Observant readers may have noticed last Wednesday’s outrage over recent developments in the once liberal and extremely secular France we all came to love. A liberal country, a society devoid of a civil dress code, leaving its citizens free to think, say or wear what suits them, which during the past week apparently turned into the complete opposite.
As we all learnt in the onset of the weekend now nearing its end, France’s top administrative court on Friday suspended the burkini ban – on civil liberties grounds.
All is, I suppose, well, that ends well.
Please understand, though, that my sentiment is nothing to do with the burkinis, or hijabs, niqabs and burqas, for that matter, but the values with which we pride ourselves, clearly in peril, due to our fear of terrorists wearing everything but burkinis.
Granted burkinis don’t belong to our culture, but I’ll let you in on a well-kept secret: Neither do cowboy hats. Truth is I find niqabs and burqas every bit as scary as the next guy, but for the love of God (regardless of what we call Him or Her), let the freedom to think, say and wear what we want, remain among the hallmarks of our democracies.
There are far better ways to counter terrorism (which is, after all, what this is all about), in itself completely unrelated to the afore-mentioned attires.
So thank you, France, for allowing us, once again, to shout a resounding
Vive la France!
Let’s just hope this nonsense has come to an end, despite continued social media commotion (coz let’s face it: it isn’t the clothing they’re after – not really).
Illustration: Islam critic and muslim. Blogger’s archived drawing (too lazy to draw a burkini-related one).