To feel sad to see 5 year old girl in hijab

(909 Posts)
INeedSomeSun Tue 02-Jul-13 09:44:37

Probably will get flamed for this & iabu as its not my business.
I am not racist in any way. I am Asian myself and have many Muslim friends.

Growing up, I never saw any muslim girls with hijabs. This is a trend which has been growing since the late 90s.

I know that the meaning behind the hijab is to protect modesty and show committment to Islam. It is supposed to be the girls/womans decision after much thought and dedication.

At 5 years old they are still getting changed in the classroom for PE and she won't be able to do this now with boys around. How will she play and do PE freely? She has been singled out by the views of her parents.
Also, she will barely know what religion means, so she has not made an informed decision for herself.

Normally she is chasing about with my DS and other kids before school.Today she was just stood there, perhaps embarrassed or told not to?
I felt very sad

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 09:45:48

Agree with you to be honest.

INeedSomeSun Tue 02-Jul-13 09:46:15

Just to add that she has just started wearing it today.

ReginaPhilangie Tue 02-Jul-13 09:46:18


scaevola Tue 02-Jul-13 09:48:46

I share your sadness.

Although I wouldn't expect my views to prevail on how someone else interprets their religion nor how they school their children in observances. I had always thought though that covering up was not a requirement until puberty, and prefer to see smaller children being children. And modest dress can be achieved without hijab.

Startail Tue 02-Jul-13 09:48:52

There were a brother and sister (3-6ish the girl being the elder) who rode trikes past my student flat. There were several family flats used by overseas post grads.

The boy tore past without a care in the world while the girl made frequent stops to mess with a head scarf that was clearly annoying her.

I've worked with girls who wore hijabs and they were perfectly able, and allowed, to play with other children and take part in PE.


Edendance Tue 02-Jul-13 09:51:07

Not unreasonable!

SugarMiceInTheRain Tue 02-Jul-13 09:51:18

No flaming here. I agree with you and I would find that really sad. Let children be children!

HintofBream Tue 02-Jul-13 09:52:09

Our GP told us that there were cases of rickets amongst the Asian children in our town, because the girls in burkas were not receiving enough sunlight and therefore vitamin D.

curlew Tue 02-Jul-13 09:53:08

Why on earth was she wearing hijab at 5? Isn't it usually adopted at puberty?

Branleuse Tue 02-Jul-13 09:53:18

I dont see what difference a hijab on its own will make to pe. its just a headscarf.

propertyNIGHTmareBEFOREXMAS Tue 02-Jul-13 09:53:51

Yanbu. Poor little girl. Very sad that such impacting decisions have been made for her.

BlessedDespair Tue 02-Jul-13 09:54:49


I had a friend in school, who once she reached 14, would remove her hijab at school and only put it back on on her way home. She would have gone without it all the time if doing so wouldn't have upset her parents

Latara Tue 02-Jul-13 09:57:20

YANBU. Hijab is a choice girls make around puberty. It shouldn't be forced onto a child who is too young to understand religion.

SomethingProfound Tue 02-Jul-13 09:57:46

Hinto really confused

I totally agree with you.

I also get angry when I see the little girls on cbeebies wearing the scarf. (think the monkey-movers on Zingzillas and Mr Maker's mini-makers). I think it serves to normalize the behaviour and make it acceptable: it isn't. I am angry that the BBC condones the beliefs of the extremists. sad

I often go to my doctors and discuss the medical issues affecting religious communities. hmm

gordyslovesheep Tue 02-Jul-13 10:01:29

It's a scarf ...I agree she is young to be wearing it but its.not as if they have removed a limb may seem odd but I don't think its worth being overly hand wringy about

muminthecity Tue 02-Jul-13 10:01:52

There are lots of girls in my primary school who wear hijabs, some of whom are in nursery or reception. They don't have to wear them all the time, they take them off for PE, or when they are playing outside, or whenever they are hot. Most children copy what their parents do, I think lots of them want to wear them because their mums/aunts/older sisters do.

Ogg Tue 02-Jul-13 10:04:10

But they are removing her freedom of movement and her choice !

I taught a girl of 6 once who had to wear a hijab.
She also had to wear a swimming costume that went from neck to feet and down to her wrists - like a wet suit I guess.
She couldn't get changed with the rest of the class and had to change on her own.
She also couldn't participate in music or assemblies.

I just think it's very young, she was 6. The others in the class were 5 and 6. In no way were they going to be viewing each other in a sexual way.
I understand when they are a bit older and it's a woman's own decision. But at 5 or 6 they are still very little.

Elquota Tue 02-Jul-13 10:05:01


propertyNIGHTmareBEFOREXMAS Tue 02-Jul-13 10:05:43

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

I've seen toddlers in hijabs, and a tiny girl wearing a full veil (impossible to tell how old she was, around five or six I suppose).

Considering the hijab/veil is supposed to protect from the lustful gaze of a man, I'm not sure what the parents are playing at.


What do you suggest they do? Exclude children wearing hijabs? Should they also exclude Sikh boys who wear a patka? And since when was every child wearing a hijab being raised be an extremist?

ClartyCarol Tue 02-Jul-13 10:06:44

YANBU, I agree. She is having her parents' views on religion pushed on to her at a very young age.

I can't bear to see women in burqas. What does her mother wear?

Greythorne Tue 02-Jul-13 10:07:38

Why would a child be required to wear a headscarf?

I have Muslim family and I respect the values and philosophy of the hijab, but it is not necessary or appropriate for little girls to wear it daily.

ClartyCarol Tue 02-Jul-13 10:14:35

Actually I meant niqab not burqa (although I think the burqa is the worst of all, I don't actually see anyone wearing it around here. There are a couple of women at dc's school who v wear a niqab).

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 10:18:15

I've lived in the ME and have never seen a child that age wearing one.

Where does this happen?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 10:20:35

It's quite extremist to put a small child in a full face, a veil or even a hijab. It's supposed to be a modesty thing. Interesting how "it's only scarf" is directed at people who don't like it, whereas it's plainly not "only a scarf" to the people who put their kids in it, it actually does mean something.

Feelingood Tue 02-Jul-13 10:21:06

I think agree with OP just for practical reasons - but then someone has posted children can manage fine.

As for making own choices - I agree this should be made later as the child grows and develops a deeper understanding of their faith and symbols related to faith.

I have a 7yr old DS. I like him to have what he needs to help him fit in - I thin school can be tough enough and there are plenty other ways to express individuality. I personally do not like my DS to stand out in anyway e.g. he doesn't like to wear a vest on PE day - its seen as babyish?? I don't force the issue. if that makes any sense.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 10:21:29

Carps: yes, hijabs should be banned in primary schools, I would say.

Longdistance Tue 02-Jul-13 10:21:55

I was on a flight to Tripoli, and a father had his little girl on his lap, so under two. He was making her wear one as was constantly adjusting it for her, whilst she kept pulling at it. He had 6 other dc, and had 3 other girls all wearing the hijab.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 10:23:25

Well that might start something, either way I won't be here to defend it! hope I have't lit a touch paper there........

Latara Tue 02-Jul-13 10:25:56

I rarely see girls under the age of about 10 in hijab in this area because it's not really meant for young children.

nenevomito Tue 02-Jul-13 10:26:11

I think hijabs and burkas are bloody brilliant.

Men are such base creatures that without one they're unable to control themselves from the effects of seeing bits of a woman, like their legs. I think its very prudent of the parents to cover their child up like this if they believe men are so incapable of keeping their hands to themselves.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 10:26:11

Longdistance - that is so sad.

FantasticDay Tue 02-Jul-13 10:27:05

Purple - One of my 7 yo dd's friends has worn hijab from about age 5. Another wore it for a few days but was so resistant that her mum decided to leave it for a while. We live in a large city in the Northwest. About 10 percent of my daughter's school are Moslem. I don't like hijab on young girls tbh, and have Moslem family who also dislike it. Kids are not likely to be thinking of each other in a sexual way at that age, and if an adult is looking at a kid like that, then it's their problem and not the child's responsibility to cover.

littleducks Tue 02-Jul-13 10:27:06

She may not be wearing it tomorrow, dd went to school in hijab age 5 once. I was at work and a friend took her to school, she borrowed one of the friends (older) daughter scarves.

She is currently begging me to wear a scarf, to be like me and her older cousins. I'm not letting her until she us in the juniors (when she is also allowed to pierce her ears). Not because I particularly care but because I'm worried about negative attention not from the other children but other parents. She wears a scarf to mosque/religious events sometimes and if we go to the park after (which we tend to as a reward for sitting quietly and behaving) she gets lots of dirty looks and the odd whisper, shame people direct it at her rather than me or her father. Oh and as for movement she appears to be able to do the monkey bars and hanging upside down better as it keeps the hair out her face.

Oh and the tickets thing is a bit of a myth, apparently the causes are complex but include increased use if sunscreen/covering up since skin cancer risks became more known and people with darker complexions living in our grey, dreary climate.

littleducks Tue 02-Jul-13 10:30:11

Rickets not tickets (am on phone)

Viviennemary Tue 02-Jul-13 10:31:00

I agree. It's dreadful and quite a new thing this last ten or so years ago.

DeWe Tue 02-Jul-13 10:32:29

But maybe it's her choice?
She'll see the grown ups wearing one, and it will be a symbol of being grown up to her, in a way that other children want heels or pierced ears because that's what mummy wears. I remember dd1 being desperate for a watch, and saying when she had a watch she would be grown up as all grown ups had them.

I don't agree with the reasoning behind the veils-it seems very insulting to men to say that a man can't possibly look at a woman without being overcome with lust. Women are obviously much stronger in this matter as they can manage to look at a man without being tempted to think that way.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 10:37:10

DeWe - they are children. Their choices are not always the best and that's why parents are responsible for them.

tigerlilygrr Tue 02-Jul-13 10:41:43

I am very surprised by this too as worked in the UAE for two years and never saw young children in head scarves. It does seem a shame.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 11:06:22

I just got back from a weekend away with the family whilst there I saw a family, mum, dad, boy, girl.

The mother was in a full on burqua and I found myself instantly annoyed by it, tbh I was really pissed off and couldn't understand why.

Then I realised; they're totally dehumanising. The human brain is programmed to recognise faces and to work out how others are feeling seeing their face. Dehumanising and only worn by females.

Honestly love, even if my husband had seen your face he'd control himself oh and btw, mind me asking why your husband isn't wearing one? he looks very comfortable in his casual wear while you're walking round like a bloody ninja.

sparechange Tue 02-Jul-13 11:13:11

I've lived in the middle east and Pakistan, and never ever saw children in a hijab.
In South London, I see primary school aged girls in them on the bus 3 or 4 days a week.
My bus route starts in a fairly well-established Somali community, so my (probably over-generalised) view is that they are probably of Somali origin rather than ME or Asian?
Even so, I find it sad that they are basically viewing their tiny girls as sexual objects who need to be covered up.

FrauMoose Tue 02-Jul-13 11:19:00

But is it worse than the cute, sexualised, pink glittery clothing available for girls. The hair bobbles for little girls who haven't even got much more than fine baby hair? The short skirts which mean that girls become self-conscious about physical play and activity.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 11:24:00

FrauMoose - I think that is a totally different subject.

ChunkyPickle Tue 02-Jul-13 11:24:52

I've only seen kids in hijab as a kind of sunday Friday best - which has included school uniforms (at the posher schools) - they were always pretty practical for the weather though (hot country - so boys and girls alike work a flowing tunic/trousers for school, boys wore a hat, girls wore a pale headscarf).

If it's 'best dress'/uniform/copying mummy I don't see a problem. If it's forced, then no, it's not right on one so young.

TBH I don't see a problem with headscarves in general, as long as they're not restricting. I've worn them in hot weather to keep sweaty hair out the way, or windy weather. People wear them to keep their hair out of food when cooking or for any of 100 reasons. When working, a lot of the girls I knew tucked them in the neck of their jumper, or wore pre-sewn snood-like ones so they didn't get in the way (certainly no more than hair)

Katnisscupcake Tue 02-Jul-13 11:29:08


CoteDAzur Tue 02-Jul-13 11:29:19

Nursery children in Muslim headscarves sad

It is not just a scarf.

SooticaTheWitchesCat Tue 02-Jul-13 11:30:35

YANBU, little girls have no need to wear a headscarf. It is a choice to be made when they are older.

FrauMoose, I think little girls wearing sexualised clothing, mini skirts etc is also wrong. I don't think of hair bobbles as being a problem though.

JackNoneReacher Tue 02-Jul-13 11:30:47

What a shame.

The rickets thing is not a myth littleducks.

There are several ways to increase the risk of suffering from vit D deficiency including covering all the skin either with clothes or sunscreen. And the darker the skin, the more sunlight you need to get the required amounts of vit d.

Hence black people in Scotland are at risk. Asian women who cover their skin are at risk.

themaltesecat Tue 02-Jul-13 11:32:28

Horrid. Makes me angry and sad when i see it.

mezza123 Tue 02-Jul-13 11:32:29

Yanbu, its sad. I would think it would give girls peripheral vision issues in PE, in reply to a pp.

ShadeofViolet Tue 02-Jul-13 11:32:49

We have a little girl in year 1 who was not allowed on the school trip because she didn't have a chaperone sad

NotYoMomma Tue 02-Jul-13 11:34:43

I think tgey shoukd make primary schools totally secular like France. No crosses, jewellry, headscarves etc

Until they are at least in secondry and learning to make their own decisions

littleducks Tue 02-Jul-13 12:03:58

Jack maybe I wasn't clear, I was saying that the 'its communities that cover more that are experiencing increased levels of rickets' is a myth.

We live in North London, there have been cases here but it appears to be from mixed communities. Not just from the orthodox Jewish community and the muslim communities (who tend to dress in a more covered fashion).

There has been an increase in all communities because:

Putting sunscreen on has the same effect.
Being dark skinned has the same effect.

foreverondiet Tue 02-Jul-13 12:09:21

Too young and I hope the parents are giving vit D supplements...

foreverondiet Tue 02-Jul-13 12:12:29

My friend is GP in area where lots women / girls v covered up and it's not a myth. There is much worse but d deficiency in their communities...

vixsatis Tue 02-Jul-13 12:14:37

It sexualises children. YANBU

specialsubject Tue 02-Jul-13 12:16:42

I was somewhat surprised to see that the NHS now recommends vitamin D supplements for all under fives. There isn't enough UV to make vitamin D here in the winter, but with normal going outside in the summer most people should be able to make enough to last. Even with sensible use of sunscreen.

Someone who describes the UK as continually grey and dreary clearly never goes outside the door and will get rickets.

and wobbling back on topic - the hijab is, I read, to prevent women being judged on appearance. That is WOMEN, not small children. How horrifying.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 12:18:55

Any religion/ custom/ practise from any area, race community that seeks to constrict or lessen choices for women ( or men) on dress, behaviour or life chances stinks.

It's about control. It's about accepting your place in life and society and not striving or questioning.

It's usually also about money and power and most generally these are held by men of course.

littleducks Tue 02-Jul-13 12:31:45

But that's the point the recommendation is for all under 5s not just those from the communities seen as 'at risk' in the past.

And in comparison to other places in the world the UK is pretty grey in my opinion. There may be scorching hot days occasionally (when we are told to cover up or wear sunscreen to prevent cancer) but lots of 'the wettest month/year' on record too!

My DD did "Race for Life", last week, her friend ran in full headscarf.

I asked if she was hot and how it felt whilst doing sport, we are friends and she wouldn't find this question intrusive.

She said that having grown up in Bangladesh, she had never felt too hot in the UK, regardless of what she wore.

Also, she found that doing exercise at home, without a head cover, wasn't any different and her clothing didn't restrict her, in any way.

She is, however, restricted by the wishes and wants of the senior male members of her family (she has a situation happening at the moment about life choices), so her clothing choice, isn't the biggest issue in her life.

It is just the most visual one.

Fakebook Tue 02-Jul-13 12:35:59

Yanbu and it makes me sad too because I know for a fact that the hijab is not compulsory for a 5 year old girl. It's normally advised to adopt it after the girl starts her periods.

Lottapianos Tue 02-Jul-13 12:36:52

YANBU OP. I have seen nursery age girls wearing hijab. It's very sad.

Agree it should be a choice that each young woman makes for herself when she is old enough to weigh up the pros and cons.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Tue 02-Jul-13 12:38:03

YANBU - age 5 is much too young. It should be the woman's decision when she is an adult.

eccentrica Tue 02-Jul-13 12:42:42

littleducks it is not a myth that rickets is linked to Islamic covering of the body.


"Vitamin D status and determinants of deficiency among non-pregnant Jordanian women of reproductive age."
"Prevalence of deficiency was 1.60 times higher for women who covered with a scarf/hijab (95% CI: 1.06-2.40, P = 0.024) and 1.87 times higher for women who wore full cover, or a niqab (95% CI: 1.20-2.93, P = 0.006), compared with the women who did not wear a scarf/hijab or niqab. "

I do think it's really sad to sexualise little girls, whether that's by covering them up (because otherwise they're immodest???) or by dressing them like mini lap dancers.

Pendeen Tue 02-Jul-13 12:46:13

YANBU, it's absolutely daft IMO.

NickECave Tue 02-Jul-13 12:47:56

My 6 year old dd is in a very diverse London primary. There are at least 5 girls in each year of the school from nursery class to year 6 who wear the Hijab. Some of the girls also wear a floor length robe. Almost all of them are from the Somali or Yemeni communities. In my opinion it is their parents expressing cultural identity as much as religious affiliation.

TheRealFellatio Tue 02-Jul-13 12:48:58

I saw two little girls around 3 and 5 in hojabs the other day and I thought it was sad. If the sight of a female's hair is supposed to be slightly indecent and to drive men wild and beyond control then what does that say about men who can't control themselves around very small girls? hmm

It is supposed to be about modesty but actually putting a small child in a hijab is no better than putting her in a push-up bra from where I am standing. It is saying that she is a sexualised woman, not an innocent child.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 12:49:41


I have muslim friends and my understanding is that the wearing of a hijab is to reduce/eliminate temptation (for a male) I might be wrong about this but im not muslim so cant say for sure ... If that is the case ... cat among the pigeons here but is that why so many muslim men jump and prey on "western girls" - they see a bit of flesh and turn into the animals we have seen on the news?

TheRealFellatio Tue 02-Jul-13 12:51:08

That is interesting Nick and I wonder how young it is culturally acceptable to marry little girls off? hmm

lurcherlover Tue 02-Jul-13 12:58:36

YANBU. I work in a very mixed community with a large Muslim population and most of the young girls (ie under 10) wear headscarves. I find it very sad. I also wonder if the men realise this is sending out a message that they can't be trusted not to see children as sexual beings. Why does a child need one?

EDMNWiganSalfordandBlackpool Tue 02-Jul-13 13:03:17

The school I worked in was 75% Muslim children. None wore a hijab and only those in last couple of classes were puberty was starting for some wore head scarf.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 13:06:13

I'm totally with France on this one. People get away with so much in the name of religion but it's 'racist' to speak up about shit practices.

Mutilate their genitals, cover them head to foot in scarves to completely dehumanise them, force them to marry while they should still be playing with dolls. Sorry, I have no respect for that bollocks.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:07:19

Who told FrauMoose off by saying that her statement was a totally different subject?

It is not.

Yes the hijab is a religious symbol and yes, women are meant to be covered to prevent men from catching a glimpse of their bare flesh as this might encourage lustful thoughts towards another woman, which is sinful. As we all well know, men cannot control their sinful urges and woman should be punished for being natural temptresses (Adam and Eve story anyone?).

But why should they feel the need to protect their pre-pubescent daughters from these lustful men?

And actually, although it is not linked to religion, I find it just as offensive to see little girls wearing sparkly boob tubes or t-shirts that say 'Sexy Babe' on them.

As a society we are sexualising our children in a very different way. You could say the Islam religion is also sexualising people by assuming that men cannot control their thoughts and urges; by assuming that the woman is immediately at fault by being this object of sexuality and those who make children wear the hijab are also presuming that their children are sexualised.

I find both to be distressing. You hardly hear a mutter about young girls wearing inappropriate clothing because it's become acceptable now, hardly worth a muster. Rape victims are still thought by some to have brought it on themselves and drunk women are still considered to be fair game.

So who the hell are we to start criticising someone else's culture?

