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    I was seriously impressed by the item on France's proposals in yesterdays Times. They covered the question from all points of view without any apparent bias.
    Large crucifixes, Jewish skull caps and hajibs may be banned but the wearing of small crucifixes, star of David and carrying of a small copy of the Koran will not be. This part I don't understand - is it because they would be too obvious if larger - and if so what's the difference?
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    (Original post by Dickie)
    So, you'd disagree, i presume, if a teacher went into school one day waering a Nazi armband. Surely this is the same as wearing a headscarf or any other highly visible religious symbol to school, in the sense that both openly convey that particular teacher's beliefs (not in the sense of what the nazis stood for - im not saying all ppl who wear headscarves are terrorists!).
    I think that the law is justifyable. I think kids should be tought what different religions teach, so that should they turn to religion, they can decide for themselves which one to turn to, instead of having one religion drilled into them from youth. I think the ban in Germany stops this, although it is a bit too narrow.
    Please tell me you can tell the difference between Nazism and religious symbols. Please.
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    Q. Would you mind your child being taught by a gay teacher
    A. No of course not

    Q Would you mind your child being taught by a teacher dressed in pink with the words "Gay and Proud" written across his chest?
    A?
    Probably yes...

    John
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    (Original post by lala)
    Please tell me you can tell the difference between Nazism and religious symbols.
    Nazism is a doctrine and religious symbols represent a doctrine. In fact if you can ostenstatiously display the symbol of your religiojn you should be able to do the same with your political allegiance.
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    (Original post by lala)
    Please tell me you can tell the difference between Nazism and religious symbols.
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    Thanks mouse, its nice to know that you collect Nazi symbolism
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    (Original post by JSM)
    Thanks mouse, its nice to know that you collect Nazi symbolism
    In fact I have a whole database http://www.adl.org/hate_symbols/default.asp
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    (Original post by Tek)
    In fact I have a whole database http://www.adl.org/hate_symbols/default.asp
    yeah thats true all old rudyard kipling books are decorated with the swastika bvefore it came to have any nazi overtones, go on MSN.
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    If the rules in France were to be introduced in the United Kingdom, do you think the public would allow it?
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    (Original post by physicsboy)
    If the rules in France were to be introduced in the United Kingdom, do you think the public would allow it?
    yes-the public is almost useless
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    I think you've got a very valid point when you say that there would be trouble differentiating fashion items from religious symbols.

    The only solution within the logic of my previous reply would be to force everyone to wear uniforms. But that would suppress all diversity and would be against the spirit of the republic. Besides what uniform would you impose in a state school if it has to be void of all symbolism?

    So, I think I was wrong to say that all religous symbols should be banned. Instead, they should be regarded as normal items of clothing. Everyone should be entitled to wear whatever they feel like. However, if for practical reasons you are required to remove those items, you have to do so, because they are considered no different from normal items. So a Muslim girl who wants to wear a headscarf during lessons is free to do so, but in PE she has to remove it.

    That's the only way to ensure secularism in schools.
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    (Original post by lala)
    Please tell me you can tell the difference between Nazism and religious symbols.
    yes, I can. I was simply using the nazi armband as an example of how someone might display their opinions/beliefs, much like a piece of religious clothing.
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    (Original post by zizero)
    ...
    That's the only way to ensure secularism in schools.
    Secularism affirms that religion is a private matter, so your theory wouldn't work as it goes against the principles of secularism.
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    (Original post by Tek)
    Secularism affirms that religion is a private matter, so your theory wouldn't work as it goes against the principles of secularism.
    I think it actually does work. Religion being a private matter, the state should not make their actions dependent on religions. So, by "ignoring" the religious symbolism of a cross or headscarf, you treat it as any other item of clothing. I think that is within the spirit of secularism.
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    (Original post by zizero)
    You've got to consider that on the continent most schools are state-schools. Since the state has a near-monopoly on schools, everything that is allowed or not allowed in schools has to be carefully considered, as most people have no alternative to state-schools.

    Two years ago I went to an English independent school. I didn't mind having to go to chapel every week despite being an agnostic, as going to chapel was "part of the deal" of going to that school. Had I refused to go to chapel, I could have just gone to another non-denominational school.

    Now, I go to a continental state school. If I was forced to go to chapel over here, I would mind, because I would have no choice. You can't just turn your back on a continental state school, as there are few alternatives.

    Therefore, it is understandable, that especially a secular country like France, does mind religious symbols in its schools. The French think that religion ought to remain strictly private and therefore has no place in public schools.

    Up till now most symbols have been tolerated nevertheless, as frankly speaking, no-one cares whether you have e.g. a Christian cross around your neck when you go to school or not.

