(I am prefacing this answer to give some background about myself, as I’ve heard from *many* people throughout my life that I am an atypical American.)
I was born and raised in New York City, where my family (a combination of Jewish and Roman Catholic members) ensured that I was exposed to as many cultures as were on offer, from as early an age as I can remember. I clearly remember being taken to see Ghandi in the movie theatre followed by the weeks of celebratory festivals in the city, celebrating every Chinese New Year in Chinatown… If there was a cultural festival or heritage event, we were there.
The woman who took care of our family throughout the years was a Jehovah’s Witness, who never tried to convert us, but instead taught us to look behind the message to the person delivering it, and treat them with respect and dignity.
(If you aren’t interested in the Book of Mormon or Watchtower or even Girl Scout Cookies that’s fine, but you can offer the person at your door a glass of water and a place to sit down for a minute before they continue on for their miles-long journey.)
So, having that as part of my values DNA, I honestly don’t have any “opinion” one way or the other about how anyone else chooses to dress, Muslim or not.
I was curious at the airport the other day if they would call over a female agent when a woman in full Niqab was going through passport control so they could see her face, but she lifted her covering for the male agent and went on her way without any fuss, with what looked like her uncovered sister and children. (Sort of how like my sister is the devoutly religious one out of my siblings.)
If I had been standing next to her in line, and if I had thought we spoke the same language (it was in a Middle Eastern country, so there was a possibility we didn’t) then I simply would have asked her myself.
I have no qualms about starting conversations with people.
We are all humans on this planet. Who are any of us to judge anyone else for their choices? There isn’t enough time in the day.
Focus on your own choices. That’s enough to fill 24 hours a day, easy.
Originally Posted: https://www.quora.com/What-do-uncovered-Western-women-think-of-when-they-see-us-Muslim-women-who-wear-a-niqab-and-are-covered-from-head-to-toe
Originally Posted On: 2015-12-05