Should we ban the burqa?

Pauline Hanson wants a plebiscite on banning the burqa, saying it has already been banned or restricted in many countries, including Muslim countries.

The One Nation leader, who caused controversy in August by wearing a burqa into the Senate chamber, has described the burqa as "offensive".

Federal Attorney-General George Brandis labelled her action a stunt.

But a burqa ban has gained support from conservative crossbencher Cory Bernardi who described the garment as a "flag of fundamentalism" and suggested terror threats could be identified by targeting those wearing the garment.

Another crossbencher, Jacqui Lambie, introduced a private bill to parliament this week seeking a ban on full-face coverings in Commonwealth jurisdictions, such as airports as well as the ACT and Northern Territory.

Should the burqa be banned? Or is the wearing of it a democratic right? 

Comments   152 Comments

Maggie H: I'm curious, but why do you sometimes post as 'Maggie H' and the rest of the time post as 'Anonymous JM'? On 1/9, on the topic of energy prices, you posted as the same person. A very strange game to play on us poor old seniors! Are you trying to pretend you don't submit as many postings as some others, or what....? Very strange!

Pauline Hanson represents her electorate. Maybe this is what Queenslanders think & feel about this issue.

Weg laments that we are pre-occupied with whether Muslim women should be allowed to wear the burqa. He says we should be discussing genital mutilation, forced under-age marriages etc.

There is a simple answer to that Weg. The question posed for this week by NSA was "Should the burqa be banned? Or is the wearing of it a democratic right?" Correspondents have been posting to both sides of the debate, as is the norm for discussion forums.

I note that you haven't brought up these subjects until now. You have been busy in previous weeks, and this weeks topics with no mention of them at all. While we have been busy giving our answers to the question, you have been taking pot shots at particular correspondents. Now you are critical of others for failing to bring up topics that you have not mentioned before either!

Apart from inanities about buckets and voodoo WEG has not shared his opinions on the topic, but he does like to rip into others.

It’s off topic, but female genital mutilation is a terrible unjustifiable attack on women, girls and even babies. There is no reason for it to happen. But rather than taking another shot at the “mad socialist left”, why not do something constructive WEG, like contacting MPs or even the PM? Your mob has been in charge for over four years now so they would be well placed to actually do something. Don’t blame everyone else when you do nothing.

FGM is a criminal offence across Australia, as it should be. According to the ABC there was a successful prosecution in 2016 and we can only hope there will be more until the practice is stamped out. BG.

Maggie H: You ask: " many burqa-wearing women have been involved in terror anywhere." Well, forgive me but I doubt even the CIA, FBI, Interpol and the combined security forces around the world can give that exact "number"! For starters, you would have to give them a time frame, define what you mean by "terror act", say whether you want that search confined only to burqa-wearing women, or to include the similar face-obscuring garb, the niqab, and then wait god knows how long for them to compile the number. But you expect me to do it! Seriously? Why don't you read my posting of 22/9 re just a few cases, then maybe do some Googling yourself if you are so keen on the topic?

I don't care who brings the better parts of their culture to our nation e.g. cuisine, crafts, dance. However I do not want un-Australian stuff taught here and I do not enjoy Muslims trying to exclude Australians from eating certain types of food at festivals etc. If they don't like what we eat, they can stay home or bring their own food, not attempt to take away other people's choices.

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do. When in Australia, respect the local culture."

Maggie H: Still determined to twist my words? You said: " you have no idea how many Aussies have been killed by Muslims or Aussies themselves, yet you cite it as evidence against burqas." Actually, I said it was easy to understand why many people find the burqa 'confronting' (a common comment). To explain this feeling I said: "Wearing a burqa instantly identifies a woman as a fundamentalist Muslim. Fundamentalist Muslims are responsible for countless numbers of terrorist attacks recently. Therefore to identify yourself as such by your dress is not a way to endear yourself to the community - or to differentiate yourself from the terrorist element. Easy to understand why many non-Muslims around the world find such garb confronting." Please read more carefully.

Bob B, 26 Sep, you and Anon both want to know how many women I interviewed, as if that is some sort of benchmark (actually Anon’s question was directed at you too Bob).

I’ve said before the comment about being humiliated came from one woman. I doubt she would be the only one but that’s my opinion. So Bob, no survey to speak of, but if actions speak louder than words, the actions of women wearing burqas would indicate some support for the garment.

So what do you throw back at me? A chat with a Pakistani soldier over a few beers in a bar 31 years ago. Okay, he’s entitled to his opinion but I don’t see how your man’s opinion is any more valid than the one woman I referred to.

We don’t know why women wear burqas. Some may want to, others may be forced by family or faith, some may wear it for career reasons. What we do know is banning the burqa will force all women out of it, whether they want it or not. That’s oppression and it won’t make me feel any safer. BG

Sorry, I am never going to accept that women wear the burqa by choice. It is an anti-female garment representative of extremist religion and has no place in a western society.

Unlike others who may not have considered the matter fully, I do not support the idea of "live and let live" as I am aware of some of the darker forces at work within the society that will eventually destroy it. Some dangerous groups don't believe in "live and let live". They want their practices taught to our children and encouraged without our consent, and also legalised in the courts.

No one seems to want to float under the radar any more. They just want to scream DISCRIMINATION whenever they cannot get their own way.

WEG, you of all people ask why we are not going outside the box of the specified topic and then suggesting we should have done this with an inference its core to the topic. I did in fact do that but it's not a core issue to the topic as presented for discussion. It's an absolutely important issue to raise for its brutal and abominable aspects way outside our culture and one we should repel. So too the child marriages and blaming and punishing sometimes by brutal stoning to death of women for being raped etc.

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