26th Aug 20164m51s
- I wanna talk about the burqa or the burkini. Now I think that women, Muslim women or otherwise, or anybody really, has the choice to wear whatever they want, as long as it doesn't either incite violence against somebody else and as long as it isn't a security risk. So if a woman wants to wear the burqa, she should be free to do so. And I don't think that right should be taken away, so I don't think women should, should be forced to not wear the burqa and I don't think it should be banned unlike what's happening in France. However, I do think that a woman who wears the burqa is making a moral statement and potentially a political statement. So the moral statement that's usually made by women wearing the burqa, is that wearing a burqa makes one more pious, and... ens, earns one more points on the morality scale. And this is why women in countries in the middle east like Saudi Arabia, or the UAE, or even perhaps Egypt, for example, would feel pressured to wear the burqa even if they personally really wouldn't want to. Because if they didn't wear the burqa in an environment where women are encouraged to wear the burqa for morality reasons, then they would suffer morality points. They would be looked down upon. They wouldn't be considered equal to the women who do wear a burqa. So often we see ah, new converts to Islam, female converts to Islam ah, especially in the UK, exclaiming how wearing the burqa, or the ability to wear the burqa makes them more empowered than they ever have before. But that's not withstanding the fact that often young girls in middle eastern countries, in Islamic countries, are told from a very young age, they're told that they must cover themselves up; that they must modestly and ideally wear the niqab or perhaps even the burqa in order to prevent the gaze of men. Because of course in Islam, the burden of preventing sex, or preventing rape, is entirely upon the women which is why, in some cases under Sharia Law, if a woman gets raped she's the one who's considered guilty for having attracted the attention, the unwanted attention of a man. So men have next to no responsibility in terms of avoiding sex, preventing sex. Whereas a woman is always given all the responsibility which in my opinion is quite unfair. Still, I still think women can wear the burqa if they so choose, or the burkini. But this... morality point system that seems to exist with it simply feeds into the patriarchical nature of wearing modest clothing, of the idea of wearing modest clothing. And it feeds that ideology. One of the other arguments you often hear from women who wear the burqa, is that they feel that Islam allows them to live such that they're not judged for how they look unlike western society where women are judged for how they look. But of course, once you consider the idea that wearing a burqa earns you more morality points, or wearing, or covering up earns you more morality points then actually Islam does judge a woman for how she looks because a woman who doesn't cover up is judged negatively and found wanting compared to a woman who does. There've been complaints about a, the photo that's been circulating of a woman wearing a burkini on a beach in Nice I think, who ah, as it appears in the photo... she's surrounded by policemen and it is, it appears as if she is being forced to undress or remove the burkini. Now, other reports I've read have suggested that she was actually just instructed to display what she was wearing underneath. She wasn't being forced to remove the burkini. We can't be certain but the media have seized upon this narrative to illustrate how damaging this burkini ban is to France's secular tradition, where ironically they're banning the burqa because they see it as a subjugation of women by Islamic culture and here they are, subjugating women to a different set of rules, ie. not being able to wear it. The interesting here is, people who disagree with the burqa or the burkini ban can at least make their voice heard through the democratic process that exists in France. Unlike in Islamic countries where there isn't a democratic process to change the dress code which is imposed upon one. Overall, I don't think banning the burqa is right. I think people should be able to choose to wear the burqa or the burkini. However, I think it sets a moral precedent and, I think women who wear the burqa and consider themselves morally superior to women who don't, are not in the right. I think if you wear the burqa then wear it because you want to, but respect, truly respect other people's right not to wear it and don't look upon them for not doing so.