France has come under criticism from women’s groups and gender activists. It is forcing women, particularly Muslim women, into wearing bikinis by banning the use of the more “figure-covering” burkinis in several beach cities and towns. It is certainly oppressive to say the least and is a violation of human rights by forcing women to choose to wear only what the government prescribes. Wasn’t that the whole problem with Saudi Arabia in the first place, France?
The logic for the ban presented by the French government is twisted
The French Minister for Women’s Rights Laurence Rossignol, while defending the choice of three cities to ban burkinis, said, “The burkini is not some new line of swimwear, it is the beach version of the burqa and it has the same logic: hide women’s bodies in order to better control them”.
Is it just us or does the act of forcing women to show off their bodies also look like a move to control them?
Oppression runs both ways.
Forcing women to cover up, stay within the confines of their homes and not participate as equal citizens in the society is deplorable. So is forcing women to conform to what is an equally restrictive idea of being “liberal”. In fact, it probably is against the very essence of what being a liberal is all about – letting people choose for themselves, being open to other’s ideas, tolerating their choices and living in harmony while respecting diversity.
Women around the world have certainly been ticked off by France’s move to force women to wear bikinis
And this is how they’ve been responding:
When you force women to wear Hijab or force them to not wear #burkini, you are violating their right to choose what they wear. "sigh"
— Sabah Hamamou (@SabahHamamou) August 17, 2016
Manuel Valls says that #burkini is 'not compatible' with French values. I guess a woman's right to choose what to wear is not one of them.
— Alida Casetta (@alastegu) August 17, 2016
3m: Cops wander on beaches, check on what you are wearing, and fine you because of your swimwear. Let's sink that for 1 sec #Burkini
— Rim-Sarah Alouane (@RimSarah) August 17, 2016
France’s actions are exactly what went on in the US in 1920s
There was strict policing on the kind of attire women could wear to the beach in the United States, during the 1920s. In fact there were special police personnel who went around the beaches and checked if the clothes women were wearing were conforming with the exact rules.
The tussle over choice of clothing and the government’s regulation of what women can and cannot wear also led to violence in multiple cities in the US, during this period.
People, generally, are not happy with France
It is completely oppressive of France, after all.
The #burkini ban highlights both deeply rooted racism within french elites & their collective irresponsibility in further igniting conflicts
— Yasser Louati (@yasserlouati) August 15, 2016
— Kasia Narkowicz (@kasianarkowicz) August 14, 2016
Well, some people have found ways to cheat this ban
— Abbie Chalgoum (@Abbie1979) August 15, 2016
Wake up, France. We thought you were better than this.
Cover Image via: elespanol.com