5 cities in France have banned the burkini, a coverall form of beachwear designed for women with a particular affinity for modesty. We at The Inertia found this issue of significant cultural import. As such, we reported on it (twice), and published a gut reaction to the news written by our own Ted Endo.
If you haven’t heard, several resort towns have instituted a ban on the burkini citing public safety concerns – the underlying logic of which is Muslim women and Muslim women alone wear burkinis on the beach, and Islamic extremism has been at the core of a number of terror attacks in France in recent months.
But if you’re fuzzy about how those two elements connect, there really isn’t a good explanation. Are they made into explosives? No. Are extremists more likely to attack a beach where women wear burkinis? Unlikely. And this ban only impacts women. In other words, if the object was to ban symbols of Islamic extremism (and even that claim is on shaky ground), this only succeeds among Muslim females.
Anyway, when we promoted the various pieces we published on Facebook and Instagram, we received a handful of thumbs up, and quite a bit of backlash. Comments to the effect of, “If you don’t like the laws you can leave,” and, “The police were doing their job. The French are tense about recent attacks and will do whatever they can to keep their country safe,” were common – not to mention many a spew of racist vitriol.
Kelly Slater has been known to weigh in on many a debate. From taking on flat earthers to Monsanto to Hawaiian Air baggage fees, the king is opinionated. But he’s discerning. Apparently, the negativity found in the comments of our Instagram post were too much, so Kelly decided to comment for himself:
“Hmmm. What to think about this. Far worse than hassling naked people on American beaches. The French seem to have one thing very progressive and accepting, and another just ass backwards. There could be a cross dresser next to this person and not be bothered so why bother her? Imbeciles. And yes these cops are idiotic…they should be committed to specifically not enforcing unjust laws and using their humanity and common sense. Outlawing clothing is seriously the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard even ahead of outlawing plants.”