Friday, February 4, 2011

German State, Hesse, Bans Burka in Public Sector

I can't say I'm a fan of telling women what they have to wear, but it's becoming increasingly clear that Europeans are fed up with Islam.

A German state yesterday became the first region in the country to ban Muslim women from wearing burkas.

The country has been gripped for several months by an angry debate on multiculturalism with many Germans voicing their concerns over immigration.

Hesse, a state run by Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats, has now became the first German region to ban Muslim face veils for public sector workers.

Hesse Interior Minister Boris Rheinsaid it was 'not acceptable' for a teacher in Frankfurt to wear a face veil because 'public sector workers are obligated to have neutral religious and political views'.

The decision was prompted by a local teacher who had told her school she wanted to wear a burka in the classroom after returning from maternity leave. She had not previously worn one.

Only a small minority of Muslim women in Europe cover their faces, but their veils have become symbols for Europeans troubled by problems such as the economic crisis, immigration and Muslim integration.

A poll last year showed 61 percent of Germans favoured a burka ban. Ban supporters include a Catholic bishop in Bavaria, and also the country's most prominent feminist, Alice Schwarzer. (Read more.)


*****UPDATE*****

A friend from Germany emailed me this morning, noting some inaccuracies in the above article. He had some corrections to suggest:

Dear David,

I just looked at your latest blog entry, stating:

"Hesse Interior Minister Boris Rheinsaid it was 'not acceptable' for a teacher in Frankfurt to wear a face veil because 'public sector workers are obligated to have neutral religious and political views'."

Frankly, that is nonsense. It is not your fault, since you are simply quoting another source, but this report is not accurate.

Public service employees have to behave religiously neutral (i.e. not push a certain religious conviction in public) but it does certainly NOT mean that they cannot HAVE a religious or political view / conviction. That is utter nonsense. There are Christians, Muslims, atheists, etc. among them who hold their views with full conviction, but they cannot bring that conviction into the workplace and subject others to it while at work.

Then the report continues:

"The decision was prompted by a local teacher who had told her school she wanted to wear a burka in the classroom after returning from maternity leave. She had not previously worn one."

She was definitely NOT a school teacher, but working in the city administration (I do not know exactly what position). Here is a German report about it:

http://www.pi-news.net/2011/02/burka-frau-gibt-auf-debatte-geht-weiter/

11 comments:

Jabari said...

First France bans the Burka, now Germany. Who's next?

Tizita said...

good for them! who will be the next brave one to also say no?

human beings like to look at each other, and if u prefer to have ur face covered then might as well stay home, after all isn't that ur point not 2 be seen by people? Then the best place not 2 be seen by the public will be inside ur home.

the only problem is the muslims don't seem to understand that. hmmmmm

Lindert said...

@Jabari "Who's next?"

probably the Netherlands. The goverment parties here have already agreed about this, and a majority of parliament supports it.

donna60 said...

What kind of covering did Greek women wear in Corinth? That is all that I want to know. Every dang preacher I talk to has a different view-point about 1 Cor. 11.

I don't cover at all. Not during church services, not outside of church services--except for the cold. But what if I should change my mind because of 1 Cor.11?

I would hate to face government prosecution for my faith in a free society, because of what I wear.

Haecceitas said...

Presumably the Dailymail article is a bit inaccurate when it says that

"A German state yesterday became the first region in the country to ban Muslim women from wearing burkas."

Banning only the burka (and only banning it from Muslim women) would be discriminatory. Banning the burka AND every other kind of actual and possible relevantly similar clothing from every person in relevantly similar circumstances could be justified. In some contexts, the justification might come from the need to identify a person, but in this case it appears to be related to a need for public sector workers to have religiously neutral clothing. Sounds reasonable enough, as long as the restriction covers other types of clothing with a clear religious association as well.

PYEM Ministry Inc. said...

I am glad Germany is waking up to this.

