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Walrus Feeder
12-10-2006, 17:02:44
Nearly a week since MP Jack Straw voiced his opinion on Muslim women in public wearing veils which cover 95-100% of their faces and still there seems to be a lot of discussion about it.

I don't think Jack was out of order in saying he would prefer them to expose their faces when they came to speak with him at his constituency offices in Blackburn. I can see what he means when he said it seems to create barriers between people. Obviously there is no law to stop them but it just goes to show how some cultural differences bother people.

Apparently it is not an Islamic requisit to be covered up like this, but just the own person's choice.

I see quite a lot of veiled women around where i live in Manchester and like to think i'm intelligent enough to judge people beyond a surface opinion of how they look or what they wear etc, but i think there is something ethically wrong and disconcerting about people walking about disguising their faces in Britain in 2006.

What do you counterglowers think? :cute:

Scabrous Birdseed
12-10-2006, 17:42:50
It's a spiritual thing for them. How exactly does it disturb you?

JM^3
12-10-2006, 17:51:57
The point is that it creates barriers between people. They want the barriers.

I want some barriers also, which is why I have a room with a door and clothes, etc.

The veil is OK I think.

Jon Miller

Caligastia
12-10-2006, 18:06:39
Veils or any other face covering should be illegal unless the weather is below freezing.

devilmunchkin
12-10-2006, 19:36:53
i think it's their body and they should be allowed to do with it as they wish.

Oerdin
12-10-2006, 19:41:44
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
It's a spiritual thing for them. How exactly does it disturb you?

It is rud to go into an official government office and not remove headwear. If I went into court (or Congress or any other official government office) I would be asked to remove my hat so I don't see why these people shouldn't have to do the same.

Also I recall the utter BS which occured in Florida a year or two ago where a black muslim convert refused to remove the face covering to her burka so that a driver's licence photo could be taken. The state originally was cowed and allowed her to have her official driver's licence photo taken where her entire face was obscured by the burka. Lucily, the idiot governor actually had a moment of sanity and had the licence revoked until she agreed to let her picture be taken. It was insane to allow people to recieve a state issued ID without containing a picture of her face being on the ID as required by law.

Caligastia
12-10-2006, 19:41:55
Civilized people don't want to hide their faces, or the faces of their wives.

Oerdin
12-10-2006, 19:45:50
Originally posted by Caligastia
Veils or any other face covering should be illegal unless the weather is below freezing.

Agreed. Especially when you see those bastards "protesting" (often while saying they want to kill Bush/Blair or commit some other crime) while cowardly hiding their faces behind masks, scarves, or veils. If you're going to tell people you want to commit a felony then you should have the balls to show your ugly face so the police can identify you later.

To allow less is stupidity.

Caligastia
12-10-2006, 20:01:10
Yep, although I suppose an exception could be made for Halloween. It is only once a year after all. And a private party with masks would be ok. It's just the idea of being able to walk around in public with a big disguise on that is wrong.

*End Is Forever*
12-10-2006, 22:14:35
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
It's a spiritual thing for them. How exactly does it disturb you?

Last time I checked, you were opposed to patriarchal customs, right? Why is this any different?

Diss
12-10-2006, 22:18:30
most Britons need to disguise their face. :p

but in my country it seems a bit secretive.

Cruddy
12-10-2006, 23:32:30
I think everybody should go around blindfold and naked.

Oerdin
12-10-2006, 23:45:17
That would make for an ackward experience when a blindfolded guy accidently bums so other guy while trying to get in line at the supermarket.

Immortal Wombat
13-10-2006, 02:52:13
Originally posted by Caligastia
Yep, although I suppose an exception could be made for Halloween. It is only once a year after all. And a private party with masks would be ok. It's just the idea of being able to walk around in public with a big disguise on that is wrong.
Yeah, totally. We should ban wigs and fake beards as well. And sunglasses. Probably make-up as well, in case Evil Terrorist Protesters use it to disguise Identifying Features while visiting government officials.

Oerdin
13-10-2006, 03:50:16
There is a big difference between wearing a scarf over your face while declaring your intent to commit a felony and walking down the street wearing sunglasses.

