We had such an overwhelming response to yesterday’s programme on the burqa, and many of you have told us you’d like to continue the discussion, so that’s exactly what we’re going to do today. There were a few clear themes that emerged out of show – Maxine summed up the thoughts of quite a few of you…
When I visit Muslim countries I am careful to wear a long dress with long sleeves, and have a scarf in my pocket… I am NOT happy to have women dressed in Burqas in my country (Australia), they should show the same respect regarding dress as I do when I visit their country.
Annette in the UK sent us this text: Is it acceptable for me to walk around Mecca in a bikini? if the argument stands up the answer should be yes.
Nanci and Pancha made the point too… is there a double standard when Muslims in Western countries expect to be allowed to dress entirely as they choose, including wearing a burqa, but Westerners in Muslim countries aren’t able to dress entirely as they choose?
In countries like Iran or Saudi Arabia women exposing too much flesh could be arrested by the authorities. There aren’t rules about dressing in every Muslim country, but in most Middle East, Gulf and North African countries a woman dressing ‘immodestly’ would at best attract a lot of attention, and at worst be jeered or more.
Is President Sarkozy, in trying to ban the burqa, simply redressing the double standards expressed in the Muslim world over dress?
Should it be a case of ‘when in Rome, do (or dress) as the Romans do’? So Muslims in Western countries should wear Western dress, and Westerners in Muslims countries should wear Muslim dress? Or if you believe that people should be able to wear what they want, should that standard apply for Muslim countries as well as Western ones?