Example Of Essay On Should The Burqa Be Banned?
The Burqa is the formal head-covering worn by many Muslim and Middle Eastern women. It covers their entire body, including veiling the eyes, entirely hiding the wearer from site. It is most associated with Afghanistan and is perceived, especially, by American perspectives as a representation of the inequality offered to women in many Middle Eastern and Muslim cultures. Modern thinkers and lawmakers wonder if making the covering illegal it will benefit the women who wear them; like freeing them from bondage. However, while modesty is encouraged, the burqa is not entirely a requirement of the Islamic faith. In fact, it is more of a cultural tradition developed in a number of countries, like Afghanistan and Turkey (Tristam, 2014). Many American-raised and immigrated Muslim women chose whether or not they will wear the burqa, however, neither option is forced. There are many women who do choose the burqa. Not just as a manifestation of their faith, but in order to remain modest and free from, what they see as, a over-sexualizing of women in Western culture (Krayem and McCue, 2014). To make the burqa illegal would be to further repress women’s right to choose what they will wear. How can anyone associate “freeing” women from institutional inequality, while, at the same time, taking away their freedom to choose their attire? Making the burqa illegal is not the solution to this social concern.
Women should have the right to wear what makes them the most comfortable. For many Muslim women this includes wearing the burqa as is their cultural traditions. In the United States, if one does not wear the burqa then they cannot be forced to, but if they choose to take up the burqa, then it should not be banned? This makes no sense. Of course, in the United States is not prepared to render the clothing illegal, but they may consider it for one very significant reason; Terrorism. If someone is completely covered there is no way to know, on sight, if that person is male or female, and more importantly if they are concealing weapons or explosives. While terrorism is a serious subject that needs to be addressed, identifying anyone in a burqa as being more likely to be a terrorist is someone, anyone, dressed like they are from the Middle East, is a little racist. However, in Belgium, France and, very soon, Australia the burqa has been rendered illegal in public places (Chesler, 2010).
This is not the direction that the United States should consider going. We are a country of diversity and that means that we must learn to be tolerant and less judgmental (Tristam, 2014). If the government begins telling the people what they can wear, whether for cultural or religious reasons, then people, women, and Muslims, along with all of us, are losing rights not gaining them. Will the next thing be the illegality of the yamaka on the heads of Jewish men or the wearing of Christian crosses in public will also be banned? That said there is no way that making an article of clothing illegal is beneficial to anyone. There are far more negative representation in attire and manifestation of one’s personal belief system that is far more offensive and problematic. For example, it is advantageous to make the burqa illegal for Muslim and Middle Eastern women, but there are Neo-Nazi’s out on the streets flashing swastikas and hate messages as part of their outfits, but we do not ban their clothing because it is a defiance of their rights. Is not the same true for all who live within United States borders regardless of their race, creed or religion; would that not make such a ban Un-American? Realistically, it certainly would be.
In the end, other countries have optioned or are considering, the illegalizing of the burqa will improve the self-image and feminine rights of the women who may or may not be forced or obligated to wear them. Whether that is true is yet to be seen. For now, it is not the direction that American should choose. You cannot take away a freedom, like choosing one's clothing, under the umbrella of granting greater freedom. It makes no sense. Women in the United States, who have chosen the burqa, should not be denied their American rights and freedoms; they work, shop, and eat-out, they simply chose to do so while wearing the burqa. The truth is that such things should be a matter of personal choice and not open for government debate.
Chesler, Phyllis. "Ban the Burqa? The Argument in Favor." The Middle Eastern Quarterly 17.4
(2010): 34-45. Print.
Krayem, Ghena, and Helen McCue. "The 'burqa Ban' Call Only Creates Division." ABC News:
Drum 1 Oct. 2014. Web. <http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-10-02/krayem-mccue-the-burqa-ban-call-only-creates-division/5785318>.
Tristam, Pierre. "Readers Respond: Should Burqas Be Banned?" About Middle East Issues 1 Jan.
2014. Web. <http://middleeast.about.com/u/ua/religionsectarianism/burqa-hijab-ban.htm>.
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