    But the headscarf does raise some fundamental questions about these symbols. Indeed, the headscarf is in a way different from most Christian or Jewish symbols: It does imply practical problems. Can a girl be forced to remove her headscarve for PE, can she be forced to participate in a swimming class, if she refuses to disclose her body. In addition, one has to admit that headscarves are more eye-catching than most other symbols.

    You can't just allow girls not to participate to a swimming-class on grounds of their beliefs, as that would imply different treatment of people according to their religion. That is intolerable in public schools as it goes against the founding principles of the Republic (in France's case).

    On the other hand, forcing these girls to participate in swimming-class goes against their right to religious freedom. As the state has a virtual monopoly on schools, most girls in that position would have to compromise on their religious practices.

    The problem is that the principles of a secular state are in conflict with most major religions.

    In secular state, religion has no place in the public domain, yet most religions require their followers to display their faith or even to spread their beliefs. So there is and always has been a grave conflict between religious freedom and the secularity of the state.

    The fact that the number of Muslims in secular countries like France has strongly risen in recent years has not created this conflict, but it has amplified it, because certain branches of Islam require their followers to be particularly uncompromising on the presence of religion in the public domain.

    A conflict that has always existed and should have been addressed ages ago is now threatening to seriously hinder integration and make our societies fall apart. It must be solved as quickly as possible.

    My view is that in a modern society, the constitution should have primacy over religion. Therefore, if society as in France's case decides to be secular, religion has to yield to secularism in every aspect of public life, including schools. All religious symbols should hence be excluded from state schools. Allowing certain symbols and excluding others would be discriminatory and allowing all symbols is not viable, as I have shown above.


    I wonder how these problems are addressed in UK state schools, where the state is not secular (the Queen being the head of the Anglican Church) and where it does not at all have a monopoly on schools. Any comment is welcome!
    thats a fair comment. but when the Republic itself states that citizens be allowed to express religious beliefs openly it begins to contradict itself.although i agree that Religion should always be governed by Law.

    1) one of the problems is that the constitution expresses that all citizens be subject to the same rights irrespective of religion. it doesnt say that religion should be removed from the state.
    2) that a law needs to be specific as to where and in what circumstances the state considers the term 'public' to be viable. more laws will need to be passed to cover more and more specific areas.
    3) if all religions are to be treated equally, why not introduce public holidays for Jewish and Muslim festivities, as suggested by the Stasi report, but criticised by everyone but the communists.
    4) A law such as the one recommended by the Stasi report would lead to a growth in Muslim faith schools in the private sector. This would be a very unsatisfactory outcome.

    my own opinions coalign with those of Bruno Gollnisch who believes, that no law is required since the existing terms state that 'no child should be wearing headwear in school on the basis of respect for the class and the teacher aswell as hygenie', and that 'France is a Christian inspiration', with its own 'symbols, culture and practices, religious and non-religious. Those arriving in France should conform to them and not the inverse'.
    The idea of two new public holidays is a political mess and would not be welcomed.
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    (Original post by vienna95)
    my own opinions coalign with those of Bruno Gollnisch who believes, that no law is required since the existing terms state that 'no child should be wearing headwear in school on the basis of respect for the class and the teacher aswell as hygenie', and that 'France is a Christian inspiration', with its own 'symbols, culture and practices, religious and non-religious. Those arriving in France should conform to them and not the inverse'.
    The idea of two new public holidays is a political mess and would not be welcomed.
    But that a very old fashioned, nonsensical argument isn't it. What happened to the freedom to express religion? How is someone wearing a head scarf gonna be ofensive to others? Also what come first - religion or human rights? Me - human rights.
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    (Original post by pkonline)
    But that a very old fashioned, nonsensical argument isn't it. .
    what argument is that?
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    (Original post by lala)
    Vienna did you have any thoughts on this? I figured you might have an idea.
    at the present time you wont be allowed to wear a head scarf in class, although it may be overlooked if you have religious reasons. after the law is passed any religious symbols or dress are banned, whether they are there for religious reasons or not.
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    (Original post by Bigcnee)
    Lol @ your naievety.
    yea

    wut an unrighteous law

    the people who took this to court should be banned
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    (Original post by Saf!)
    i know it's headscarf

    anyway, i dont think most of the terrorists are muslims cos they dont act like one........................ personally i think G.W.Bush can be defined as a terrorist, he killed many innocent ppl in afghanistan and iraq....... for the "good" of the ppl

    I wear a headscarf to, some teacher actually came up to me today and said havn't they baned the headscarf in this country
    I was completely confused, i did hear about the crisis in bavaria, the problem hapenning here, no way, it was shocking to hear it from a teacher
 
 
 
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