Why France's Burkini Ban Is Absolutely Senseless

Why France's Burkini Ban Is Absolutely Senseless

This is what happens when fear mongering rises to a whole new level in Cannes, France.
15
views

Just when you thought France couldn't get any more Islamophobic than it already is, the mayor of Cannes decided to ban women from wearing burkinis – full-body swimsuits – on beaches.

Why, you ask?

Because Mayor David Lisnard believes a burkini is "the symbol of Islamist extremism". He cites France's secular laws and the recent terror attack in Nice, France in order to support his ordinance.

"Beachwear which ostentatiously displays religious affiliation, when France and places of worship are currently the target of terrorist attacks, is liable to create risks of disrupting public order," his policy states.

But what about other religious symbols, like the Jewish kippah or Christian cross?

Not included, because apparently, to the mayor, every other religious symbol is totally fineanything but this Islamic garment. So if you want to keep it "modest" at the beach ladies, looks like the only option left is to wear a headscarf with that bikini. Any woman caught wearing a burkini will be fined 38 euros if she does not leave the beach or change into another outfit.

"Not a day goes by without the target of Muslims, especially Muslim women in France," Yasser Louati, a human rights and civil liberties activist, told Al Jazeera.

"There is a feeling now that France is at war with its own citizens. Today they are Muslims, and yesterday they were Jews," said Louati. "French elites cannot live in peace with minorities."

Understandably enough, anti-racism organizations and human rights activists all over France are outraged over the discriminatory city ordinance. The Collective Against Islamophobia in France (CAIF) said it's filing a lawsuit challenging the legality of the Cannes's ordinance. The CAIF urges tolerance in communities, noting that a third of the 85 victims of the terror attack in Nice, France were Muslim. The League of Human Rights also issued a statement that it would challenge the ban in court.

Even the French media is questioning the legality of the burkini ban. The French newspaper Liberation accuses the ban of being exclusively political while another French newspaper, Le Monde, disputes the ordinance on legal grounds: "The law on the full-face veil only bans covering the face in public...The burkini, which covers the body but does not hide the face, is thus a totally legal garment."

And considering that a burkini is not much different than a wetsuit, the ban raises several questions about what "suitable beachwear" even implies.

Moreover, how does a burkini symbolize a link to any terrorist group, let alone ISIS? Does Mayor Lisnard think the women of ISIS flock around beaches to lounge "ostentatiously" in their burkinis? Or is this ban meant to eliminate the threat of ISIS swooping in on Cannes beaches to recruit a couple of burkini babes, as if the garment is some sort of advertisement for terrorism?

As Judge Marie said on France TV Info's legal blog, "The basic freedom to come and go dressed as you please seems to me to be infringed in a way that is disproportionate to this risk."

As tensions continue to rise in France, critics argue that the religious divide has only deepened due to the ban of yet another Muslim garment.

"Yet again it's ordinary Muslims who pay for the actions of terrorists even though they had nothing to do with it," Feiza Ben Mohamed, the spokeswoman for the Southern Federation of Muslims told The Local. "They [ISIS] are trying to recruit young people in France and they will be saying to them, ‘look, France stigmatizes Muslims; look, France won’t let you wear the veil’."

“At a time when politicians should be doing everything to avoid tension between communities, they have done exactly the opposite,” she added.

Cover Image Credit: NPR

Popular Right Now

The Trump Presidency Is Over

Say hello to President Mike Pence.

53012
views

Remember this date: August 21, 2018.

This was the day that two of President Donald Trump's most-important associates were convicted on eight counts each, and one directly implicated the president himself.

Paul Manafort was Trump's campaign chairman for a few months in 2016, but the charges brought against him don't necessarily implicate Trump. However, they are incredibly important considering was is one of the most influential people in the Trump campaign and picked Mike Pence to be the vice presidential candidate.

Manafort was convicted on five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of failure to file a report of a foreign bank account. And it could have been even worse. The jury was only unanimous on eight counts while 10 counts were declared a mistrial.

Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer, told a judge that Trump explicitly instructed him to break campaign-finance laws by paying two women not to publicly disclose the affairs they had with Trump. Those two women are believed to be Karen McDougal, a Playboy model, and Stormy Daniels, a pornstar. Trump had an affair with both while married to his current wife, Melania.

