Quebec (twice) refuses to teach French to woman because she wears a Niqab

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Cueball Cueball's picture

Lily_C wrote:

You should direct that comment, Mahmud, to women who have been banished by their families (or worse) for not wearing it. But as I said, for LGBT Muslims, the veil is the least of their worries.

Right. So therefore we should banish them from society at large by making sure they can't communicate with it by hunting them down and evicting them from language classes!

Will your tune change if this were a closeted lesbian woman, with very good personal reasons to comply with social norms in order to protect herself or her family who came to Canada in expectation thing are different here and that she might liberate herself from gender oppression, which you so adamantly oppose, only to find that state "cultural purity" functionaries will move in and ban her from school, with the support of state affiliated womens organizations?

I really am begining to doubt your sincerity, most certainly your wisdom.

Lily_C

Cueball wrote:

Lily_C wrote:

You should direct that comment, Mahmud, to women who have been banished by their families (or worse) for not wearing it. But as I said, for LGBT Muslims, the veil is the least of their worries.

 

Right. So therefore we should banish them from society at large by making sure they can't communicate with it by hunting them down and evicting them from language classes!

 

Be so kind as to quote me where I said that?

:)

mahmud

Lily_C wrote:

You should direct that comment, Mahmud, to women who have been banished by their families (or worse) for not wearing it. But as I said, for LGBT Muslims, the veil is the least of their worries.


 
In that case, I suggest that some neocon guru came to their rescue with his formula of legislating: Just replace "abortion" with whatever is "coerced" upon them, from broccoli to veil to niqab and what have you.
But even if such banishment does happen, I have known many white Christian families who banished their family members for pursuibg "different" lifestyles. I do not see what is your point, here. Are you suggesting that parents and relatives must be legislated into accepting what they otherwise would not want to accept? The whole debate here is about "personal choice", not about should others be forced to accept you once you have personally made that choice.
 
Tory MP introduces 'coerced abortion' bill

OTTAWA - A Conservative backbencher has come forward with a new bill on abortion, despite Prime Minister Stephen Harper's insistence in recent weeks that the abortion debate wouldn't be reopened in the Commons.
Rod Bruinooge, chair of the all-party pro-life caucus in Parliament, has introduced a bill that would penalize anyone who "coerces" a woman into ending her pregnancy against her will.

http://tinyurl.com/yyptqvu

Cueball Cueball's picture

Lily_C wrote:

Cueball wrote:

Lily_C wrote:

You should direct that comment, Mahmud, to women who have been banished by their families (or worse) for not wearing it. But as I said, for LGBT Muslims, the veil is the least of their worries.

 

Right. So therefore we should banish them from society at large by making sure they can't communicate with it by hunting them down and evicting them from language classes!

Other than make general accussations about Islam, Niqab and the specially

 

Be so kind as to quote me where I said that?

:)

Well what are you saying? Denying a Muslim woman the right to education is a really a good opportunity to chip in and talk about Niqab, gender oppression by Muslims, and the problem of LBG rights in Islam. That is about all I am getting from you.

Lily_C

you are so right!

what was I thinking? silly woman weighing in with personal experiences -

what I meant to say, was,

"well, I don't know about that, but I do love kittens!"

 

I have no problem with Islam in particular, and my primary interest is in both women's and LGBT rights, but I happen to have worked in a support groups where there were some specific problems.

Now where did I leave my knitting. ....

Kloch

Here's a question to those who support the Quebec government: are you in favour of prohibiting Orthodox jewish women from shaving their head and wearing a wig?  Bear in mind, that in order for your identity to be verified, government employees need to see eye and hair colour?  Since they would be imposing their cultural values on us, surely you must be opposed to this.

Kloch

Lily_C wrote:

you are so right!

what was I thinking? silly woman weighing in with personal experiences -

what I meant to say, was,

"well, I don't know about that, but I do love kittens!"

 

I have no problem with Islam in particular, and my primary interest is in both women's and LGBT rights, but I happen to have worked in a support groups where there were some specific problems.

Now where did I leave my knitting. ....

Deflection.

skdadl

Unionist wrote:

If so, should we write cultural freedom into the Charter (note: it ain't there now)?

 

Nonsense. Freedom of conscience covers any expression of cultural identity. You don't need religion for that, and in fact people usually aren't talking about religion when they talk about religion.

Michelle

Kloch, they should probably also make it illegal to dye your hair.  Natural colour only so that we can't change our appearance on our ID. :)

Lily_C

Kloch wrote:

 

Deflection.

 

Humour.

Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

freedom of expression is the right to present yourself to the world as you want. I can wear a t-shirt with a protest slogan as well as show my devotion to a cultural practice, it is the same right I would argue.

No, you can't wear a t-shirt with a protest slogan to work if the employer tells you not to. If it's a yarmulke or turban or hijab, however, the employer is obliged, by law, to make every reasonable effort to accommodate you up to the point of undue hardship.