Let's sort out the issues in our own backyard before casting judgement on our neighbours.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 13:09:43

That's another thing though. If a child begins puberty quite early (primary age) is it not really intrusive to the child to have it blatantly spelled out by the sudden wearing of the hijab?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:10:21

And whilst we are beating our breasts in horror about child marriage let me remind you of the Jeremy Forrest thread where many posters were of the opinion that a girl who was groomed from the age of 13 not only went with him willingly but was actually responsible for her own actions and his.

What makes our society so morally perfect that we can criticise other societies?

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 13:10:51

So how come the rape statistics in Pakistan and India are through the roof compared to here?

So dressing modestly doesn't ensure the men dress like animals does it really?

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 13:12:07

On and actually its quite acceptable to criticise any culture you like actually.

HintofBream Tue 02-Jul-13 13:14:33

craps'if your snarky remark about visiting doctors to discuss medical problems of religious communities was aimed at me, it so happens that our GP is also a friend and it was in the context of sunscreen and general avoidance of sun that it cropped up. No compromise of patients' confidentiality if that was going to be your next offering.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 13:17:03

Religion= control and power exclusivity to ensure through rules and fear that people confirm and don't question or complain.

Helps keep people ignorant, unthinking, compliant.

All religions I am aware if are run by men and have mysogynist and dubious child safe guarding tendencies.

Most involve collecting money for membership and involve fear and intimidation and shame.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 02-Jul-13 13:17:27

I am Muslim, I wear hijab. I think it should be a choice made post-puberty by the individual if they wish to wear it or not.

Dd likes to use my scarves as fancy dress, that's it.

So YANBU, I do not like seeing little girls wearing hijab on a daily basis.

However, I don't think the parents are doing it because they think their daughters are alluring, they're doing it as a way of instilling religious practice from an early age. Not how I'd go about things, mind.

Finally, it is interesting that there is never the same level of concerns about Sikh boys in Patkas or Sikh men in turbans.

Wingdingdong Tue 02-Jul-13 13:18:35

Re rickets and vit D deficiency - I'm pale skinned, spend a lot of time outside (walk 5 or 6 miles most days between nursery/town/activities, 1yo and 4yo so in park a lot, need to get out for sanity and to prevent house being trashed, etc etc). I have taken 200% RDA vit D supplements daily since starting TTC in 2007, throughout pregnancy and breast feeding. I was quite surprised to discover late last year that my total exhaustion and joint pain was more likely to be from vit D deficiency than from the DC - I was lucky I had an osteopath who suggested it and a GP who agreed to do blood tests. Since both DC were BF until 1, we were advised that they should also take supplements as it was likely they'd be deficient.

Anyway, that's a bit OT. OP, YANBU, I once had a student who kept fainting due to overheating. But at least she was old enough that it was her choice! Bloody inconvenient and disruptive though... If there's one way to guarantee drawing attention to yourself, it's keeling over in a warm classroom. Worse still if you're on the large side, the girls in the class can't lift you and it sparks a debate amongst your classmates as to whether the boys would be allowed to touch you in order to carry you out for some fresh air!

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:21:22

The same point was made about Scottish children and rickets.

And actually, I think it is very hypocritical to criticise a culture when ours culture has a pretty appauling record of the sexualisation of young children and misogynistic attitudes.

I think it's wrong to see women and girls as sexual objects and I think that the Muslim religion is wrong for encouraging this view and that our society is wrong for also encouraging it, albeit in a different way.

But I think it's worse to make out that our society is somehow better when it clearly is not.

EDMNWiganSalfordandBlackpool Tue 02-Jul-13 13:25:45

Rhubarb, your Adam and Eve comment reminds me of when dd then age 5 went to church with school and I went as a helper.

The vicar told the children older girls had painful periods to remind them of the bad Eve did and remind them they were sinful and not worthy of the lords purity hmm of course there was no mention of Adam doing wrong.

angelos02 Tue 02-Jul-13 13:25:48

YANBU. I don't like seeing women of any age in such a thing. It is a device in which men control women. Simple as that.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 13:29:39

Don't think anyone is criticising just Muslim societies, I certainly am not. No society is perfect is it?

Criticising one isn't praising the other.

There are mysygonistic vile practises in all societies but covering up women to ensure they don't inflame men or for modesty or for any of the other reasons given is controlling.

It's all very well saying its a woman's choice but that's clearly not the case in a Pakistani village is it??

Rollmops Tue 02-Jul-13 13:32:55

Good grief, where do all these men who can't control themselves, spring from?

If the headscarves etc are meant to keep the lustful glances and grabby hands away from female modesty, then why don't all the religions suggest wearing them. Or local councils. Or whoever.

Because them evil men get everywhere, you see. Just look around, I bet there's one lurking just behind the third bush. [aargh]

Isn't it a woman's job to make sure she is not dressed provocatively, or she'll be 'asking for it'. The honour killings because an ankle was shown. Why do these happen?
Rhubarb, what do you think?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:33:33

EDMN - hello fellow northerner! Yes, women are persecuted in many religions and it's a view that still carries some weight today unfortunately. You would not believe how many women supported Jeremy Forrest and were of the view that a child under his care was somehow just as much to blame, if not more, for his actions. Because she was a girl and girls are supposedly "more mature" for their age, says the age-old paedo excuse.

Our society produces padded bras for little girls, skimpy knickers, revealing tops with risque slogans, tight skinny jeans, high heeled shoes, make-up, etc. In short, it encourages girls to show off their bodies from a very young age.

The Muslim culture encourages their little girls to cover up their bodies from a very young age as the woman's body is sinful.

Both are equally bad, both discriminate against women but somehow one is more culturally acceptable than the other?

I think not.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:38:56

Rollmops, answer your own question. I'm sure you have one.

Criticise all you like but don't forget the position you are starting from. That of belonging to a society that sexualises children and encourages the notion that girls are mini-seductresses who groom their own teachers and who are completely responsible for having under-age sex with older men. Cause it's all their choice isn't it?

Reminds me of that cartoon which depicted a woman in a bikini walking past a woman in a burkha and a thinking how it's sad that she has to dress to please her male-orientated society whilst the woman in the burkha was shown to be thinking exactly the same thing about the woman in the bikini.

unobtanium Tue 02-Jul-13 13:39:41

She may get rickets. YANBU.

unobtanium Tue 02-Jul-13 13:41:43

Oops, I see rickets has been raised...

LouiseSmith Tue 02-Jul-13 13:42:46

I share your views, children should be allowed to be children. Personally I think its a form of cruelty to deliberately single a child out like that in a school where other children have to wear the uniform. Children can be so mean sometimes.

Poor girl.

4x4 Tue 02-Jul-13 13:45:14

I have seen Indonesian baby girls in prams wearing hijab and at the other extreme Khaleej youngsters dressed like spice girls.
It's the parents/ families decision .

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 13:45:14

TheRhubarb, agree generally with you but my dds are teens and wear makeup, skinny jeans and right tops.

That's their choice. I don't control them and have absolutely no problem with this as a woman should dress as she sees fit. Not how her father or brother or some priest/ imam or what have you says.

Men are not to be controlled or corralled. The law is there to prefect women and girls from rape and assault.

I too was horrified at some of the comments re the child in the Jeremy Forrest case. The perpetrator is always the guilty party not the abused.

If dressing modestly calms men down then why are the rape stats in Pakistan and India so horrendous?

Sirzy Tue 02-Jul-13 13:45:29

I have no problem with people wearing religious dress when they have made an informed choice that is what they want. A 5 year old cant do that.

I thought it was normal for them to only start wearing religious dress from puberty?

ReallyTired Tue 02-Jul-13 13:49:52

Many little girls want to look like their mummies. Plenty of five year olds do PE in a hijab, go to school and do PE. It was be a very extremist muslim family to object to a five year old girl doing PE with five year old boys.

Rickets is a disease of povety. Some children do not have enough vitamen D in their diet. It is not just about black/ dark skined people having no exposure to sunlight.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 13:50:33

THERhubarb - what is your culture that you speak about?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 13:51:20

I love posts which start with 'I'm not racist but...'
'Some of my best friends are mozlamic...'
'I'm indian....' does it somehow make you less prejuidiced and xenophobic

I've got two dd's both appear to have an extensive wardrobe of hijabs (heascarves) wardrobe, despite having spent considerable money on it, appears to be vastly inferior to my childrens hmm, my dd's are 8 and 10.

I also have mozlamic friends and not a single one of their children wear hijab even the older girls are a bit hit and miss, some do some dont it's a personal choice. The mozlamic women I know and firends with wear dress ranging form headscarves atop normal clothing to all encompassing veils.

My eldest DD always spends ages wrapping and accessorising herself in fancy hijab before going out, she also as a much younger child once went to nursery in her PJ's and my youngest once went out shopping with me wearing fairy wings and carrying a light up wand. I couldn't be bovvered to argue, it was a sunday and the shops were going to close and I had no food in the DD's are oppressing me.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:54:43

thebody - teens perhaps but little girls? This is what I was talking about. What possesses a mother to go out and buy her little girl a padded bikini? Or a t-shirt with a sexualised slogan on it?

Make-up for young children is not unheard of and many primary school children will wear it.

Yes you could say they are copying their parents but you need to also remember that make-up and revealing clothing is there to attract the attention of men, so is it really suitable for little girls?

In our society we encourage our girl to be as attractive as possible for the benefit of men whilst in their society it's the opposite.

Both societies are guilty of pressurising young girls to conform and both are guilty of thinking that girls/woman only have one aim and that is to attract attention from men. They discourage it and we encourage it.

Both practices are equally obnoxious.


I'd go further and say of females of any age. But I add I would never condone someone (adult) being prevented from wearing one.

Yes Rhubarb - it's two sides of the same coin.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 13:59:45

ThePurpleCarrot you want to shout me down I know. You want to tell me that this does not exist, not in your experience, not amongst your friends, not where you live.

Then you walk around with your eyes shut.

Why did Mumsnet feel the need to start a campaign to stop the sexualisation of young girls if this was not thought to be a problem?
Why are so many make-up kits aimed at and sold to children (Hello Kitty?), why is it nearly impossible to buy a bra for my 12yr old dd that is not padded?

And I've read enough posts by other women, other mums, to realise that sometimes rape victims are blamed. There is this notion that they shouldn't have put themselves in that situation in the first place.

Phineyj Tue 02-Jul-13 14:04:26

I think it is pretty unlikely any British primary school would allow girls to attend in mini skirts, push up bra and makeup. Even at secondary we spend an enormous amount of time daily making girls clean off makeup, remove jewellery and roll their skirts back down. We therefore do not approve of girls dressing in a sexualised way in institutions like schools. It's not encouraged in a lot of workplaces either.

So there is a double standard.

In the Koran it instructs both genders to dress modestly, doesn't it?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 14:09:18

It has very specific instructions in the Koran about how women should dress.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 14:15:23

Phiney, I went to a seocndary school in East london, and if you really think the girls there didn't cake on make, up roll up their skirts to barely cover their arses, wore massive hoops in their ears despite the shool rules, I must have attended a very unique school (this was 20 or so years ago). AND I went to an all girls school!!!!!

bakingaddict Tue 02-Jul-13 14:22:09

Rhubarb it's about repurcussions and enforcement isn't it....what happens to the child or young woman who refuses to wear the niqab in an ultra orthodox muslim community, compared to the child who refuses to wear a glittery sparkly top or tight jeans in western society?

In a western society teenage girls can take or leave the provocative clothing without any consequence from their family or those around them, I don't think this is afforded to young woman from strict muslim families who want to abandon the niqab hence why people feel justified to criticise

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 14:23:48

Depends on the school fuzzy. My dd's school is quite strict but the one I went to was like the one you described and I've seen schoolgirls myself wearing arse-skimming skirts with stockings (presumably they roll their skirts back down before going into school) and full make-up.

Yet you get a teenage girl in a burkha and suddenly everyone feels obliged to have an opinion and to voice that opinion as though they are the superior ones.

This sense of superiority really rankles me.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 14:27:38

thats not true baking, every single woman I know had to fight her own family to wear hijab, my sisters husband wont allow her to wear a niqab.

The justification to prevent women dressing as they wish is that theyre being forced to wear a headsarf against their will, I dont kow any who have personally nor do my friends or family, we have come across the opposite many times.

If girs were being pressured to wear hijabs I'm sure I'd have come across at least one. I havent.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 14:28:00

That is true bakingaddict and a very fair point.

Yes there are some clear differences. My dd is teased because she is 12 and doesn't have her ears pierced, doesn't like One Direction, doesn't wear make-up or trendy clothes and doesn't have a boyfriend. She's been called a lesbian, a nerd and a geek and is generally avoided at lunchtimes so she sits on her own or with one or two girls who will still speak to her.

I got the same treatment at her age, not just by my peers but also my family who took every opportunity to poke fun at my lack of fashion and opinionise loudly that I would never get a boyfriend or that I should be a lesbian.

But like you say, at least that doesn't include beatings, being cast out or worse, murder.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 14:29:58

fuzzywuzzy, honour killings do exist and in countries like Afghanistan, women ARE forced to wear the burkha.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 14:32:42

Woooaaaah THERhubarb. I asked you a civil question and you tell me that I walk about with my eyes closed!

I live in the most remote city in the world. I have never seen a grown women in the town that I live in, dressed in burkha.

Perhaps if you are more civil, people will engage with you more.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 14:34:04

I thought we were discussing the UK?

I dont dispute that many countries opress women, and use sexual abuse as a method of control they prevent girls from being educated and try ot force thme to stay behind clsoed doors to prevent thme form 'gettign above thmeselves' I don't dispute any of that.

I beleive firmly in educating women and for mothers to treat bring their sons up to treat women as equals and for girls to be boguht up to consider themsleves equal to any man.

I also feel everyone should wear what the hell they want witohut fear of physical violence for their dress or lack thereof.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 14:36:38

I have to question the whole meaning behind girls wearing a headscarf/ full dress when you see 13/14 year old girls with a headscarf on yet make up which would put Lilly Alan to Shame - If these girls are truly following a religion should the meaning not be explained to them? And Anne gorilla I don't think you can compare a Sikh And a Muslim - I think you will find that the Sikh religion actively promotes equality and respect between the genders and doesn't tell one to cover up to quash the lustfulness of the other. It also doesn't promote man as superior to a woman in that a man can take so many wives to demonstrate his wealth and still go to heaven to find an endless line of virgins!

My personal understanding is that some Muslim girls in the uk can choose to wear the attire but when visiting their families in India/Pakistan they are expected to conform or face the wrath of villagers/ relatives

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 14:36:58

honour killings and forced marriages and preventing girls from being educated is not confined to the Muslim religion, Islami specifically states that men and women are equal and everyone should pursue education and furthering knowledge, a girl cannot be married against her will that is also unislamic and such a marriage is void on relgious grounds.

A lot of Mulsim men prefer uneducated wives so they wont have to give her her due and she will quietly accept culutral practices as relgious edicts instead.

youvegottabekiddingme Tue 02-Jul-13 14:39:04

I've only read the first page but why do people make judgements based on the own stereotyping without knowing facts? My daughter is five and begs me to let her wear a hijab to school. It was difficult enough to find one her size after she pleaded for it. We live in a hot country but sometimes she asks to wear it when we go out. No doubt judgmental people will think I'm forcing her to wear it when they see her hot and sweaty trying to adjust it while I'm trying to take it off her and reminding her that I told her not to wear it in the first place.

MrsDeVere Tue 02-Jul-13 14:41:09

It is common where I live in East London to see very young girls wearing headscarves (I am sorry I don't know the correct term for the different types)

It has always puzzled me.

I don't like it or understand it.

But I don't like or understand dressing a 4 year old in a teeshirt with 'sexy' on it.

Both extremes are common where I live.

If I am honest I would say the 'sexy' example is more disturbing and damaging (IMO).

But I still think little girls wearing adult clothing for adult reasons is messed up.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 14:42:26

I went to school with sikh girls who were pulled out of school and had arranged marriages against their will. The Sikh are very conservative with their girls ime.

The headscarves with make up is those individual girls choices, ask them why thety do this. I don't so wouldnt know the reason behind it.

And muslim men are not allowed to marry lots of women to portray thier wealth. They are relgiously allowed to take up to four wives providing they can treat them equally. I would not personally make an informed deciision to be a co-wife, also I do not believe in the UK you can be an equal co-wife as the law of the land only recognises one wife.

Taking many wives does not guarantee heaven, it guarantees hell if you are at all unequal in their treatment.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 14:44:19

Forced marriages, beatings and killings also exist in the UK. The man is a dominant force and the woman is duty bound to be obedient to him. The focus is on pleasing him.

Same as with the Christian faith as it happens.

Yes everyone should be able to wear what they like but the western culture has this huge force called the media and this media targets women and girls, making them believe that sexualisation at an early age is normal.

I honestly don't believe that in a cold easterly town in the north of the UK, young women would brave the icy wind and lashing rain dressed only in a white mini skirt and white boob tube with impossibly high heels if she was not led to believe that this look made her more attractive to the opposite sex.

bakingaddict Tue 02-Jul-13 14:47:46

Fuzzywuzzy with the upmost respect you cannot begin to assert yourself as the voice of muslim woman based on your own circle of friends and family, just because it doesn't happen within your limited circle doesn't mean enforcement isn't happening. Just like any religion there will be a spectrum of believers, from the moderate to the ultra orthodox. The statement 'my sisters husband wont allow her to wear a niqab is quite telling'. Hasn't she just replaced one form of male subjugation with another, whatever happened to free choice

If every woman was free to make an individual choice on the matter then why do so many Muslim countries such as Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia have such strict laws on what woman can and cant do/wear in public

Phineyj Tue 02-Jul-13 14:53:31

That was my point, girls try very hard to wear sexualised clothing at school but the school uniform code and the teachers try to stop them -- so therefore at an institutional level we do not approve of young girls dressing like this and we try to stop them even if it is a doomed enterprise.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 14:54:16

THERhubarb "The man is a dominant force and the woman is duty bound to be obedient to him. The focus is on pleasing him."

Rhubarb, you obviously come from an unusual culture.

stepawayfromthescreen Tue 02-Jul-13 14:58:18

I loathe hijab/burqa etc and any form of clothing like this.
Only worn by women.
Men can do as they please, as usual.
I've heard the intellectual arguments on support of Islamic cover up clothing for females, but it doesn't wash with me.
It's not about modesty, it's oppression.
Religion and religious schools should be outlawed.
Not going to happen, but I can dream..

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 15:03:04

Well said stepaway. I personally also find if quite intimidating!

The comments of the mother of the two brothers who were recently sentenced after grooming underage girls also frighten me - is this the thinking of most people from this background?

bakingaddict Tue 02-Jul-13 15:03:52

Rhubarb your logic seems a bit skewed, all animal species do their best to attract a mate it's what keeps the human race alive. The girls up in Newcastle are only trying in their own sweet way to perpetuate the species showing potential mates big bosoms for breastfeeding etc, etc, we are all in some way biologically programmed to do this.

I don't really care what people wear but it's only when a society seeks to formulate into their laws, be it state or religious decree what an individual should or shouldn't be wearing do I think a line has been crossed

SHarri13 Tue 02-Jul-13 15:04:59

I once cared for a woman who had a toddler wearing a hijab, the mother herself wore a burka. The daughter was less than 2.5 as we discussed the age gap between her daughter and unborn baby.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 15:05:54

Stepaway - I lived in the UAE for some time and it looks very different there. Women dressed head to toe in black yet when their uniform open they are dressed in the most skimpy, seductive clothing available.

MarinaIvy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:07:33
Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 15:08:48

Where we are the little girls (and I mean primary school aged) who wear the head scarves pinned at the chin and baggy tops tend to be of N African origin.

We get a lot of folks from the Middle East visiting this time of year and it seems like overnight the fully black clothed women appear. Not so many with the gold masks any more, and there are more and more younger women covering everything but the eyeballs (from what I can tell) - it used to be mainly the grandmas until recently. The girls never wear headscarves though.

I have Muslim relatives in the ME and girls certainly don't cover either. The women (reluctantly) pop on a scarf, but they are stunningly beautiful and it suits them. I look like Les Dawson in a headscarf.

Little girls... I don't like to see it. Yes I know, some are probably just 'being like mummy' (how we used to trot around the house in mums heels with her handbag) but the scarf is a sexual thing. It is to stop mens' gaze - how does a parent explain that to a five year old? Why do they think they are wearing it? This says more about their attitudes to sex than anything else - and this is what makes me feel uneasy about it. Do they really see a small girl as a sexualised being? Who is the risk coming from?

Maybe men should be forced to wear blinkers and bee-keepers masks, and have bromide slipped into their tea.

