HuffPo names 17 Muslim-American women who “Made America Great” this year. Guess how many wear hijabs?

Yep, you’re right: all of them. The women named in the December 8 piece include a hijabi fashion blogger, a journalist who appeared (clothed) in Playboy, a fencer, a hip-hop group, and the Miss Minnesota contestant who wore both a hijab and a burkini. It’s not so much the achievements of Muslim women that are celebrated here—and there’s nothing wrong with that—but the headscarf. Hijabs are mentioned repeatedly: here are two excerpts.

From the introduction:

Muslim Americans continue to face rising intolerance and Islamophobia as a result, in part, of aggressive attacks on their community by politicians and conservative media. They were assaulted, ridiculed and at times even murdered for their religious identification ― and hijab-wearing Muslim women often bore the brunt of this bigotry.

Check the link to the “even murdered for their religious identification” link in the Guardian, which says this about the murder of two men wearing Muslim garb:

The motive for the shooting was not immediately known and no evidence has been uncovered so far that the two men were targeted because of their faith.

“There’s nothing in the preliminary investigation to indicate that they were targeted because of their faith,” said deputy inspector Henry Sautner of the New York police department.

That’s the exact opposite of what the HuffPo article claims about the link. And then there’s this:

Well-known Muslim beauty blogger Nura Afia made history in November by becoming CoverGirl’s first ambassador who wears a hijab. With her CoverGirl contract, Afia will appear in commercials as well as a giant billboard in New York’s Times Square alongside celebrity representatives like Sofia Vergara and Katy Perry.

“I feel proud to be part of a movement that is showing the hijab in a positive light for once. The more of us who can wear them as representatives of these big household names on TV or billboards the better,” Afia told The New York Times.

Now that’s making America great!

What is really the positive light here is not the woman herself who is achieving, but that the achiever wears a hijab. And can this garment, reflecting a religious dictate that women must hide themselves to avoid arousing the uncontrollable lusts of men, really be seen in a positive light? It’s a symbol not only of a largely oppressive faith (one based, like all faiths, on fiction), but of the misogyny of that faith itself. Do we need to show the yarmulke in a positive light given the higher per capita rate of anti-Semitic than anti-Islamic acts?

Read for yourself (screenshot links to the article):

screen-shot-2016-12-11-at-12-02-50-pm

62 Comments

  1. Posted December 11, 2016 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    sub

  2. Posted December 11, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    The two highest-profile murders of Muslims in the UK recently both turned out to be by … other Muslims, and done because the assailants disagreed with the variant of Islam adopted by the victim.

    Then there was the case of the Muslim teenage boy assaulted in the street … by a Muslim who objected to him being arm-in-arm with his girlfriend.

    • Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

      I remember a Muslim shopkeeper murdered for putting a poster “Happy Easter” as a courtesy to his Christian customers.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

      Not to mention the number of ex-Muslims murdered, assassinated or executed for being just that. An annual number for that over the last several years might be useful to have readily available.

  3. Randall Schenck
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    If nothing else, Huff knows how to run a bad slogan into the ground. It sounds stupid no matter who says it.

  4. Posted December 11, 2016 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    This is Nusrat Ghani, the first Muslim woman to become a Tory MP:

    https://www.nusghani.org.uk

    Notice anything missing from her head?

    But she’s on the ‘wrong’ side of the political divide so don’t expect her achievements to celebrated.

  5. Posted December 11, 2016 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    It seems to me that even in the west Muslim women would be far more likely to be ridiculed, and ostracized for not wearing a hijab, than for wearing one. I’d like to hear some western muslim, and ex-muslim women chime in on this. The only person I’ve personally ever spoken with about it was a girl who was a friend of my daughter. (they attended high school together) She said no one ever made fun of her for wearing one, but if she hadn’t her father likely would have disowned her, and her family would have ostracized her.

    • Chris G
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      Mike, living in the UK and having known a few Muslim women through both friends and work, none of whom wore the hijab, I’m really not sure why you’d think non-wearing is more likely to result in being ridiculed and ostracised.
      I don’t know the figures, but I think it very likely most Muslim women in the UK do not wear the hijab (or any other head covering) particularly the younger generations.
      I’d be interested in any stats you may have to support your view?
      Chris G.

      • Posted December 11, 2016 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

        “I’d be interested in any stats you may have to support your view?
        Chris G.”

        If I had stats to support it I wouldn’t be asking muslim, and ex-muslim women to chime in. If you have stats that are contrary to my opinion I’d like to see them as well.

