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Hijab Bullies Unveil Their Aggression
by David J. Rusin • Mar 15, 2010 at 11:04 am
For some Islamists, freedom to wear Muslim attire is not enough; they also demand that others conform to their definition of modesty. IW refers to them as "hijab bullies," though their focus is not necessarily limited to headscarves. Examples highlighted previously on this blog include a British dentist requiring patients to cover their hair and a teacher in Norway manipulating first graders into donning hijabs. However, these tactics are tame compared to recent revelations.
Consider the experiences of Shiria Khatun, a secular Muslim who serves as a Labour Party councilor in Tower Hamlets, a borough of London and an Islamist stronghold. Police are investigating claims of harassment by locals objecting to her style of dress. She explains:
Moroccan-born Fatima Ghailan, who works for the government of Cunit, Spain, has had her own run-ins with hijab bullies. Local imam Mohamed Benbrahim and Islamic Association head Abderraman el-Osri now face criminal charges of harassing, slandering, and threatening Ghailan, whose duties as a "cultural mediator" include encouraging "cloistered" Muslim females to participate in the life of the town. As the Washington Post reports, her influence over the community "was something the traditionalists could not accept — particularly because it involved a woman who refused to cover her hair." The Telegraph elaborates:
Finally, self-appointed "morality police" have been patrolling the Muslim-heavy Grønland district of Oslo. According to Aftenposten, women passing through in Western attire can consider themselves lucky if they suffer only "aggressive looks of rebuke, scorn, and contempt." The unlucky ones are abused by men who "touch their breasts and pinch their bottom, claiming that it's the girls' own fault for not covering themselves." The vigilantes also have taken to tormenting gays and anybody caught snacking on the streets during Ramadan.
Grønland illuminates a vital truth: Islamists may start out as hijab bullies, seeking to enforce dress codes among Muslims. But they do not stop with dress codes — or with Muslims.