Why cant people just let kids be kids - pink and frilly/cartoon tops and jeans, whatever. No coverings and no 'Future WAG' t-shirts either for that matter...

Yes stepaway well said

if the female form is too distracting [from God] them why don't men cover their eyes? Or stay at home? Their problem - not women's.

It's misogyny masquerading as religion : same deal re. Women bishops and the Catholic Church not allowing women priests. Power and control.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:14:56

Baking I am in better place than you to assert my self as the voice of Muslim women. Hoever I am not saying I am that at all.

I don't like my sisters husband particularly and my sister chooses for now to go along with him regaridng the niqab.

I don't understand what you're getting at, if some women are forced to wear a headscarf then the headscarf should be banned completely, my sister is forced not to wear a veil, should all women by that logic then be forced to wear the veil in support? Some women are forced into arranged marriages (not just muslim women happens with Sikh and hindu women as well), should marriage be banned?

Safe guards should be in place and I think are more and more with marriages but with heascarves my firends choose to wear them and their daughters have a choice of whatever they cna wear.

My dd's love wearing headscarves they take mine to wear as I dont buy thme their own.

A headscarf has never stopped anyone form doing anything except when facing prejuidice and xenphobia, my girls ride bicycles without having to stop to adjust their headscarves (what is htat all about?), I hold down a high powered professiaonl job whilst simultaneously wearing a headscarf.

I also campaign for womens rights in Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia, and wouldnt' hesitate to help a woman in the UK who was bieng forced agianst her will to do something she did not want.

whats the point here?

The OP states a little child was seen wearing a headscarf for the first time today and wasn't playing with hte other chidlren as normal. She goes on to say that now she wont be able to share a changing room with boys . Altho there doesn't seem to be any basis for this assumption bar the OP making massive assumptions.

From that we're discussing Afghanistand and Saudi Arabia, I've been to the middle East many times no young pre-pubescent child wear hijab there.

I'd also say I am pretty well placed to state that no muslim woman condones the opression of her sister in Islam under the guise fo religion.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 15:16:07

I've read loads of literature about Islam, I'm interested to understand what the Qur'an actually does say as opposed to the interpretations extremists take on it. Nothing I've read has convinced me women are considered equal to men.

If it truly is about Modesty why is it only women expected to wear them?

I appreciate the Bible is just as misogynistic but it's ok to point that out. We just have to pretend it's just a cultural difference that we should accept without question or else you're a big ole' racist. You'll not see my daughter in stupid sexy slogan t-shirts any more than you'll ever see her in a burka so it's a moot point. The question was about hijabs. I'm personally bloody annoyed when I see women in burkas, the irony is that you'd not give her a second glance without one.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:17:50

Sauce Muslim men and muslim women are instructed to lower their gaze in the quran.

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 15:18:58

I do get the covering up... if you live a nomadic life in the desert - to stop your skin getting burned and sandblasted, and sand getting into every orifice. That makes sense.

The black colour just doesn't though. The heat would make me very tired and slow, and if I was also fasting/praying 5 times a day, I would be an absolute zombie.

Religion has its own ways of making people compliant. Sadly, the books and laws are written by mortal men.

TheCrackFox Tue 02-Jul-13 15:19:37


There are a few young girls wearing the hijab at my DC's school and I think it is a bit sad TBH. Why can't they just be kids?

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 15:20:45


It depresses me.

chocolatespiders Tue 02-Jul-13 15:21:36

personal choice and I have seen a girl swimming in one once.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:23:24

Men have a dress code too.

It doesn't take long to pray five times a day, fasting is only requied one lunar month, women don't fast during their periods nor do breastfeeding mums or pregnant women.

If you don't beleive in God then you wouldnt be able to do it. It would be a chore.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 15:23:41

Stepaway, excellent posts.

Rhubarb, why are the rape stats so horrendous in Pakistan and India where women dress modestly.?

Please explain...

DH is from North Africa and I regularly visit there. No one in his family expects young girls to wear the hijab and none of them do. I can't recall seeing young girls in a hijab whilst visiting his country other than if they have just been to the mosque. None of his friends daughters here wore the hijab at a young age either.

But it's only women who are covered in my part of London. Only their eyes are [barely] visible.

The protest outside the Syrian embassy was divided by gender. It infuriated me. We have equality laws yet women and men are meant to protest separately and women are meant to cover every centimetre of skin.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 15:26:52

I have to admit I have very limited knowledge of the writings on the Koran - I am very interested in learning though. I have studies Christianity, Judaism and just recently Sikhism. So please pardon my ignorance but in studying the religion I have yet to read anywhere that man and woman are equal.

Does a woman, after leaving this earth arrive to heaven greeted by line of Virgins? Can a woman chose to take more than one husband? Can a woman end a marriage?

I find this all fascinating - I guess when you live this way it becomes quite normalised but it doesn't make it right.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 15:26:55

Would you not feel totally wrong footed and unequal in a conversation with a woman in a face covering?

Human brains are designed to react to faces. If that woman in the burka had spoken to me (her husband actually did, just pleasantries) I honestly don't know how I'd have reacted. How do you react to a person when you can't see their face?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:26:56

Thebody India is a mjority Hindu country (so not filled with burkha wearing women for the benefit of this thread), did you see the documentary on BBC 'India a dangeorus place to be a woman' it was terrifying and sad and a huge eye opener, the women there are however fighting their corner fiercely.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:29:29

Clumsy, who is supposed to meet a line of virgins on dying, certainly not muslim men or women.

A Muslim woman can't marry more than one man at a time, she can stipulate in her marrigage contract that her husband can't marry more than one woman whilst married to her.

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 15:30:24

Its not the length of prayer but the times. The human body needs to sleep and eat to function properly. I know the rules. My family tell me and I see it first hand. And if you don't believe in God where they are, heaven help you, literally.

Men may have a dress code - it's certainly not as restrictive and a lot don't seem to bother anyway.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 15:31:32

Basically, Allah is pleased with you if you treat your daughter's the same way you treat your sons. It obviously needed to be spelled out though.

It is something like this...yes, yes, women must cover up but it is only for modesty's sake, not because they're unequal </end explanation.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 15:34:10

Maybe I misunderstood - I was reading from surah 55. Apologies if I got this wrong as I said I'm learning.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 15:35:01

One of the most telling incidents for me was when we were in Fujairah (sp?) as a weekend break from Dubai.

Evening and the sun is going down. A remote hotel on a peninsula. Hotel nearly fully booked but dining room empty.

Beautiful, huge, swimming pool. 5 or 6 good looking, swarthy, men appear in shorts and cut off t shirts. Obviously they go to the gym and work out. Little children run about laughing and playing.

5/6 women, completely covered up walk behind them.

The men and children came in to the swimming pool and had great fun. They then went down to the beach - 20 ft away and played there. The women also went in to the water. The women were fully covered in their heavy, black, restrictive garb.

I've not forgotten the sadness and sense of oppression this left me with.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 15:36:59

I guess this was the bit that led me to believe it was just men: " the smallest reward for the people of paradise is an abode where there are 80,000 servants and 72 wives ( whom no man or jinn before them has touched) over which stands a decorated dome"

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 15:44:09

In the country I know anyway: It is fairly normal for a son to be given double the inheritance of the daughter. Women can divorce but if they remarry, any children automatically go to their father. Yes, there is the 'term' marriage. In the case of witnesses, a man's statement carries more weight than a woman's (and in some cases a woman cannot be a witness). In cases of adultery, the law comes down very very hard on the woman, not so the man. Prostitution, child abuse, drug use and crime is usually approached with fingers in the ears, singing 'lalalalalalala' strategy.

The whole virgins thing is a mis-translation anyway (like the camel and the eye of the needle actually being a rope). Apparently the original word was 'dates' - ie sustenance, dates being a bit of a wonder food (so really meaning sustenance for the soul). I have seen some foolish young men still making reference to the virgins - they are just stupid and ill educated.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 15:44:52

...meant to say. The hotel dining room was almost empty because the local women didn't want to eat in front of the 10% of foreigners, so the family ate up in the bedrooms.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 15:49:36

Hang on a sec, do I sense that some presume I am from a different culture? Why am I asked to explain the rape stats for India?

I feel some of you are misunderstanding my point. I am explaining WHY the hijab or burkha is worn, I am not condoning it and my posts cannot be misconstrued to condone that either.

ThePurpleCarrot in thinking I am from an unusual culture you are coming across as quite passive aggressive, presumptious and ill-informed and I am sure that is not your intention.

Let me remind you all of the UK and Ireland 40 years ago. My mother was refused a sterilisation process without the consent of her husband. Catholicism was the oppressive religion then (and still is to some extent) where women were raped in marriage and beaten but nothing was ever said about it. Men hit their wives and that was just that.

The Catholic church preaches that the wife submits to her husband just as the Islam faith preaches. If a young catholic girl got pregnant, she was refused an abortion and the baby was forcibly removed from her arms. She could then be cast-out by her family who saw her as being damned to hell. Oh and all who did not follow the faith were infidels who were also damned to hell - sound familiar?

Talkinpeace Tue 02-Jul-13 15:50:04

Niqab is routine for girls
hijab is only once puberty sets in

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:50:54

I pray five times a day Moomins, it is exhausting during Ramadan, but the rest of the year I function fine, my body is used to it, providing I go to bed at a decent hour I can make dawn prayers, if I miss the dawn prayers I can make them up later.

I wouldnt expect a non muslim to understand or desire to worship five times a day, I do it because I want to, it's my personal choice nobody can force me to do it I do it of my own free will.

Nobody has died from praying five times a day and fasting during the month of ramadan as far as I'm aware.

Clumsy, carry on learning prehaps read the entire verse and then find out when it was revealed, that shoudl explain it.

Wuxiapian Tue 02-Jul-13 15:51:04

YANBU; very sad.

Clumsyoaf Tue 02-Jul-13 15:53:24

I love it when people are so happy to educate and share their knowledge. hmm not passive aggresive at all.

Sallyingforth Tue 02-Jul-13 15:54:08

If people want to cover their faces voluntarily to follow the rules of their religion I can understand.
But I do wonder whether all those rules affecting women, weren't written by men simply in order keep their women subservient.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 15:56:11

The Koran was written by men and the Bible was written largely by men - go figure.

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 15:57:23

I do understand the desire to pray. I do it twice a day myself.

In the country I am thinking of, these days it is very much not 'if' you fast. Choice is the key issue. I have relatives here who choose, but some there who have to have a bloody good reason not to and who are made to feel bad if they don't.

I would find ramadan exhausting, as do my relies here who do it. I'm not speaking as someone who's never met a muslim. We do talk quite a bit about religion, politics and culture at home. We understand each other and respect beliefs.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 15:59:12

Moomin in some cases a womans testimony is only accepted as well it is all about context.

A womans inheritance is half that of her brothers because the brother has to take care of her and provide her maintenance if she is living at home, however a woman does not have that same financial responsibility the brother is also financially responsible for all the dependants left behind plus his own family if he has one.

I am divorced, I am muslim, I have full custody of my children, my husband will never get it as he is a danger and a threat to them. I am going thro the english courts to get this as well, Islamcially I have it already.
By custody Islamically it means that the children sleep in their fathers house, during the day time they can be with their mother.

Islamically a wpmans punishment and mans punishment for adultery is the same. The law neforcers who do not treat both men and women the same for this are the ones at fault not the Islamic law.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 15:59:55

Thank goodness we've moved on, rhubarb. I would have hated to live by 1950s social mores, and I'm as troubled by some of the appalling acts committed in the name of Catholicism as you are too. But what does that have to do with this thread?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:02:14

I have just finished working on a charity website. They help to rescue trafficked girls from Nepal into India. These girls are either abducted from their villages or lured with promises of work or marriage. Once in India they are taken to brothel warehouses where they are sold at auction. The highest prices are reserved for the youngest girls and virgins are highly sought after because of the belief that virgins make men virile.

Some of these men (and women) even perform surgery on girls to make them virgins again so they can command a higher price.

This charity has set up checkpoints across the 1,000 mile border to try and prevent girls from being trafficked. They educate girls they have rescued and give them a life skill because these girls are not accepted back into their families or communities. Once they have been violated, it is presumed that they are atoning for some kind of sin and that they will bring shame on their families. Many of them carry STDs or AIDS and their families cannot afford to care for them. So they are taught to be independent and are re-introduced into different communities where their background is not known.

The scale of it is shocking as is the attitude towards young girls.

It is prevalent everywhere. Women have always been and probably will always be oppressed in some form or another.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 16:02:20

THERhubard - please read my posts - I did not ever say you were from an unusual culture. I asked you a simple question as to what your culture was.

Me thinks the lady doth protest too much.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:04:31

MorrisZapp because there are similarities are there not, between catholicism and Islam?

Catholic women used to cover their heads in church. Look at the coverings nuns wear. Women were oppressed and subject to terrible abuse if they were thought to have brought shame onto their family.

Those who weren't catholic were damned to hell.

The similarities, when you look at them, are pretty striking.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:05:38

ThePurpleCarrot I am fairly well known on Mumsnet, go ask someone else. I don't see why I should tell you what culture I am from or its relevance. I am not here to provide you with ammunition dear.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:10:19

At school catholic primary children were forced to go to mass every Sunday, if they weren't they were given the strap at school. Children were given crucifixes to wear around their necks (health and safety nightmare) and had to learn the cathechism off by heart.

This was accepted and in some catholic primary schools children are just as indoctrinated today, yet we reserve our criticism for a Muslim girl who is attending a mixed race school for all faiths?

I am trying to show that the UK, that western culture was not that much different. I am perhaps also implying that it's ok for western Christianity to oppress girls and women but not ok for an Islamic religion to do so?

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 16:15:27

My friends kids all go to catholic schools here and abroad, as did my dad in the 1930s. No frogmarching children to mass or forcing crucifixes on them.

quoteunquote Tue 02-Jul-13 16:18:36

Females treaded as something lesser than males.

horrid and unacceptable.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 16:21:12

Fuzzywuzzy, no I didn't but am horrified by it all. These brave women are fighting a battle just like our suffragettes did.

I hate to see women covered up in black, I hate to hear about the Catholic Church sponsoring laundries for girls whose crimes were to get pregnant, hateful mysygonistic sharia law where women are ignored, hate hearing a teacher pleading that a 15 year old child led him on.

The difference is that in some countries the vast majority of men get away with hate crimes against women and in other countries they don't.

This depends upon the status of women in the country.

In cultures where the women cover up their human rights are proportionately eroded.

It's not choice. If a young girl in a Muslim country doesn't choose to cover up like her female relatives she would be in danger of her life.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:22:00

In your experience Moomin. The church in Ireland was extraordinarily strict and very oppressive. Many young women were forced into establishments run by nuns to have their babies and then the baby would be whisked away as soon as it was born.

This is well documented. As is the catholic attitude towards non-believers.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:24:15

That is true thebody, luckily we do have human rights in this country but make no mistake about it, there are men out there who would happily oppress women and actually do believe that our sole duty is to please them sexually, have their babies and be a house slave.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 16:25:51

Thebody women are fighting for their rights in Pakistand and Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan, they arent taking it lying down they are brave and courageous and amazing.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:30:37

Yup, look at Malala Yousufzai

I am an actively practicing Christian. I do not accept that my faith requires me to be oppressed nor do I accept others being oppressed although I do think that regrettably that is how some Christians approach the faith. I don't think the OP is being unreasonable and I don't think this child should be wearing this type of clothing. Come to that I don't think any adult should have to either but the religion demands it.

Religion and faith are seperate things.

ThePurpleCarrot Tue 02-Jul-13 16:43:33

THERudebard - well congratulations "for being fairly well known on mumsnet". Was that for being rude?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:48:31

No ThePurpleCarrot I don't give two hoots about your rudeness and intrusion, I am simply stating that you will have to ask someone else as I do not believe that my culture or race is any of your business smile

Northerlurker I am sure many Islamic men and women would say the same. Unfortunately we only tend to hear about extremist Islamists and not ordinary Islamists who don't accept that their faith gives them the right to oppress anyone either.

I do blame the media for only showing us one side of Islam. 20 years ago you could be forgiven for thinking that every Irish catholic had links to the IRA. Again it's because everytime Irish catholics were featured on the news it involved some act of terrorism. Most were reasonable, law-abiding people who didn't condone acts of violence and still don't.

Moominsarehippos Tue 02-Jul-13 16:49:48

Coming from 1953 perhaps...

quoteunquote Tue 02-Jul-13 16:50:08

It's child abuse and shame on our society allowing it to happen.

I do not care if someone religious sensibilities are offend, I care not what an adult decides to do to themselves, but when they start abusing children or others because of their personal beliefs then we should stand up to them, and not allow it.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 16:50:13

Rhubarb, speaking for myself I am an atheist, and one of my biggest gripes with organised religion of any stripe is the shit way they treat women. I detest the practices you mention in the Catholic Church.

However, I don't think other religious practices are relevant here. There are numerous threads on MN about the Catholic Church, they get long and very heated. I know that many Catholic MNers feel their religion is unfairly targeted.

But this thread is about the practice of religious covering on women and girls, so why not stick to discussing that, and take your grievances about Catholicism to a relevant thread.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 16:52:34

And I agree with Northern. I don't like seeing grown women covered up either.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 16:53:18

I am trying to show that the UK, that western culture was not that much different.

WAS not, not IS not. There's a difference.

The catholic church has lost its hold on women in the main.

Islam is tightening its grip on women.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 16:57:08

MorrisZapp I do believe it is relevant and my grievances are from experience. Please do not dictate to me what I can and cannot post about, you are not my oppressor wink

I am comparing the Muslim faith to the catholic faith because the two have similarities, certainly when it comes to the oppression of women. I am also trying to discover why certain catholic practices are now hardly spoken of yet as a society we act as though we are all superior and would never and have never oppressed women in the name of religion.

This thread also spoke about children being indoctinated into their parents religion, again catholicism is relevant as many catholic schools still discriminate against non-catholics today and indoctrination is still rife.

So why make out that the Islamic religion and its practices are far removed from our own when they are not?

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 16:59:44

I know a lot of kids who wear headscarves. It doesn't restrict them in anyway. If they get too hot, them they take them off. It's more a fashion thing at that age.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:01:18

It doesnt matter what you like seeing or not, so long as the person covering themselves is doing so out of choice then its frankly nobody's business. Just as women who want to flaunt it can too if they so wish.

I've never seen or heard of tiny children being forced into covering, kids copy their parents that I can understand.

The OP has made some masisve assupmtions. it's the first time she's seen this child in a head scarf, she has asusmed fomr this that her parents are forcing her ot wear a head scarf and now she wont be able to join in PE lessons, all form a seeign the hcild for a few minutesw.

How many five year olds actually realistically go along with thier parents sartrial wishes if it clashes with their own?

And PE is not optional surely? NEver midn that we have no idea if the chidl will stop doing PE because of her parents relgiious sensibilities!

gordyslovesheep Tue 02-Jul-13 17:02:52

good lord - anyone that thinks 'western' culture is less is less misogynistic needs to open their eyes

Wearing a head scarf may be the child's choice - but it's equally oppressive and damaging to deny women a choice either way

Domestic violence is rife in ALL sectors of society - the woman killed at the weekend by her partner was not Asian or Muslim - lets get away from the idea that Islam equalsl oppression more than bog standard patriarchy and woman hating in general does

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:02:56

The thread started off with criticism and pity for a child who was presumed to have the headscarf forced on her at school.

I am pointing out that her parents have chosen to send her to a mixed faith school, something many catholic children do not have the luxury of. There was a view on the thread that the child was indoctrinated by her parents, so are many catholic children.

I do not condone the wearing of anything which oppresses women but I can see the hyprocrisy of a society which criticises women for being oppressed in the UK by having to wear a hijab or burkha whilst that society encourages its own girls to become sexualised at a very young age and accuses teenage girls of seducing their teachers.

It's so easy to criticise someone else's culture and faith and feel quite smug and superior in doing so, but the western culture is not as free or democratic as one might think and I do believe that we are blind to many acts of oppression against women that occur everyday.

Such as being told to shut up and leave the thread. wink

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 17:03:36

I've never oppressed anybody in the name of religion. Neither has anybody in my family. The Magdalen laundries were in Ireland, not Scotland. I don't agree that appalling treatment of women by other religions is not spoken about.

But I'm not sure what you think we should be saying right now about practices within the Catholic Church (a minority religion in this country) forty years ago? Little girls in religious covering is happening today, and is surely a matter for more urgent debate?

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:06:51

Who mentioned Scotland?

