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Agree Totally with Cohen-Almagor's Logic, Pipes' Conclusion Except It Isn't Enough

Reader comment on item: The Case for Banning Burqas and Niqabs

Submitted by David Ryan (United States), Apr 24, 2022 at 05:57

I agree totally with Cohen-Almagor that in a free democracy or republic, everyone has a right to their preferred dress, as well as their preferred sidearm. If they abuse either to harm innocent people, the penalty is on them for their bad acts, not what they wore or carried, just to repeat the libertarian argument. Guns, switchblades, "burglary tools", which could be anything, etc. are banned mainly to aid lazy law enforcement. Rather than doing the hard work of catching criminals in the act or subsequently, they ban stuff that might be used for crime so that most law-abiding people will obey, even though they have a right to such items, and police can just stop and frisk people and arrest them for an open and shut case of possession, assuming they are catching bad guys even though the people they catch are only exercising a right that has been taken away from everyone. It isn't that easy when everybody is allowed to exercise their rights.

Also, I sort of like masks and coverings to defeat the face-scanning surveillance state.

But...

I agree with Daniel Pipes about banning burkas but that does not go far enough because Mr. Pipes does not think far enough ahead.

You can only think about banning burkas as long as Muslims are a small minority. As long as Muslims are a small minority however, it looks like persecution. As soon as a political party, usually of the left, decides to buy the votes of that minority, banning anything related to them becomes a political football that divides non-Muslims, which is a bad thing.

It is bad short-term thinking to pass laws that annoy a minority, assuming that minority will be a minority forever. There are two things you have to remember. First, payback at the first opportunity tends to be a b****. And they will have friends that may form a majority. The second thing is that in the long run, that minority may reach 51% itself, locally or nationally. At that point, it will make the laws. Are Muslims going to agree with the rationale that burkas should remain banned so that people can't use them to mask identity while committing crime and mayhem? I think not. In fact, I think burkas were really invented to facilitate assassins moving among non-believers and weak Muslims thinking they are all women.

If Muslims reach 51%, they are going to put non-Muslims into burkas too, and they will require non-Muslims to follow most of their religion in subjection. And if they get annoyed then, they will have a persecution that drives non-Muslims out, like Lebanon.

The question IMO of dealing with any minority is what would happen if they became the majority one day? Would that be a place where you or your descendants could theoretically live free and happy along side them? If the answer is yes, then don't annoy them as a minority. God knows slavery and Jim Crow come back to bite when skin color should not make a difference. But if that erstwhile minority has the stated aim of subjugating everyone else at the point of a sword or gun, murders apostates etc., merely annoying them by suppressing a few of their practices may be useful if it invites them to leave. But it is insufficient when the aim of dealing with such an anathema to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness should be to drive all of them out like the Spanish did in 1492. (Not that the Spanish were paragons of freedom.)

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