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Call to ban burqa is hypocritical

LET us not, now or ever, ban something as innocuous as an article of clothing outright because we ignorantly hold such an artefact to be in grotesque violation of freedom and equality.

Martina Devlin (Irish Independent, January 28) asserts so assuredly that a woman in a burqa is not "free", and that headscarves are an authoritarian representation of male dominance that subjugates women.

Her view is simply ignorant, ethnocentric and dangerous.

Unfortunately there are women the world over, with and without headscarves and burqas, who are subjugated and repressed.

To claim that such an expression of religion and culture automatically causes such subjugation and repression is simply narrow minded and wrong.

If Ms Devlin is honest in her claim that she is saddened by extremism, then she should well be crying herself to sleep at night for her own radical calls to ban the burqa.

Dr James C Ryan
university of Sharjah, UAE

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