Islam is also a minority religion in this country. Indoctrination of children is happening today in the UK. The headscarf is an external symbol, the more dangerous symbols are the ones you don't see, such as the psychological damage done to children.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 17:07:31

I think you're picking and choosing, rhubarb. We don't think anything 'as a society'. Some people have outdated, sexist views. We know this. There are loads of threads about sexism and oppression on here, not just within FWR.

I think it's classic web forum posturing to say 'you can't say x is bad, because Y is also bad'. Reasonable people can recognise that both are bad.

Would you have preferred it if the OP had said she was saddened by the girl in a niqab but other religious oppressors exist?

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 17:07:47

I agree with rhubarb

The hijab is not a matter for urgent debate
FGM is

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 17:08:28

THERhubarb - stop protesting so much. You sound as though you are trying to justify your beliefs all the time.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 17:09:48

I mentioned Scotland, because it's where I live. Unlike you, I do not keep my nationality or culture secret. I'm a Scottish atheist with Protestant forebears. I feel no need to apologise for the transgressions of my culture.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:14:31

LastTango, of course the West opresses women, its more insiduous and not so brazen about it but they do.

Women who are raped are still blamed for it.
I've been shocked and disgusted at posts on here where other women have posted things like well what was she doing out at that time, why was she so drunk, why did she behave like that etc etc etc

Girls and women are objectified constantly, porn is normalised in the media and anyone who doesn't like it or approved is derided.

In instances of DV the woman is always blamed, why didn't she walk away, why didnt she leave, why didnt she tell anyone.

There's lots. England and the west is not as liberated and free at all, just better at hiding it.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:15:49

I'm glad you are from Scotland Morris, but where you come from is not relevant to the points you make.

By all means discuss the hijab and Muslim girls, but it's worth bearing in mind always that our culture is far from perfect.

I would much prefer to talk about the general misogynistic attitude which prevails in all cultures and to actively DO something about it than to single out one little Muslim girl for criticism. Especially one which we know nothing about. But if you want to use that little girl as justification for your own criticisms of her religion then go ahead.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 17:18:11

LastTango, excellent point.

The Catholic Church and religion in general is loosing its grip on women and society in general in the west

Islam is tightening its grip.

Yes domestic violence, rape exists here but the law is in place to protect women or deal with the aftermath.

Not so in countries where women are treated as second class citizens.

Look at the original op. I think it was barbaric to dress little girls in crinolines and tight girdles, we have moved ion and don't do it now.

We had our suffragette struggle, its not a perfect society, where is? But I am glad me and dds live here and not a country that shoots girls for going to school or a culture that tells me my body is so inflaming/ sexual that I must swathe myself and dds in ugly black hot material.

Sorry it's not about religion it's about control and ownership.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:18:33

agree completely fuzzy

oh and I'm not hiding my origins by the way, I just take offence at someone quite rudely presuming that I am from some sort of unusual culture and then equally rudely asking me what culture I am from. As if this somehow impacts upon my argument.

It's not hard to figure out where I'm from if you can be arsed. I have a profile, a blog and everything. I still don't understand what difference it makes?

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 17:20:16

Well said thebody !

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:20:43

Morris equally as a Muslim woman I have never opressed anyone in the name of my religion, least of all my children neither has my family....

Wearing what you want thro choice is fine, people trying to stop the women who choose to cover from doing so are the opressors themselves.

quoteunquote Tue 02-Jul-13 17:21:54

Religion is all about controlling and having power over others, which is why it attracts abusers to it's power base.

I can only think of one faith based organisation where everyone is viewed as equal and there is no higher hierarchy.

funny that.

what isn't funny is that we stand by and allow children to be abused.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 02-Jul-13 17:22:07

Marking my place as I have nothing intelligent to add.

FuzzyWuzzy and TheRhubarb are in particular really making me think.

A comment up thread that really resonated with me was how we must clean our own backyard before judging our neighbour's.

On the topic of the OP, if the child was forced to wear the scarf (like the toddlers mentioned) I am not comfortable with that. Dressing like mummy is a totally different, totally normal thing that all children use for development.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:22:43

thebody excellent point. It's not about religion, you are right. It's about a very long-standing view that women are sexual objects.

Unfortunately, whilst the crinolines and tight girdles have gone, they have been replaced with tight little t-shirts, arse-skimming skirts, offensive slogans and other sexual clothing for girls.

Whilst boys toys sections are filled with educational toys, what are the girls toys sections filled with? Dolls, toy ovens, vaccum cleaners, etc.

But yes, thankfully we have laws that, whilst still have far to go, do afford some protection for women.

gordyslovesheep Tue 02-Jul-13 17:25:55

I thought we where discussing the UK - but if other countries don't have the same laws and don't offer women the same protection laughable in the UK to be honest) what are you doing about it?

As a politically active feminist I support women in those countries campaigning for change and organisations that advocate for change

It doesn't get away from the idea that Islam is a) not universally oppressive b) not the only oppressive religion c) most oppression done in the name of Islam is bog standard domestic violence and women hating - which exists healthy out side of Islamic families in the UK

2 women a week die at the hand of violent partners and plenty of white, Christian children are forced to wear and do things they don't want to by abusive fathers (and Mother's)

I think it's a smoke screen that a) allows people to be casually racists b) makes people feel they are some how immune from such oppression - so it's a win win for white oppressive males everywhere!

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:27:38

gordy I love you.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 02-Jul-13 17:28:09

In instances of DV the woman is always blamed, why didn't she walk away, why didnt she leave, why didnt she tell anyone.

Then you have the opposite, there is a thread on here started by a very brave woman who's STBXH kicked in the chest. (That could of killed her!!!) The amount of comments she's gotten from family as well as 'friends' about how it wasn't a big deal, the extreme pressure to drop the charges from her own mother etc.

I'm probably wording this poorly, but how is that any different to a Muslim woman (pretending she was in the exact same scenario and in the UK) being told to put up and shut up?

That's not about religion, it's culture surely?

Life can be a lose-lose situation, which is why we all must continue the good fight.

SpecialAgentTattooedQueen Tue 02-Jul-13 17:30:04

ATM my hero is Braveheart in India. They're saying this could be the change for India - Either forwards or backwards.

gordyslovesheep Tue 02-Jul-13 17:31:18

Thank you THERhubarb

Juskeepswimmin Tue 02-Jul-13 17:32:10

Haven't read through whole thread but had to post. The reason you may be seeing a growing trend op may be due to the change in demographics of our population. I know that where I live there has been an increase in the number of Somalian people, and I see a lot of little Somalian girls who wear it. Its an outward feature of faith.. I see nothing wrong with that. We can't tell whether it is imposes on them or if the little girls like dressing like mummy and other femaile relatives. I am a Muslim. My dd is 4 and doesn't wear the hijab outdoors but when I sit down to pray, she voluntarily wears her scarf and sits next to me. She enjoys wearing it and it's quality time together.

THERhubarb Tue 02-Jul-13 17:32:55

yyyy, it IS about culture. Not everyone who voices the opinion that rape victims had it coming or that girls are capable of seducing teachers are religious. I think religion just embraced a misogynisitic culture that already existed.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 17:35:23

Gordy no one is saying the west has the answers on here. That's absolutely not the point and I do hope that discussion about women's suffer age can be discussed from any religion or culture without being seen as racist that's lazy thinking and closing doors to debate.

Rhubarb my dds love wearing arse skimming skirts but I am not making them. It's their choice as are leggings and jumpers in the winter.

Their father and brothers don't tell them his to dress?

You see girls dressed every way in some societies but in others they all dress the same.

Surely a whole nation of women would not deep down choose to wear head to tie black with slits for eyes?

Really ?

bakingaddict Tue 02-Jul-13 17:36:39

Fuzzy you said yourself in your other posts that nobody in your circle is forced to wear the niqab, hijab etc but that your sister is not allowed to wear the niqab on instruction on her husband. Don't you see any contradiction here. For a grown married woman in an equal marriage why should something like clothing be dictated to by a husband

My whole argument has been about freedom of choice be it if you want to wear it or not and whether there is repurcussions if you choose to go against the wishes of your family or community.

I'm not so ignorant or dumb to believe that you are incapable of doing your job because of a headscarf or your DC cant ride a bike, that is your extrapolation, not mine

Why if the wearing of the niqab, hijab is down to free choice as you seem to be asserting and not something dictated in your religion by men, why is your own sister not allowed to do as she chooses. Here in the UK Muslim women are free to wear whatever covering they like, the state sees no reason yet to involve itself in these affairs, giving an individual state sanctioned FREE choice on this matter.

If in Saudi or anywhere else, it is indeed free choice then why would the Saudi state need to legislate for these matters on something as basic as what you choose to wear. If you are given autonomy in these matters as you keep saying Muslim woman have and it's not something dictated by men, surely it's moot for these countries to need to then legislate for woman to be covered up in public.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:37:01

The OP is one massive assumption.

Today one little girl turned up at school in a headscarf, which was very unusual (by the OP's own admission).

OP didn't bother asking the child or the mother why or wherefore just came along to lament the opression of babies by mozlems, on MN.

Muslim women are strong and clever and courageous, they are fighting for their rights all over the world and some do it whilst choosing to cover themsleves.

The people who are so upset at these poor opressed women inthe UK, would have these women uncover against their wishes because of course women who cover are too stupid to make their own decision.

I was told by a poster, that I couldn't make an informed decision to cover myself because I choose to cover, its indoctrinated in me apparently (never mind that nobody else in my family covers) so I should not be allowed to wear what I want (like the poster could), the conclusion here is that Muslim women should have fewer rights and freedoms than non muslim women if they choose to cover apparently.

I personally don't like seeing men with moobs walking around topless during summer, I dont like seeing women walking around with their bums exposed to the world in light coloured knickers whilst wearing dark coloured legggins and short tops.
I accept this as a personal informed choice however and avert my gaze in order not to lose my lunch.

I would therefore accept as given that women walking around wearing head scarves are doing so from choice unless they say otherwise.

In countries where women are being opressed I campagin for them and cheer them on to go out and fight to gain their rights. I can't personally do anything more for the women in Afghanistan and Saudi and everywhere else.

What exactly would banning women wearing headscarves in england be doing for the women in the above countries? Except opressing the women here? How does that help any woman?

Many of the societies where religion is used to oppress women were already patriachal societies. Men are using religion to reinforce the privileged position they already hold i.e. its not me who says you can't ... its God and you can't argue with God.

Juskeepswimmin Tue 02-Jul-13 17:38:59

Young Sikh boys wear turbans, Jewish boys scull caps.. Seen it since I was a kid... I don't see the difference. Just wonder if it is regarded in the same way.. I don't see why it shouldnt be.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:39:38

Baking, my sister has for the time being not taken an issue with it, she told her husand she wanted ot wear a veil he said he didn't want her too, as far as I knw that wa the extent of the dicussion (for now, I dont know how serious she is as she doens't wear anything covering and is very fashionable), there are many women on MN who have accepted far worse behaviour from their partners and non of them are muslim.

Ex wanted me to stop wearing my headscarf, I refused.

LetsFaceTheMusicAndDance Tue 02-Jul-13 17:40:15


I feel sad. I have kind of learned not to be sad about a scarf over hair but anything more of a cover up and it does make me feel very sad. It's an instant emotional response.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:43:16

baking someone further down posted that a child was weairng a headscarf and it was hinering her riding her bike as she had to stop to adjust her headscarf.

twistyfeet Tue 02-Jul-13 17:43:24

'I have no problem with people wearing religious dress when they have made an informed choice that is what they want. A 5 year old cant do that'

I agree with this. Where I used to live all the little jewish boys (I am jewish) had to wear the kippurs and peyos (the sidelocks). No way could they have made an informed choice about religion at 2/3/5. The girls were also forced to dress in a certain way and they were kept very sheltered.
you see it in documentaries about the Amish communities. Those poor kids dont even get a decent education that would allow them to function well outside should they choose to leave. Extreme religious choices forced on kids have a lot to answer for.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:50:00

SpecialAgent, I suffered from domestic violence, when I went to get my islamic divorce we told the scholar the grounds for divorce and he without question gave me the divorce. There was no trying to condone it or suggest anything but leaving and being safe.

Here in the UK, I went thro a hearing to prove the DV, altho ex had two cautions for it and friends had seen bruises etc I was still forced to give evidence and repeatedly be told that I was a liar and the whole why didnt I leave, I was clever and educated if it was that bad why did I stay.
Even after proving all counts of DV against me and the judge accepting that my children had been present for at least some of it, and that my eldest had been subject to at least one count of direct abuse by her father, ex was still allowed contact with the children, who were (and still are) terrified of him.

I saw very similar posts regarding Nigella Lawson recently, some on here.

And it really upset me.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 17:50:04

twisty that is not the equivalent of wearing a headscarf though

A girl stopped whilst riding her bike, to adjust her headscarf. I see hundreds of girls ever da in eascarves. Non of them appear anymore encumbered by them, than by any other item of clothing. Just like stopping to tie your shoe laces

Fair enough, if you object to childrn/people wearing headcarves But dont try and turn it in to something isnt

Sae withitamin deficiency. Peoplewith darker/black skin are more likely to suffer Vitain D deficiency. But its a it of an epidemic in Europe rig now, for everyone because we dont spend enough time outdoors/have crap summers/wear sun screen. There is no link to burqa wearing

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 17:52:49

Of course there's a link to burqa wearing Boomba - it's logical and well proven.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 17:57:29

darker skin has more difficulty in absorbing Vitamin D, also our summers have for the last few years been really really crap, Vitamin D can be found in foods as well, I dont think you can actually absorb enough vitamin D from the sun for the amount of sun we get here, almost non at all today for example.

My GP told me that about the sun Vitamin D absorption.

Also when I was born my mum was automatically perscribed vitamin drops for me and herself that was stopped too, dunno how much of that would have a knock on effect now.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 18:00:24

yes, me and my children all have vitamin d. We dont wear burquas. or headscarves

application of sunscreen is contributing to vitamin d deficiency also

I think the issue with Vitamin D deficiency is not just as simple as burqa wearing. My SIL all wear the hijab and one wears the niqab as well. But they live in a hot country and have outside space at home where they wear normal clothes usually a short sleeved dress. The problem is where people live in a country like the UK with low levels of sunshine and lack access to a garden. So wearing a burqa if you live in a flat in Newcastle may be an issue for Vit D but not if you live in a house in North Africa like my SIL.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 18:02:05

I'm really sorry to hear about the DV, fuzzy. I don't understand your point though. Would the Islamic court also have given you sole care of your kids while your ex denied any wrongdoing, without a trial or hearing?

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 18:03:29

wearing a burqua is no different in terms of vitamin d, than wearing trouses and a long sleeved top...either to keep you warm, or protect against the sun. Especially if you slather on the suncream a well

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 18:06:48

Boomba - when did we start discussing the application of suncream?
We didn't so don't try to side-step what we are discussing.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 18:08:29

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 18:09:16

Morris I was granted full custody of my children, they accepted what they heard and my children could also relate what had happened so they were all completely accepted. Ex pretty much made his own bed when he tried to have my uncle beaten up by thugs, that was proof enough that he was a danger.

Islamic laws regarding custody is firstly how fit the parents are to care for the children, then the children get to decide where they want to live if both parents are fit to care for the children but cannot agree.

If ex was not a danger to my children I would not hesitate in agreeing to shared residency.

Islamically children have a right to know their roots and by that their father.

I am firecly protective of my chidlren because of what I've gone thro, I would not force my chidlren to do anything they did not want. I feel girls especailly need to have their wises feelings and personal boundaries respected.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 18:11:30

my point is nobody accused me of lying for not having left him when the violence started, they accepted what they heard and the police cautions and the fact that I had bruises which people had seen and third party witness statements as to what ex said about me.
At no point was I accused of lying for not leaving.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 18:13:07

Boomba - don't start trading insults, it demeans you and the discussion.

Your hands and face are uncovered in a long sleeve top and trousers. Quite a few burqa wearers wear gloves as well.

One of my SIL wears the haik but she has private outdoor space where she can uncover.

DH mentioned something to me about sun exposure and rickets the other day, probably as we live in Canada, and the winters are very long, dull, and we hardly get outside. So I looked up what he told me, and found the NHS say the same. Diet plays a part, and 10-15mins exposure to sun in spring and summer, a FEW times a week, on HANDS and FACE is enough.

Rickets Prevention

I don't have anything to say about what other people dress their children in as it's not my business.

Maybe she was copying her mum, maybe she wanted to try it out, maybe as it's Ramadan the family are more strict for this month and after it's finished it will come off. Many, many reasons. The only way to find out for sure, is to talk to her mum.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 18:17:25

LastTango, wearing sunscreen is a factor in the growing case of ricketts.

I was told by my GP when pg that I was fine, my children are OK I have a Vit D deficiency but it has been developed very recently and is knock on affect of other illnesses I've had. Not wearing the headscarf.

I think most people forget that Muslim women dont cover in the privacy of their own home and they can get sunlight on their skin from sitting in their own back gardens.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 18:19:57

You've been amazingly strong fuzzy. I have no experience of courts, divorce etc but I do feel that the adversarial system, flawed as it is, is as good as a legal system gets.

Presumably the people who accused yiu of lying were advocating on behalf of your ex. It's horrible that people have to go through this kind of ordeal, but at the same time its hard to see how justice can be done otherwise.

If your ex was accusing you of lying then as vile as he is, he deserves his say and his representation too. I'm glad you are rid of him now.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 18:20:05

fuzzy - I am aware that wearing suncreen is a factor in the growing case of ricketts - it's just that this thread is a bit like 'chinese whispers' and we weren't discussing suncreen application !

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 18:30:06

It wasn't the being accused of lying, thats fine, it was being laughed at and told as I was intelligent that I would have left if I was suffering from DV. That shocked me as surely the statistics for DV show a completely different story.

Also the fact that the judge found completely in my favour regarding the DV and the hcidlren having witnessed it, yet still gave him contact.

I had to fight to protect my young vluerable and terrified children.

My stance in these cases would be if the father is found to have been abusive the children are not safe in his care.

It has been emotionally draining and financially crippling but I can't not fight my childrens corner in this, I firmly believe he would not hesitate to cause them personal harm, or put them in harms away if he ever gets the opportunity.

LastTango, I think Boomba meant that sunscreen plays a part in the increasing case of ricketts, also for women weairng a headscarf the amount they leave uncovered is enough to absorb the amount of Vit D from sunlight, however a good diet is also needed in combination to prevent ricketts.
So the statistics aren't reflecting the number of women wearing burkhas rather a combination of all the above, lack of sunlight full stop, poor diets, and increased use of sunscreen.

The NHS has recommended Vitamin D for all children under 5s and pregnant women for decades, it was even around pre-NHS (it's even there in old WW2 health leaflets). It's not new in the slightest, just a new campaign to get the information out there.

I wear cloth caps for purely personal reasons: I just feel more comfortable with it and enjoy how it looks. I started wearing them as an adult, my family thought it odd at first with no religious or cultural connection or illness, but it suits me. My DD1 likes to wear them sometimes and is very careful when wearing them, as she thinks they're very special and grown-up. My cloth cap keeps my long hair out of the way so I can do more.

Coming from a culture which suffered through forced haircuts and clothing removal and changing children's appearances to save them (and much more), the idea of banning clothes because they aren't "right" comes across as downright imperialistic. The underlying issue of inequality can be faced and challenged without denying cultural differences (Hijabs existed in many of areas pre-Islam and head coverings can be seen in cultures globally for religious and secular reasons).

Many within Muslim cultures are working towards that equality already, and Britain has enough problems in it's media representation and education that perpetuates inequality and pushes the focus for change on "saving" others rather than focusing on those still oppressing us all.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 18:49:30

See, I just don't get why it has to be either/ or. I'm very concerned about women's issues wherever I see them. I'm a feminist to my bones. I'm pissed off by pinkification. I'm aghast at sexually exploitative pop videos etc. I abhor all forms of DV, or other domestic abuse. And I hate seeing girls and women covering themselves up beyond conventional dress standards in order to stop the male gaze.

Surely the same people will, by definition, be concerned about a range of limitations on women's freedoms, rather than thinking that one type cancels out the other?

It makes no logical sense.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 18:57:12

Last Tango I agree with your posts and Fuzzy I can't imagine anyone having anything but the upmost respect for you. How dreadful.

The op was about little girls covering up and I agree with her. I am sad for any child has to dress a certain way to satisfy a religion or custom but especially sad as this often restricts girls more than boys.