And to skdadl's post above - there is no prohibition on the part of an employer or landlord or restaurant owner regarding discrimination based on choice of cultural dress - whereas there absolutely is such a prohibition when it comes to religion, disability, sexual orientation, etc.

 

Kloch

Michelle wrote:

Kloch, they should probably also make it illegal to dye your hair.  Natural colour only so that we can't change our appearance on our ID. :)

Then we'd have to arrest everyone at TIFF.

skdadl

Unionist, have you taken in pookie's post above? Permit me to repeat it for you (she's a lawyer, and I ain't):

 

pookie wrote:

P4 - That is sometimes referred to as formal equality.  ie; It's ok if the Sikhs can do it, so long as everyone else gets exactly the same consideration with respect to whatever THEY want to wear.

It's been over 20 years since Canada has adopted a model of equality that recognizes that people do NOT have to be treated in a precisely similar way in order to respect equality.

Now, that is not to say that people don't have a presumptive right to wear what they want.  It does, though, mean that the justification for asking Michelle to remove her wreath may be quite a bit less stringent than the justification for asking a male Sikh to remove his turban. 

 

Again, to me some of the comparisons people try to make with serious matters of culture and conscience seem to me as perversely trivializing of human rights as are the arguments that the men's rights groups make.

Unionist

Skdadl, you simply didn't get what I said. Let me say it differently. If my employer requires me to wear a blue shirt and white pants and a carnation and a bare head when serving customers, and I say, "But where I grew up we wore baseball caps whenever we wanted, and it's really important to my sense of identity", there is no legal obligation to accommodate that.

If I say, "My sincerely held religious belief requires me not to bare my head at any time", there is a duty to try to accommodate me up to undue hardship.

If that's what pookie meant by "quite a bit less stringent", then I would have to agree. But the bottom line is this: Religious discrimination is prohibited. Discrimination based on cultural identity is not, unless it can be shown to be a cover for national or linguistic or religious or some such discrimination.

No matter how often you say "that sounds arguments that men's rights groups make", I will continue to scratch my head and wonder: (a) what you're talking about (because no one here is proposing formal equality or opposing affirmative action); and (b) isn't that sort of a "guilt by association" or "ad hominem" or some such fallacy?

pookie

You're arguing this culture point pretty hard, Unionist.  What exactly are you basing it on?  For example, why wouldn't what you call "culture" easily be subsumed under (a) ethnic origin which is a prohibited ground of discrimination or (b) the fundamental freedom of conscience?

Unionist

(a) There's nothing "ethnic" about wearing a face veil, nor "national origin" for that matter. If anything, it can be defended on grounds of religion, and as I've said, that merits accommodation - but it also demands compromise on the part of the individual. And when it violates gender equality (for example, requiring different male-female seating arrangements in a classroom, or requiring an attendant of a specific sex to serve the person), it must be rejected as being inimical to the rights of women. I am NOT talking about the alleged oppression of the veil-wearer (the capital letters bolded are for skdadl and others who keep thinking I'm trying to "liberate" the poor oppressed niqabi - I am not, it's her business, I do not care).

(b) Either wearing a face veil is a matter of religious freedom, or it is not. If it is, it must be accommodated up to the point of undue hardship. If it is not (like, it's part of "my culture"), then there is no right and no accommodation whatsoever. Otherwise, you can wear a grass skirt to your job at the funeral home and demand accommodation for your cultural choices. No.

Finally - on "culture" - you can come to Québec and demand to have your kids educated in English or Turkish or German. No. Not in our public school system - unless one of your parents was educated in English in Canada. Or perhaps you'd like to run your business in Mandarin or English. Or post commercial signs in Greek. No. Is that against your "Charter"? Tough. That's our society. Don't like it, don't come here.

 

Cueball Cueball's picture

It's not a job Unionist. Its a public school.

Furthermore, I don't particularly care for the idea that an employer should have the right to define what a person wears on the job either, outside of something that identifies the person as an employee in the public service industry, I don't really see the demand as legitimate. The ethical difficulties of your position are exampled by the extreme amount of milage you are getting out these theoretical musings in order to avoid and mystify the topic with talking points about "equality", "rights", "religion", "culture" and so on.

Your most recent musings about language, culture and the charter are only more examples of straight up bollocks. I didn't realize that wearing a veil when attending French classes was tantamount to demanding an education in Arabic.  I thought it was learning French.

The only right that is really in question here, is the right to an education.

Your position is absurd in that you are basically allowing a discussion about clothing to take precedence over a persons choice, and their right to an education, indeed the right to learn the official language in Quebec. What is reasonable about that? Certainly when something as vital as education is at stake, it would make sense that the onus would be upon the state to prove that it had the right to deny the right to an education to a person, when we are talking about something as trivial as a piece of cloth someone asserts they wear for the sake of their own modesty?

Again, to date, the only real legal limit that has been placed on what a person may wear is defined by what is obscene, not fashion sense, religion or culture. All of that is just flak.

Maysie Maysie's picture

I need to close this for length.

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