Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam.
The media has found its latest civil rights cause. It’s not the plight of Christians in Muslim countries who are being blocked from coming here as refugees because Obama’s refugee policy favors Muslims. Obama brought over 2,000 Syrians here in July. Only 15 of them were Christians.
It’s not the rising fear of an Islamic terrorist attack in Jewish synagogues. I have lately witnessed unprecedented levels of security at synagogues including guards in body armor and checkpoints. Racist Muslim violence against Jewish synagogues has been a staple of Islamic terrorism for too many years.
But instead the media has highlighted the civil rights cause of the burkini.
The “Burkini”, a portmanteau of “Burka”, the all-encompassing cloth prison inflicted on women in Afghanistan by the Taliban, and “Bikini”, was banned in France along with its parent, the Burka.
While Muslims massacre innocent people in the streets to shouts of “Allahu Akbar”, the media has once again decided to ignore these horrors in favors of broadcasting some petty Muslim grievance.
Does it matter what Muslim women wear to the beach? Arguably the government should not be getting involved in swimwear. But the clothing of Muslim women is not a personal fashion choice.
Muslim women don’t wear hijabs, burkas or any other similar garb as a fashion statement or even an expression of religious piety. Their own religion tells us exactly why they wear them.
“O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies that they may thus be distinguished and not molested.” (Koran 33:59)
It’s not about modesty. It’s not about religion. It’s about putting a “Do Not Rape” sign on Muslim women. And putting a “Free to Molest” sign on non-Muslim women.
This isn’t some paranoid misreading of Islamic scripture. Islamic commentaries use synonyms for “molested” such as “harmed”, “assaulted” and “attacked” because women who aren’t wearing their burkas aren’t “decent” women and can expect to be assaulted by Muslim men. These clothes designate Muslim women as “believing” women or “women of the believers”. That is to say Muslims.
One Koranic commentary is quite explicit. “It is more likely that this way they may be recognized (as pious, free women), and may not be hurt (considered by mistake as roving slave girls.)” The Yazidi girls captured and raped by ISIS are an example of “roving slave girls” who can be assaulted by Muslim men.
Muslim women who don’t want to be mistaken for non-Muslim slave girls had better cover up. And non-Muslim women had better cover up too or they’ll be treated the way ISIS treated Yazidi women and the way that Mohammed and his gang of rapists and bandits treated any woman they came across.
That’s what the burka is. That’s what the hijab is. And that’s what the burkini is.
And this is not just some relic of the past or a horror practiced by Islamic “extremists”. It’s ubiquitous. A French survey found that 77 percent of girls wore the hijab because of threats of Islamist violence. It’s numbers like these that have led to the French ban of the burka and now of the burkini.
When clothing becomes a license to encourage harassment, then it’s no longer a private choice.