I still maintain that I simply cannot believe that a whole nation/ culture of women, if thru really really had a choice, would pick thick all enveloping black robes to wear with holes for eyes, gloves and a mouth slit.

I simply don't believe that's their choice to make and there are men making them do this.

AL religions are male dominated, mysygonistic, controlling and restrictive and you bet that somebody somewhere is making the money and it sure wont be AWOMAN.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 19:06:29

The OP is making huge assumptions we dont have facts.

All I can tell you categorically is that young children aren't expected to adhere to clothing rules in Islam.

Also there is a massive industry in abayas and burkhas, what you see as one black sheet with eye slits is in actual fact seasonally changing outerwear in a thousand different colurs, cuts, materials with a load more accessories.

It's a very lucrative industry is abayas and headscarves.

You'd be amazed I think.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 19:10:47

fuzzy - I am sure it is a very lucrative industry........but I wonder how many of the entrepreneurs are women?

Timetoask Tue 02-Jul-13 19:15:10

I am really sad to see any girl or woman of any age in 2013 having to cover her head up.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 19:16:12

All the places I buy my headscarves from are women who own their own businesses.

The main designers for designer abayas are women (the expensive couture ones that I am familiar with at least), there's a French muslim woman with her own abaya boutique with her own designs (also super expensive).

I usually design my own ones and send the design with my mum to india and she brings back what I want (with her own embellishment added much to my despair).

pigletmania Tue 02-Jul-13 19:17:22

Yanbu at all, I recently saw a girl in a buggy, could not hav been rpmore than 3 in one sad. As if men will be tempted by a baby in a buggy fgs!

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 19:18:23

do you actually know any Muslim women tango?

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 19:21:53

Boomba - why?

Pixel Tue 02-Jul-13 19:31:29

Finally, it is interesting that there is never the same level of concerns about Sikh boys in Patkas or Sikh men in turbans.

I went to school with a sikh boy. One day he was messing about in the playground with the other boys and one grabbed his head covering (didn't know what it was called) and it came off. He had the most beautiful waist-length hair, which would hardly be practical at school would it? It wasn't concealing any other part of his face or body so I can't see that it is the same thing at all. I don't think it was to avoid girls lusting after him hmm. As far as I know covering hair applies to both sikh men and women so it's not a form of control of one over the other.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:44:04

I like these women

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:45:29

"One of my SIL wears the haik but she has private outdoor space where she can uncover."

This sort of talk really troubles me. She can uncover anywhere.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 02-Jul-13 19:46:30

For those wondering why a husband might not want his wife to wear niqab, the recent case in France where a woman suffered a miscarriage after being attacked by two men for wearing niqab might be a clue.

The likes of the EDL frequently abuse women who appear Muslim in the street and attacks are rising at the moment

I've had some vile things said to me, yet funnily enough, never when I'm with my husband. hmm

On a lighter note, hijab fashion is indeed huge business and there quick a few Muslim women with huge followings on You tube who do hijab tutorials and the like.

I have to say, I live in an area with a huge Muslim population and I see hijabis doing everything, from working in Asda, to being hospital consultants. Even the city Rollerderby team has a hijabi in it.

Likewise, niqabis are generally SAHMs ( although a good amount have home businesses, you'd be surprised) and I see them out and about doing normal SAHM things.

I just don't recognise the doom and gloom picture some here are portraying.

And before someone says "What about Afghanistan?" A country that has been at war for 30 years has far more problems then excess fabric. Ditto the situation in Saudi. We do the people in these countries no favours by claiming their problems and any possible solutions are so one dimensional.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 19:53:41

Wow is this thread sponsored by the EDL?? sad

Shocked by some of the prejudices and ignorance coming through.

What if the 5 year old wanted to wear the hijab?

Does anybody actually know anything about Islam? I invite you to take a REAL look at the religion and it's values rather than accepting what you read in The Sun or Daily Fail.

Islam promotes equality between the sexes and holds women very highly. What happens culturally is a different matter. Most women CHOOSE to wear the hijab and are not FORCED to.

And someone compared Islam to Sikhism?? You sure you're not related to Tommy Robinson?

As for Rickets... A darker skinned person receiving the same amount of 'sunlight' is always gonna have a reduced amount if Vitamin D when compared to a lighter skinned person.

mombie Tue 02-Jul-13 19:54:24

I wear a hijab, for personal reasons. I don't wear it to stop men's lustful gazes because 1) I don't look so hot underneath 2) I am responsible for myself and not for them.
I don't like my dd (5) wearing it, and I wouldn't want her to because she wouldn't understand it. she wants to copy mummy at times and dresses up but no one is forcing her.
it is sad to see kids who are made to wear it, it is also sad to see little girls in heels, suggestive clothing etc. From my xperience, u can't force hijab on children, especially in the uk because they will soon be grown up enough to decide wether to wear it or not. I grew up in the 80s wen wearing hijab or any ethnic clothing was embarrassing and usually led to a beating. (Remember paki bashing?). I think people are now free to wear whatever they want and identify themselves as Muslims or whatever with pride in a way they couldn't before. it has become a symbol of pride and identification for us.
There are people who make girls wear them from a young age. however, everyday women in islam are increasing their knowledge about islam. changing and challenging traditional views on women in islam. islam is not against women. however, the intrinsic male role of protection of women has sadly turned into the control and manipulation of women. this is being challenged all the time. I find the freedom from expectations to look good, flirt etc extremely liberating because people just don't bother with me!

finally, I hate the Muslim male bashing that goes on. I don't personally know any Muslim men who prey on women like animals. just cos u see some in the media doesn't mean they are all like that. men are expected to be modest and mindful towards women. it saddens me to see men use my religion to further their own shitty agendas, again this is changing too. So to summarise YANBU!

CoteDAzur Tue 02-Jul-13 19:55:31

"Excess fabric" shock Is that what we are calling mandatory covering up of women in shapeless bin bags now? hmm

That "excess fabric" is a cause and a symptom of the segregation, subjugation and abuse of women in Afghanistan.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:56:55

Islam promotes equality between the sexes and holds women very highly. What happens culturally is a different matter.

If people of a certain culture attach bigotry and unfairness to religious practice it's their fault if the religion comes in for criticism as a result.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:00:13

I agree with Cote. Critics of critics (you know what I mean!) try to downplay the importance, saying, it's just a bit of extra fabric, it's just a scarf, it's just a long skirt. Well if it was just all that it wouldn't have any importance to the people wearing it, which it obviously does. It does symbolise something and that something is control and oppression, and about blaming women over and over again.

lurcherlover Tue 02-Jul-13 20:12:08

I think it's irrelevant that many women are involved/make money in the production of scarves, burkhas etc. In countries which practise FGM, it is generally the women of the family who want the girls to be mutilated, and it's often performed by a woman.

I am not likening wearing a headscarf to FGM, btw. I'm just pointing out that women being involved in a process doesn't therefore mean that other women aren't being oppressed.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:15:06

My Hijab for me is the outward symbol of my relationship with God. It is me adhering to the Gods laws. It is between me and God, I really don't care about what men are asked to do they could be asked to go naked and women to cover their hair, I'd still do it.

It takes a huge amount of courage and fortitude to wear it, it makes a muslim woman a walking target for hatred and bigotry and most people automatically see my headscarf and make massive (incorrect) assumptions about me, I get a huge amount of satisfaction watching the sexist, bigotted, xenophobic assumptions being obliterated by my conduct, sometimes I actually see the shock register on the faces of these people, funnily enough, most of the time it's women who dismiss me as stupid little opressed indian girl who probably can't speak english, men generally don't.

I was in court last week, the judge (female) assumed I was in receipt of legal aid, when she was told I was not she actually did a double take and her entire facial expression changed, my barrister even commented on it.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:16:36

lurcher whats your point, so women should be opressed by being banned from wearing a hijab?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:21:16

Fuzzy - God's law says modesty, no? It's cultural, not religious, how you apply that. So that means you have a choice.

"It takes a huge amount of courage and fortitude to wear it, it makes a muslim woman a walking target for hatred and bigotry"

It so often sounds to me like a political gesture rather than anything else. Many absolutely devout Christians won't wear a cross or crucifix because they don't want to use the sacrifice as bodily adornment. Others much less devout might wear it to make a big old point. I think there's a parallel.

Fuzzy I am not casting doubt on how devout your faith is.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:21:41

'If people of a certain culture attach bigotry and unfairness to religious practice it's their fault if the religion comes in for criticism as a result.'

Or rather if people of certain journalistic, social and government backgrounds attach bigotry and unfairness to certain religions (namely Islam) it's actually THEIR fault the religion comes into criticism!

Sallyingforth Tue 02-Jul-13 20:23:22

fuzzy I have great respect for your beliefs and the way you are loyal to them.
I only have to ask, were Gods laws given to you by God, or were they transcribed by men who wished to preserve their status as being superior to women?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:23:57

Fuzzy, I would ban a hijab from primary school and I would ban face covering from public service jobs. Sorry.

Op, yanbu at all. A friends dd (12) excitedly told me a class mate has begun wearing a burqa lately and she she thought this girl was very inspiring. I felt quite sad about this - sad for the Muslim girl and sad that my friends dd thought it was a positive thing. It really isn't hmm
I haven't the slightest prejudice against any religion but I have plenty against the oppression of women hmm

lurcherlover Tue 02-Jul-13 20:24:55

fuzzy, earlier in the thread there were comments that this is a big money-making industry, and that lots of women do very well financially out of it. My point is that that doesn't mean no other women are being oppressed. For me, a burkha is a tool to oppress women, regardless of who made it or sold it.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:25:19

Crumble it's clearin the quran that when out in public a woman is to sover her head neck and torso, the face veils and hands and feet have always been up for dicussion, I use the middle road and cover my head and torso.

It's clear to me and the women I know who observe hijab.

It only becomes political when people start telling me I don't know my own mind and am opressed for choosing to cover what I want to cover.

I'm not breaking any laws in choosing how I dress, if everyone else can choose how they dress in England, I expect the same, seriously people have too much time on their hands.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:28:36

Mejy: I think it's more that people take the name of Islam and abuse and distort it, and most of the people who do that are claiming to be Muslims and to act in the name of Islam. People who aren't Muslims, the Church of England, atheists, agnostics, in fact most people, most journalists, most commentators, most regular people, go to great efforts to be sensitive and tolerant. You choose to see the worst.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 20:28:49

I've asked many times on forums about why men of Islamic faith living in the UK don't generally wear religious or covering dress, while the women often do.

The answer is always, what men do is up to them, but I wear covering because I want to.

To me, that's a cop out. How can it not be a sexist religion or culture that asks women to be modest and wear outward symbols of faith, but does not ask men the same?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:30:11

But the reason for covering your head neck and torso is not to inflame men?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:30:51

Sally it's the word of God.

Hamwidge, you're sad a 12 year old girl says she finds another girl wearing a hijab inspiring? Seriously?

Lurcher women wear the hijab and they design it for women and there is a massive amount of money in couture hijabs, I don't buy into that and I dont buy into that it is oppressive full stop.

It is oppression to have your rights to dress, worship and live freely as the rest of the country does taken away from you.

Choosing to wear a headscarf is not opression.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:31:31

I think women who can should reject it, because there are too many women who can't, and if you can reject it and don't, that validates and excuses the oppression of those who have no choice. I think it's an issue of global responsibility and sisterhood.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 20:31:34

Also saying people have too much time on their hands is a cop out too. I have opinions on loads of stuff, I'm a busy person but I'll always engage with issues that interest me.

Why does the Quran not ask men to cover?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:32:47

Crumbled, I'm not wearig a headscarf not to inflame nayone, I'm weairng it because it is Gods law, I have in the past got chatted up by men utterly unphased that I was covered.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 20:33:15

Meejpoo, what a Shane you come late too a thread and mention the EDL. There was an intelligent debate here. What a stupid lazy comment.

Pixel Tue 02-Jul-13 20:33:49

Yes but the whole point of the thread was that 5 year old girls are not choosing. We've had the whole 'dressing up like mummy' thing but generally children do that at home, you don't get them turning up at school in Mummy's high heels and make-up. If they did they would be told it wasn't part of the uniform and told to wear the appropriate clothes. The fact that headscarves etc are exempted from this means that they are accepted as a religious symbol. Therefore this argument doesn't wash with me. It's obvious that they are being coerced in to wearing the scarf as otherwise the mother would just say 'no dear, it isn't uniform, wear it when you get home'.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:34:11

Crumbled: I agree on the whole, HOWEVER I am muslim, my family are and I would say I go to extreme lengths to be more sensitive, tolerant, welcoming.

In fact I think it is more important than ever for Muslims of the UK to be that way, particular in light of recent events!

Not all muslim women are 'oppressed' as people like to assume. sometimes its about looking at the bigger picture!

My husband is serving in the Army, has been to Afghanistan etc. I do not wear a hijab but am a practicing muslim. You don't hear about 'Muslims' like me in the papers... ;-)

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:35:15

In that case please condemn, Fuzzy, the oppression of Christians by Muslim dominant countries. Please condemn it loud and clear. Muslims worship freely and live freely in this country. You seem angry about something that isn't there. Muslims also dress the way they want and there are no plans to change that. But as you point out it's a free country and people are free to criticise a decision to wear the hijab or burkha or niqab, and free to criticise obliging a child to wear any of these. Please remember that.


Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:36:18

But why is it God's law? Why does God say it's required?

Crumbledwalnuts - you like a bunch of White Atheist women mostly om rich Western countries telling Islamic women, specifically they speak mostly to ones who are not White from poorer countries, that they are wrong, ignorant, and can be saved from this by just doing and believing what the White Atheist women do. You like women who ignore the cultures of others and think everyone would be saved if they followed what they do? You like a group that enjoys ignoring the very large campaign from Muslim women asking them to stop talking for and over them because it's not helping and preventing their work because it gives the group more media exposure and fame to ignore them?

That's imperialistic BS. I'm from a culture that has had enough of people trying to 'save' us, and love to talk over and destroy our work by talking over us. It does nothing for us, absolutely nothing, it's all for them to feel good about themselves.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 20:37:18

my dd is 8 and wears a headscarf sometimes, because she wants to. From the age of about 5. She likes it. For her, its the same as plaiting her hair or having it out.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:37:23

I think women who can should reject it, because there are too many women who can't, and if you can reject it and don't, that validates and excuses the oppression of those who have no choice. I think it's an issue of global responsibility and sisterhood.

I want to repeat that because I feel it very strongly.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:38:04

Morris, men have a dress code as well, they also have to grow their beards, those who choose to do adhere to that, they're just not as visible as women.

No I will not go against what I believe is gods law because somewhere some one is forced to wear a headscarf against her will.

I will however support and fight for womens right to be educated and for them to have equal rights and opportunities.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:38:18

Litlte spork I'm sorry - I can't respond until your tone is less aggressive.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:38:48

The Body: intelligent thread? LOL.
Don't think we were reading the same responses at all

sanam2010 Tue 02-Jul-13 20:39:22

Well yes it's a bit sad, but I don't find it sadder than 5 year old girls dressed as barbie dolls, wearing skinny jeans and princess outfits in our culture. What is really worse? I find both sad, as it happens, and I think it's important not to be too judgmental about other families' choices. Parents who put their young daughters in hijabs probably find lot of things English girls do or are made to do very sad.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 20:40:34

I'd love to see crumbled come to our school and give a talk to the girls about liberating themselves from headscarves , and making a stand for their sisters 'back home'grin

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:40:39

I agree Sanam: and with those girls the parents should be saying "that's not appropriate" not "oh but she wants to". The same judgement applies.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 20:40:59

Isn't it amazing that the word of god in all religions often comes out of the gob of a bloke.

Strange that ladies isn't it!!!!

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:41:34

LittleSporks here here!!

And crumbed what is between fuzzy and God is just that why does it bother you so?? She is not doing any harm?

I will openly condemn the oppression of Christians in Muslims countries. Yes and next???

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:42:15

Boomba: I don't think it's funny. I don't think you should. It's very serious. And why did you say "back home"? Are you trying to ascribe to me the view that women in the UK who wear coverings have all come from another country?

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 20:42:18

my dd tells me, she likes her headscarf...its good for wiping her nose and mouth on! shock

lurcherlover Tue 02-Jul-13 20:43:02

One of my close friends is Muslim. She's a practising Muslim - she prays, observes Ramadan when not pregnant/bf, has done a Haaj, eats halal etc. In every way she is very observant, but she chooses not to wear a headscarf. She dresses modestly, in that she wears trousers and a long-sleeved top which doesn't show cleavage. But that's it. She would consider herself an observant Muslim. So why is it OK for her not to cover her hair?

FreudiansSlipper Tue 02-Jul-13 20:44:11

No I do not like ito see young girls wearing a hijab. It is worn for modesty what does a young girl need to be modest about why does it even need to be something she or others think about

The niqab is a different argument and I personally dislike to see women beng hidden away from society

But do agree that what is considered important for women and freedom here is different in Muslim countries and too many see our way as being the right way but having lived in a Muslim country, been married to a Muslim and have family that are Muslim I value the freedom I have here

lurcherlover Tue 02-Jul-13 20:44:14

hajj sorry

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:44:43

I think it is damaging mejy: it validates systems of oppression against women. I'd like to know, I'm asking, why it's God's law, what is it supposed to achieve? I'm glad you condemn the fact that Christians too often cannot worship or live freely in countries described as "Muslim".

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:44:46

Crumbled I am angry at your attitude that Muslim women should have less rights than you do and forced to remove headscarves because you dont like them.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 20:45:34

Mejypoo,,, this thread is 12 pages long and had been going all day.

I disagree with some posters but would never resort to the 'oh you must be from the EDL or read the daily mail' because I am interested in everyone's views.

Both crumbled, tango and fuzzy and many posters make fantastic points and we have all disagreed and agreed on some points.

READ THE WHOLE THREAD and don't be silly.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 20:45:36

because of your moving rhetoric about global responsibility and sisterhood walnut

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:47:25

Lurcher thats your friends own personal choice, ask ehr why she doesn't wear hiijab

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:48:09

Fuzzy: there are plenty of Muslim women who don't cover.

Why would Muslim women have less rights than me? I can't wear a mask if I work in a public service job. We would just have the same rights.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:49:48

Boomba: do you think "outsiders" from a community are the best people to talk about and promote human rights within that community? Or do you think members of the community are best placed to do that?

Theas18 Tue 02-Jul-13 20:50:06

many hijab wearing girls of all ages locally. get to know a few before you worry too much about them. many go to normal schools and play/ do pe eff perfectly normally.

even when dd1 was at secondary her hijab wearing mates were very " on off" about it ( girls school, some male teachers) they were off for pe definitely. some girls wore then at religious festivals etc and pine wire it when she was in trouble at home lol ( again! )

Sallyingforth Tue 02-Jul-13 20:51:28

"It's the word of God".
But it was translated by men was it not?

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:52:01

Although principally for modesty, a lot of women do wear the headscarf in the UK for fashion.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:52:56

Crumbled I'm talking of the choice to wear headscarves, and you could wlak down the street in a face mask, I dont tihnk any Muslim woman in a niqab has ever wanted ot hold down a public service job and if she did and was refused on grounds of her face being covered thats compeltely correct given its a requirement for everyone wnating that job.

Your attitude that Muslim women should not be allowed to wear headscarves is what I find abhorrent and demeaning and oppressive, why should I not be allowed ot wear a headscarf when that would be exclusively aimed at muslim women when all other women and men can wear what they want on their heads?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 20:54:40

Sally its the word of God which was relayed to a man, he did not translate it as it was relayed in a language that is still in use today.

You can say you don't believe it is the word of God, but I am not expecting you to believe what I believe.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 20:56:01

is that you mathanxiety? if not then the posting style and rhetoric seems very familiar walnuts.

innocent native christians wrongly in those countries get blamed for the actions of the large 'christian' imperialistic nations like the USA. people see the actions of official US government policy as a overall christian crusade against the muslim world instead of the militaristic arm of capitalism inc. and they take it out on the simple christians living in their midst for being part of that machinery where before they had lived for hundreds of years together peacefully in the middle east. what those muslims in those countries fail to realise is that, in fact, the west barely ever gave a damn about non white christians unless its a foot into further colonisation. historically the christian religion was coopted by white settlers and colonialists in order to pacify 'natives' - i say co-opted, and this is the racial memory that muslims have of christianity which is very different to the relationship in the 21st century.

its completely unfair on those innocent christians. should the whole of christendom shoulder the burden of all the lives dead because of western militaristic foreign policy? does anyone who worships Jesus or celebrate christmas validate the actions of drone attacks, bomber planes, bunker busters those these are done by 'christian' nations against 'muslim' nations. i think it has nothing to do with religion, its just about resource scramble but i live in the west and can see how deeply capitalism is a motivator rather than the christian bible. those muslims in those countries just go by the external not the internal and so they take their christian neighbours as hostiles.

the racial memory of most modern europeans about muslims goes back to the colonialist times also, when muslim populations of european colonies were generally restive and difficult to control and often instigating revolts against colonial rule. thats the roots of the 'muslims dont assimilate' comes from, except back then it was 'muslims don't toe the line'.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 20:56:49

All religions are mysoginistic and exert fear and control.

