Burkinis cont’d

What has been transpiring in France has given echo here as well. Some are pro and some are con. Sweden has an issue with clothing and public baths, too. In our case, since our beaches aren’t quite as golden and warm for as long as the ones in France, it’s about our municipal public bath houses. You know the ones with indoor pools, gyms, SPAs, saunas and Jacuzzis.

The “Muslim” and/or Islamist issue is constantly lurking behind it all.

While some municipalities in France has decided to ban the burkini, we have, in some cases, introduced separate times for women only times at the public bath.

Those in favour of gender separation feels that it’s better to have this separation so that, not only, Muslim women can meet and relax together and also, even better, learn how to swim. Also the increasing number of instances of sexual harassment makes even Swedish women want to get rid of men (read: unaccompanied “minors” mostly, but not all, from Afghanistan)!

Those who are against the separation feels that, hey, in olden days we had separation, too. And not even one hundred years ago, women bathing wore suits not far from today’s burkinis albeit they may have showed more leg than burkinis allow. And men used to wear bathing suits as well. But, hey! We did away with those mores of elder days! We developed! For better or for worse.

bathing-suit-baddrc3a4kt-women-in-bathing-suits-on-collaroy-beach-1908-photographed-by-colin-caird-credit-library-of-new-south-wales-via-flickr-commons mens-bathsuit-early-1900s1

I can’t really argue against those who are in favour. The problem is that there are still women, and men, out there who are literally slaves under the yoke of ancient tradition – religious or not. Don’t forget that that’s easy for me to say. I live in one of the most secularized countries in the world and have no understanding at all!

I can’t really argue against those against, either. Again, we’re secular and these people come from societies where you’ll get ostracized, at least, for not being conformant. More likely is you’d be run out of town if you managed to live long enough.

Let’s make this clear once again. It’s not the burkini as such that I mind! It’s the mindset that enables its creation and usage I abhor.

And to be honest, with no such mindset, or none having it being here, this wouldn’t be an issue at all, would it now?


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