10.04.2010

French women cause a stir in niqab and hot pants in anti-burka ban protest

How do you feel about this? Original article here.




Two French female students have made a film of the pair of them strolling through the streets of Paris in a niqab, bare legs and mini-shorts as a critique of France's recently passed law.

Calling themselves the "Niqabitches," the veiled ladies can be seen strutting past prime ministerial offices and various government ministries with a black veil leaving only their eyes visible, but with their long legs naked bar black high heels.
Bemused passers-by can be seen gawping at the pair or asking to take photographs in the clip.
At one stage in the film, the two women approach the entrance to the ministry of immigration and national identity, only to be told by a policeman to go elsewhere. However, a policewoman also present is delighted by their clothes. “I love your outfit, is it to do with the new law?” she asks. “Yes, we want to de-dramatise the situation,” one girl replies. “It’s brilliant. Can I take a photo?” asks the policewoman, who will soon be required to fine public niqab wearers.
In an opinion piece published on the news website, rue89, the anonymous duo – political science and communication students in their twenties – said the film was a tongue-in-cheek way of criticising France's niqab ban, which the Senate passed last month and is due to go into force early next year.
"To put a simple burka on would have been too simple. So we asked ourselves: 'how would the authorities react when faced with women wearing a burka and mini-shorts?," asked the students, one of whom is a Muslim.
"We were not looking to attack or degrade the image of Muslim fundamentalists – each to their own – but rather to question politicians who voted for this law that we consider clearly unconstitutional," they said.
"To dictate what we wear appears to have become the role of the State (as if they didn't have other fish to fry ...)."
The film had been viewed 71,000 times on rue89 and a few hundred times on YouTube yesterday, but French websites predicted it would become an internet sensation.
France's law banning the burka makes no mention of Islam, but President Nicolas Sarkozy's government promoted the law as a means to protect women from being forced to wear Muslim full-face veils such as the burka or the niqab.
France's five-million-strong Muslim minority is Western Europe's largest, but fewer than 2,000 women are believed actually to wear a full face veil.
Once the law is in force, a woman who chooses to defy the ban will receive a fine of 150 euros (£125) or a course of citizenship lessons. A man who forces a woman to go veiled will be fined 30,000 euros (£25,000) and serve a jail term.
It could yet be overturned by France's constitutional court.

8 comments:

fatimah said...

its funny how they say "force". haha. they have no idea. we love it. it's our faith, we love to cover ourselves. Nobody is forcing us, they are so dumb yet they criticize our religion :/
and the video, first i thought it was offensive, but after reading this i get it. their motive is good. god bless you girls :)

Khadija said...

I think their protest is amazing. It shifts the focus from the face covering to the bare legs and leaves lots of questions in the process. I still can not understand how France can the niqab represents oppression of women and taking away the freedom of choice in their clothing by making them remove it is any less oppressive. I love the hot pants and niqab look.

Patrick said...

I have to agree with Fatimah. Perhaps there are some women who are forced or coerced into it, but I've learned that the majority of Muslim women wear burqas, niqabs, or hijabs voluntarily.

The laws may be SAID to protect women, but really, the government would do better to funnel money into education on these.

Anonymous said...

I believe we all have the right to define modesty for ourselves, I really don't see how a girl in skinny jeans, makeup and a fabulously trendy scarf is any more modest than another girl in a reasonably modest pair of jeans and a long sleeve shirt without a scarf. It really comes down to intention, if modesty in behavior does not come from within, it does not matter what you wear on the outside.

.hopeful. said...

What a wonderful way to protest and point out the complete hypocrisy of the French System. Forcing someone to wear something is just as bad as forcing someone not to wear something!

Anonymous said...

Hi,
this video starts automatically on your blog and every time i come i'm surprised by the song, which is really nasty even though the old lady sings in a very sweet way... it's old fashioned slang but french people still can understand what kind of entertainment she is talking about !
i thought it may help, of course u can cancel my post.

Opinionated hijabi said...

sister, I've seen the photos before... and I never really understood it.

brilliant and daring protest to the burqa ban. i love the music.

j'aime la liberté et cette vidéo française

Anonymous said...

Just so you know, this song in french is really really not appropriate the singer talk about sex in a very explicite and vulgar way, it is not your fault you could not imagine !

this law is typical from french people, they are becomin more and more racist