If I am not mistaken it is already illegal in the UK to "protest" while wearing masks or rags which obscure your face and prevent police from identifying hodlums.

Koshko
13-10-2006, 06:10:29
Originally posted by devilmunchkin
i think it's their body and they should be allowed to do with it as they wish.


It doesn't work that way for hardcore Muslims.

Chris
13-10-2006, 06:32:34
Plenty of ugly chicks should wear veils, only good looking broads should not.

Gary
13-10-2006, 07:31:00
You want to keep the status quo ?

Nills Lagerbaak
13-10-2006, 08:12:06
Absolutely no problem with Jack saying what he did, absoutely no problem with women wearing veils.

fp
13-10-2006, 08:27:06
As far as I see it, the bottom line is that governments do not have the right to tell honest, law-abiding citizens what they should or should not wear.

I couldn't really give a fuck if people wear veils or not. But I don't approve of some patriarchal tyrant telling them they should, and I don't approve of dickhead politicians telling they shouldn't.

Tizzy
13-10-2006, 08:29:44
As I understand it, he didn't say no-one should wear a veil, he only asked a few women to remove their veils when they came to talk to him.

MOBIUS
13-10-2006, 09:50:51
It's a bunch of twats trying to politicise a common sense comment from Jack Straw...

It's as Tizzy says, so no big deal. These women are coming into his surgery, if he wants them to remove their veils then fine by me.

I am no nationalist by any means whatsoever, BUT - this is our country!

WE set the rules in our country, and if they don't like it then they can ship off back to their own country. Given how 'evil' and 'decadent' our liberal laws are supposed to be to some of our more extremist Muslim friends then it beats me why they are even here in the 1st place.

Besides, the paradox is that it is our liberal laws that allows peoples of a different race and creed to ours to practice their language and religion in our country with very little interference from the state, so that smacks of a little hypocrisy on their part.

Nowhere in the Koran does it expressly state that women are obliged to wear veils - it is an extreme interpretation. As long as our state sticks to accepting Koran 'lite', then that is fine by me - but I am damned if I am going to be told what to do in my country!

I don't mind if women want to use veils on their streets, but in situations such as proving identity then they cannot be allowed to wear them - e.g. driving tests etc where it is known that 'ringers' have been abusing the system.

Axe for teacher who kept her veil on in the classroom
Last updated at 09:17am on 13th October 2006

A Muslim teacher who insisted on wearing a veil in class has been suspended after the children complained they could not understand what she was saying.

Aishah Azmi, 24, was told she could wear the veil in the corridors and the staf froom, but had to remove it while teaching. She refused, saying it was part of her cultural and religious identity.

But children at the junior school in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, said they found English lessons hard to follow because they could not see Miss Azmi's lips move.

The Muslim Council of Britain criticised the teacher for insisting she had to keep her face covered. Dr Reefat Drabu said under Islamic law Muslim women were not required to wear a headscarf, let alone a veil, in the presence of young children.

Miss Azmi is now taking her employer, Kirklees council, to an employment tribunal. It will rule on her case later this month.

A council source said: "it is ridiculous. How can you teach English to young children with a veil over your face?

"The children themselves were complaining. It is about what's best for the children."

Many of the 529 boys and girls aged seven to 11 at Headfield Church of England Junior School are from ethnic minorities and English is not their first language, reinforcing the need for clear English teaching.

Council education spokesman Jim Dodds said: "This is nothing to do with religion. We accepted the veil could be worn anywhere else in school, but not in the classroom."

An Evening Standard survey has, meanwhile, found that the Cabinet is deeply d iv ide d over whether Muslim women should wear the veil.

Senior ministers cannot agree a common position on whether full veils such as the burka should be discouraged or not.

Most ministers say it should be a matter of choice for women - and some say privately that Commons leader Jack Straw has damaged the party's standing in the Muslim community by raising the issue at all.

Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott has defended the right of Muslim women to wear a veil and suggested banning it would fuel prejudice.

But other ministers have condemned the practice.

Constitutional Affairs minister Harriet Harman, formerly in the Cabinet, called for a campaign to abolish the veil because it kept women down and "hid" them from society.

Some MPs suggested the row was contrived to raise the profile of contenders for the deputy leadership, but Mr Straw dismissed this as "nonsense".

