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Should Boris apologise for writing this?

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Should Boris apologise for writing this?

Old 7th Aug 2018, 18:42
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Should Boris apologise for writing this?

From the Daily Telegraph:

Denmark has got it wrong. Yes, the burka is oppressive and ridiculous – but that's still no reason to ban it

BORIS JOHNSON

Women wearing niqab and headscarves take part in a demonstration on August 1, 2018, the first day of the implementation of the Danish face veil ban, in Copenhagen, Denmark
Women in Copenhagen demonstrate against the Danish veil ban CREDIT: MADS CLAUS RASMUSSEN/AFP

Ah Denmark, what a country. If any society breathes the spirit of liberty, this is it.

It was only a few weeks ago that I was in Copenhagen for some international conference, and as ever I rose early and went for a run. As I passed through some yuppie zone of warehouse conversions and posh restaurants I saw to my amazement that the Danes had also got up early for exercise – and they were diving stark naked into the bracing waters of the harbour. And I thought to myself – that’s the Danes for you; that’s the spirit of Viking individualism. I mean, we have a climate warmer than Denmark; but even so, would you expect to see Brits disrobing and plunging into the waters of Canary Wharf, or even Greenwich? We are pretty easy-going, but not that easy-going.

If you wanted to visit a country that seemed on the face of it to embody the principles of JS Mill - that you should be able to do what you want provided you do no harm to others – I would advise you to head for wonderful, wonderful Copenhagen
Denmark is the only country in Europe, as far as I know, that still devotes a large proportion of its capital city to an anarchist commune, called Christiania, where I remember spending a happy afternoon 25 years ago inhaling the sweet air of freedom. It is the Danes who still hold out against all sorts of EU tyrannies, large and small.

They still chew their lethal carcinogenic tobacco; they still eat their red-dyed frankfurters; they still use the krone rather than the euro; they still refuse to let foreigners buy holiday homes in Jutland; and of course it was the heroic population of Denmark that on that magnificent day in June 1992 stuck two fingers up to the elites of Europe and voted down the Maastricht treaty – and though that revolt was eventually crushed by the European establishment (as indeed, note, they will try to crush all such revolts), that great nej to Maastricht expressed something about the Danish spirit: a genial and happy cussedness and independence.




It is a spirit you see everywhere on the streets of Copenhagen in the veneration for that supreme embodiment of vehicular autonomy, the bicycle. The Danes don’t cycle with their heads down, grimly, in Lycra, swearing at people who get in their way. They wander and weave helmetless down the beautiful boulevards on clapped-out granny bikes, with a culture of cycling in which everyone is treated with courtesy and respect. Yes, if you wanted to visit a country that seemed on the face of it to embody the principles of JS Mill - that you should be able to do what you want provided you do no harm to others – I would advise you to head for wonderful, wonderful Copenhagen.

If you tell me that the burqa is oppressive, then I am with you. If you say that it is weird and bullying to expect women to cover their faces, then I totally agree
So I was a bit surprised to see that on August 1 the Danes joined several other European countries – France, Germany, Austria, Belgium – in imposing a ban on the niqab and the burka – those items of Muslim head-gear that obscure the female face. Already a fine of 1000 kroner – about £120 – has been imposed on a 28-year-old woman seen wearing a niqab in a shopping centre in the north eastern town of Horsholm. A scuffle broke out as someone tried to rip it off her head. There have been demonstrations, on both sides of the argument. What has happened, you may ask, to the Danish spirit of live and let live?


If you tell me that the burka is oppressive, then I am with you. If you say that it is weird and bullying to expect women to cover their faces, then I totally agree – and I would add that I can find no scriptural authority for the practice in the Koran. I would go further and say that it is absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter boxes; and I thoroughly dislike any attempt by any – invariably male – government to encourage such demonstrations of “modesty”, notably the extraordinary exhortations of President Ramzan Kadyrov of Chechnya, who has told the men of his country to splat their women with paintballs if they fail to cover their heads.

I am against a total ban because it is inevitably construed – rightly or wrongly – as being intended to make some point about Islam
If a constituent came to my MP’s surgery with her face obscured, I should feel fully entitled – like Jack Straw – to ask her to remove it so that I could talk to her properly. If a female student turned up at school or at a university lecture looking like a bank robber then ditto: those in authority should be allowed to converse openly with those that they are being asked to instruct. As for individual businesses or branches of government – they should of course be able to enforce a dress code that enables their employees to interact with customers; and that means human beings must be able to see each other’s faces and read their expressions. It’s how we work.

