Tensions are rising between France and the Muslim world after President Emmanuel Macron expressed his plans to fight “Islamist Separatism” in early October.
Macron believes Islamic Separatism is a threat to France’s values of keeping the state and religion apart. This is not a first, France has previously domineered freedom of religious expressions for Muslims by banning the hijab. But after the beheading of the schoolteacher Samuel Patty, Macron allegedly stated the country needed to take stronger actions against radical Islam.
In order to protect the secular values, Macron’s current bill involves strengthening laws against homeschooling, forming a stronger control over imams sent from abroad and closely monitoring the funding for religious organizations.
Although this is Macron’s attempt to combat the “radical Islamists,” it seems as if the majority population suffering from these measures would be the Muslims in France.
After the announcements, various Muslim countries expressed their anger by boycotting the French products. Some also compared Macron’s actions to those of Nazis, drawing an analogy between issuing identification numbers to Muslim children with Hilter’s actions to discriminate against the Jews.
However, through a tweet in late November, the French Diplomacy has refused the allegations of issuing identification numbers to students in order to track attendance, saying“Any so-called information pertaining to alleged intent to register children being schooled in France based on religion, belief or origin, is absolutely false.”
Macron states that his bill was meant to ensure that children do not drift away from education in order to be a part of a counter society. While the intention may be fair, these laws are silencing many Muslims into giving up their right to practice freedom of religious expression.
What do you think about Macron’s bill and what it was really intended to do?