All religions have a male hierarchy.

All religions act to suppress free thought and speech.

Thankfully me and dds don't have to live and dress as some man seems fit.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:57:00

Well that's what I said. Covering should be banned in primary schools and public service jobs. We agree?

"Your attitude that Muslim women should not be allowed to wear headscarves is what I find abhorrent and demeaning and oppressive"

Well lucky you, you can stop upsetting yourself because I haven't said that. I think women who have a choice shouldn't cover - I'm not so bothered about a headscarf, though I don't really like it, but the full covering, the veil, the gloves. I think women should think about making a different choice.

"I dont tihnk any Muslim woman in a niqab has ever wanted ot hold down a public service job"

Why do you say this?

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 20:57:32

The crux of it is the thread started with a 5 year old wearing one. Unknown to us real the reason behind it, wanting to copy mummy, parents choice, fashion etc.

All should remember that not ALL women who wear headscarves are oppressed and not ALL muslim women are ruled by men. Lets open our eyes a bit please x

I'm all for equality sisters and being non-judgemental x

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:58:17

Do you mean me? Am I mathanxiety? no I'm me. Are you asking me if I'm someone else?

dontgowadingin Tue 02-Jul-13 20:58:26

Yet another example why I hate religion with a passion!

Religion is man made, to rule and control man.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 20:59:12

I know not all are. I'm saying those who have a choice should think about those who don't, in the interests of human empathy and human rights. I think a stand should be taken against the oppression it represents.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:00:24

I thought the rest of your post was thoughtprovoking crescentmoon.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:00:40

Crumbled, do you personally know of a muslim woman who tried to hold down a public service job whilst wearing a face veil?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:01:34

No. Can I ask you why you think a woman wearing full face covering would not want such a job?

suburbophobe Tue 02-Jul-13 21:01:46

application of sunscreen is contributing to vitamin d deficiency also

I just read about this - the higher the factor (which we have been told is better) actually blocks Vit D being absorbed.

I have also read about lack of Vit D in women who cover up their bodies completely.

My nutrionist at the time (other health problem) told me it only takes 20 minutes a day in the sun to top it up.

And biological coconut oil is a pure natural sun screen, I am going to test it if we get any summer smile

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:02:33

Fighting for women to have a right to education and work and drive in places like Afghanistan etc would be far better than me not wearing a headscarf in England.

MorrisZapp Tue 02-Jul-13 21:02:57

I don't want to stop adults wearing whatever they like, it has no impact on me.

But I'm a thinking, questioning type. And I really want to know why god wants women to be demure, modest, domestic, whatever, in most organised religions.

And why god doesn't ask the same of men. My granny was a hardcore Aberdonian Protestant who wouldn't allow my dad to listen to rock and roll music. She was hideously sexist, appallingly so. I questioned, questioned and questioned her beliefs. I'm not picking on Islam.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:03:40

Same reason why you wouldnt expect to have a public service job and wear a face mask.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:05:37

Fuzzy: yes, that's terrific work you are doing. Does every Muslim woman do that? But I think it's important that women do not validate the terrible, appalling, horrific oppression of women in some countries by wearing its symbol when they don't have to. This is how things start, small, taking a stand. It's how all human rights movements start.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:05:40

Morris, muslim women are asked to wear it when out, its outerwear for us, you throw on a jacket I throw on a cloak and headscarf.

I'm not expected to stay indoors and be domesticated, I have an Islamic right to education and to earn money. Both of which I do.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:06:39

But that means the women have given up on independence, self-sufficiency, a life under their own control. Just given up on it.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:08:08

Crumbled I've no idea what every Muslim woman does, my friends and social circle do, one of my closest friends used to work for NGO's i Pakistan specifically to help women.

Hijab is Gods law, its not a symbol of opression, when I wear it to work I obliterate that mindset, as I am clearly not oppressed or stupid or incapable.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:10:00

Crumbled, there are many jobs that accept women in a face veil, loads of women work for home and have very successful businesses, a lot of the women who wear face veils teach in Islamic schools.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Tue 02-Jul-13 21:10:10

All should remember that not ALL women who wear headscarves are oppressed and not ALL muslim women are ruled by men. Lets open our eyes a bit please this is exactly what I was thinking, a woman in eygypt explained to me that the majority of women made a choice to wear full veil, some full face cover and some just a scarf over hair, she was an educated working woman and was happy in her choice, yes I guess there will be some who are pressured into a choice but then many western women are pressured too in their choices, peer pressure, religion, controlling partners dictating, media images etc. Its a religion and those that follow it will do as they see fit regardless of anyone outside the religion liking it or not. the followers of a religion will be the ones to campaign for change just as catholic followers have for relaxation of some of the 'rules' just as many other religions have, why do those outside care so much? what business is it of ours? is it just the fear of anything we don't understand or conform to? I frankly am not at all bothered what anyone else chooses to do or wear or who they pray to unless it is seriously impacting on me at all.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:11:45

Crmubled a lot of women give up independance and choose to stay at home and birng up families and rely on their husbands regardless of religion.

I persoally couldnt as I have had a very bad experience of marirage, but if a woman has a good relationship and chooses with her partner to be the main parent I can't really comment.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:15:23

Hijab is not Gods law. It is your interpretation of Gods law.

The muslim God is the same as the christan God but i dont believe my Gods requires me to wear a scarf or cover any part of myself.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:15:46

God not Gods

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 21:16:48

why should you use the tone of 'validating'? does an ordinary nun or priest faithful to their religion trying to live a good life and serve others validate the actions of people who sin behind the cassock? its atheists who beat christians up about the child abusing minority not muslims who talk about it.

if an american person is proud of their nationality does that mean they validate those who use that identity for white supremacist purposes? either in america or abroad? are they are proud of Abu Ghraib, or iraqi girls getting raped by american soldiers?

im proud to be british, proud to bear the british flag, but im not owning or validating illegal military action the UK performs in other countries. thats not in my name why should i bear that on my shoulders?

this is the rhetoric of terrorists.

if i vote and pay taxes to a democratic government but does that mean i am responsible for any criminal activity the british army funded by my taxes commits? is that more or less logical? perhaps to a society influenced by the concept of 'sins of the fathers' but i feel quite easy to say not in my name as a british person for something i do not agree with and also not in my name when it comes to islam.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:17:10

No cantspel it is Gods law Islamically and very clear, you don't believe it to be thats fine, your beliefs are not my beliefs and my beliefs are not yours.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 21:17:54

There are no Gods.

Just men taking control and exerting power. Usually extracting money as well.

Women at the bottom of the pile.

LovePotatoes Tue 02-Jul-13 21:17:58

Hijab isnt to be worn until a girl reaches puberty. it is meant to be obligatory at that point not optional.
the little girl May very well be copying her Mum or other female role model. Could just be a phase ..

strawberry34 Tue 02-Jul-13 21:20:19

Yanbu. Very sad, poor girl.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:20:27

I've never paid anyone to be Muslim!

There is a 2.5% tax on wealth which has been held for an entire year, which must be given in charity each year, but that has to be distributed by the giver and begin with those closest to you in need.

I choose to wear a headscarf, nobody else in my family does.

It's very very personal.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:21:50

I disagree. I love my country - I'm English - but for a long, long time I wouldn't display or wear an England flag because of what it came to represent. I refused to validate that, and it's only in the last year or so that the association has receded. It's the same thing, in my opinion.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 21:22:43

"The muslim God is the same as the christan God but i dont believe my Gods requires me to wear a scarf or cover any part of myself."

but Lady Mary covered her hair, and for centuries this was part of christian practise wasnt it to cover ones hair for modesty? less symbolic than in islam but from the same concept of modesty.

Islam and Christianity are not that different - Islam is a religion of Abnegation.

not as extreme as some branches in Christianity but the concept is far more standardised than in mainstream christianity.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 21:23:54

I xposted with you Crescentmoon. Perhaps you don't know, but for a long time many people avoided displaying an England or Union flag because it represented the NF and racism (and racist thugs). It's exactly the same thing. God's law is one thing: its interpretation is cultural and therefore a choice.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:26:12

Crumbled, my wearing a headscarf obliterates the negative and worng associations that people have of Islam and muslim and muslim women in hijab.

I will be part of the reason why wearing a hijab will not be considered as oppressive to women and certainly people who meet me when they think of women in hijab and think of me will most certianly re-assess their prejudices.

My neighbour has a St george cross flag on the door frame, I was thinking it was a football thing.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 21:27:15

" the association has receded"

where has it receded? in your mind? same as mine.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 21:31:51

we fly a union jack; and another flag

its about reclaiming these things IMO

LovePotatoes Tue 02-Jul-13 21:35:51

I am an educated, professional woman wearing hijaab. I am in no way oppressed or down trodden. Hijaab was totally my choice; my parents were very against it. It is like a second skin now.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:36:09

Mary covered her hair because she was living in the middle east over 2000 years ago.
The history of the hijab predates islam and would be a senseble choice is you were living in a desert community over 2ooo years ago. Protection from the sun, sand and desert winds so i can see why it was a common piece of clothing.
Life today in Western europe doesn't compare with life in the middle east all those years ago

StayAwayFromTheEdge Tue 02-Jul-13 21:38:37

I work in a predominantly Asian area - there seems to be a growing number of young women (teens and older) wearing headscarfs. I don't believe in God, but understand that faith is important to many and generally keep my views to myself. (I actually enjoy a church service for the peace it seems to bring).

To get to the point the scarfs seem to be getting bigger and more elaborate. Some are truely beautiful and are often coupled with stunning make-up - instead of being about modesty it seems to shout out "look at me" - I really don't understand why.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 21:43:17

why would it be more sensible in the desert than in colder climes cantspel?

protection against the elements in both isnt it if you wish to talk of climate?

but if the 'mother of God' as you would call her wore it why would you put down or humiliate women who try to follow that tradition? didnt Lady Mary wear it for modesty also? i know thats an ugly word to capitalists and materialists, along with submission and duty and responsibility, but there are traits in all the abrahamic faiths that hold up modesty as a virtue not as an abomination.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 21:45:50

but you dont need to understand why stayawayfromtheedge

CoteDAzur Tue 02-Jul-13 21:46:02

"Hijab isnt to be worn until a girl reaches puberty. it is meant to be obligatory at that point not optional"

Only if you take the Quran literally, as fundamentalists do. (look up the definition of "fundamentalism" before you get offended at this)

A significant portion of devout Muslims around the world do not wear the hijab. Your view that it is obligatory is by no means the view of all Muslims.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 21:46:06

Crescent, Italy's minister Roberto Maroni, refused to sign a hijab ban precisely because all pictures depicting the Lady Mary are of her in hijab.

StayAwayFromTheEdge Tue 02-Jul-13 21:49:49

That was useful Boomba - isn't this whole thread about understanding and tolerance? I'm I the only poster not allowed to question?

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 21:49:54

'But I think it's important that women do not validate the terrible, appalling, horrific oppression of women in some countries by wearing its symbol when they don't have to. This is how things start, small, taking a stand. It's how all human rights movements start.'

Crumbled I think you really have 'crumbled'
You are seriously telling fuzzy to give up her headscarf to make a stand against women who are oppressed in other countries????


Please can we all stop wearing anything that symbolises a religion/culture/sect/race as surely we are supporting those oppressors said group(!)

Give me strength.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 21:50:19

cote makes a very good point. Most west African Muslims dont wear hijab or burqua

its culture and choice

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 21:50:45

'But I think it's important that women do not validate the terrible, appalling, horrific oppression of women in some countries by wearing its symbol when they don't have to. This is how things start, small, taking a stand. It's how all human rights movements start.'

Crumbled I think you really have 'crumbled'
You are seriously telling fuzzy to give up her headscarf to make a stand against women who are oppressed in other countries????


Please can we all stop wearing anything that symbolises a religion/culture/sect/race as surely we are supporting those oppressors said group(!)

Give me strength.

Changeasgoodas Tue 02-Jul-13 21:51:32

Have not read the thread but YANBU in my opinion, I feel sad enough when I see grown women in it although I try very hard to understand. I only just realised the other day, when in a meeting and a colleague couldn't hear the conference call well that ears are covered with a Hijab too. I do hope the little girls ears are not covered, it would be awful if her education was harmed because she couldn't hear well in class.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:52:28

As the pre islamic khimar was a loose scarf which was draped over the hair and then left to flow down the back it would hardly do much to keep you warm. They were a sign of status with the more wealth a woman had the longer her khimar would be.

As Muslims dont accept jesus as the son of God i dont why what Mary would have worn to would have any significance to a muslim woman.

CoteDAzur Tue 02-Jul-13 21:52:31

"isn't this whole thread about understanding and tolerance?"

Err... no, it's about small children covering up in the name of religion.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 21:54:13

stayaway I really wasnt meaning to be arsey! smile

I mean just that though.....if girls want to wear a full face of make-up and a headscarf, its up to them. What's to understand? Its the same as any other personal preference.

Muslim women get scrutinised like this, because they dont conform with the label/assumptions people have assigned them. They dont need anyone else to 'understand'...its a doesnt need verifying

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:54:56

And even though i dont like the fact that some women no matter what their faith choose to cover i would always defend their right to free choice.
But i have the right to wish they would hake different choices. Dont I?

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 21:56:58

like skinny low-rise jeans and a muffin top...i dont understand that grin

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 21:58:46

Cantspel: Jesus or the Prophet 'Isa' is very highly regarded in Islam as is the Virgin Mary or 'Miryam' so actually yes Islam cares very much, there are more similarities between the religions than differences.

Jesus is mentioned more times in the Quran than Muhammad...

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 21:59:05

The headscarves don't bother me at all (I'm sure you're all very pleased to know grin) I can see your face, I can interact with you and read your facial expressions (which the human brain is programmed to do).

I defend your right to wear what you choose to wear, it's bugger all to do with me.

But can anybody seriously defend the burka? they reduce a woman to a vague shape and a slither of their eyes. How do you interact with a person when you can't see their face? can't read their body language? I've said it before - they're totally dehumanising and they make me feel really uncomfortable. Yes, yes, I know blind people have to do that all the time but I'm not blind and so other senses haven't kicked in to help me in that situation.

It takes away the very fundamental sense of who a person is.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 21:59:16

I always think girls who wear low-rise jeans with a muffin top just dont own a full length mirror

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:00:19

Change what was her hijab made of? Mine doesn't impede my hearing!

Cantspel, In Islam the Lady Mary mother of Jesus is revered as amongst the best of women a woman guaranteed paradise, she is the mother of Jesus whom we revere as a Prophet of God.

StayAwayFromTheEdge Tue 02-Jul-13 22:01:50

My point Boomba is that the modesty argument that is being discussed on here falls down - it is absolutely not about modesty.

And I agree Cote that it is wrong for a 5 year old - the ones I see of this age wearing a scarf appear to be on the way to or from Mosque.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:03:02

Bottle I think with the face veil a lot is down to personal beliefs but also the cultural practices, different cultures have different types of face veils, I think its predominantly Somalian Muslims who wear the chador style, Arabs wear opaque face veils, Egyptians the gold metal ones etc.

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 22:04:08

yes, its often about fashion and identity, rather than modesty

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 22:04:56

or probably...identity and fashion, would be more accurate

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:05:14

But muslims have down graded Jesus from the Son of God to the status of a prophet so although your religion respects them it doesn't place them in the same role as i do. But then at least your religion calls Jesus a prophrt where mine completely rejects Mohammed as one so you could argue your religion is more accepting than mine.

Either way we will all find out who was right one day and in the mean time we should all just live and let live without forcing our beliefs on our children before they are old enough to make a reasoned choice.

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 22:06:32

had to laugh when i read some comments including rickets caused by hijab (para-phrasing of course) and girls education harmed due to hijab!

DD (7) was getting head lice so often that she asked that she could wear hijab to school. She doesnt get head lice no more. grin

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 22:07:52

catspel i think people can wish what they like cant they. It would be rude to go round telling people what you wish they would do though?

You could extend 'crumbles' reasoning to SAHMs for example; should no one in the UK choose to be a stay at home mum, because in some countries women are forced to stay at home?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:09:28

We haven't down graded the Son of Mary, The fundamental principle of Islam is that God is one, he neither begets nor is he begotten.

We believe that Jesus the son of Mary is the word of God and the son of no man, he was strengthened by the holy spirit Gabriel in his task to spread the word of God, we also await his second coming.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:11:17

defuse that is one thing I have thus far avoided, yeay to hijab and never had a bout of headlice, I cant deal with creepy crawlies.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 22:12:05

I was in a very touristy area last weekend so saw lots of different cultures. Some of the headscarves are lovely and I admired a few of them, especially because my hair appointment isn't until tomorrow and I was having a seriously bad hair week.

The family I saw where the mother was wearing a full burka was definitely Middle Eastern, not Somalian. Their little boy was fascinated by my dog and I chatted to the dad. The woman just hung back and forgive me for saying this, I'm almost glad because I honestly don't know how I'd have reacted to her because I just found the full on burka a bit intimidating. The fact it made me quite angry is, I realise my issue not hers. It's up to her how she dresses, but there's modesty, and there's making yourself as good as invisible. I admit, my initial reaction was anger and wanting to tell her to take the bloody thing off.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:14:01

it not rude if it is a few pixels on a internet chat board. It is just a discussion with random strangers.
If i went upto a stanger in the street and said i do wish you wouldn't wear that. Now that would be rude.

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 22:14:02

cantspell We muslims also believe that Jesus did not die on the cross - that he will return.

AddictedToCoffee Tue 02-Jul-13 22:15:54

How did a thread about a girl who turned up to school ONE day (and no-one knows for the whole day or not), where the OP ASSUMED she was being forced to wear it, ASSUMED she couldn't do PE and mix with boys, become all about how the hijab is wrong, how islam is oppressive and the usual muslim bashing that starts when a thread like this comes along??!

BTW anyone seen the OP come back??? Me thinks some shit stirring is going on......

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:16:21

bahahahaha cantspell, I was once told by a woman 'god I hate seeing women in those things everytime I see a woman wearing a head covering I want to rip it off....' I told her 'please don't I choose to wear this......'

She was very nice tho (apart from that bit)

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 22:17:16

fuzzy, dd has been attending mosque from an early age - so always used to wear a hijab to the mosque. Extending it to school merely made her feel more grown up and gave me some rest after battling the pesky lice for over 8 months!

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:17:32

Addicted all good points and I've noticed them too.

bottleofbeer Tue 02-Jul-13 22:20:34

I don't think Islam and Christianity are so different.

I'm personally against ALL organised religion, but I respect that others have faith etc..

My understanding is that Islam totally believes in Jesus as a prophet but Muhammed is the last prophet who was around 600 years after Jesus.

Considering we're not so different why is the whole live and let live thing just not happening?

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:21:08

fuzzywuzzy does that translate to you believe that Jesus was the Son of God, His only begotten son, who is seated at the right hand of his Father ?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:24:46

No its exactly that God does not beget nor is he begotten.

Jesus the Son of the Lady Mary is the word of God he is the son of no man he has no earthly father.

quoteunquote Tue 02-Jul-13 22:25:44

I would love to see some proof.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:26:00

defuse where i believe that he died on the cross and rose again and 40 days later he ascension into Heaven.

I know muslims dont believe in the ascention but do you believe in the ascension of Mary?
Real question as i have often wondered what other religions think happened to `mary

Boomba Tue 02-Jul-13 22:26:32

YY cantspel that is what i meant. I didnt mean to suggest you were being rude now...just answering your question, as i see it

AddictedToCoffee Tue 02-Jul-13 22:27:19

Hands up, who wants to wait for the OP to come back with an update?

Unfair to fuzzy to have to keep defending herself and religion when the whole thread is based on big, fat ASSUMPTIONS.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:28:27

With Regards Jesus the son of Mary we beleive he ascended to heaven before the crucifixion.

With the Lady Mary we know she is one of the ladies of Paradise, presumably she lived out the rest of her earthly life.

