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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

one vote against ....

The French Senate voted almost unanimously to ban face-covering Islamic veils in public, opening the way for the enactment of the colloquially called anti-burqa law. Interestingly, 246 senators overwhelmingly outnumbered the one and only opponent of the law who voted against it. Similarly, in July, the bill sailed through the Assemblée nationale by a vote of 335 to 1. Despite the intense public debate, within the serene confines of France's legislature the law united government and opposition and was met with virtually no resistance. 

It is telling that not only the rights of the estimated 2,000 French Muslim women who wear variants of the full cover, but also the broader right of self determination of hundreds of thousands of French Muslim women which the bill symbolically challenges have not been deemed worth defending by the French legislators.

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