On air at 1100GMT: Should you embrace the culture of the country you live in?
From today women in France are banned from covering their face in public. It has been brought in to stop Muslim women wearing a face-concealing veil such as the niqab or burqa. They can be stopped by police and given a fine.
Writing in an official government newspaper explaining the law the French Prime Minister Francois Fillon said, "The French Republic lives in a bare-headed fashion,"
The fine is more symbolic than anything else, a 150 euro fine, that's £133, $217. However people forcing women to wear the veil face a much larger fine and a prison sentence of up to two years.
France is the first country in Europe to publicly ban a form of dress some Muslims regard as a religious duty. But it extends beyond Muslims, if you were to walk down the street wearing a balaclava or motorcycle helmet you would still be breaking the law. But according to this article it only affect a maximum of two thousand people who wear the full veil
This is a fascinating read from a young muslim woman who lived in London and moved to Saudi Arabia. After originally opposing wearing the niqab she embraced it,
"The niqab appeals to the voyeur in all of us, cosily secreted away behind a veil, but still able to view the world go by."
Along with the opposition on grounds of oppression, there are concerns that this ban could add to anti muslim feeling.
maxneill on twitter says,
#France banning the #Burkha seems an incredibly oppressive piece of legislation. What gives the state the power to tell women what to wear?
Watching TV discussing the #burkha ban. Yes, they should be banned. We don't know who's underneath them! They're intimidating.
If you choose to live in a secular country, or indeed one with a different religion should you adopt their cultures? Or even go one step further and be forced to? We'll be discussing this in our 1100GMT show today.