Tuesday, 23 September 2014

When You Are No Longer "Democratic"

You know that you have utterly failed in your identity as "democratic" when you start telling women how to dress.

A posting to the Facebook discussion group "British Muslims for Secular Democracy" of the Standard (UK) news article "Camden School Bans Muslim Teenager from Taking A-Levels Because She Wears the Niqab" evoked a variety of responses. Some were supportive of a woman's right to choose how she dresses her body. Some stated that legal bans are less desirable than pressure to abandon face coverings from within the Muslim community. Most, however, completely lost sight of the fact that it is women and women alone who should be deciding what to do with their bodies - and that includes clothing - and supported legal bans of face coverings for women.

Leighton Evans: "My opinion is this. It's not compulsory so she cant claim religious discrimination and should work to to the rules of the college. Fit in or f off."

Yay. Plurality Fail.

Marina Mahbub: "Thats true there are muslim schools so she could have gome there. Its not practical to wear niqab for things like exams"

Abz Hassan: "It's a good idea to impose the ban, she could be wearing google glass or anything under that covering. She knew what the dress code was, but was hoping the school would buckle and provide special treatment I guess. Doesn't work like that. Not in this country anyway."

A very typically patriarchal response: "Oooooo, she could be wearing ANYTHING under that (or nothing all)!" Also, nation as a monolith.

Imogen Louise Rahman: "Leighton it's not an obligation. Sunnah is not obligatory but is important"

Leighton Evans: "I must try wearing a balaclava and demanding only males speak to me next time I have an interview. Quite rightly I'd be told to fuck off."

And an example of the oh-so-endearing "Why can't men have special privileges, too?" whine. Yay patriarchy.

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