And then to no surprise, Fox News pundits spun this in the only way they know how. Sara Carter on Hannity said that the FBI and the Department of Justice are colluding as if it's some sort of deep-state conspiracy. Does someone want to tell her that the FBI is literally a part of the DOJ?

The Republican Party has for too long let Trump get away with criminal behavior, and it's long past time to, at the very least, remove Mr. Trump from office.

And then Trump should face the consequences for the crimes he has committed. Yes, Democrats have a role, too. But Republicans have control of both chambers of Congress, so they head every committee. They have the power to subpoena Trump's tax returns, which they have not. They have the power to subpoena key witnesses in their Russia investigations, which they have not.

For the better part of a year I have been asking myself what is the breaking point with Republicans and Trump. It does not seem like there is one, so for the time being we're stuck with a president who paid off two women he had an affair with in an attempt to influence a United States election.

Imagine for a second that any past president had done even a fraction of what Trump has.

Barack Obama got eviscerated for wearing a tan suit. If he had affairs with multiple women, then Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell would be preparing to burn him at the stake. If they won't, then Trump's enthusiastic would be more than happy to do so.

For too long we've been saying that Trump is heading down a road similar to Nixon, but it's evident now that we're way past that point. Donald Trump now has incriminating evidence against him to prove he's a criminal, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller is just getting started.

Will Trump soften the blow and resign in disgrace before impeachment like Nixon did? Knowing his fragile ego, there's honestly no telling what he'll do. But it's high time Trump leaves an office he never should have entered in the first place.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Beto O'Rourke Is The Future For The Democratic Party

Democrats need a new voice, and now they have him.

527
views

As a self-professed progressive, the 2016 presidential election was one of the darkest days of my life. Every day I wish that the election had turned out differently. But if there's a silver lining, the Democratic Party has almost completely reinvented itself and has a chance to move forward.

Barack Obama was an amazing leader for the party for a decade. Hillary Clinton was arguably the most-flawed candidate the modern-day Democratic Party has ever nominated, and she lost to the most-flawed Republican ever nominated. So now the Democrats need someone to look up to and lead the way past the regressive presidency of Donald Trump. That man is Beto O'Rourke.

O'Rourke is a representative of Texas's 16th congressional district, which covers the city of El Paso. But right now people in the political world know him as the guy who is running against arguably the most-hated man in the Senate, Ted Cruz. Former House Speaker and fellow Republican John Boehner once said that Cruz is "Lucifer in the flesh."

Cruz prides himself in being hated by Washington politicians, but hatred from his current colleagues could come back to bite him. "If you killed Ted Cruz on the floor of the Senate, and the trial was in the Senate, nobody would convict you," said Lindsey Graham, Republican senator from South Carolina.

If O'Rourke wins in November, he'll take down Cruz, who is one of the most powerful and influential Republicans in Washington despite being hated. And it could launch Beto to even higher office someday.

Even if he loses to Cruz, Beto has an extremely bright future ahead of him because he's just what the Democratic Party needs right now. He's young, passionate, communicates extremely well and is a perfect representation of what the face of the party should be.

This year, O'Rourke has been setting an example of how Democrats should run their campaigns. Beto has traveled to every single one of Texas's 254 counties. Ever since the Supreme Court's decision on Citizens United v. FEC (2010), Democrats have pushed for campaign finance reform, and O'Rourke is leading by example with his campaign. Beto has taken $0 from Political Action Committees (PACs). All of his money comes from individual donors. Cruz has taken PAC money, but O'Rourke still holds a significant advantage in fundraising.

O'Rourke in his campaign emphasizes that Texas has among the highest immigration populations in the United States, but the senators from Texas, Cruz and John Cornyn, do not accurately represent the diversity of the state. O'Rourke has separated himself from Cruz by speaking out against the proposed border wall and the separation of immigrant children at the border.

I'm not from Texas, but I'm just as excited for this senate race as I was when Doug Jones won in my home state almost a year ago. Beto O'Rourke has an opportunity to make positive change in our country and actually bring people together. If he doesn't win in November, Beto should make plans for 2020 because he can become the face of the Democratic Party.

If you'd like to learn more about, join, or donate to the campaign, here is a link.

Related Content

Facebook Comments