All that seems to me to be sensible. But such restrictions are not quite the same as telling a free-born adult woman what she may or may not wear, in a public place, when she is simply minding her own business.


I am against a total ban because it is inevitably construed – rightly or wrongly – as being intended to make some point about Islam. If you go for a total ban, you play into the hands of those who want to politicise and dramatise the so-called clash of civilisations; and you fan the flames of grievance. You risk turning people into martyrs, and you risk a general crackdown on any public symbols of religious affiliation, and you may simply make the problem worse. Like a parent confronted by a rebellious teenager determined to wear a spike through her tongue, or a bolt through her nose, you run the risk that by your heavy-handed attempt to ban what you see as a bizarre and unattractive adornment you simply stiffen resistance.

The burka and the niqab were certainly not always part of Islam. In Britain today there is only a tiny, tiny minority of women who wear these odd bits of headgear. One day, I am sure, they will go.

The Danes swim starkers in the heart of Copenhagen. If The Killing is to be believed, their female detectives wear Faroe sweaters on duty, as is their sovereign right. If Danish women really want to cover their faces, then it seems a bit extreme – all the caveats above understood – to stop them under all circumstances. I don’t propose we follow suit. A total ban is not the answer.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 18:44
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Boris is just on a pre leadership bid Public Relations tour... this is nothing more than have it both ways mealy-mouthism and it does rather stink of opportunism.

It is a spirit you see everywhere on the streets of Copenhagen in the veneration for that supreme embodiment of vehicular autonomy, the bicycle.
He can't help but spout out a warm-up piece of literary shite.
If a constituent came to my MP’s surgery with her face obscured, I should feel fully entitled – like Jack Straw – to ask her to remove it so that I could talk to her properly.
Yes, Boris but what would her reply be? Most likely F--- off (or equivalent), and if she deems it an insult you have given her (highly likely) I'd watch your back.

In Britain today there is only a tiny, tiny minority of women who wear these odd bits of headgear.
Not according to those I've spoken to, but Boris speaks about Central London (or as is his modus operandi, just makes it up) of course...
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:03
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He’s paid to fill column inches, and nothing he has written is in any way offensive.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:03
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In Saudi, even non Muslim women are expected to cover completely in public places - that’s their culture, and whilst there, visitors should respect that.

In the U.K., it is NOT part our culture to expect women to cover completely so, out of respect to to our sensitivies it should not be allowed.

When in Rome.

So, no, Boris should NOT apologise.

Having said that, like the other posts above have said, his statement (as always with him) is more about sensationalism than useful content.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:19
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So when in Rome you must convert to Roman Catholicism, because that's their culture - everything else should be "not allowed"??

There's a world of difference between "not compulsory" and "not allowed". Until you can grasp that you will never understand why Boris is a self-aggrandising prick. Remember that he's been sacked many times from disparate jobs for telling lies. He's a piece of slime, and his comeuppance is due.

PDR
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:24
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Originally Posted by PDR1 View Post
He's a piece of slime, and his comeuppance is due.

PDR
But in this respect the view he has expressed is IMO absolutely correct.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:39
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I always seem to wonder what they are ashamed of.
Isn't there a Health&Safety issue in the middle of a blazing hot summer? Like locking a child inside a car in a parking lot somewhere.
Kindof like Boris, all things considered.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 19:49
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Originally Posted by PDR1 View Post
So when in Rome you must convert to Roman Catholicism, because that's their culture - everything else should be "not allowed"??

There's a world of difference between "not compulsory" and "not allowed". Until you can grasp that you will never understand why Boris is a self-aggrandising prick. Remember that he's been sacked many times from disparate jobs for telling lies. He's a piece of slime, and his comeuppance is due.

PDR
We get it. You think Boris has no right to exist or at least should go back under the rock he came from.

But, any chance you could let us know what you found reprehensible about the content of the article other than that it was written by a piece of (Tory) slime.

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Old 7th Aug 2018, 20:31
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No, he should NOT apologise for writing that.

