ANSWERS: 50
  • Yeah! It's an expression of their culture. Who are we to say they can't express their culture. And at least I can speak for America, where it's nothing but a mix of different cultures. Which is why I love this country.
  • Yes, of course. You can't start telling people what they can and can't wear. It's a headscarf, not a gun.
  • Certainly, and if necessary I would defend their right to do so.
  • I don't see why not. It is part of their culture. As long as it isn't hurting anyone to me it is just like anyone else wearing something because of their culture or even to make a fashion statement.
  • They can wear it, but as for the case where the Muslim woman wanted to be photographed for her driver's license with it on, that should not be (and wasn't) allowed. But I see no reason that otherwise they shouldn't be allowed to wear it.
  • France has banned the practice of hiding the face. I do not know how successful they have been. I realize there are religious connotations, so I would be hesistant to ban it. On the other hand, we do not allow people to hide behind bandana scarfs, like cowboys, due to security issues in banks, Quikie Marts, etc. Police often need a facial recognition, as in a driver's license. Some Muslim women have refused to have a driver's photo made. Do you think it would be wise to issue a passport without a photo? So, I think this one is a toss up for me. I am inclined to protect individual freedoms until they become a threat to others. This cannot be a yes or no answer. So, no points given or none expected. Call it a draw. Perhaps we need a question that is not quite so broad?
  • If Leif Garrett can walk around looking like this, then headscarves for Muslim women is fine.
  • A HEADSCARF YES of course , the full covering of the face I would be very hesitant to agree with. Security has to be a priority and to just be able to see a very little of a persons eyes IS NOT a good thing for security. If it was not a religious thing it would not be allowed. I am a Catholic and there are more laws against the Catholic religion than any. I would not be allowed to MARRY Prince Charles, that is a good one I am not complaing. The full face Berka is a very difficult thing to agree with but it is also difficult to try to force our ideals on another persons beliefs. Herego the minus points. Maybe it would be easier to live in a country that finds it totally acceptable and does not have a constant threat of terrorism as do the USA and Britain, both from inside and outside of the country
  • Of course they should! Why not? The covering of the head for women, is one that dates back (in both eastern and western cultures) a very long time! It used to be improper (up until fairly recently) for a woman to attend Catholic mass without covering her head. The Mennonites and Amish women cover their heads regularly, so do many of the country and mountain folk in Europe, as do nuns in habit. Just because of the fairly recent trend that the west has adopted that has made it acceptable for women to take it all off (which may be liberating for some) it is wrong to make it a requirement for all women. It is especially wrong to single out a particular group and tell them that it is wrong, when it was the norm in western society for women to always wear hats, bonnets and headscarves.
  • Should nuns be asked to go with their heads uncovered? Why do jewish women shave their heads if they don't want to cover them? Islam forbids a woman to shaver her head. Should monks be stopped from wearing their religious clothing? Should priests be banned from wearing their black thingies..whatever they are called? We have to obey Allah even if that makes us expelled from nonmuslim schools, banned from certain jobs, or whatever the case may be. It doesn't matter if a school or goverment bans it. It won't get us to stop practicing this way of life.
  • only if western women are allowed to go bareheaded in muslim countries.
  • There is nothing wrong with a simple jilbab. No one should be allowed to restrict that. What worries most westerners, however, are the more extreme versions of hijab, especially those which cover the entire body in black, and obscure the face. Westerners equate this with inequality for women and restrictions on their freedom. Plus, there is the added security risk (not being able to recognise a face; devices being carried beneath the clothing) which is not only a problem for Western countries. Turkey, too, has restrictions on the wearing of such hijab. You cannot enter public buildings dressed like that.
  • Sure why not. In New Orleans there were special laws for Free People of Color. They forbade the free people of color and slaves to meet in groups and they could not have their celebrations that they had been able to have up to that point. The manner of dress for black women was a part of those restrictions. They were forced to wear the head wrap or “tignon” in public. I think not allowing Muslim women the right to wear their scarves is similar to what happened in New Orleans. You can read about the Free People of Color on this site. It is a fascinating history. http://www.elysianguesthouse.com/history.php and this site is also good. http://www.frenchcreoles.com/CreoleCulture/freepeopleofcolor/freepeopleofcolor.htm
  • Only if we can wear western clothes in Muslim countries.
  • Yes. It's called freedom of religion. Besides, it's not as if all Muslim women wear noticeable hijab.
  • The last 'head scarf' debate in the UK concern a girl who was sitting on the Jury during a murder trial. It turned out that through the entire case (incliuding the accused's defence & witness statements) she was listening to her MP3 player. When the case was over she had to go back and was charged with contempt of court.
