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Widespread Support for Banning Full Islamic Veil in Western Europe

 
 
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 08:40 am
Pew Global Attitudes Project
Widespread Support for Banning Full Islamic Veil in Western Europe
Most Americans Disapprove
July 8, 2010

On July 13, members of the lower house of the French parliament are expected to vote on a bill that would make it illegal for Muslim women to wear full veils -- those that cover all of the face except the eyes -- in public places. A survey by the Pew Research Center's Global Attitudes Project, conducted April 7 to May 8, finds that the French public overwhelmingly endorses this measure; 82% approve of a ban on Muslim women wearing full veils in public, including schools, hospitals and government offices, while just 17% disapprove.1

Majorities in Germany (71%), Britain (62%) and Spain (59%) would also support a similar ban in their own countries. In contrast, most Americans would oppose such a measure; 65% say they would disapprove of a ban on Muslim women wearing full veils in public places compared with 28% who say they would approve.

In the four Western European countries surveyed as well as in the U.S., support for a ban on Muslim women wearing a full veil is more pronounced among those who are age 55 and older, although majorities across all age groups in France, Germany and Britain favor a ban. For example, 91% of French respondents age 55 and older approve of restrictions on Muslim women covering their face, compared with 81% of those ages 35 to 54 and 72% of those younger than 35.

In Spain, where 70% in the older group and a narrower majority (55%) of those ages 35 to 54 favor a ban on full veils, younger respondents are closely divided; 49% of those ages 18 to 34 approve of such measures and 47% disapprove. In the U.S., about one-third (35%) of those in the oldest age group say they would welcome a ban on veils that cover the whole face except the eyes, while 28% of those ages 35 to 54 and just 22% of those younger than 35 say the same.

Opinions about banning Muslim women from wearing a full veil do not vary along gender lines in any of the five countries where the question was asked. In France, Britain and the U.S., views on this matter are also similar across education and income groups. However, in Spain and Germany, those in higher income groups are more likely than the less affluent to approve of such a ban; for example, a slim majority (51%) of low-income respondents in Spain favor a ban on full veils, compared with 62% of those in the middle-income range and 68% of those with high incomes.

Ideologically, those on the right in France, Britain and Germany are more likely than those on the left to approve of a ban on women wearing the full Islamic veil in public places, but majorities across the political spectrum in these countries endorse such a ban. In France, 87% of those on the right support prohibiting women from wearing full veils in public, and 75% of those on the political left agree.

Spain is the only Western European country surveyed where those on both ends of the ideology scale express nearly identical views; 59% of those on the right and 57% of those on the left approve of a ban on Muslim women wearing veils that cover the whole face. Ideological differences are also insignificant in the U.S.

Entire report:

http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1658/widespread-support-for-banning-full-islamic-veil-western-europe-not-in-america?src=prc-latest&proj=peoplepress
 
xris
 
  3  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 09:07 am
Difficult subject, I oppose them wearing but not banning them. Many like me see it as a form of indoctrinated oppression of women. I feel many who wear it are pressurised into wearing the full veil. You will only hear from those women who choose to wear it, not from those pressurised to, so the true picture is obscure.
dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 09:12 am
@xris,
I feel that your feelings are no more than your feelings. My feelings is that neither society nor governments actions are based on anything other than some peoples feelings.
saab
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 09:50 am
It is also a practical question. Often we are asked to show an ID, if we have a monthly ticket for public transportation the driver has to be able to see our faces.
A veil, which covers the face except the eyes could be removed for a short time to show the face, but a Muslim woman would not do so if the person asking is a man.
With a burka it is different as it covers the whole body from top to toe and she can hardly be asked to lift it or take it off to show her face.
Personally I see no reason to bann a veil if the Muslim women would cooperate.
On the other hand it is forbidden or at least was forbidden in Turkey.

A little more tolerance from both sides would not hurt at all.
A Finnish lady living in Italy has made it possible that cruzifixes should be banned in schools in Italy. This law which comes from EU or the Court of Human Rights could lead to that any Christian symbol in public areas could be forbidden. If this law goes too far even the flags of 18 countries could be forbidden as there is a cross in them.

