This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Delusions of Arrogance

"The public interest in enhancing the integrity of obtaining citizenship and promoting the broader Canadian values of having the oath recited publicly, openly and in community with others in this context outweighs the harm to [Ishaq] in being  unable to vote in this election."
Federal Citizenship and Immigration lawyers, Federal Court submission

"Given that my case has become such a topic of discussion in this election, I would be particularly hurt if I were not able to vote in it."
"I know that elections are usually held every four years in Canada and I would be extremely disappointed if I lost my right to vote in this federal election, especially since I believe that there are many issues of great importance being debated. I very much wish to exercise my democratic right to vote as it is very important to me."
"I want to further my commitment to my country by becoming a citizen. The right to vote in particular is very important to me. I feel this is a way in which I can directly have a say in how the country that I love so much should be run."
Zunera Ishaq, Pakistan-born permanent resident of Canada
Zunera Ishaq - pictured outside the Federal Court of Appeal in Ottawa - thinks the government’s ban is illegal and politically motivated : Rex Features

Passionate to be able to vote for a country she 'loves', but not enough to accede to its social contract of openness and equality. This woman's insistence on her right to defy the courtesy of open contact with Canadians in a social public context, let alone a solemn citizenship ceremony whereby she would be entitled to receive citizenship has priority for her over the honour of becoming a citizen.

Her egocentric position is that she should be entitled to behave in a manner she believes best suits her interests while spurning the Canadian values that entitle her to the freedom to pursue those interests, with rare exceptions, the topmost of which is revealing her identity during the process of declaring the oath of citizenship.

While insisting that she loves the country she emigrated to from Pakistan in 2008, she evidently does not love it enough to set aside her niqab for the few minutes it would take to participate in the citizenship ceremony; her face must be concealed from public view, she insists, as a pious Muslima. But Islam makes no such conditions to the faithful, covering the face is a cultural mainstay of a patriarchal society.

The late Benazir Bhutto, herself a proud Muslim, and former Prime Minister of Pakistan, never covered her face. The very forces of Islamist extremism that killed her are the same religious fundamentalists in Pakistan who insist that women must be chaste, modest and restrained, covering themselves with a burka, concealing their identities as individuals and women.

Canadian values of equality between the sexes reject the misogyny of Pakistan's extremists.

The arrogance of this woman who claims to love Canada and who states her intention to 'exercise her democratic right to vote', appears deliberately oblivious of the fact that in democracies women do not hide their faces and their identities, they do not shun the attention of others around them, they exercise ordinary social courtesy in communicating their openness to others.

This woman takes a special delight in her veiled contempt for Canadian mores, insisting that her imported values must be accepted at one of the most critical times of a new immigrant's transformation toward Canadianism. The niqab is a vile symbol of female repression, one that most Canadians deem insulting to women and which they refuse to countenance. This woman does not deserve Canadian citizenship.

Her powerfully egocentric sense of entitlement is hugely less than commendable in someone expressing eagerness to join the Canadian community. Her arrogant intransigence in the matter represents a clear signal that she is incapable or unwilling or both, to adapt to Canadian society and accept its cardinal values.

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