  • Yes they should. Why should only Muslims be victimised and given rules govning their dress code? What about Sikh men and turbans? In some Muslim countries, all women are required to wear Islamic clothing, but these are very backward countries ruled by religious fundamentalists. Western countries should be above such pettiness. In some cases though things are not so clear. If a Muslim woman wears a hijab in the work place, some other employees might argue that this is a religious display and that employees have a right to a religiously neutral workplace. Also, there might be issues if the woman is a government employee. Some might argue that a government employee wearing a hijab during working hours is unconstitutional since it may breach the sepparation of church and state. Outside of work there should be no restrictions although the same standard should be used for all religions and not just Islam. Muslims have a right to freedom of expression and religious freedom as long as it does not violate the freedom of others or the Constitution.
  • Not only Muslim women but Christian women also should be allowed to cover in Western lands. In fact the immediate consequences for the Christian woman of not covering are more serious according to 1 Corrinthians 11:5 which says "For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, (then) let her be covered"
  • If thats what they want to do. If not allowed some might just stay in their houses and not come out but if i was a woman i wouldnt chose to wear one
  • Mary was Jesus' mother. She wore a hijab.
  • I'm not opposed to the head scarf but believe covering the face means the woman is opting out of society. Humans communicate by facial expression and so I find it offensive when someone makes that one sided. Furthermore I do not believe the Quran tells woman they have to. It says that woman should cover their adornments and features of beauty but until the 1970s this was never meant to mean anything more than what would be usual in western culture. In the 60s the head scarf or hijab did not exist (in my knowledge) in Islam. To me this tends to lead me to the conclusion that Islam has been used to undermine woman in modern culture. I'm sure there are plenty of extremists out there who are going to call this heracy and call for my death, but that kind of thing kind of proves my point.
  • The whole deal here is *freedom*, no? So WTF not, if they wanna? ;-)
  • Only in the ones that aren't hypocrites about the freedom of expression.
  • their choice what they want to wear none of anyone else's biz
  • Depends on the place. It has already been outlawed in French schools.
  • That depends on the headscarf. I don't think we should interfere with the practice of their religion unless it impacts public safety. Amish and Mennonite women where head coverings too. That said, I don't think that the headscarf should be allowed to completely obscure their identity so that you cannot even tell whether it is indeed a woman under there. I don't think they should be allowed to refuse a photo ID or to so completely cover themselves that the photo ID is useless. We need to be able to at least see their face. As long at that concession is made, then leave them alone. I wouldn't want to see Amish women stripped of their headcovering either, and the fact that some Muslim attacked the U.S. doesn't mean that we should take away the rights of all Muslims.
  • They ARE allowed to. Now, just see how it goes over when western women go head-uncovered in countries under shaira rule. Freedom is not a two way street.
  • Yes, if they want to - since when should governments regulate the way women dress? (And don't say anything to me about public nudity - this is a different issue altogether).
  • I find this a very interesting debate. Personally I feel that we have free will and therefore are well within our rights to wear what we please to. You could argue that people in the Western world must cover up in Islamic countries so as a result it would appear to be fair for them to take off their headscarves in the West. However, if hypothetically, a country where the women walk around topless is the normal done thing where they live, then they visit a western country, it would offend us and they would be expected to cover up. Much the same as it would be for Westerners in Islamic countries. It's a sensitive issue.
  • Yes. And they should be able to remove them when asked to do so by the police when the constabulary needs to check their I.D.
  • IN ONE SIMPLE ANSWER - NO!!!!!!!!!! I WAS ALWAYS TAUGHT TO HAVE RESPECT FOR THE COUNTRY I VISIT OR LIVE IN AND WEARING THE GARMENTS OF YOUR COUNTRY ON A REGULAR BASIS IS TOTALLY DISRESPECTFUL!!!! - EG; "WHEN IN ROME, DO AS THE ROMANS"!!!!
  • Headscarf, yes, up to the extent of a nun's Habit. Full-face-cover with eye-slit, No. Body-cover-tent, No. Because it is a 'health & safety' issue! Individual's health (rickets, sweaty-dehydration & BO) and public safety issue of 'concealing identity'. * 'Culture & voluntary choice' do not exist in Islam, particularly for their women, who are treated as dry-shagh oles for inb reeding. * The issue of full-face-covering under religious pretext has several facets: 1. By any stretch of imagination, the veil originates from the barbaric past custom of ‘protecting’ sexually mature women from risk of rape or or sexual molestation, i.e. a face-veil is an 'anti-rape device'. 2. In primitive, pre-barbaric Mohammedan cultures, where stranger men’s intent is looked with suspicion and assumed to be towards sexual abuse or molestation of women of sexual maturity at the first opportunity; a face veil may serve exactly such purpose of an ‘anti-rape device’, coupled with the stranger/guest’s assurance of ‘salaam-alikum’: “peace to you, i.e., I mean no harm to you, your women, sheep & camels, etc.” 3. That such a veiled is a sign of bondage or submission and like ‘cooped hens’, such veiled woman is a particular man’s possession, or property for his private enjoyment, is a logical conclusion reached quite easily. 4. Women living in the modern post-barbaric societies insisting on wearing veil either by choice, right or ‘as a religious identity’ could not be true or honest, because (a) the same women would not be able to exercise such choice in the opposite direction: of not wearing a veil in the primitive, pre-barbaric Mohammedan society; and (b) ‘one’s face may be one’s identity’, but covering it can not be. These purportedly liberated women also have a right, or ‘choice’ to stay indoors of their husband’s, father’s, brother’s or owner’s home[s] or ‘coops’. 5. The opposite of a ‘face-covering veil with a slit for the veiled person to peep at the outside world’ is wearing dark glasses or ‘shades’, which allows the wearer the privacy of the direction of his/her gaze or stare, but covering just the eyes in such way is quite acceptable, even fashionable or ‘cool’ and not seen as objectionable, unsociable or a sign of bondage. 6. The most insulting and the least recognised aspect of face veil is the automatic branding of the gentlemen from ‘the unveiled masses with uncovered faces’ as “potential rapists or women-molesters” who they are certainly not. 7. In the ‘post 9-11’ or ‘post-7-7’ modern societies, concealing one’s face under whatever pretext raises the issue of security, health-and-safety of the ‘masses with uncovered faces’. 8. The only excuse for wearing a face-veil could be ‘to conceal ugliness’, which again may be seen as discriminatory against the disability of ugliness… Veil covering ought to be unwelcome on the streets of modern society. If it has to be banned by legislation, it would be by necessity and much greater pity. [Simon A Smith] [423] In Biblical times, full-face veil was the custom of prostitutes [Bible, Genesis: 38:15], or at least an apparatus for adultery: "When Judah saw her, he thought she was a prostitute, for she had covered her face."
