Liberty, Equality, Fraternity!
This was once the cry of French revolutionaries from centuries gone as they tore down the archaic monarchy of old for the new in the creation of a republic. How times have changed since then. Of course what I’m talking about here is the debate around the burkini, which flared up recently as the Mayor of the French Riviera town of Cannes has banned the garb from their shores.
No doubt this will be seen by some as but another battle in the culture war for Europe, in which the fight is between the supposedly increasing islamification of Europe and their host European cultures. After all France is one of the few European counties who have banned the burqa, which many on the right believe it to be a symbol Islams oppression of women and it “simply doesn’t fit into an open society” .
Thus the burkini was banned in an attempt to keep the peace, as due to the recent terror attacks upon France herself the burkini was at risk of “disrupting public order”, accused of being a garb which affiliates itself with terrorist organisations. Although this hasn’t stopped people from wearing it, despite facing fines and having to remove them on the spot.
Kudos to those who refuse to abide by this, unlike the banning of the burqa in which the face is covered (where the main issue arises), the burkini is basically a swimming suit with a headscarf attached to it. Whatever reasons people have for wanting to ban such apparel it really doesn’t stand up to reality, the freedom which exists in the West is something to be cherished, the burkini is a representation of this freedom and does no harm to anyone so why should it have been banned? Luckily a French court thought the same thing and saw the banning as a “violation of basic freedoms” .
No doubt this won’t be the end of this, but it has encouraged a healthy debate around such issues which is never a bad thing.