        I wanted to add that it seems to me the ridicule, and ostracization received by a woman who doesn’t wear the hijab would be more severe on average as well. Being ridiculed, ostracized, or disowned by family, friends, and your community would be more traumatic than the occasional dirty look, or verbal insult.

        • Chris G
          Posted December 11, 2016 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

          Sorry I should have been more clear – I meant any stats on whether the majority of Muslim women across western countries wear hijab or other head coverings.
          I agree that the pain a Muslim woman would suffer from family that happen to disapprove of her non-wearing would likely be more severe than the grief she’d get from non-Muslims if she wears the hijab. But I’m really not sure the pressure to wear a hijab is the norm for western Muslims.
          Even in some Muslim majority countries the hijab is not the norm.
          Chris G.

          • Posted December 11, 2016 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

            But I’m really not sure the pressure to wear a hijab is the norm for western Muslims.

            There are plenty of UK schools nowadays where the hijab is *required*. For example this one.

            • Chris G
              Posted December 11, 2016 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

              That doesn’t resolve the question about stats and the norm Coel.
              Can you clarify what you mean by ‘plenty’?
              The example you’ve given is a private fee-paying school. Do you know of any UK state schools that *require* the hijab? I’d be amazed if there are any,
              Chris G.

              • Posted December 11, 2016 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

                The Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School is a state school that has a hair covering as part of the uniform. (link). Actually, the rules say that a *parent* can opt their child out of that requirement. That means that the girl cannot choose for herself.

              • Chris G
                Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

                As liberal and open-minded as I like to think I am, the photos on that school web-site showing all the girls in hijabs still seem so shocking.
                Just because the school state that parents can choose to opt-out, that doesn’t mean the child couldn’t have made the decision themselves, which the parents then conveyed to the school.

          • Posted December 11, 2016 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

            “I meant any stats on whether the majority of Muslim women across western countries wear hijab or other head coverings.”

            Perhaps I misunderstood because I don’t see how that’s relevant to my point? What we need to know is what percentage of those wearing them, whatever that may be, are pressured into doing so, and fear the backlash they would receive for not wearing them more than insults, and ridicule they might receive for wearing them.

            • Chris G
              Posted December 11, 2016 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

              Sorry Mike I think we’re at risk of talking past each other here.
              You started your first comment with: “It seems to me that even in the west Muslim women would be far more likely to be ridiculed, and ostracized for not wearing a hijab, than for wearing one.”
              I agree that where a particular Muslim woman experiences disapproval from her family for NOT wearing the hijab, this is more likely to be worse than the typical grief a hijab wearer would experience.
              But across all Muslim women in the UK for example, I think we need to know how many wear the hijab, and how many are expected (by their families) to wear the hijab, hence my question about stats.
              My presumption is that most Muslim women in the UK are not under pressure to wear the hijab,
              Chris G.

              • Posted December 11, 2016 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

                “My presumption is that most Muslim women in the UK are not under pressure to wear the hijab”

                I would say that’s my presumption as well here in the US, because I think a minority wear them (though I could be wrong) but I would also presume that most women who do wear them are under pressure to wear them, or at least aren’t free from pressure to consider not wearing them.

                Ultimately my question is are more women choosing to wear them based on muslim community pressure, than are choosing not to wear them based on societal pressure. I suspect the former has more influence.

              • Chris G
                Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

                We’re agreed: how does the number of women who experience family/community pressure to wear compare to the numbers who wish to wear but worry about doing so because of non-Muslim hassle/criticism.
                I’d also be interested in change in trends, and whether, particularly in the US what with this whole ‘wear it loud and proud’ phase, Muslim women who are not pressured by their families are increasingly starting to wear the hijab in defiance.

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

        My impression – and it is only an impression – is that the proportion of “olive-skinned” women wearing the hijab in Britain has increased over the last several decades, while negro and white-skinned women wearing the hijab has increased from zero to “some”. Whether the increase is because of increased numbers overall, or increased “observance” in a more-or-less constant population I can’t say, having moved between very different populations in the time period. (for example, Nigerian (nationality) oil workers who are often Muslim were an unknown thing in the first population I’m thinking of, most of whom originated in India/ Pakistan (some via the Ugandan ethnic cleansing).

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted December 11, 2016 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

          Actually, I just remembered a complicating factor – my former neighbour-over-the-road was a Nigerian and tried inviting me to her church (some Pentecostal lunatic asylum) one day – while wearing a hijab. Presumably then she’d been acclimatised to wearing hijab while living in a Muslim-common region of Nigeria. I noticed that her teenaged daughter didn’t wear hijab, growing up in the UK. Complications.

