'No hard feelings, but we don't want the burqa'
BUNDABERG readers have made their stance clear on the burqa, with an overwhelming majority calling for the garment to be banned.
The burqa involves wearing a full-body covering with just the eyes visible, though sometimes covered by mesh.
The discussion topic drew an overwhelming response on Facebook, with almost 200 people joining the debate.
Many said that while they hold no ill will towards people of the Muslim faith, they disagreed with full-body covers.
"Sadly times have changed thanks to the radicals and Isis," Nigel Whitworth said.
"As much as I have no malice against the Muslim faith or its people.
Is it time to ban the burqa?
This poll ended on 16 September 2017.
Only in certain places or situations
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
"For security reasons it should be banned in public places.
"It doesn't form from Muslim faith, but more the Muslim people."
Roslyn Avagliano agreed security was paramount.
"Yes they should be banned for security reasons in this violent world," she said.
Susan Kross agreed.
"Yes because you don't know who is under them, they could be anyone and could do anything if the women must cover up then wear the head scarf, we are not allowed to wear helmets when we go into banks so same rules apply to this," she said.
Angelia Svenson said it was only fair to ban the burqa in Australia.
"Yes, ban it," she said.
"We live in Australia for God's sake. "We have rules in place for a reason, stop sugar coating everything for everyone else coming to our country.
"Didn't realise how soft Australia had become."
Some people in the debate, however, said they thought there was no problem with women wearing full-body coverings and urged people to look to more pressing issues such as the economy and poverty.
The comments came as Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt, when asked his thoughts by the NewsMail, said he supported the right of women to dress as they wanted, but not if they were forced.
The burqa is currently banned in countries including Italy and Belgium.
In the Netherlands, the burqa is banned in certain places but is still allowed on the street.
In the Tessin region of Switzerland, wearing the burqa can involve a fine of up to $11,400.
Chad and China have bans on burqas, while the US and UK still allow it to be worn.
In Russia, the wearing of head scarves is prohibited in government-run schools.
Canada banned the wearing of the burqa in citizenship ceremonies in 2011, but the decision was overturned by the supreme court who found the ban violated freedom of religion.
Niger, Congo-Brazzaville and Cameroon all have various bans on the burqa, mainly for security reasons.
In Turkey, women are not permitted to wear the burqa in judicial, military or police positions.