Friday, November 14, 2014

Veiled Woman Kicked Out Of Paris Opera After Cast Refuses To Perform

Full face coverings, like the burqa and niqab, have been banned by France in public places since 2011, and there is a fine for violating said ban. When it first passed, there was the usual outcry from conservative Muslims and liberals, saying these women should have the right to wear niqabs if they choose, but the ban prevailed.  We really haven't heard much regarding the issue until now.

Apparently, some cast members of the Paris Bastille Opera spotted a woman in full niqab regalia during a performance of La Traviata, and refused to continue performing.

'A singer spotted her in the front row during the second act,' said Jean-Philippe Thiellay, director of the Bastille Opera, which was opened by Socialist president Francois Mitterand in 1989.
'Some performers said they didn't want to sing."

The woman is thought to hail from one of the Gulf States, and was there with a friend. She was informed about the ban by a security guard, asked to remove the veil, and when she refused, she was kicked out. According to Thiellay, "It was unpleasant getting her to leave."

Naturally, the liberal arts community has condemned the decision.

'What possible harm could a woman sitting quietly in the audience with face covered do to anyone?' said Guy Laurent, a regular at the Bastille Opera.
'The woman would clearly have felt utterly humiliated by what happened – French culture should be more tolerant.
'It is not the job of theatres to enforce petty laws.'

The women did not receive a refund.

As a result of this latest brouhaha, the government plans on revisiting the law:

A spokesman for France's Ministry of Culture today said it was 'producing a new set of rules' to make sure the so-called 'burka ban' was better enforced in theatres, museums and other public institutions.
If Westerners are expected to adhere to the dress code in Muslim majority countries, then Muslims should do the same in western nations. The woman was sitting in a dark theatre, no-one would have seen her. Good on them for tossing her out.

More on the DailyMail.

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