          • Claudia Baker
            Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

            “Pentecostal lunatic asylum”

            made me laugh out loud

  6. Claudia Baker
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Okay, I can’t hold back: fucking sickening.

    One young Syrian woman, who has come to Ottawa as a refugee, and is now a friend of my friend, said that, as a Christian in Syria, muslims would spit on her because her head was uncovered. She sees the shite going on here and is incredulous. “In five years,” she said, “you will see the results of this and it will not be good.”

    Methinks we should listen.

    HuffPo is making things so much worse. What a moronic bunch of infidels.

    • Chris G
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      Claudia: you should never hold back!
      Can you clarify what your friend means by ‘the results’ she thinks we’ll see in five years etc.?
      As for the moronic infidels at HuffPo, surely they’ve all embraced Islam now, and wear THE most wonderful hijabs. The fellas too!
      Chris G.

      • Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

        I guess that the Syrian Christian meant the standard package of boons associated with Islam; and I also think that the signs are already manifest.

        “April 2004 – A Canadian Muslim of Lebanese descent firebombs the library of the United Talmud Torahs Montreal Jewish school.

        2006 – In the 2006 Ontario terrorism plot, Canadian counter-terrorism forces arrested 18 terrorists (dubbed the “Toronto 18”) inspired by al-Qaeda…

        August 2010 – Misbahuddin Ahmed of Ottawa was arrested (later convicted in July 2014) of knowingly facilitating a terrorist activity and participation in the activities of a terrorist group…

        October 20, 2014 – On October 20, 2014, two Canadian Forces members were hit by Martin Couture-Rouleau, a recent Muslim convert in what is known as the 2014 Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu ramming attack…

        October 22, 2014 – Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a convert to Islam, fatally shot Corporal Nathan Cirillo, a Canadian soldier on ceremonial sentry duty at the Canadian National War Memorial in Ottawa, and then forced his way into Canada’s parliament building, where he had a shootout with parliament security personnel…

        August 10, 2016 – Aaron Driver was killed in Strathroy, Ontario, in a confrontation with police after detonating an explosive in the back seat of a taxi. The confrontation followed a tip from the FBI that Driver had made a “martyrdom video”…”

        Source: Wikipedia

        • Chris G
          Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

          Well clearly this is all related to the wider issue of Islamism, some due to immigration, some to ‘home-grown’ radicalisation, but none directly to the wearing of the hijab.

          • Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

            Of course. The wearing of hijab is not directly related to Islamist terror, but it is likely to pave the way to terror by normalizing fundamentalist Islam, and is a very worrying symptom – like the wearing of Nazi swastika, which few would totally uncouple from Nazi or neo-Nazi terror.

            • Claudia Baker
              Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

              Yup.

      • Claudia Baker
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

        Chris G.: I think she means that we’ll see islamization in Canada – pressure on people to do just what HuffPo is doing: kowtowing to islam. One of my hairdressers, who is from Egypt, said once, many years ago, that the creep of islam is insidious and he sees it happening here (in Ottawa). Does that clarify a bit? I didn’t actually have a conversation with the young woman; heard it second hand from my friend, a colleague.

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

        I guess that the Syrian Christian meant the standard package of boons associated with

        caring or even knowing what religion any other person has – such as wearing religiously-dictated apparel, needing to register your religion as part of applying for a job, work permit, or security clearance ; people being able to tell your religion by which buildings you enter at particular times … that sort of thing.
        State-sponsored databases of people holding any particular religion will be a first step, which will have to be extended to tracking the religion of all people in the state (sense: nation, not sense: local government) in order to monitor people changing religion and also apostates. Criminal penalties for not truly reporting your religion or falsely reporting one’s conversion will have to then follow, logically ; state-sponsored bounties for reporting an unregistered religion change or apostasy would also follow.
        Has the burning of books re-started yet? “Dort wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man auch am Ende Menschen.”

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      Such a nice Catholic girl, dropping F-bombs outta the same mouth she usta kiss her mother. 🙂

      • Claudia Baker
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

        I know, right? My new fav is ‘ffs’. Learned it on an atheist website. Good thing Mom is not alive to see this degeneration…

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

          My new fav is ‘ffs’

          For Freya’s Sake?
          though how Freya ever got hold of the rice to make sake, I don’t know. The Gods move in mysterious ways . Except for Thor, who uses his two-goat chariot. And Wodin on his eight-legged steed.

