government's intent is to protect women from subordination by private citizens. The premise — is it proved? — is that a woman is highly unlikely to freely choose this form of religious garb for herself. The freedom of women who choose the veil is counted at nothing compared to the supposed great evil in coercing women to wear it. If the coercion involved is so terrible, why not only outlaw coercion?
But is intrafamily coercion really that bad when what we're talking about is clothing? Would you be willing to accept a generally applicable law that imposed a 1-year jail sentence for forcing someone to wear clothing they don't like? Don't parents and spouses do that all the time? Would you double the sentence — on a generally applicable law — for parents who force their daughters to wear something other than what they want to wear?
Once you start asking questions like this, it is hard to avoid the conclusion that the French law is anti-Muslim.
As for those who "choose" to wear the burqua, would they "choose" to do so if they had not been habituated to do so in the first place?
It seems to me that this is an issue of conforming to society's norms and expectations. Human communication is said to be only 7% verbal. The rest - body language, facial expression, etc is explicitly hidden by the naqib. If I'm interacting with another human in a public space, I would consider hiding behind the naqib rude.
If there was a religious sect that considered the wearing of any clothes at all to be sinful, should they be prosecuted under decency laws? And if not, why should anybody else have to follow those laws? Do we allow Rastafarians to openly use cannabis?
I doubt that either of us are in a good place to do much more than repeat bits of Quranic analysis we found in translation on the Internet.
Would you be truly comfortable if we were discussing a group of men who insisted on wearing stocking masks in public?
so how many women wear full niqab in the US ?
Police Minister Mike Gallacher has revealed that police do not currently have the legal power to require women to show their face if the women refuse on religious or cultural grounds. Linky.
Yesterday, Ms Matthews avoided jail because her identity could not be proven.
Ms Matthews, 47, from Woodbine, in Sydney's southwest, had been sentenced to six months in jail for making a deliberately false statement that a policeman tried to forcibly remove her burqa because he was a racist.
But judge Clive Jeffreys said yesterday he was not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that it was Mrs Matthews who made the racism accusation because the person who complained to police was wearing a burqa at the time.
I am cool with Muslim women wearing the niqab in public, as long as I can wear my balaclava around London.
The announcement of Drider’s longshot candidacy came the same day a French court fined two women who refuse to remove their veils. Drider has her campaign posters ready to go, months before the campaign begins — and before she has the required signatures of 500 mayors in the country.
She is among a group of women mounting an attack on the law that has banned the garments from the streets of France since April and prompted similar moves in other European countries.
They are bent on proving that the ban contravenes fundamental rights and that women who hide their faces stand for freedom, not submission.
"When a woman wants to maintain her freedom, she must be bold," Drider told The Associated Press in an interview.
The court in the northern cheese-making town of Meaux ordered Hind Ahmas, 32, to pay a 120-euro (about US$160) fine, while Najate Nait Ali, 36, was fined 80 euros. It did not order them to take a citizenship course, as the prosecutor had requested.
The two veiled women arrived too late to attend the court hearing, but addressed journalists in front of the building.
“We’ve been sentenced under a law that violates European law. For us, it’s not about the size of the fine, but the principle. We can’t allow women to be convicted for freely following their religious beliefs,” Ahmas said.
The young woman, who comes from the troubled Paris immigrant suburb of Aulnay-sous-Bois, called the ruling a “semi-victory” since it opened the way for a series of appeals she hopes will lead to the law’s abolition.
Yann Gre from the “Don’t Touch My Constitution” group that is defending the two women, said that they would appeal.
If the fines are confirmed by a higher court, they will take their case to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, he said.
“This law forbids women in niqab from leaving their homes and going out in public. It’s a kind of life-sentence,” he said.
Multimillionaire businessman and aspiring presidential candidate Rachid Nekkaz has tried for months to get French courts to fine a woman for violating that country’s law against wearing a full Muslim face veil.
His efforts paid off on Thursday, when a judge levied fines against two women in Meaux, a Paris suburb, who turned up on the steps of City Hall last May wearing niqabs and offering the mayor an almond birthday cake. Now Mr. Nekkaz can challenge the controversial law in court.
Although the law came into force in April, it’s the first time a court has fined anyone for violating it. Mr. Nekkaz says he plans to ask the European Court of Human Rights to strike down the French law, which would effectively make similar legislation across Europe illegal.
Although he disapproves of the veil, he believes banning it violates individual rights and that a raft of anti-veil laws introduced in the past year is “a virus which is contaminating Europe.”
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