On both sides of the Atlantic, the courts this week was considered the relationship of Islam to the West, but with radically different approaches and results. In the US, Federal courts in Hawaii and Maryland was foiled the second attempt by Donald trump to ban Muslim. Meanwhile, the European court of justice, the highest court of Europe, and affirmed the right of private employers to prohibit Muslim women from wearing hijab.
The ruling of hijab ban on Muslim women | Iman Amrani
American and European right of every to accept the principles of religious neutrality and non-discrimination, but also various applications of these laws reflects various levels of discomfort with religion in General and the demographic the trouble with Islam in particular.
In the US and Europe, politicians proselytize about Islam as a mortal threat to Western civilization, with a high degree of success. Victory trump, the rule of marine Le Pen in France, and right roll in the Netherlands, despite the defeat in the elections – Geert Wilders, to provide sufficient evidence that such populism pays political dividends. And yet, while European courts regulate the veil from year to year, American courts have by and large renounced anti-Muslim bait.
In the case at our clinic and partner organizations, Darwish in the cards, a Federal court in Brooklyn first prescribed the ban of the Muslim trump within 24 hours of going into effect, and many Federal courts subsequently came to the same conclusion.
In decisions this week to oblige a second ban of the Muslim, the courts rejected the empty claims of the government that the ban has nothing to do with Muslims. As a judge derrick Watson wrote in the case of Hawaii: “any reasonable, objective observer would conclude that … stated secular purpose of the order is at least higher religious purpose to suspend the entry of Muslims.”
Thus, the court easily determine national security requirements of the government for the ban as a reason for religious hostility. The decision represents a further deviation by the courts irrational fear of Muslims – Islamophobia – promoting President and his entourage.
In contrast, the decision of the European court reflects the failure of that body to deal with the problem of Islamophobia in the forehead. Its decision this week upheld the dismissal of the Belgian administrator of a multinational campaign security g4s because she wore a headscarf.
Such an outcome is inconceivable in an American court.
The Belgian subsidiary of g4s – but not a global company has adopted a policy that prohibits employees from wearing visible signs of religious belief or participation in religious ceremonies of any kind.
While the policy has been written in General terms, it was no coincidence that the case involved Muslim women; this is one of countless such cases in Europe in recent years, from the prohibition to wear the veil in public places in France to ban the wearing of headscarves in school teachers in Switzerland.
While U.S. courts have seen through the government’s statement on non-discrimination, the European court turned a blind eye to anti-Muslim context in which G4S policy was adopted.
The courts everywhere in the dialogue with the public and their decisions are inextricably linked with the society in which they are made. American and European decisions reflect vastly different social orientation towards the Muslims. In the United States, our deep experience with pluralism of all kinds – racial, ethnic, and religious – in the vault of resistance to anti-Muslim populism, which is much higher than such resistance in Europe.
Of course, the United States is not immune from nationalist impulses or case of Islamophobia trump election proves as much – but the fear of a Muslim takeover of the country considers the trust only on the outskirts. Even as the trump administration is pushing a simple equation of Muslims, refugees and terrorists, courts are more resistant to religious search for scapegoats.
Unlike most of Europe appears to be suffering from anxiety to the Muslim demographic bomb and the loss of European identity. In this context, there is a fixation on the veil as a visible manifestation of alternative cultural practices, and European courts have responded accordingly.
First ban a Muslim in January welcomed tens of thousands of protesters descending at airports across the country, and standing in solidarity with Muslim immigrants and refugees. Many of these protesters carried signs with the image that is filled marches of the women the week before: a woman in an American flag hijab.
In the same moment that the administration trump was to denigrate Muslims as a special object of contempt, protesters exalted of Muslims as a universal object of human rights.
For them a Muslim is not a threat to the nation, but in it, in a way that seems unthinkable in Europe. There were no mass protests by non-Muslim Europeans, in opposition, the ban on the veil, no picture France as a woman in hijab Tricolor or Belgium in a scarf in black, yellow and gold.
Oddly enough, even in the era of trump card, when Islamophobic nationalists have ascended to the highest office in the land, the us courts and government are more reliable protection of pluralistic values than their European counterparts.
The results of the elections in the Netherlands give reason to hope that the mood may change. Maybe the European courts will be bolder, and the us courts will continue to hold the line.