He stood by his remarks, saying: "These were my views. Maybe my concerns were misplaced but I thought there was an issue here."

The Muslim community seems equally divided over the issue, with some claiming his comments were insulting and others welcoming open debate.

In 2004, France banned overt religious symbols, including headscarves, from schools, citing the need to protect the secularity of the nation.

It's the Daily Mail, so take it with a pinch of salt - but a very tiny one...:rolleyes:

Gary
13-10-2006, 10:00:35
Whilst I tend to agree with Nills, I think you need to be a little careful Mobius.

As soon as one, not unreasonably since immigration is part of the issue here, start to refer to "our country", one can get bogged down on who is "we", and who is not "we". Especially given that many of those involved will have been born here.

The question is at least partially to how much integration one should expect from incomers, and how much tolerance there should be of foreign customs that incomers wish to retain. After a generation are the customer foreign any more ?

MOBIUS
13-10-2006, 10:08:32
Originally posted by Gary
Whilst I tend to agree with Nills, I think you need to be a little careful Mobius.

As soon as one, not unreasonably since immigration is part of the issue here, start to refer to "our country", one can get bogged down on who is "we", and who is not "we". Especially given that many of those involved will have been born here.

The question is at least partially to how much integration one should expect from incomers, and how much tolerance there should be of foreign customs that incomers wish to retain. After a generation are the customer foreign any more ?

Merely the fact that a very small minority should not dictate the living conditions of the vast majority. The extremists that are complaining of intolerance on the government’s part are some of the most intolerant people on the globe, and we should not capitulate to this kind of behaviour. These use of the full veil is considered an extreme interpretation of the Koran itself, so it is not like we are disrespecting the religion as a whole…

As for integration, I generally don’t mind what another culture gets up to – I love the idea of a multi-cultural society. Really all I expect is a reasonable fluency in the language of the host nation and a tolerance of the customs of that host nation.

maroule
13-10-2006, 10:16:42
my opinion on that is similar to the french official position, ban head scarf and other visible religious symbols in public places

BTW that got us a lot of sticks in the muslim world, and strong condemnations from the US neo-con and Fox crowd (the very same that were accusing us of being too soft on muslims)

We have rules here, that are the result of our history and social pact. We had to fight the catholics off our schools, and we're ready to do it again for any religion. It's simple: keep religion at home. Those who don't like our secular rules can go back to where they're coming from, or emigrate in a theocracy.

JM^3
13-10-2006, 10:31:21
But it is enforcing religious rules... Enforcing no expression is still enforcement. It is not a truly free society, where expression is free.

It is just as wrong as when Catholicism was in the schools, it is just isntaed of enforcing catholic rules, you are enforcing atheistic rules.

Jon Miller

Kitsuki
13-10-2006, 10:52:19
I think Jack Straw should wear a paper bag over his face, but do I tell him to?

I think what he said was pretty offensive. The veil is of cultural and religious significance to the women in question.

maroule
13-10-2006, 10:57:19
Originally posted by JM^3
But it is enforcing religious rules... Enforcing no expression is still enforcement. It is not a truly free society, where expression is free.

It is just as wrong as when Catholicism was in the schools, it is just isntaed of enforcing catholic rules, you are enforcing atheistic rules.

Jon Miller

spoken like a true believer... a typical BS position from religious US groups...

atheisitic is saying there is no God and when installed as a form of government (aka communist for example) preventing people to practice their faith... I'm sure you're aware that there is religious freedom in France, and that Turkey is a secular state as well

A secular country is saying that religion is a private matter that shouldn't impede on the functionning of the state. Some areas of the "polis" (city), like schools, must remain neutral from any encrochement. If you're shocked that there is no morning prayer at school, you're ripe for a theocracy

King_Ghidra
13-10-2006, 10:59:11
It's interesting, it echoes an old british army officer recruiting advert that showed from an officer's POV some random african militia guy getting really aggro. The guy suddenly calms down when the officer removes his sunglasses. The message being that officer skills are about communication, understanding etc. not just ordering people about.

It is irritating talking to people who have sunglasses on, and i'm sure the veil thing is the same, so on that front it's hard to argue with Straw.

