THE FOLLOWING is excerpted from an article entitled, Why France is Leading the Way in the Battle for Women's Freedom:
The French lower house of parliament approved the ban on face veils. Even the French communists caved in to feminist pressure and did not oppose this ban.
The Koran does not mandate having to cover one’s face. This is not a religious requirement. It is, rather, a hostile rejection of Western values, a refusal to integrate, a sign of political Islam, and possibly of jihad. It is also the foremost distinguishing feature of Islamic gender and religious apartheid in the West.
Some Western feminists have opposed such a ban. Most recently, in The New York Times, philosopher Martha Nussbaum claims that to do so would be hypocritical since we are the culture of bikinis, cosmetic plastic surgery, and dangerously high heels. I disagree.
Western families and Western countries do not force women to wear bikinis or to have plastic surgery, and if women refuse to do so, they are not acid-attacked or honor-murdered.
Loose clothing, which Nussbaum prizes, is not the same as cloistering, ill-fitting clothing which renders a woman socially invisible.
Quite apart from security or even human rights concerns, which I share, additionally, in my opinion, covering one’s head and face creates a serious health risk. Wearing a chaudry or burqa condemns a woman to a sensory deprivation chamber—something that is ordinarily considered a form of torture. A woman who can never feel sunlight condemns her to all the Vitamin D deficiencies, to low self-esteem, and to serious depression. How can a doctor examine such a woman?
How can a professor, a police officer, a judge or jury evaluate the credibility of a faceless being?
The article was written by Phyllis Chesler, Ph.D. a frequent contributor to Fox News who blogs regularly at Pajamas Media and NewsReal Blog. She is the author of thirteen books, including "Woman’s Inhumanity to Woman" and "The New Anti-Semitism," and may be reached at her website www.phyllis-chesler.com.