  • I find arguments by Muslim women about 'choice' & 'fashion statement' laughable, because quite simply it's a case of 'Turkeys voting for Christmas!' * A face-cover can never be a 'fashion statement' like a bracelet, bangle (kara), a forehead sticker (bindi), or a bikini!
  • The most insulting and the least recognised aspect of full-face-veil is the automatic branding of the gentlemen in the post-barbaric societies, or from ‘the unveiled masses with uncovered faces’ as “potential rapists or women-molesters”; who they are certainly not. * This is equivalent to asking all men to 'opt-out' of a sexual offenders' register! Agreeable? No!
  • No. Women have to abide by the dress code laws in Saudi so muslims women should adapt to the country they are living in. Even the wisemen in Egypt say that muslim women do not have to wear it if it is not accepted in the host country. . I am, however, against them going naked on beaches;)
  • Most definitely! I understand problems with burqas but not the hijab.
  • should they be ALLOWED to? if it's a free country, then yes people should be allowed to wear whatever they want (short of coats made of human skin).
  • I prefer a global ban on woman's clothing. I guess that is impractical because French winters can get pretty cold. I a inherently against anything that limits women's freedom. The veil is not really religious. When Islam started women that worked did not wear a veil because it interfered with their work. Only rich women wore them as a status symbol. It later became a fashion statement rather than a religious symbol. The ultraconservative branches of Islam doesn't like change or advances of any kind (much like western conservatives). They insisted that women wear the veil or even worse, the burka. The veil is degrading and cumbersome. It is a hinderance when identity is to be determined, and it supports narrow-minded thinking. There will be resistance but then acceptance in the long term. I commend the French government in the blow struck for women's freedom.
  • As long as it doesn't cover the whole face.
  • if i'm allowed to wear a cross or star of david, then they ought to be allowed to wear other religious material. the law must be blind on this point. now, do i wish sometimes that all women had the right and felt the strength to become independent, assertive, etc. - then, yes.
  • I cant find reason not to ...! everyone has freedom what to wear ! you better say Should we allow naked women in our streets "I'm against that because thus is against the women's rights completely " .
  • I think it is fine. Can you say someone in a western country not to wear jeans? We allow religious freedom and freedom to wear anything. In fact they are not exposing their body parts, they prefer to cover it up right? All religions are good.
  • To be honest, I can't believe this is even a question! . If I want the freedom to decide what to wear, how can I deny the same for someone else?
  • Of course they should.
  • I am a muslim woman. This thing is not in the quran and made up by the interpreters of quran I guess. Have you seen a woman breathe through one of those, burqa or the hejab with the slit... WTF. This is not Islam, this is... I am too polite to say.
  • Headscarf, yes. Full face covering, no. In western cultures, covering the face is a suspicious act, concealing identity. +4
  • There was some controversy in Philly about this The woman in question was a cop, and it was against dept. policy to wear anything, religious or not, that could be used as a weapon by a criminal. She sued and lost. Quite often SOME Muslim women use their garb to shoplift, and to hide their face from identification. So I would say it depends on the situation/circumstance
  • Of course...like another poster here I find it a tad odd that you would ask this question. There is one exception that I do think is important to consider. When appearing in a court of law in the United States (I cannot speak to other countries courts because I am unsure of the law) we have a right to face and question those giving testimony. I don't think the veil should be allowed in court when it completely obscures someones face and potentially conceals their identity.
  • I have no objection to the headscarf, it's pretty much the same as a Sikh would wear a Turban, no problem with it at all. Burkas etc are a different thing and i agree with the French that they should not be worn in public.

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