From a political point of view i find it a very clumsy and badly managed statement, as it was absolutely guaranteed to whip up a storm in the current climate. Still, before Maroule accuses me of being naive i should perhaps suggest that straw was told to take a bullet by the labour party, and this is all some ruse to get some public debate on the issue going and to try to win public support against religious 'rights'.

maroule
13-10-2006, 11:02:53
Originally posted by Kitsuki
I think what he said was pretty offensive. The veil is of cultural and religious significance to the women in question.


that factors (being of religious significance to a certain culture) is not an acceptable argument. The basic example is excision (ablation of clitoris) of women in some black african countries. It has religious and cultural significance. Would you allow that? Where do you draw the line?

maroule
13-10-2006, 11:04:17
Originally posted by King_Ghidra
Still, before Maroule accuses me of being naive

:lol:
I wouldn't do that

MOBIUS
13-10-2006, 11:06:53
The sunglasses are a good analogy, I agree.

And it does sound like a sort of 'getting it out in the open' sort of debate.

Personally from a freedom of expression POV I have not problem. Where I draw the line is a point where veil wearers are able to flout the requirements of physical identification.

What next, women allowed to wear burkas for their passport photos...!!?:clueless:

PC gone mad - as usual.

Kitsuki
13-10-2006, 11:07:28
Originally posted by maroule
that factors (being of religious significance to a certain culture) is not an acceptable argument. The basic example is excision (ablation of clitoris) of women in some black african countries. It has religious and cultural significance. Would you allow that? Where do you draw the line?

There is a difference between a grown woman making a conscious decision to wear a veil and a child having her clitorus removed...!

maroule
13-10-2006, 11:25:27
there is no difference in view of the principle you gave ("being of religious significance"). Even the "conscious decison" argument doesn't help you here. A lot of young girls have consciously accepted having their vagina removed because they were told it was evil to have one. Only when confronted to non traditional african culture did some start to question it (and only a few of them, the impetus from stopping that came from outside, not from the victims themselves).

so what is the difference you make? where do you draw the line between what is tolerable and what is not?

Fistandantilus
13-10-2006, 11:38:46
I'm not going to post here because I fear I'd end up agreeing with Maroule. :p

Gary
13-10-2006, 11:39:42
I think what he said was pretty offensive.And there's a problem right there. Offense is so subjective. I don't see what he said as being offensive at all. OK anyone can be offended at anything, so in a sense everything is offensive, or potentially so. But I can't see why Jack's opinion could be considered offensive. I find the attempt to pillory him for expressing it, very offensive though. Seems that some sections of society almost can't wait for an excuse to claim they're being unfairly treated. :(

Oerdin
13-10-2006, 15:51:04
Originally posted by maroule

BTW that got us a lot of sticks in the muslim world, and strong condemnations from the US neo-con and Fox crowd (the very same that were accusing us of being too soft on muslims)

Yes, but those people are douch bags who were just looking for a chance to bash France and try to prove they weren't anti-muslim.

Oerdin
13-10-2006, 15:55:00
Originally posted by Kitsuki
I think Jack Straw should wear a paper bag over his face, but do I tell him to?

I think what he said was pretty offensive. The veil is of cultural and religious significance to the women in question.

If I have to take off my hat then those people need to take off their scarves. What they were doing was rud and disrespectful at least as much as if I refused to take off my headwear in a court house. That's a long standing social norm and the new comers should be forced to accept such basic social standards if they want to be part of this society.

When you become weak on these basic issues then you end up not assimulating people and instead having totally seporate cultural groups which mix as well as oil and water. It is reasonable to expect a certain amount of intigration with wider society.

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 20:22:09
So muslim women covering their hair is not, in fact, a long-time social norm?

Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women wearing veils?

Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women who, as a covering for the hair that's not supposed to be seen, wear a wig that LOOKS like their natural hair?

Would you object to all wigs?

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 20:25:39
Fact is, in western society it's almost always a concious decision to wear a veil, as a religious signifyer. I only object to it as much as I object to all religion.

It surprises me it brings out such outpourings of emotion in people - they must be doing something right if it's this provocative.

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 20:50:47
Are codpieces OK?

