Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Poking holes in a Paper Bag

It's not a dog whistle, it's an air horn, calling to the worst instincts we have.

Boy, I really hope this niqab thing is not going to be what makes or breaks this election, because if it is, I might have to start wearing a face covering of my own, out of sheer embarrassment for our country, like Leafs fans in the stands did late last year.

In Canada, you and I are guaranteed the right to believe any damn fool thing we want about our religion.

Head coverings, homeschooling, the golden rule, vaccinations: it's not up to me to decide what you believe about your religion, even if I'm not comfortable with it.

Our judges have said so, not once, not twice, three times now, and I'm hoping the Supreme Court of Canada will not even deign to hear this stupid argument about citizenship ceremonies - everyone identifies themselves beforehand-- there's no concern about identity at these things.

There are plenty of reasons to choose or dismiss any and all of the parties on offer in this election, but please, please don't let the niqab have anything to do with it. And don't be fooled by any politician who says they're concerned the face covering is against women; if they're so concerned about women, they might have done something to find out where thousands of female Canadian citizens have disappeared to, snatched from the streets while various parties were in power all these years.

Banning some offensive religious practices may seem sensible when it comes to the niqab, because the niqab is odious and awful. But this is the thin edge of an ugly wedge. Are the curls and hats of Orthodox Jews next to be banned? Maybe Catholics' trans-substantiated communion wafers make them cannibals?

Be careful what you wish for because it might be your faith that falls out of favour next time.

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