French Policy on Religious Intolerance
Perhaps some of our current political leaders can learn a thing or two from French President Jacques Chirac about how to handle the crisis in the Middle East.
However, Mr. Chirac, along with his cabinet, could definitely use a crash course in the teachings of our founding fathers about the separation between church and state.
Jewish skullcaps, oversized Christian crosses and Islamic headscarves are what Chirac deems too ‘ostentatious’ for public schools and is proposing to ban them from being worn in public altogether.
So what’s his excuse for such a bill that would curtail religious freedom for Muslims, Jews and even Christians?
Though Chirac believes it will uphold ‘secularity, social harmony and national cohesion,’ what he fails to realize is what will amount to outright religious discrimination.
Chirac is promoting his own ideals and beliefs in the public arena, which fail to demonstrate brotherhood among France’s multireligious society.
Muslims, who make up eight percent of France’s population, the largest concentration in Western Europe, are now in the process of rallying, demonstrating and doing everything possible to curb this censorship of religion.
Of course Chirac must have something diplomatic to say for himself and the rest of France, right?
‘France must remain a multicultural society.’
What a perfect way to promote that brotherhood among your people. Tell them to tolerate, rather than accept, a growing religious diversity in your country. It’s flawless.
Rather than asking the religious population of France to reevaluate their own values and learn from their Muslim brothers and sisters, he’s shielding the eyes of his people to prevent growth, learning and tolerance.
We can argue about whether or not Chirac was right when France publically denounced the U.S. for entering into war with Iraq. Many of us asked then