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Respect or dhimmitude? August 12, 2009

Posted by Beth in Politics.

I struggled over which blog to post this and decided here would be best. AisA Academy started off about homeschooling but has evolved into a blog about about the school-of-life. Also, I’d like to reserve Wealth is Not the Problem for more formal posts on politics and economics. However, since my life includes much political discourse , there is a lot of overlap and every now and then this is the best place to share my thoughts.

What I want to share today is a set of photos from a pair of articles by Daniel Pipes, “Hijabs on Western Political Women,” and “Glamorous Muslim Political Women.”

Pelosi hijab Queen Rania of Jordon

Nancy Pelosi, Speaker                            Queen Rania of Jordon
US House of Representatives

Laura Bush hijab d-i-l of Mubarak

Laura Bush                                    Khadiga el-Gamal -d-in-law of Husni
Former First Lady USA                  Mubarak– Prob. future 1st  Lady Egypt

Hillary hijab

Chelsea and Hillary Clinton, daughter and wife of Pres. Clinton

Sheikha Mawza of Qatar

Sheikha Mawza, wife of Hamd bin Khalifa,  ruler of Qatar

Camilla Bowles w Prince Charles asma Al Assad, wife of Assad of Syria

Camilla Parker Bowles                         Asma Al Assad, wife of Bashar
Prince Charles’ wife                            Al-Assad, ruler of Syria

So the question I ask is—Is donning a hijab, burka or chador a gesture of respect or dhimmitude?

I do think it is important to be civil and respectful of harmless cultural differences, but to dress oneself in the garb of submission goes beyond civility. The hijab, and the religion it symbolizes, is an anathema to individual rights and reason. To wear another’s religious dress  implies a degree of acceptance and agreement which I do not think is required, or even appropriate for leaders of free people.

When I attend an event with religious friends or family and a  prayer is said, I can show respect by remaining quiet, but I feel no need to bow my head.  Respect requires I not interrupt their prayer, but it does not require that I participate. Bowing my head would signify an agreement with the practice of prayer which I do not have.  In addition, no Christian ever asks or expects me to wear a cross.

I think it is an essential matter of pride in our own beliefs not to give more respect than civility demands to symbols of our different beliefs. Our leaders should resolutely represent equality before the law, individual rights, freedom of choice—and the hijab stands for the just opposite.

And as these pictures demonstrate, such gestures are not even necessary.

And just because they are so stunningly beautiful, here are some more pictures of these prominent Muslim women:

PrincessAmira Al-Taweel of Saudi Arabia PRincess Lalla Salma of Morocco

Princess Amira Al-Taweel, wife of Saudi prince Waleed bin Talal and

Princess Consort Lalla Salma, wife of Muhammad VI, king of Morocco


1. Anonymous - October 7, 2009

You should show the pictures of the Muslim Royal women who cover like they are suppose to

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