Now that Syria has opted to ban face-covering Islamic veils from its universities, how will shouters of Islamophobia wriggle their way out of this one; particularly those Muslims who live among us who disguise themselves as moderate proponents of a free society?:
Rather than enhancing secular democracy, a ban on the veil, or niqab, diminishes it. Instead of curbing “Islamic fundamentalism,” it fans it. Far from advancing the integration of veil wearers into the mainstream, it marginalizes them even more.
We’ve learned that lesson in the war on terrorism, but we have yet to in the cultural war on Muslims, which is what niqab banning is all about, notwithstanding the phony rationalizations in France and, sadly, Quebec as well. – Toronto Star
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What culture war on Muslims is Haroon Siddiqui talking about? A resident of Damascus of all places described women who wear the burqa as “walking black ghosts.” His sentiments are understandable as he describes these women stripped of their precious human identity to escape the gaze of men. A young Syrian engineering student identified only as Ahmed had this to say about Muslim coverings:
‘Hijabs and niqabs have been a symbol of oppression and religious extremism over the past hundreds of years. They have been a tool used by fundamentalist men to repress women,’
Muslim dominated Syria levied the face covering ban at its universities because of rising concerns about Islamic extremism, joining other countries in efforts to restrict or ban the burqa: Belgium, Spain, Netherlands, Italy, Denmark, Germany, Austria, Russia, Switzerland, and in Quebec, Canada. Any individual or country with a genuine appreciation for human rights will do well to heed Syria’s Minister of Higher Education Ghyath Barakat’s veracious declaration to his top officials: ‘We will not leave our daughters a prey for extremist thoughts.’