Embracethemuffintop Tue 02-Jul-13 22:28:45

Why don't we just let children wear want they want - that way this is all a non-issue. If a child wants to wear a head scarf to look like mummy, fine, it probably won't last long if it is restrictive and then she'll be interested in wearing something else. Let them have the freedom to choose what they want to wear - just like we do.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:31:26

Addicted OP wont, every so often there's a thread like this on MN with the predictable posts.

wharrgarbl Tue 02-Jul-13 22:33:02

all pictures depicting the Lady Mary are of her in hijab

Really? Not my understanding at all.

The biggest question I have about hijab, is that if it is seen as the dress of a proper and modest woman, how is it then possible not to despise, or at least look down on any woman who doesn't wear it, regardless of how they dress? If Islamic men are told that 'good' women wear the veil, doesn't that by definition make anyone who doesn't, 'bad', or not worthy of respect? Please note, I'm not (only) referring to women who wear revealing clothes, more women like me, who rarely show much skin, but absolutely don't and wouldn't wear any kind of veil.

ethelb Tue 02-Jul-13 22:34:45

I haven't read the whole thread but my immediate reaction is yes, it makes me sad. I grew up in an area with a large muslim population and remember feeling especially sorry for my primary aged friends who were made to fast in ramadan.

It goes against a lot of muslim practices, teaching and culture for these to be doen before puberty and I know some muslims who get as cross about this misinterpretation of the teachings as I do. It is very unfair on the child.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:35:02

fuzzywuzzy where i believe in the opposite he was the only begotten son of God.

Angels are called the sons of God in job since they had no fathers and were created by God and the same for Adam but they are not his begoten sons.

Pixel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:35:48

So what do you do when your sons get headlice, do you put a scarf on them too?

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 22:38:44

there is a hostility against religion in western feminists because of the Judeo Christian stance and then you carry that against all religions. the Old and New testament stance on women was historically very different to the islamic stance. we have battles with our patriarchy but for different reasons. and as christianity and judaism shouldnt be lumped in with islam for the issues muslim women face, so its unfair to lump islam in with those religions. as a woman educated in my religion i appreciate what Muhammad (pbuh) tried to do even though people changed or ignored his teachings on the rights of women afterwards.

in islam women were not taught that Eve was the one who ate the apple and tempted Adam and caused the fall of Man - so we have not had that held over our heads for centuries as western women had to fight against.

so we dont have that greivance against religion as western feminists have.

islam came and destroyed primogeniture and wherever islam spread women were able to inherit from their families unlike in christendom where women only got that right in the 19th century. the problem of eldest son taking all the wealth was still a problem and a theme in Jane Austen's England 1200 years after muslim women were able to have that right.

so we dont have that grievance against religion that western feminists have.

on marrying a christian woman's property became her husbands, and even her identity changed with the history of the whole surname changing. so western feminists had to fight centuries and won it relatively recently for women to have that right to have financial control of their affairs. something which muhammad specifically stipulated muslim women had the right to do with their own wealth and their own property. so muslim women automatically kept their property and wealth after marriage.

so we do not have that greivance against religion that western feminists have.

women were given the right to divorce by the Quran unlike in christendom where women had to fight for the right until the 19th century. not just divorce but the right to spousal maintenance is also mentioned in the Quran. in the 7th century. so the right to leave an unhappy marriage wasnt forbidden by God as in Christian Europe. and the Quran even talked of the rights of women to have alimony if they were divorced for no reason.

muhammad (pbuh) obliged men not women to give dowry which in western europe was an obligation on women and their families to provide for marriage. it is still a problem in many parts of non muslim asia and a big reason for female infanticide in India and China.

then the Quran specifically prohibits female infanticide - you will say why does it even need to say that. but this is because it was a huge social problem of that time in that society EVEN THEN and islam sought to abolish it amongst the pagans of arabia. but it is just as relevant to south asian and far eastern muslims as it is now.

then muhammad (pbuh) spoke of the blessing of having daughters and promised paradise to one who raises and is good to his daughters - its not even mentioned for sons because the social problem of that time, as in europe for so many centuries and still existent across much of the world was that sons were favoured and cherished and daughters were treated badly. again i can call on religious literature to support that.

300 years after islam it was being discussed in europe whether women had souls, the Quran stated men and women and their good and evil acts had the same status and same reward.

the quran says to obey your parents but muhammad said this doesnt mean extend to having to marry who your father chooses and gave the right to women to annul marriages they were forced into against their will. this is in religious literature. so women had and have the right to call on religious literature to support them against oppressive relatives - christian women had no such recourse.

on paper muslim women not christian women had far more rights, but in the 21st century its the other way around. and that is because the west progressed when they stopped taking their religion literally, whereas, the problem in islam, is that the rights of women are not taught, not followed, and deliberately suppressed.

before muslim feminists talk of interpretation they first ask for application of the rights that islam came with because religion and culture has been so muddied up. the quran states unless a couple is seen in the action of sexual intercourse it is forbidden to accuse them of adultery, and even then gives women an out of an accusation by simply giving an oath to swear. but in some cultures women are condemned just for being seen speaking to men.

though men and women were given the right to divorce without a reason muslim cultures suppressed it for women and gave it to men. so that a man wouldnt fear his wife divorcing him if he wasnt a good husband but a woman would fear her husband divorcing her for any arbitrary reason. it gave the power to the man.

candyandyoga Tue 02-Jul-13 22:38:54

Yanbu - that's disgusting really sad

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 22:39:29

wharrgarbl - I wear the hijab, but why would i look down on someone who doesnt? Would it be acceptable for me to look down on someone who wears very revealing clothing? the answer is no!

My hijab doesnt make me good or bad - it is my actions. I wear the hijab because my faith is important to me. it does not give me the license to look down on those who don't wear it - no, does it make me any better than anyone else. That in itself would contradict the 'spirit' of islam.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:39:55

Wharr are there depictions of Mary without a head covering? I wouldn't know not being a church goer.

It's a stipulation form God to be covered when outside the home.

No idea what other men and women think of women who don't cover, perhaps you should canvass women walking down the streets.
I personally don't feel its any of my business.

Cantspell there's an entire chapter of the Quran devoted to the birth of Jesus the son of Mary (its called the verse of Mariam), there's also a chapter call the table laden with food, which could be about the last supper its about the feast with the twelve desciples of Jesus the son of Mary.

Need to re-read it myself.

CoteDAzur Tue 02-Jul-13 22:40:45

"But muslims have down graded Jesus from the Son of God to the status of a prophet "

I think the story is that he never claimed to be the son of God during his lifetime and that his Godhead was decided upon at the 1st Council of Nicea about 300 years after his death. God wasn't happy with this distortion of the religion he sent, among other things, so he sent another one (Islam) in which he expressly forbid making pictures or sculptures of Mohammad and worshipping/praying to anyone/anything other than Himself.

Mimishimi Tue 02-Jul-13 22:42:04

I live in a very Muslim part of Sydney, Australia. When I was growing up,most girls didn't wear a headscarf here until the onset of puberty (if they wore them at all). However, since the 'GWOT' started, I've noticed that age getting pushed back now. Five would still be very unusual but eight or nine seems to be more common now. It doesn't prevent them from playing sport etc and I don't see the scarf as an oppressive thing for them at all, they wear it like a badge of pride. I would have more reservations about sticking a young girl into a niqab or burka. I don't like those, even on grown women.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:43:23

Little is written about the rest of marys life we we believe she was so loved by God that upon her death her body was lifted into heaven and so we celebrate the assumption of `mary as part of the religious calender

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:44:10

Pixel if my (non existent) son got headlice, after getting very hysterical about it and getting my mum to louse him, Iwould most certinaly put him in a keffiyeh......and if he took it off I'd shave his head and dye it blue (I understand that to be the acceptable deterrent aginast headlice).

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 22:46:13

jesus didnt address these issues that muhammad did because they both were performing different roles and went into different societies. the jews of jesus's time were already following the 10 commandments and the old testament, jesus came to relieve them of that.

but muhammad went to a people who were pagans, hedonists, and believed in the law of the strong survive.

so jesus taught about a loving God and told his people to go easy on themselves, muhammad taught about an exacting God and told his people to be wary of God. so for a hedonistic people islam came and spoke about self denial, piety and submission. on the rights of women, the rights of the poor, those who are strangers etc. believe in God and do good - and that no one would get into heaven not even muhammad without the mercy of God.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 22:46:31

Crescentmoon thank you for that post

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 22:46:41

"Crumbled, my wearing a headscarf obliterates the negative and worng associations that people have of Islam and muslim and muslim women in hijab."

No it doesn't.

Yes, Mejypoo, I do. I wouldn't force her: we don't do that sort of thing. But I think it would be the right thing for her to do.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 22:47:50

"they wear it like a badge of pride"


defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 22:47:51

lol fuzzy - i was just about to say shave it off (on my non-existent son) too. grin

Alternatively hoodies may be quite effective too - against lice and people!!

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:48:50

Crumbled yes it does, when they see me in my head scarf and then see me in action at work, it totally makes them reassess the negative prejuidices they have of women in headscarves.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 22:49:44

Crescent, such an interesting post.

I am not religious in any way and defiantly see all religions as mysoginistic but have really enjoyed reading different views on this subject.

I still feel that I don't need any other adult to tell me how to dress. Although my mother tries😄.

Wish every woman everywhere had my and my dds choices.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 22:50:17

And they've all told you this? I'm afraid it doesn't work on me.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 22:53:20

I am genuinely saddened to read CrumbledWalnuts comments.

There is obviously a more deep rooted issue with you and headscarves.

I don't think there is anything more that can be said to you.

cantspel Tue 02-Jul-13 22:53:48

cote there are plenty of reference to Jesus saying her was the son of God in the bible.
The clearest probably being John 10:36

King James 2000 Bible (©2003)
Say you of him, whom the Father has sanctified, and sent into the world, You blaspheme; because I said, I am the Son of God?

NeedFood Tue 02-Jul-13 22:54:22

I wonder what the response would be if I posted to say I was 'sad' about a 5 year old wearing a mini skirt and skimpy halter neck (as I have done)...

I wonder if we would talk or even think immediately about female oppression and how men's ideals and sexulisation of women/girls have changed the way women dress.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 22:56:29

Crumbled lets see, my barrister certainly has, a lawyer who was representing me was also very taken aback and then actually asked me what I did for a living the previous assumption being I would have been a SAHM (no offense to SAHMS, but most peopel who see a woman in a headscarf assume she is not capable of holding down a job.

Then there's work who are very respectful going from rude and dismissive to contrite and (at first) grudgingly respectful to respectful and with high expectations of me and two promotion in as many years.

I don't need to be told I have made people re-think their assessment of women in headscarves by meeting me, I know for a fact I completely wrong foot people and their expectations of a woman in a headscarf.

But I'm damn good at what I do and work harder than most because I have more to prove due to my dress choice.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 22:56:33

And by the way, the only negative prejudice I have of women in this country covering (mainly more than the headscarf to be honest) is not a prejudice at all. A choice has been made to adopt a symbol of oppression. You might not like that it's a symbol of oppression, but you can't deny that it is. You might have a job, and financial independence, and a very devout faith. I don't doubt all of those things, I wouldn't stop you worshipping freely, living freely. I can't stop you wearing it and I won't even if I can. That's not the way things are done. But a choice has been made to wear a symbol of oppression, and a denial is being made that it is a symbol of oppression.

It would be nice if it wasn't, and perhaps one day it won't be, in the same way that the Union flag and the England flag no longer represent racism, xenophobia and thuggery. But right now, it does.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 22:58:34

Has it occurred to you that they may simply like you and respect your work?

(no offense to SAHMS, but most peopel who see a woman in a headscarf assume she is not capable of holding down a job.

Not surprising, since we were just told that a niqab wearer wouldn't want a job. Didn't you say that yourself?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 23:00:38

I work with someone who covers everything except her face and hands. I have, and had, no prejudice about her, or her capabilities. She's extremely good at her job and has a really sharp attitude. It's impressive for anyone. But it doesn't change my opinion of the covering.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 23:02:04

It is not a symbol of opression, it is your choice to see it as such to justify your personal prejuidice of women who cover.

Its more palatable to pretend its a symbol of oppression than I'm a bigot and feel Muslim women should not be allowed to make their own sartorial choices because I am superior to them and should dictate how they dress.

Women who choose to cover their heads freely are not symbols of opression, we are strong kick ass sisters who are showing up everywhere and shocking the naysayers into silence by being the best we can possibly be.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 23:03:50

I think you misunderstand, Fuzzy. You seem to assume that the problem is people assume women who cover are somehow stupid and incapable. If they did think that then I suppose you could have your prejudice removed by seeing a competent or impressive lawyer. Maybe that is a problem for you, plainly it has been.

But that's not what this is about. This is about what covering represents. We starting talking about five year olds, and so it's all about what the covering represents, and the oppression it validates. You are talking about something rather different.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 23:04:24

crumbled, you said you wouldnt expect to hold down a job in public services whilst wearing a face mask, I said no muslim woman a face veil would expect that either.

I told you I know plenty of owmen in face veils who run their own businesses and are teachers at islamic schools.

There are also plenty of non Muslim SAHMS who rely totaly on their husbands income and have given up financial independance.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:05:06

You might not be 'symbols of oppression' among your culture and religion - but there are many many people who are not of your culture and religion who DO see it as a symbol of oppression.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 23:05:16

You may see the headscarf as a symbol of oppression crumbled but I and many others DO NOT.

It is your perception and attitude that has to change rather than the headscarf wearer.

PrincessFiorimonde Tue 02-Jul-13 23:06:13

This: I don't agree with the reasoning behind the veils - it seems very insulting to men to say that a man can't possibly look at a woman without being overcome with lust. Women are obviously much stronger in this matter, as they can manage to look at a man without being tempted to think that way.

And this: Any religion/custom/practice from any area, race [or] community that seeks to constrict or lessen choices for women (or men) on dress, behaviour or life chances stinks.
It's about control. It's about accepting your place in life and society and not striving or questioning.
It's usually also about money and power and, most generally, these are held by men, of course.

And this too : Our [Western] society produces padded bras for little girls, skimpy knickers, revealing tops with risque slogans, tight skinny jeans, high heeled shoes, make-up, etc. In short, it encourages girls to show off their bodies from a very young age.
The Muslim culture encourages their little girls to cover up their bodies from a very young age, as the woman's body is sinful.
Both are equally bad, both discriminate against women

And also this: But the whole point of the thread was that 5 year old girls are not choosing. We've had the whole 'dressing up like mummy' thing but generally children do that at home, you don't get them turning up at school in Mummy's high heels and make-up.

In summary, this: Men are using religion to reinforce the privileged position they already hold, i.e. it's not me who says you can't ... its God, and you can't argue with God.

Finally, this: Isn't it amazing that the word of god in all religions often comes out of the gob of a bloke.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:06:51

WHY should my attitude change?

fuzzywuzzy Tue 02-Jul-13 23:07:13

My choice to wear or not a headscarf will not benefit a muslim woman being opressed in outer mongolia.

My active campaigning and work to help that woman will.

My wearing a headscarf in the workplace and being downright amazing at my job will give people at work who believe that Muslim women are opressed food for thought.

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 23:08:56

Please stop accusing me of a prejudice against women who cover. I don't have one, though it suits you to imagine I do. It suits your argument, and is easier for you to label and reject.

I have just explained this. We can't agree, and you don't seem to understand that I am not talking about people who think a headscarf=stupid. I have not seen a single example on this thread of anyone who thinks a woman wearing a headscarf is stupid or incapable. Not from me, not from anyone. You are arguing with something that doesn't exist here on this thread and with a point that has not been made. Of course it's easy to argue against, because it's obviously not true that a woman who wears a covering is stupid or incapable. Therefore you think you make a point. But nobody is denying it. So what? Headscarf wearers can be competent and capable? It's not exactly a "who knew?" is it?

But there it is, the denial that it's a symbol of oppression. As long as you do that, we cannot agree.

RussianBlu Tue 02-Jul-13 23:09:58

maybe she wanted to wear it?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 23:10:17

My attitude certainly doesn't have to change and it won't. What an frighteningly aggressive thing to say.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:10:48

My choice to wear or not a headscarf will not benefit a muslim woman being opressed in outer mongolia.

Of course it does - it sends a message to ALL the men who run Islam that people agree with what they are doing!

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:11:06

crumbled - are you having a laugh? Or are you really serious? a choice has been made by you to put the blinkers on - a symbol of ignorance.

Remove the blinkers some day - and try to see the woman for who she is. You will find it very humbling. It takes so much courage to wear the hijab - even more to wear the niqab and walk down the street. If you think it is a sign of oppression - try to wear it. you will find that it is generally society and people like you that will oppress and make ill-informed judgments about the woman wearing the scarf. Try to endure the taunts, the verbal abuse, even the physical aggression that the woman may have to suffer. You talk of hijab as oppressive, try to walk in a hijab and you will realise where true oppression actually lies.

I understand exactly what fuzzy means when she says that she has to work twice as hard because she wears a hijab. I totally get it.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:12:54

So, if I went to Saudi Arabia and tried to walk down the street wearing very little, would I be treated with the tolerance you are asking us to show?

Crumbledwalnuts Tue 02-Jul-13 23:13:08

No, I'm most certainly not having a laugh. It's extremely depressing. And again - you do not understand, defuse, a word of what I said in my last post. Perhaps we cross posted.

Very depressing talk. Goodnight.

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 23:14:11

Your attitude about the headscarf does need to change crumbled. You keep calling it a symbol if oppression. That is your opinion. There is nothing aggressive in what I said.

And what is this men who run Islam business?? Lol. LastTango I'm sorry but you sound thick as mince with that comment.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:15:04

I have yet to see an female Ayatollah or a Mosque Elder who is female!

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 23:15:10

thanks Mar and body. what went wrong with islam if it started out 1400 odd years ago with those rights of women? can we explain it to non muslims we cannot even understand it ourselves as muslims? did Jesus speak up on any rights for women? Muhammad did often and with authority, and yet we find ourselves today with a very distinct patriarchy in the muslim world not seen in the western world. and we have less excuse for it but if christian/western women could achieve so much against such odds then things should change and soon if concerted effort is made in muslim communities.

as for the hijab.

when i wear the headscarf it is not because i fear for my security, but it is about a spiritual exercise against my own vanity. it inhibits me - theres another ugly word again for capitalism: inhibition - against taking things too far if i was the type of person who would be easily played by all the media attempts to make women chop and change their own bodies to fit a perfect ideal. so it is a protection for me not against men but against the excesses of materialism as they are played out on women rather than men.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:17:04

it inhibits me - EXACTLY !

mejypoo Tue 02-Jul-13 23:18:41

So LastTango are you saying you shouldn't be tolerant to folk wearing headscarf a in the UK because of what happens in Saudi Arabia?

Do you think that tit for tat is an acceptable way to live?

Biting my lip here...

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:19:57

It's not tit for tat - it's called equality.

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:21:10

lasttango - contrary to popular belief - we do not all go running to ayatollah every time we need guidance.

there are many many many islamic study groups run by women, who lead and also advise - if need be.

What exactly is a mosque elder? confused

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 23:21:20

me specifically as an individual.

as for saudi wearing very little there is like a woman from an Amazonian tribe that only wears a waistcloth walking on the streets here in the UK with her breasts bare. that would be against social norms here though it would oppress that amazonian woman to have to cover her breasts.

what are you tolerating if i choose to cover my hair? are you using the word 'tolerating' about people wearing tattoos? or multiple piercings? or green hair? these were all not tolerated before but now are mainstream.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:23:06

Will one of you please tell me: when we see pictures of prayers, in a mosque or in a street, why is it only men? Genuinely interested.

Sallyingforth Tue 02-Jul-13 23:23:38

mejypoo You are right that tit for tat with Saudi Arabia would be wrong.
But the clear public perception of Islam is that the tolerance always seems to be in one direction.

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:24:09

Lasttango - and that is your definition of equality????? ROFL.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:24:32

defuse - you mock me because I don't know the correct term for someone who runs the mosque. I was trying to be polite.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 23:26:20

there are lots of pictures of women praying inside and outside mosques, usually they pop up on the picture of the day feature on the guardian website or the bbc from time to time. but men are obliged to pray the friday prayer in the mosque women are not

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:27:33

lasttango - if i told you that women also pray in mosques and in streets and in shopping malls and in playgrounds and in schools and in universities and in hospitals. Would you believe me?

mombie Tue 02-Jul-13 23:27:49

all the men who run Islam? Wow..

