France’s lower house of parliament recently approved a bill to ban the wearing the burqa in public. I’ve posted a bit flippantly about this before, but in fact it’s an issue about which I’m genuinely deeply conflicted. I loathe the burqa with every atom of my being, the more so because I live in Turkey and can see exactly what the garment means, every day–not only for the women who wear it (very few, here), but for the women who don’t. They, too–or perhaps I should say, “we, too,” since I live here as well–are gravely affected the culture that gave rise to the notion that this garment is a terrific thing. But I just can’t be insensible to the religious freedom arguments. Martha Nussbaum recently made what I think is the best case that can be made against the ban. She responds to her critics here.
Do you find her arguments persuasive? If not, why not?