          • Posted December 12, 2016 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

            I don’t know about you, but an eight legged horse is pretty mysterious …

            • gravelinspector-Aidan
              Posted December 12, 2016 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

              I’d put it to the “Furry” and “extreme body modification” communities as a challenge. Or an inspiration. Double points for getting the genetic modifications to work in the germ line.
              I think they’d put it on the back burner. Somewhere not far behind making real centaurs. 2200 CE or 2300CE?

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      See my “complications” comment of a few moments ago.

      • Claudia Baker
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

        🙂

  7. Jacques Hausser
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    As an antidote, it is good to read the last post by Jeffrey Tayler on Quillette: “The Hijab and the Regressive Left’s Absurd Campaign to Betray Freethinking Women”.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted December 12, 2016 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      Yes!

      Why does HuffPo feel this constant need to celebrate the particular interpretation of Islam that says women should cover up so they don’t incite uncontrollable lust in men?

      Does this mean they will also be writing stories about women deserve rape if they wear revealing clothing?

  8. dd
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    Dr. Coyne, this may be of interest….(note that it’s Breitbart).

    “Southern Poverty Law Center Calls Islamic and Black Lives Matter Attacks ‘Radical-Right Terrorist Plots’”

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/12/10/southern-poverty-law-center-calls-islamic-and-black-lives-matter-attacks-radical-right-terrorist-plots/

    • Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      True. The Breitbart article gives a link, so readers can check for themselves:

      https://www.splcenter.org/20100126/terror-right

      Actually, one can make a case that Islamist terror is right-wing. (John Pepple, a blogger who identifies himself as a leftist, complains that you cannot help supporting the right these days because if you support the right, you are obviously doing it, and if you support the left, the leftists you are supporting will support the Muslim right.)

      However, listing Islamist terror together with standard right-wing terror is untenable. And I do not see how the attacks against police can pass as right-wing.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted December 11, 2016 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

        True, these things don’t fall along the usual left-right political axis. But there’s a reason for the “fascism” part of Islamofascism. And there’s long been an odd affinity for Islamism within a particular strand of the old paleo-Right.

        One true thing that can be said in this regard is that Islamism stands in opposition to “classical liberalism” — the broad principles on which those is the Anglo-American tradition, both left and right, are in general agreement.

    • somer
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

      I wonder if this is some kind of thought process that blames Islamic terror on the actions of the West and assume its all due to Saudi Arabia and western support for this (versus Soviet support for other islamists and saudi manipulation of the west plus the sheer willingness of much of the Islamic world to adapt their forms of Islam to outright salafism or variants of their school that might as well be Salafism such as the Deobandis). Islamism is presumed to be little to do with the “real” Islam and to itself be a product of resistance to Western colonialism (as if the Muslim world didn’t have colonialism until 20th Century such as millions of 18-19thC Egyptian pashas and Omanli sultanate slaves in E Africa) and west support of Saudi.
      They are blissfully immune to anything that might prick their bubble that the West is the source of more bad than good in the world
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_slavery_in_the_Muslim_world#19th_and_20th_centuries
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_in_the_Ottoman_Empire
      Plus Africa:Biography of a Continent by John Reader – there were millions of Muslim owned slaves in muslim owned plantations in East Africa in the 19th Century tho the Europeans didn’t ask questions about conditions of labour for goods from trade links they’d facilitated in other parts of Africa

  9. Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    This is so stupid. The direction we want to go in is towards being able to see a woman in hijab and think “uhuh”, and nothing more, if that much — knowing that it was her choice, and not because the men around her still haven’t realized that Ibn al-Haytham was right in 1,000 AD when he argued that perception occurs inside the brain, and, effectively, it’s not the woman’s fault if the man can’t see her without getting sexual diarrhea.

    Opposing Trump will require rather a lot more than trying to make pointless symbolic gestures. The Huff Po and many on the left, it seems, still haven’t figured out that they have just been hit by a Tsunami of corruption and right wing stupidity.

    • Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      I think that Muslims wearing or endorsing the hijab and non-Muslims praising it are giving Trump free ammo.

      • Posted December 12, 2016 at 3:04 am | Permalink

        Yes — it’s insane. And aligning themselves with the Islamic extreme right as well. As Sam Harris might say, “Is that really the hill you want to die on?”

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

      Ibn al-Haytham was right in 1,000 AD when he argued that perception occurs inside the brain, and, effectively, it’s not the woman’s fault if the man can’t see her without getting sexual diarrhea.

