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← Moral compass: a guide to religious freedom

EvN's Avatar Jump to comment 29 by EvN

…It should not, however, impose a ban on those who have chosen to wear the burqa. Some suggest that burqas cause harm because they may pose security problems, or be incompatible with the needs of particular jobs. Such practical problems can usually be solved on a case-by-case basis without the need for draconian legislation.

Nonsense. These practical problems cannot be solved in an impractical manner. How on earth does one solve such problems on a case-to-case basis? Run to court in every case? In Common Law jurisdictions the law and precedent beds down the principles and in Civil Law jurisdictions the text of the law does the job. The “cases” all need to be evaluated according to the same law for different people.

I am also not aware that any of the legislation can be described as “draconian.” What is draconian about expecting people not to hide their identities in public or to ban garments that obscure sight when other people’s lives may depend on unhindered sight?

Whatever one’s beliefs, there should be complete freedom to express them, short of inciting violence or other forms of physical harm to others.

Only physical harm? I wonder what would happen to my business if my sales staff wear their pentacles and other supposedly “satanic” symbols when they visit my clients? My staff are welcome to their religious freedoms – not on my time and not on my dime.

I will certainly not allow a woman covered in a burqa in my office. I am not discriminating on the basis of race or religion. I need to see who I am dealing with in order to prevent harm to myself and my business. I really, really do not want to explain to a court why I cannot identify my own client. I also do not allow hoodies that obscure faces in my office.

Comment 6 by Jos Gibbons

Whenever the gays vs Christian B&B issue comes up, someone claims legally companies can have, for example, no-blacks policies. I bet there’s a lawyer on this forum; could someone who actually knows the law (state in which country, please) say what the situation really is? Of course, Malik may be referring to what should be disallowed in a secular state.

In South Africa, a company may not discriminate on the basis of skin colour or sexual orientation for any reason (legitimate affirmative action on basis of skin colour excluded). We have had such cases and the companies lost every single case in the courts.

I understand that this is the case in just about all Common Law and “modern” Civil Law jurisdictions and even more so in countries with written constitutions.

@ xmaseveeve and Vrij

I am getting more and more irritated by the burqa-wearing women in Western societies being seen as victims. They are often portrayed as downtrodden and indoctrinated etc.etc. by Western women. However, they themselves state clearly that they choose to wear the burqa. Let’s take them at their word and require of them everything that we require of other women who make their own choices. If they want to drive a car, let them be subject to exactly the same requirement regarding unobscured vision. If they want to pick up their children at school, let them identify themselves properly as all other parents must do. If they then want to retire to their houses in misery as they made a silly choice, let them bloody well do so.

I am sick of these women, who help to perpetuate discrimination against ALL women, having their cake and eating it.

What do you think?

Mon, 25 Jun 2012 18:10:05 UTC | #948049