Islamic dress doesn't generally mean belonging to a sect. It is a way to propagate a message of hate, oppression and subjugation. This offends every freedom-loving and educated man and woman and must be banished from every free country.

They can legislate a law that it can be worn @ home 24/7, but not in public

Haecceitas said...

"This offends every freedom-loving and educated man and woman and must be banished from every free country."

I support every reasonable legislation that tries to uphold the freedom for a woman to choose her dress (including a Muslim woman to choose not to wear burka) but I don't think that banning certain type of clothing "from every free country" on the grounds of it "offends people" is the way to go. Perhaps there is an argument to be made for burka being a potential public safety risk due to problems with identifying people but that would be a different argument.

Radical Moderate said...

I don't know about this law or the implications, but I am against the government telling people what they can and can not wear.

However i do believe that in cases were identification is necessary like getting photo ID, getting a drivers licence, driving, walking into a bank, or being questioned by a police officer, then commonsense says that a woman must remove her veil.

Also a employers should and do have the right to enforce a dress code, and I believe in a open society a employer should have the right to have a burka ban.

cmclvr said...

Radical Moderate says: I don't know about this law or the implications, but I am against the government telling people what they can and cannot wear.
First of all Burkha is not a dress. It is just some cloth used to box the body like tarpaulin is used to cover the contents of a truck. A woman in Islam is treated like an object to be hidden from public view – oppression of women by brainwashing them with hell fire if they do not follow what Allah likes. The fanatics consider women as a constant sexual provocation in nature and as a priced personal possession of men in value. We always secure and hide what we think as our priced possessions. It is with this attitude these brainwashed community boxes its women.
Boxing the body denies identity of the boxed to the rest of people. It cannot be allowed as a personal choice as a boxed woman will qualify as an unknown entity having the privilege of knowing the identity of others – violation of rights of others. These people refuse to integrate to mainstream life, segregate themselves in to ghettos, condition and brainwash their females right from childhood to accept this kind values. If entertained, they will never integrate socially and politically to their host nation. It is for this reason that this kind of practice where women are considered as walking vaginas must not be respected in the West even as personal choice of women. It is all a part of exhibiting the glory of non-existent supremacist status of Islam. As it is not a dress, governments have every right to insist on some dress of their choice that does not hide their face - personal identity. It is a healthy interference as it will ensure with drawl of their female ambassadors from their public duty of advertising for Islam. It will certainly help some to think of integrating in to mainstream life.
Incidentally, nowhere in their religious texts, hijab or Burkha is specifically mentioned or described. There is emphasis that women must dress modestly. Thus, it is not a part of religious practice. It was a tribal practice that is deliberately Islamized by the fanatics. The fanatics have interpreted modest dressing as boxing the woman to limit her dangerous levels of provocation. How can this be accepted in a free world?

David Wood said...

Cmclvr said: "Incidentally, nowhere in their religious texts, hijab or Burkha is specifically mentioned or described. There is emphasis that women must dress modestly. Thus, it is not a part of religious practice. It was a tribal practice that is deliberately Islamized by the fanatics."

What do you do with Qur'anic passages such as 24:31 and 33:59? (We can discuss the Hadith after I understand your interpretation of the Qur'an.)

24:31--"And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent (like palms of hands or one eye or both eyes for necessity to see the way, or outer dress like veil, gloves, head-cover, apron, etc.), and to draw their veils all over Juyubihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms, etc.) and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all."

33:59--O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies (i.e.screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way). That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever OftForgiving, Most Merciful.

cmclvr said...

I am honored by David Wood’s comments. I meant, specifically, usage of the words “Hijab” and “Burkha”. “Adornments” in sexual context may be body skin and body curves. Does it involve even the face? Are we to accept that a woman is such a sexual object that just her face triggers uncontrollable lust and sexuality in men? Then, the scope of 24:31 and 33:59 appear to suggest that the women must box herself completely and appear like a Ghost to others. But, still, the term used is “tell” in both the verses. No room to interpret this as a suggestion and not as a commandment or compulsion?