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 20:52:06
Are they of great cultural and religious significance to people from the West Country?

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 20:53:31
No, but they can hinder conversation by preventing eye-to-penis contact.

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 20:54:28
I don't actually mean sticking your winkie in someone's eye, of course. That's a bit nasty.

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 20:54:59
Eye-to-penis contact sounds like an injury waiting to happen.

Caligastia
13-10-2006, 20:56:08
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
So muslim women covering their hair is not, in fact, a long-time social norm?

Are we talkign about veils or hair coverings? You choose.


Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women wearing veils?

Yes. I find anyone who doesn't want to show me their face in public objectionable. Unless there is a very good reason for it of course, and religious custom is not a good enough reason.


Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women who, as a covering for the hair that's not supposed to be seen, wear a wig that LOOKS like their natural hair?

Would you object to all wigs?

Now you're being silly.

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 20:56:57
As does eye-to-eye contact. Isn't that a particularly brutal and reckless head-butt?

Caligastia
13-10-2006, 20:57:33
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
Fact is, in western society it's almost always a concious decision to wear a veil, as a religious signifyer. I only object to it as much as I object to all religion.

It surprises me it brings out such outpourings of emotion in people - they must be doing something right if it's this provocative.

Anything that provokes 'must be right'?:clueless:

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 20:57:41
Can we ban hoodies as well?

Caligastia
13-10-2006, 21:00:11
Ban burberry.

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 21:01:20
I was responding to Oerdin's comment about courthouses. But seriously, how many people here regularly see women wearing a niqab as opposed to just the hijab? I don't think I've ever seen one and I lived in a predominantly muslim region for six years!

Scabrous Birdseed
13-10-2006, 21:02:17
Originally posted by Caligastia
Anything that provokes 'must be right'?:clueless:

Islam = Punk.

Caligastia
13-10-2006, 21:05:03
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
I was responding to Oerdin's comment about courthouses. But seriously, how many people here regularly see women wearing a niqab as opposed to just the hijab? I don't think I've ever seen one and I lived in a predominantly muslim region for six years!

This whole discussion is probably a storm in a teacup then.

Caligastia
13-10-2006, 21:05:27
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
Islam = Punk.

:lol:

Oerdin
13-10-2006, 21:30:36
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
So muslim women covering their hair is not, in fact, a long-time social norm?

Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women wearing veils?

Would you also object to married orthodox jewish women who, as a covering for the hair that's not supposed to be seen, wear a wig that LOOKS like their natural hair?

Would you object to all wigs?

If it was in an official government office and prevented proper identification then yes.

Lazarus and the Gimp
13-10-2006, 21:35:00
It was a constituency surgery, not a frontier checkpoint. You can turn up in a Daffy Duck mask if you really want to.

KrazyHorse@home
13-10-2006, 23:09:54
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
But seriously, how many people here regularly see women wearing a niqab as opposed to just the hijab?

I do all the time, both in Baltimore and in Montreal

MOBIUS
13-10-2006, 23:51:37
Well already some shopping centres (e.g. Bluewater) have banned people wearing hoodies - don't remember any muslims protesting about that...

Oerdin
14-10-2006, 00:55:34
I'm sure it was just an over site.

Lazarus and the Gimp
14-10-2006, 08:39:42
I objected about the hoodie ban. Does that make me a suicide bomber?

MOBIUS
15-10-2006, 22:43:14
Originally posted by Scabrous Birdseed
I was responding to Oerdin's comment about courthouses. But seriously, how many people here regularly see women wearing a niqab as opposed to just the hijab? I don't think I've ever seen one and I lived in a predominantly muslim region for six years!

Must've missed this one, I regularly see them in Cardiff. If I spend any time in the centre of town I reckon I have about a 50% chance of a sighting...

My gf saw a niqab wearing woman driving a car nearly run someone over the other day because they can barely see where they're going.

MOBIUS
15-10-2006, 22:47:32
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
I objected about the hoodie ban. Does that make me a suicide bomber?

No. However you have a situation where a minority is blatantly taking advantage of certain properties of the garment.

At the Millennium Stadium, no plastic bottles are allowed on the grounds as they could be used as missiles - the law-abiding majority of the public suffer because of a minority.