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A Burqa at the Beach
by Deborah C. Tyler
Not too long ago, I spent a few days at an oceanfront resort hotel. While I was there, an Islamic group of about a hundred people checked in for a few days.
My stay at the beach provided an unforeseen opportunity to observe their psychosocial process. I got to watch a group of jeans-clad teenagers plot to escape their parents. I watched a father grab and swat his son, who was running up and down a broad, carpeted staircase (good luck keeping that one down on the farm).
One evening, a woman in a full black burqa walked into the lobby. At first, I felt a shiver of horror in reaction to her macabre attire. This was followed by a sense of pity that she is forced to dress in such a manner, her skin deprived of the evening breeze, her eyes directed away from the moon over the ocean. But as I sat there watching this apparently young woman for about half an hour, questions came to my mind.
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