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Women should cover up and storm the beaches to show contempt for these cowardly xenophobes

letter of the day: burkini ban

I cannot understand the "reasoning" of your anonymous correspondent (Muslim head covering the provocative item, Write back, August 31) that "the problem with the burkini is the head covering [since] covering the head in public is pure provocation by Muslim women who are not European and want to show they are different".

When I was a boy, most women in England wore swim caps which entirely covered their hair to avoid it getting wet and nobody thought anything of it.

While the claim that "a burka, hijab, or niqab ... is designed to separate Muslim women from the rest of society" may have some truth, so long as it does not represent any real threat, it should be tolerated.

The burka and niqab, which involve complete covering of the face, may raise security fears and a logical case could be made for banning them. But the hijab or, for that matter, the burkini, which leave their wearer clearly identifiable, do not, and there is no reason for banning them.

I therefore support Valerie Morgan's suggestion that "the best response to this stupid burkini ban is for hordes of women to storm the beaches dressed in leggings and long-sleeved, loose-fitting tops [since] not all women want to expose their bare flesh to damaging sunlight".

Hiding behind anonymity to purvey xenophobic attitudes is typical of cowardly fanatics and has no place in your usually broad-minded columns.

Martin D. Stern

By email

Belfast Telegraph


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