On the other hand Italy could take revenge and see to that saunas are forbidden in Finland.
engineer
 
  4  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 09:53 am
@BumbleBeeBoogie,
I don't think that majority support for oppression of a minority means much. While I see the "women are forced to wear it" logic, that doesn't trump the rights of women who choose to wear it. We all do things, often dumb things to fit into our society and face the wrath of society if we choose not to conform. Their society demands this of them. The better answer would be education, both for the women and for their persecutors.
0 Replies
 
Pepijn Sweep
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 10:11 am
@xris,
Also wedding veils ? I just getting ready
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xris
 
  2  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 10:34 am
@dyslexia,
Sorry but what are you actually saying?
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xris
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 10:59 am
@saab,
If it opposes an existing law like identifying yourself on a bus ,then if you cant be identified, you dont travel. Its not banning the veil but it might restrict your ability. That surely is your choice, we cant design laws to fit every individuals desires or reasoning. We must also consider that the KSA customs confiscates bibles and crucifixes when you enter their country, should we be more concerned with this? Muslim countries dictate to non muslims certain laws that are not appropriate to their beliefs, should we point to that in response. I dont think its unfair for anyone to oppose the wearing of the Burka, it is alien and for many very intimidating. As for banning im undecided.
saab
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 11:12 am
@xris,
If it opposes an existing law like identifying yourself on a bus ,then if you cant be identified, you dont travel

---------------------------------------

That is the problem. Some busdrivers in Copenhagen have not allowed women with a veil on the bus, and then they have been punished in some way. If they allow them on board - the can be punished by their emplyers. There has been controversial happenings regarding the veil and riding on a bus.
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 11:55 am
Apparently, in France, they fear terrorist men would hide inside full veils to achieve an attack.

Would this law also ban halloween masks and costumes?

BBB
saab
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 12:32 pm
@BumbleBeeBoogie,
By the way, women in full veil or maybe it was a burka have achieved an attack.

We should not get hysterical. One can hide things for an attack in almost any way we want to. Halloween costumes, carneval oustumes, as backpacker you name it and it can be used.
xris
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 01:19 pm
@saab,
Not many halloween costumes try getting on a plane. The practicality must be considered. Sikhs refusing to wear helmets was just as contentious.
ebrown p
 
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Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 01:22 pm
How do you free someone from "indoctrinated oppression" by taking away their rights?

It really makes no sense.
xris
 
  2  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 02:16 pm
@ebrown p,
What? taking whose rights, the indoctrinated or those who indoctrinate? Facing the truth is not easy.
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 02:29 pm
@xris,
If you are telling me what I can or can't wear... then you are taking away my rights. If you tell Muslim women what they can or can't wear, you are taking away the rights of Muslim women.

By banning the veil, you are telling Muslim women (and everyone else for that matter) that they can't wear a veil. If I were a Muslim woman, I would tell you to buzz off and dress your own damn self.

The truth, in this case, is very easy. Adults should be able to decide for themselves what they want to wear. If you want to wear a veil, then that this your own business.


saab
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 02:55 pm
@xris,
People donĀ“t just try to blow up planes.
In London 5 years ago carried rucksacks as far as I remember. In Germany 2 men put suitcases on a train and left the train. Luckily nothing happened.

0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 02:59 pm
Let's just get the truth out in the open. Banning the veil is bigotry, pure and simple. This is singling out a practice of one ethnic group. This type of bigotry should not exist in a modern free democracy.

If we banned yarmulke (the head covering worn by some Jewish men) I would just as strong... but this wouldn't happen these days. It is great that hateful bigotry against Jewish people is scorned in Western democracies.

It is a shame that hatred and bigotry toward Muslims is acceptable and promoted.



Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 03:10 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

If you are telling me what I can or can't wear... then you are taking away my rights.


So you can walk through your city's main street naked, because you like to so?
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 03:12 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
Banning the veil is bigotry, pure and simple. This is singling out a practice of one ethnic group.


Why is this singling out an ethnic group? We don't have a lot of Muslim women wearing a veil here - all those, who try to get a court judgement are ... white, German born ...
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Mon 12 Jul, 2010 03:26 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
In Germany, would anyone try to ban the yarmulke (the head covering worn by observant Jewish men)? How would is banning clothing worn by one ethnic group not singling them out? (Religion, be it Jewish or Muslim, is certainly a big part of ethnicity).

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