How Islamophobia Is Worsening in France; The Hijab Ban

Angela Cene, Student Writer

Why is the Hijab important? The hijab is a head covering worn by Muslim women, the hijab maintains and represents modesty and privacy from unrelated males. The hijab is expected to be worn once a female has hit puberty, but many wear it once they feel ready and comfortable. This is represented in the Quran which is followed by Muslims all over the world. Wearing the hijab is very important for Muslim women, it becomes a part of who they are and their religious journey. Recently the French parliament has created laws that ban those under 18 from wearing the hijab. 

Islamophobia is becoming worse in France, the French parliament does not want females under 18 to wear the hijab. Veils have been banned since 2004 in public schools. They also plan to make laws that ban Muslim mothers from going on their children’s school trips while wearing a hijab. The French see the hijab as a threat and something that goes against their republic and what they stand for. 

The French think they are “freeing” women from Islam by making these laws although it is their choice. Since the pandemic, the citizens of France must wear face coverings because of covid-19, but those who wear the niqab which covers the same area of the face will be fined. The niqab is clothing worn which covers a woman’s face except for the eyes.

A Stanford study showed that the 2004 veil ban had an impact on Muslim girls and their ability to complete school, they were most likely to fail or repeat a class. This ban led to an increase in discrimination and the number of Muslim girls affected was higher than the number of girls who wore veils before the ban was even put in place. When the ban on the veil was put in place Muslim girls were expected to attend school with no veil. If they did not do so they had to discuss what would happen next. If the student did not agree with the rules set their options were to leave the education system, switch to private school, or leave the country. 

In France, the age of sexual consent is 15, but to be able to wear a religious garment is 18. A teenager can consent to sex before she can wear a hijab. French politician and senator, Bruno Retaileu believes that the hijab and veil are “sexist” and oppressive for women. As so many Muslims live or travel to France, this goes against their religion taking away their religious rights away

Although the French deny the accusations of being Islamophobic they continue to go against their Muslim citizens, taking away their rights and making it hard for them to practice their religion.