For those of you heading to the south of France for the remainder of the summer, we hope you have your ‘bikini body’ ready, as the Daily Mail refers to it (like it’s somehow different from your regular body – one you pull out of the wardrobe when the sun comes out). Either way, we hope you are comfortable and confident and don’t burn to easily and have no religious beliefs that might prevent you wearing a two piece because France’s former Minister for families, the right wing Nadine Morano, has announced that ‘it’s a French woman’s duty to wear a bikini’.
The comment was in relation to a Muslim woman sitting on a French beach in headscarf, long-sleeved tunic and trousers while her husband stripped off and bathed in the sea. Apparently this sight caused great offense to Morano, for, oh, no logical reason whatsoever. She posted a picture of the woman that she had taken on the beach on to her Facebook page (who needs privacy anyway?) alongside an image of Brigit Bardot.
“When you choose to come to a country of secular laws like France, you have an obligation to respect our culture and the liberty of women. Or you go somewhere else,” Ms Morano wrote on her Facebook page alongside the images.
That’s right folks, it’s now an obligation to wear a bikini in order to respect French culture, and, indeed, the culture of women. Whether it’s also necessary to have Bardot’s blonde hair and blue eyes in order to respect the culture, she didn’t elaborate.
Under French law, only full face-covering veils such as niqabs or burqas are banned in public places. Under a separate law, no visible religious symbol can be worn at work by any public service employee or by pupils in state-run schools.
The comments have resulted in a political row. Jean-Marc Germain, from the ruling Socialists, attacked Morano as representing “the worst of the right-wing … who rejects others, who believes that you are not a proper French person if you are Muslim”.
“French culture is equality between men and women,” Morano insisted.
Indeed, we all know that wearing bikinis is the very thing that brings about gender equality. Just ask the Victoria’s Secret Angels or the strippers that have men stuff notes in their bikini bottoms. It’s ironic that Morano is so insistent on gender equality, yet doesn’t approve of the woman’s equal right to make a decision on how she dresses. Is it not plausible that the woman might want to dress in this manner? That she made her own decision?