"Face veils are sexist."

Yeah, so is our makeup. Let’s ban that too!

Seriously, I can’t believe feminists who make this “It’s sexist, but it should be up to the woman whether she wants to wear it” point, as though the former sentiment is some kind of disclaimer for the grudging latter. Why do you need to specifically point this out? Would you do the same for miniskirts, high heels, and lip gloss if they were up for a nationwide ban? Or would you be outraged that the government is infringing not only on your freedom of expression and your rights but on your person? I sure as hell would. There is no need, in this context, to discuss whether miniskirts or face veils are empowering or oppressive. That is an entirely different discussion. It is not the point.

Feminism does not reinforce the governmental imposition of beliefs and practices on women. Apologizing for how sexist you feel face veils are while asserting that government should not control them is almost as pretentious as apologizing for the actions of a woman walking at night while insisting the rapist was fully responsible. If you believe she has the right, whether or not she should practice it is irrelevant. In neither case, the veil or walking alone, is she infringing on the rights of others, and the one who is infringing on the rights of others–the one who infringes on her rights in both cases–is not to be given even a hint of any arbitrary “justification.”

Update 4/17/11:Consider the Tea Cosy has an awesome post on this.

8 thoughts on “"Face veils are sexist."

  1. Ugh, I should've known some dunderhead was going to say something like this.Yes, people have the right to object to others whose opinions do not agree with them. They do not, however, have the right to rape others whose clothes do not agree with them. Infringing rights was covered in the post.

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  2. Seriously. A veil is a piece of cloth. A piece of cloth! Pieces of cloth aren't sexist. Pieces of cloth don't infringe on people's rights. People do that. And one of the major ways we do that is by looking down on other people and their choices, without even bothering to find out why they made them in the first place.

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  3. @considertheteacosy (Heh, I wish blogger had a reply system where you could reply directly underneath the respective comment.) You are absolutely right. It is our own mentality that we assign to people without fully understanding that they have a different perspective that is just as valid as ours. And that inanimate objects can't be anything without us projecting ourselves on them.

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