      Hmmm, I wonder if “The Artist” might consider throwing that source into his “Uncontrollable Lust” work.
      “sexual diarrhea” – nice phrase. Again, I wonder if The Artist reads here.

  10. merilee
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    sub

    • Diane G.
      Posted December 12, 2016 at 2:11 am | Permalink

      sub

  11. Alexander
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    Perhaps a more general comment. We, the West, inherited from the Enlightenment in France and elsewhere during the 18th and 19th century the conviction that we want to live in a progressive, free and liberal society devoid from superstitions, restrictions on individual freedom, but a society based on the reliance on rationality, etc. We also introduced a fundamental principle, that of human rights and equality between genders. We stepped away from a regressive oppressed society with the French Revolution, when the terror and general brainwashing of the Catholic Church was defeated (although at a price of many lives). The Catholic Church made a great effort to regain it’s dominance in politics and control of society during the 19th century. But they did not win, and the secular dream succeeded in France when in 1905 it threw out any religious interference in society and government, the teaching of religion and other superstitions became outlawed in schools and universities.

    This is why in France you have the concept of a secular public space. Religions are a private business, but they have no business in the public sphere. Now, in Europe you notice that now Catholics and the Protestants (especially in Germany) have set their hopes on Islamists to destroy the secularization of the re publica, and this is why they defend the idea that you can wear and display religious symbols in public spaces. They want to heed to demands of Sharia Law, Muslim schools, etc., and thus try to undermine the fruits of the Enlightenment. Many of these Christian movements are what we call the regressive left.

    Giving in to demands of a fundamentally non-democratic and inhumane religion should be out of the question if we don’t want to return to a society that existed up to the 18th century in Europe, under the dominance of the Catholic Church. Remember, apostasy, whether in the Catholic or Anglican world, was punished by death.

    To my dismay the French recently voted for a Catholic regressive. Opus Dei is doing a good job.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

      But they did not win, and the secular dream succeeded in France when in 1905 it threw out any religious interference in society and government, the teaching of religion and other superstitions became outlawed in schools and universities.

      Would you give due credit to Kemal Ataturk too?

      To my dismay the French recently voted for a Catholic regressive. Opus Dei is doing a good job.

      And one can see why the ISIS “Caliphate” really want to destroy Turkey.

      • Alexander
        Posted December 12, 2016 at 3:38 am | Permalink

        “Would you give due credit to Kemal Ataturk too?”

        Yes. However the Islamic world did not experience an “enlightenment” as did parts of the Christian world, which caused Ataturk’s project to fail. During the Middle Ages Islam was probably more enlightened than the Catholic world, but things changed to the worse in the 17th-18th centuries, and again now.

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted December 12, 2016 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

          Which increases the estimated time required for “an Enlightenment” to settle into a culture’s psyche by several generations.

  12. Richard Zierman
    Posted December 11, 2016 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    Trying to be chicly politically correct will make many people feel better about living in a tolerant society.I keep remembering how the tolerance of appeasement impacted Europe in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Like it or not the hijab is a badge of sexual slavery and Feminism is the anthesis of Islam. Taunts of Islamophobia and bigotry will not alter the toxicity and backwardness the cult of Mohammad brings to our secular democracy.

  13. Brian Salkas
    Posted December 12, 2016 at 3:47 am | Permalink

    The hijab represents one thing more than anything, and that is belief in a god who chances of existing are abysmal. Why do we celebrate this?

  14. aljones909
    Posted December 12, 2016 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    C4 TV news in the UK had a hijabi adorned newsreader reporting on the Nice terror attacks. Caused a bit of controversy. “Islamic” dress, male and female, seems to be much more visible on the streets. These photos were from a recent Telegraph report on lack of integration in the UK.

  15. steve oberski
    Posted December 12, 2016 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    So when 2 Muslim men are murdered it is immediately assumed to be due to their “religious identification”*, but when Muslim men commit atrocities and explicitly attribute these actions to their religious texts it is considered to be Islamophobia to take them at their word.

    * As pointed out in another comment, the majority of violence against Muslims is instigated by other Muslims (so in a sense HuffPo got this right), but apparently it is also Islamophobic to point this out.

  16. somer
    Posted December 13, 2016 at 5:46 am | Permalink

    Some people of the Left even those who are atheist disparage western secularism as liberal individualism and actively celebrate the religious garb of more conservative but Non Western cultures

    In other places they legally punish secularism
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-38285515


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