What in it could he possibly have to apologise for?
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 20:34
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No of course Boris shouldn't apologise. What for? These women may look like bank robbers or letter boxes to others. I think they look like a load Penguins. Not there fault entirely, as I suspect they have been told by the men what to wear. Here's where the double standards kick in. Most muslim men can wear what they like,and they don't expose too much skin. Perish the thought should they do so.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 20:57
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It's a shame that "sexism" is not as powerful a word as "racism", because they are cut from the same cloth.

The burka et al exist because at the core is the belief that women are less than men, not for any manufactured cultural tradition, stance or religious commandment.
That they are chattel, property, not as smart as, not as strong as, inferior and a lesser human being is the baseline for all sorts of discrimination.
Substitute the word "racism" in this argument and all these cloaking devices would not be tolerated for an instant.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 21:15
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For any who have bothered to read Boris's article, it is fundamentally a case for a liberal society not banning this form of garb as doing so would play into the hands of those who want to politicise the matter. I see that as laudable for a politician in a liberal society.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 21:20
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I find the concept of a burka to be offensive.


I do not understand how anyone could find these rather benign comments about this offensive form of garb to be 'offensive', unless they are attempting to politicise the situation by 'becoming offended'. Especially when the author is supporting their right to wear that garb.

meadowrun's comments are extremely pertinent. When there is so much about equality for women at the moment, how on earth could any liberal-minded person find any way of supporting the burka or finding the author of this article's comments 'offensive'?

Last edited by Trossie; 7th Aug 2018 at 21:48. Reason: Last two paragraphs added.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 21:27
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He expressed an opinion.
There was no obvious intention to offend anyone within that opinion, as expressed.

So what was your question again? And why are you asking?
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 21:37
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Originally Posted by WingNut60 View Post
There was no obvious intention to offend anyone within that opinion, as expressed.
Its Boris, a cold calculating piece of slime whose goal is Leader of Tory party and PM.

He was never in favour of Brexit but figured in favour of it and a small Yes vote would get rid of Call Me Dave
and Boris would be feted as a Hero and become PM.
It spectacularly failed,

Now it is to grab the right wing vote but one only has to see his mouthings on Russia and see a man
unfit for any office above Dog Catcher.

Boris believes he is cleverer than he is................ that alone is scary.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 21:50
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Don't let your bigotry show!!
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 22:05
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The burka et al exist because at the core is the belief that women are less than men, not for any manufactured cultural tradition, stance or religious commandment.
That they are chattel, property, not as smart as, not as strong as, inferior and a lesser human being is the baseline for all sorts of discrimination.
Substitute the word "racism" in this argument and all these cloaking devices would not be tolerated for an instant.
I genuinely, never, ever can never understand how a paedophiliac, misogynistic, homophobic, limb-cutting and downright plain flesh-crawling religion is utterly embraced by the left-wing media... when that religion stands for everything they detest.

Banning the Burka should just be the start.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 22:34
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Originally Posted by meadowrun View Post
It's a shame that "sexism" is not as powerful a word as "racism", because they are cut from the same cloth.

The burka et al exist because at the core is the belief that women are less than men, not for any manufactured cultural tradition, stance or religious commandment.
That they are chattel, property, not as smart as, not as strong as, inferior and a lesser human being is the baseline for all sorts of discrimination.
Substitute the word "racism" in this argument and all these cloaking devices would not be tolerated for an instant.
So, really there needs to be a #Metoo for Muslim women? Like it.


Incidentally, the burka is an insult to men too. Kind of suggests that we are all so incapable of handling our desires that we could become overcome with lust at the sight of an unveiled woman.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 22:45
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all so incapable of handling our desires that we could become overcome with lust at the sight of an unveiled woman.
Another clue in why that style of dress was created and evolved long before any other culture was involved.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 22:48
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Fleeting escapades, of necessity only when ever absolutely so, through the food alleys of Tescos and Morrisons have well illustrated the fact that the wearing of the burka should be made compulsory for most indigenous women, the gracefully symmetrical lines of a pillar box, enhanced by black shading, being infinitely preferable to the obese objects so often to be found draped over their trolleys gawking over the pizza freezers whilst attempting to subdue the rodent desires of their poor children with monosyllabically guttural grunts.
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