France To Ban Burqa-Like Veils writes:

A law banning the wearing of a full Islamic veil in public in France has been adopted by the lower house of parliament.

The ruling UMP and the New Centre party voted for the ban on the burqa or niqab while the Socialists, Communists and Greens abstained.

The law goes to the upper house in September and then to the Constitutional Court. If ratified there, it may still face challenges at the European Court of Human Rights.

The ban is supported by the majority of French people although it only applies to a very small number of women in France.

Critics claim it is a distraction from other issues and panders to the far-right vote.

More information in a video on the website.

My conflicted thoughts on the subject from a year ago, can be found in the posts:

Playing Sarkozy’s Advocate

France Considers Banning Burqas in Public and I Consider Haidt on Pluralism

Towards A “Non-Moral” Standard Of Ethical Evaluation

Further Towards A “Non-Moral” Standard Of Ethical Evaluation

Your Thoughts?

About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.

  • Amber

    I disagree with this ruling 100%. I think that the government should not tell its constituents how they should practice their religion. One of your previous posts mentions security risk, and I agree that if there is a security risk, then government intervention may be necessary. However, in this case, I think that this is just a way to persecute muslims. I took an intro to Islam class as an undergrad and wrote a research paper regarding women and Islam. I came to the conclusion at the end that the oppression of Muslim women really is a cultural phenomena. Women in “the free world” have a choice about whether or not to wear a veil or a burqa. This is not so true in some of the Middle Eastern Muslim states, but it is in much of the world. As an atheist I don’t want the government to enforce religious values upon me. But, I also feel that it is wrong to prohibit free religious expression in situations where it doesn’t interfere with the freedoms of others. Wearing a burqa doesn’t hurt anyone else who isn’t already prejudiced.