This weekend we have seen the news that the European People’s Party, the European parliament’s biggest political grouping, has said that it would support a EU wide ban on women wearing Islamic face veils.
The idea of women not being allowed to wear a niqab or a burqa in the west and non-Islamic countries, now seems to be a popular thought amongst people. With the EPP now stating it would support a ban, the proposed ban is shown to be no longer a ‘far-right’ policy proposed by ‘racists’ who could not be taken seriously.
The left of course do not agree with such a ban with the argument that “freedom and liberty is found within western nations”, and therefore women should have the right to wear whatever they want to wear in order to fulfil their religious obligations, especially within a land of freedom and equality.
However is seeing a woman in a Western country wearing an Islamic face veil, a sign of the freedom and equality found within the west? Or is it a sign of the complete opposite; the oppression of women and the patriarchy found within Islam.
I am not even going to try and pretend I know the extent of oppression that is put upon Muslim women. I could easily read articles in the Daily Mail and assume them to be 100% true, but the valid way to judge the extent of Islamic patriarchy would be to read Islamic texts themselves, of which I am unlikely to ever find motivation to do.
Although one must ask, why is it only Muslim women who have to cover their faces? Why not Muslim Men as well? Why are Muslim women not allowed to pray whilst they are on their period (I know that’s absolutely bizarre!)? Why did the Taliban ban education for Muslim women but not Muslim men (yes I know the vast majority of Muslims aren’t as radical as the Taliban but lets face it, the Taliban aren’t exactly Buddhists are they!? They still act under the name of Islam. They are still Muslims)? Why does the Qur’an permit Muslim men to have four wives but not vice-versa? Why are women in Islamic societies expected to stay at home and not participate in public life? Why are Muslim wives in Islamic societies expected to cook, clean and look after the children while their husbands work? Why are Muslim women not allowed to drive in certain Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia? Why were Muslim women only given the right to vote in Saudi Arabia as late as 2015? Why do Muslim women have to endure Female Genital Mutilation? Why are Muslim women (and men to be fair) forced to marry?
Western societies such as that of Britain are still patriarchal in the twenty first century with issues such as equal pay between men and women (after reading the last paragraph do you really think that is such an issue). Of course it is no issue to me if feminists carry on with their ‘warheads’ pointed at Western society; outraged at the pure and utter evil fact that builders like to ‘wolf whistle’ at pretty blonde women walking by wearing short skirts. But just have a minute and take a look at Islam. That is gender inequality at another level. If Muslim women are continuously covering their faces and not being allowed to show their beauty whilst in Western society, then that contradicts the freedom and equality that the West is proud to have.