Crescent Moon, I feel exactly as you do about my hijab. it's about me, my tendencies for excess and vanity. Not to toot my own horn, but its an acknowledgement of the power behind female sexuality. Hard to explain.

no more a symbol of opression than a push up bra.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:30:53

Another genuine question: how can a nurse or doctor conduct their business in a hospital if they have to keep stopping to pray?

If they work in the emergency department what do they do when it comes to prayer time and they are saving someone's life?

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 23:31:33

I don't see women who cover a stupid but I do see it as a symbol of oppression.

Fuzzy you said' women who choose freely to cover their head'

That's the point. They don't all choose do they? Here maybe but not everywhere else.

mombie Tue 02-Jul-13 23:34:58

nobody has to stop to pray mid surgery, only matter of time before NHS crisis became the fault of them muslimists!

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:36:01

lasttango , sorry if i upset you earlier. From islamic point of view, if the choice is to save a life or pray - then you save the life - and make up the prayer later.

So you have to fulfill your role towards people (in this case save life) and then towards God (do the prayers)

You have quite a bit of flexibility and it is not as rigid as you may think.

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:36:10

mombie - can't you answer a genuine question without being sarcastic?

LastTangoInDevonshire Tue 02-Jul-13 23:36:44

Thank you defuse.

mombie Tue 02-Jul-13 23:39:43

I have managed to answer a few earlier. just wondering where you were going with it.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 23:40:39

women in islam can be judges, and muftis, and scholars, just as men, there is absolutely no prohibition against women entering religious law and there is alot of precedence in muslim history. but there are alot of traditional and cultural obstructions to women entering religious law, and it was only in the last few centuries that women become overwhelmingly the subjects of religious law not the makers of religious law. and it is still something that we are learning about now because it is yet another aspect of the religion that is suppressed.

muhammad even addressed birth control and allowed it saying whatever God willed would happen anyway. these are from authentic texts but women arent taught that and so feel they are bad for wanting to limit the number of children they have. how if a woman is in a rural village or town in afghanistan, illiterate in her own language can she have access to arabic knowledge. i can gain it now in english but thats because of theefforts of women and men translating texts from arabic that i can read. there is an interest in western islam to find these hidden gems, but in some parts of the world tribal elders and chiefs dont want women to know they have religious rights. they make womens rights a western innovation, the cause of womens education a western deviance. and these women are cowed and so they do not know.

islam is more lenient about abortion than christianity historically because muhammad's statements on the process of ensoulment was taken, with certain verses in the quran, to allow abortion in specific cases.

NeedFood Tue 02-Jul-13 23:40:51

Seriosuly?! Are these posts for real? Stopping life saving surgery to pray? Are there lots of dead ppl lying around because of this and we didn't get informed by the media? I must have missed this.

Some of this posters are just muslim bashing for the sake of it.

PrincessFiorimonde Tue 02-Jul-13 23:43:55

I agree with a poster's point above that wearing the hijab comes down to both 'culture' and 'choice'. However, I reject the 'culture' from which this idea springs if it really does suggest that this is a clear 'choice' for a 5-year-old (the original point of this thread).

I do see the related point that 'Lady Mary' (= the BVM, in the Catholic culture in which I grew up) represents 'modesty', 'along with submission and duty and responsibility', but 'submission' is not a trait that I admire, or that I want to see perpetuated among our children. When the poster adds that these are 'traits in all the abrahamic faiths that hold up modesty as a virtue not as an abomination', I can only say that it is time to ditch the Abrahamic faiths as pernicious claptrap. By all means, let our children have a sense of responsibility, but please let them grow up to be less submissive and more likely to take their fate in to their own hands.

thebody Tue 02-Jul-13 23:44:29

Needfood, what a twattish post.

Read the thread to see real respectful debate and then come back.

crescentmoon Tue 02-Jul-13 23:45:04

prayers normally have a large window to be completed in the summer - where people would go and have a cigarrette or lunch break thats when you would do your prayer. not in the middle of a crucial operation or a teleconference!

dawn prayer is before work,
midday prayer is at lunchtime,
mid afternoon prayer is close to clocking off time,
sunset and night prayers are at home. but they can be delayed also - its not about completely separating prayer and normal life you have to incorporate prayer as you can in your daily life whatever it is.

curlew Tue 02-Jul-13 23:45:04

So women have equal rights in Islamic countries?

That's a relief. I could have sworn they didn't. So glad I was wrong.

mombie Tue 02-Jul-13 23:46:59

I am glad that Muslim women are becoming more empowered as they become more knowledgeable about their religion. there is an ongoing battle on a day to day level between the old culture and the new.. It does slowly but surely trickle down. It may not be obvious to those on the outside but it is happening.

PrincessFiorimonde Tue 02-Jul-13 23:50:56

islam came and destroyed primogeniture and wherever islam spread women were able to inherit from their families unlike in christendom where women only got that right in the 19th century. the problem of eldest son taking all the wealth was still a problem and a theme in Jane Austen's England 1200 years after muslim women were able to have that right.

so we dont have that grievance against religion that western feminists have.

REALLY? So how many Muslim kingdoms have been ruled by men and that rulership has been inherited by their daughters, then? I'm thinking (off the top of my head) Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Jordan, Syria, for a start?

And how many Muslim men have controlled big companies that have been passed on to their daughters? Can you name just one, please?

NeedFood Tue 02-Jul-13 23:51:45

Thebody - all credit to the women who are repeatedly explaining things very patiently. However, not only am I not as good with words as them nor do I have as great a tolerance for some of the very obtuse posts left here. Perhaps my impatience is coming across as 'twattish' to you but come on now! The questioning is needling and just plain ignorant in my view.

defuse Tue 02-Jul-13 23:56:03

thebody some women around the world do not have a choice in covering. So why should that impact my choice to wear the hijab. Some women around the world are forced into prostitution - wearing 'revealing' clothes because men have forced them to. does that mean that no woman in this country is allowed to wear 'revealing' clothes because of the oppressive actions of men around the world. Those clothes are a symbol of oppression too - why no call to ban those.

we are bombarded daily with oppressive messages to look alluring for men in this country - be it the push-up bra, the length of skirt or the magazines which constantly give you tips on how to please your man. Recently was the craze of 50 shades of grey - great stuff furthering the cause of female liberation right! Even in business settings, society/media is still encouraging women to use their sexuality - by dressing in a certain way to get further. Yet, we do not blame the woman nor their choice.

But bring the hijab into the equation and all bigots come out in force, standing shoulder to shoulder angry with the hijab wearing woman - how dare she make a choice to wear what she wants to wear - because somewhere in the world, someone is being forced to wear it.

double standards or what!

defuse Wed 03-Jul-13 00:00:15

curlew . do you honestly believe that women have equal rights in this country?

crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 00:07:23

hello princess.

primogeniture as i talked about it was to do with wealth, not rulership. and my point was that in islam daughters inherited from their fathers just as sons did, then as now.

arab monarchies do not follow eldest son gets kingship anyway, the ruler of Qatar last week stepped down and gave the kingship to his fourth son. in saudi arabia rulership goes to the next brother in line not down to the first son/child.

there have been female queens in muslim history, in the Maldives and in South East Asia. but thats where my knowledge ends.

in south asia you have presidencies not monarchies but there you had Khaledeh Zia in Bangladesh and Benazzir Bhutto in Pakistan both serving two non consecutive terms as leaders. both daughters of prominent politicians and there was a feeling of inheritance ot their taking rule as well.

thebody Wed 03-Jul-13 00:08:33

NeedFood, point taken.

Defuse, women have choices here to dress in arse skimming skirts or completely cover up. Fantastic.

You can't deny that is not the case around the world.

Of course any case where a woman has list the choice is as bad in a western brother as it is in a Pakistani village.

One does not cancel out the other.

I defend womens right to choose,, burkah or mini skirt. But THEIR real choice not the choice if their culture or religion.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 03-Jul-13 00:09:24

Princess - Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia have all had elected female leaders.

Liberia is a mixed Christian and Muslim country (Watch Pray the Devil Back to Hell if you want to see Liberian Christian and Muslim women working together to restore peace to their country) and has Africa's first female president.

The head of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Benesouda (sp?) is a Muslim woman

Syria, one of the countries you mentioned is a secular Baathist dictatorship. Not a Muslim kingdom.

thebody Wed 03-Jul-13 00:09:36

Brothel not brother....

PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 00:15:38

Someone suggested that 'Lady Mary' always wore hijab. But there are lots of paintings suggesting that she didn't.

For example Leonardo (Mary is the one bending down)

And Raphael (Mary getting married)

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 03-Jul-13 00:17:36

So what are "real choices" thebody?

Do only nice, white atheists make real choices, unimpeded by any external factors whatsoever? Veritable islands, immune from any societal pressures.

Whereas as Muslim/religious women have heads full of nonsense? Unlike the clever, clever secular sorts.

Who on earth do you think you are to determine which choices are valid? Do you not understand how oppressive you sound?

defuse Wed 03-Jul-13 00:19:44

Thebody, you said yourself that

I do see it as a symbol of oppression


They don't all choose do they? Here maybe but not everywhere else.

The point is - viewing a hijab as a symbol of oppression is a very narrow view and you are actually causing oppression by making your views known - on the woman who wears it - whether out of choice or out of oppression.

It is an unhelpful and a poor way to tackle the injustices that you are allegedly against.

crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 00:19:44

"And how many Muslim men have controlled big companies that have been passed on to their daughters? Can you name just one, please"

the world's oldest continually operating university, the University of Karouine in Morocco,

was established in 880AD by Fatima Al Fihri who used the inheritance from her father, an extremely wealthy moroccan businessman, as well as an inheritance from her brother, to establish the first academic degree granting institution in the world.

i can tell you also that waqfs - or religious endowments - were sometimes used by wealthy property owners so as to disinherit daughters and avoid splitting up large estates. one of the subtle ways women were systematically disadvantaged even when their religion didnt obstruct them.

because of polygamy inheritance became very complicated very quickly amongst the early muslims as inheritance had to be split between wives and their children rather than the first son of the eldest wife. it was one of the reasons for the early interest and development of algebra in the muslim world because it had real uses in the field of religious law on inheritance.

defuse Wed 03-Jul-13 00:27:18

It is sad to see people boast how great women's rights are in this country - not so much in a grateful way but more like gloating and turning their noses up at those less fortunate.

It is also funny how they dont see how oppressive and also indeed oppressed they are themselves, following like sheep making ill-informed judgments and holding deep-rooted prejudices and false notions of some kind of supremacy that feels very very uncomfortable from this side of the fence. It feels....oppressive.

crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 00:30:25

i think another reason western women are so hostile to the veil is that it is almost the visible manifestation of all the struggles christian/western feminists had to fight against in the judeo christian world that muslim women didnt have to in the muslim world. so to us it can be a piece of cloth, not the great symbol of oppression symbolic of eve the temptress the cause and all her daughters too of all the ills and evils of humanity.

because.... it was Adam not Eve! different historical contexts and memories. with the obligation to wear the hijab in islam came alot of rights as well, but some muslim societies enforced the veil and dissolved the religious rights of women.

what the phatwa! its 12.30am ladies! good grief!

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 00:35:59

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PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 00:40:21

I was talking about primogeniture and how this affects women. This was in response to crescentmoon's post ('islam came and destroyed primogeniture and wherever islam spread women were able to inherit from their families unlike in christendom where women only got that right in the 19th century').

I am perfectly aware that in countries such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, rulership has not always passed to the eldest son of the eldest son. That was not my point. My point was that I am not aware of any country where rulership is hereditary, either in theory or in practice (e.g. Syria or Saudi Arabia), where rulership has ever passed to a daughter. Please correct me if I am wrong.

I was also not talking about countries where Muslim-majority electors have elected a woman to lead the country, because obviously that has nothing to do with primogeniture.

crescentmoon adds that 'primogeniture as i talked about it was to do with wealth, not rulership'. But I did also ask this: 'how many Muslim men have controlled big companies that have been passed on to their daughters? Can you name just one, please?'

cantspel Wed 03-Jul-13 00:44:41

aboutus that is the most stupid question i have ever seen on mn.

Then maybe google rape in pakistan

angelsonhigh Wed 03-Jul-13 00:54:34

aboutus you have just added to the mindset "A woman deserves to be raped according to what she is wearing".

Can't believe you could actually post this comment.

crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 00:58:06

ahh, you ask 'ever'.

in the maldives there were muslim female queens who inherited from their fathers, and female muslim queens who inherited from their fathers in one of the south east asian sultanates, but not in the middle east.

"I am perfectly aware that in countries such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, rulership has not always passed to the eldest son of the eldest son. "

were you perfectly aware i did not know that. because, regardless of daughters or sons that meant the gulf or north african monarchies did not historically practise primogeniture anyway, as we can still see now in the 21st century. but they did not pass leadership down to daughters.

as for khaledah zia and bhenazzir bhutto, they were elcted to lead but in being chosen to head their parties there an element of their inheriting the presidency from their respective fathers. seen by the party faithful as the continuation of the political dynasty. not like maggie thatcher who became leader of the conservatives and then prime minister from being born a greengrocers daughter.

" 'how many Muslim men have controlled big companies that have been passed on to their daughters? Can you name just one, please?'"

i named fatima al fihri rather than her father, and the benefit to the muslim and wider world from the wealth she inherited from his many businesses. even Maimonides the great Jewish scholar studied at the university that she established.

as for 21st century businessmen, i couldnt name one off the top of my head. but iv already repeatedly said that women in modern muslim societies have a way to go compared to earlier muslim societies. before getting going on 21st century rights first need the application of those from the 7th century. thats how difficult it is in places.

in Egypt the muslim woman's right to a no fault divorce - established by muhammad in the 7th century - was only granted in the year 2000. in the first month of the new law 3000 applications were received in Cairo alone by women, who previously had to either prove 'harm' or could not get a divorce. this was a cultural obstruction not a religious obstruction.

more on the khul divorce and issues around it..

after the war of application comes the war of interpretation.

crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 00:59:34

PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 01:03:02

aboutus that is about the most disgusting thing I have ever read here.

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:03:06

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PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 01:04:10

Remove the blinkers some day - and try to see the woman for who she is. You will find it very humbling. It takes so much courage to wear the hijab - even more to wear the niqab and walk down the street. If you think it is a sign of oppression - try to wear it. you will find that it is generally society and people like you that will oppress and make ill-informed judgments about the woman wearing the scarf. Try to endure the taunts, the verbal abuse, even the physical aggression that the woman may have to suffer. You talk of hijab as oppressive, try to walk in a hijab and you will realise where true oppression actually lies.

I understand exactly what fuzzy means when she says that she has to work twice as hard because she wears a hijab. I totally get it.

I have thought and thought and thought about this post. Because I like to think of myself as a warm woolly liberal, and I do tend to think that a woman in - not so much a hijab, but let's say a burqa or a niqab, may be wearing that because she's been told she MUST wear it. So my default setting is to see that covering as a sign of oppression.

Having read the thread, however, I do see that an adult woman may choose to wear this covering, even though I may disagree with her reasons for doing so.

But I also see the OP's unease at the fact that a 5 year old is covering herself. I really don't see how a 5 year old is making any real choice here. She's probably following how Mummy dresses. In the same way that I would also think it wrong to see a 5 year old in heels, make-up, etc., I just think this is wrong.

megsmouse Wed 03-Jul-13 01:11:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

angelsonhigh Wed 03-Jul-13 01:11:28

I feel quite sad that this us against them mentality exists.

I am a practising Catholic and say my decades of the rosary when I can fit them in.

I imagine that Muslims can "make up" their prayer time if it is truly inconvenient when prayers are due?

Blind faith is not acceptable to me. I query and question my own religion on a regular basis. I also attend my Hindu friends' celebrations and know and respect my Muslim friends' beliefs.

My only hope is that these feelings and beliefs are also shared by these communities.

angelsonhigh Wed 03-Jul-13 01:12:44

aboutus Your Q doesn't warrant an answer

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:16:45

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aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:18:36

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cantspel Wed 03-Jul-13 01:21:08

aboutus explain then why pakistan has a growing rape problem.

And even if you were stupid enough to accept that what a woman wears is an excuse for rape or a cause of it. It still doesn't mean women should cover themselves. Maybe we could just poke the eyes out of all baby boys at birth so that they are never so overcome by the sight of a woman they are driven to rape.

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:21:58

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aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:22:23

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aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:23:41

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cantspel Wed 03-Jul-13 01:25:58

no i just hate stupid people who thinks a woman by what she might be or not be wearing is responsible for becoming a rape victim.

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:28:13

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crescentmoon Wed 03-Jul-13 01:28:40

good night all,

aboutus, have a read of this first before you go down that line.

the 'We believe you' rape awareness campaign.

and relevant to the posts , an earlier campaign by Mumsnet...

'let girls be girls'. its not 'creeping sharia' but premature sexualisation of children thats a threat to our daughters. as i understand it the campaign wasnt started because of the 'pernicious ideal of modesty' but real concerns about sexual attractiveness being held up as the sole value for young girls as well as women to strive towards.

ItsNotATest Wed 03-Jul-13 01:28:59

aboutus you are being utterly absurd. 50% of the population does not have to go about in a black sheet in order not to be raped. Get a grip.

cantspel Wed 03-Jul-13 01:30:08


PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 01:30:13

aboutus, I can hardly believe I'm engaging with you, but I'd like to point out that any woman has the right to walk anywhere, at any time, dressed or undressed as she pleases, without fear of assault. If she is raped, that is because she came across a bastard who is a rapist - he was the wrong person there at the wrong time, not her.

You should also be aware that, sadly, most rapes are perpetrated on women who know their assailants - and, even more sadly, that many women do not even report the fact that they have been raped. So I'm afraid that may include many 'sober women in a hijab'.

Also (can hardly believe I'm saying this), surely you must know that many rapes have been perpetrated on older women in their own homes - women in their 70s, 80s or even older. These are women (I hate to say this) like your mother or grandmothers. I think we can assume that they do not fit your 'drunk women in a tiny top or a tiny skirt' sashaying down the street stereotype.

Pixel Wed 03-Jul-13 01:30:16

Well that argument only works if the only women to get raped are drunk ones wearing short skirts. I think you'll find women get raped in all sorts of situations, on their way home from work in their sensible office clothes, dragged into the bushes while jogging in tracksuit trousers, even old ladies in their beds. Are they all asking for it? Your argument also requires a total absence of rape in islamic countries but we all know that isn't true either.

Pixel Wed 03-Jul-13 01:31:20

cross post

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:33:14

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aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 01:35:07

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PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 01:35:35

crescentmoon, I don't agree with you, but I thank you for answering my points and engaging in debate with me. Perhaps we might continue the discussion another time?

Meantime, good night and sweet dreams.

PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 01:58:56


You don't answer my points? Perhaps you can't.

In the meantime, may I suggest these possible situations:

1. You're walking home at 6pm when you are suddenly mugged from behind. You're badly hurt; perhaps your assailant kicks you in the head and the ribs, and you're bleeding badly. Your wallet, keys and phone are stolen, but hey - so what - it's all your fault for walking home all by yourself. Get over it.

2. You've been to the pub and struck up a conversation with someone. You played pool together, had a chat and drank a few pints. You both leave the pub at the same time. And just as you're checking the messages on your mobile your new friend suddenly punches you in the face and you fall to the ground. You're badly hurt; perhaps your assailant kicks you in the head and the ribs, and you're bleeding badly. Your wallet, keys and phone are stolen, but hey - so what - it's all your fault for walking home with a stranger. Get over it.

3. You haven't been out all day. You go to bed at 10pm but wake up when you hear an unfamiliar noise. You switch on your bedside light but before you can react you realise there is a burglar in the room. The burglar thumps you before you can get out of bed. You're badly hurt; perhaps your burglar has kicked you in the head and the ribs, and you're bleeding badly. Your wallet, keys and phone are stolen, but hey - so what - it's all your fault for waking up all by yourself. Get over it.

All so unlikely, eh?

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 02:04:06

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PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 02:08:30

You still don't want to address specific points, aboutus?

PrincessFiorimonde Wed 03-Jul-13 02:10:23

So why don't you just fuck off with your nasty little agenda that might be read as misogynistic and just plain shit-stirring?

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 03-Jul-13 02:19:16

Not sure I should feed the troll, but while I am happy to wear hijab and think there are many benefits from not drinking, immunity from rape is not one of them.

Most rapes are by people you know and wearing any item of clothing does not protect you from meeting a rapist.

aboutus Wed 03-Jul-13 02:39:26

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