Thank you for this article Rashmee. However, if I may comment, I do not agree with you.
From a French point of view, I have absolutely no worry knowing that a person may be muslim, and I have never been thinking than there is any connection between being muslim and being a threat, terrorist or whatever.
However, I do not see this fashion as appropriate in my country. I see it as a near east fashion style, not as a mark of religious belief. I see some difference between my country and the region where this type of clothes is inspired from. As I am sad seeing the Champs Elysees hijacked by Gap, Disney, Zara… that have little to do with what tourists (and nationals!) look for in visiting Paris, Burka Burkinis and other strongly flagrant get-ups are to my opinion not appropriate in France. The France that I love is the one I remember from 10, 20, 30 years ago, where everyone lived in peace and respect. There were not more or less muslims, not more or less arabics. There was certainly less expressions of world’s globalization, and more authenticity.
You can say that this is a “my country, my values” thing and I agree with you to some extent: My country is different of other countries, and I like it like that. And vice versa another country could pride itself of being very different of mine, I see no issue with that, because different doesn’t mean better; different means different.
I am very happy that France was able to integrate and assimilate people from very various origins. This has worked for a very long time. The problem the opinion feels now is that the a fringe of the new generation, unlike its parents, wants to run backwards the way of integration… This is this reaction that is very negatively perceived by the majority — not an issue of Religion, not an issue of racism… just a model of integration falling apart, with the perception of one minority trying to impose its codes (allegedly named laws) to the others.
Some feels that this situation (of trying to ban a clothing) is absurd in a country so-called country of human rights. My perception is that France has the right to try setting up or preserving its model of society, even if it differs from another country’s one — in a manner that respects the rights of everyone, according to the laws of the republic, laws that supersedes any other rules or beliefs.
All apologies for the length of this comment. I just felt the necessity to explain my way why things are not black or white, although from each of the two camps the judgments are very unequivocal.