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Discussion (67)¬

  1. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    Because nothing says ‘liberated’ more than being imprisoned behind sixteen yards (or however much it is) of cloth.

  2. HaggisForBrains says:

    Or being told by your partner, “No, you can’t take it off”

  3. Undeluded says:

    Keywords here (panel 1): “You should feel…” Exactly. If you’re not feeling the way you are told, then you are sinning / blaspheming / defiling or anything else from the “evil” vocabulary. Once you feel (or claim to), you can be convinced to think the way you’re told, too. And then – act.

    I feel the need to counter this.

  4. Hobbes says:

    Love it. Obviously there are good reasons for Muslims having their women so covered. The first and main reason is extreme insecurity–not wanting other men looking at their wives because they are either too beautiful and would elicit lust (from personal experience), or they feel that their wives are not pretty and don’t want others to know.

  5. Bob Knisely says:

    “Man’s inhumanity to man” is NOTHING compared with man’s inhumanity to woman.

  6. E.A. Blair says:

    I wonder what a Muslim Ferengi would do?

  7. Reid Malenfant says:

    The Burqa is just a bad habit

  8. Reid Malenfant says:

    And if I were a Muslim entrepreneur I would start a fashion chain named Burqa King ….

  9. jerry w says:

    @Reid Malenfant:
    So then, maybe it’s o.k. to spend time with a Muslim woman once in a while, but you just shouldn’t get in the habit?

  10. David Amies says:

    Bloody brilliant.


  11. Nassar Ben Houdja says:

    Muslim men are weak minded fools
    With no self control, seeing a woman they drool
    Even hideous hags
    They keep in bags
    To prevent getting boners like mules.

  12. Maggs says:

    Do you think that having a wife hidden under all that, replicates the imaginary was of the holy friend? I mean, if you can’t see her…

  13. Maggs says:


  14. pete says:

    But when the men get to heaven (presumably also womens hell) they get to fornicate like rabbits?

  15. Graham ASH-PORTER says:

    More likely to hide bruises!

  16. steeve says:

    I can still see her eyes. Author, please rectify; my zip is straining.

  17. two cents' worth says:

    Some idle thoughts inspired by this cartoon:

    Why are burkas usually black? It’s bad enough to be stifled under so much cloth, but in a desert environment, the fact that it’s black cloth makes it even more oppressive. How come it’s the men who get to wear white, which reflects more infrared rays? If J is supposed to be a pearl, can’t his burka be oyster grey, at least?

    If J wore a burka in Saudi Arabia, would he be arrested for cross dressing?

    If a devout Muslim woman from Pakistan showed up in Saudi Arabia, could she get away with wearing her usual salwar kameez with a lightweight dupatti covering her hair (but not her face), or would she have to wear a burka? Is the burka a point of contention in Muslim sectarian disputes/wars?

    Has one of the rationalizations for having women wear burkas been the fact that they act as sunscreens, helping to preserve the women’s beauty? In the 21st century, with so many security cameras in public places, is another rationalization the fact that wearing burkas protects women’s identity and privacy?

    Here in the U.S., some people have committed robberies while wearing burkas, leading to an outcry from the Muslim community. (Muslims here already face discrimination from people who assume they’re all terrorists; they don’t want “common criminal” to be added to that stereotype.) There have been calls to have the courts deem it an aggravating factor if the defendant wore a burka while committing the crime for which s/he is on trial. I assume the court would do this only if the defendant is not a Muslim woman. (I don’t know whether this has become the law. A quick Google search didn’t answer that question, and I don’t have time for a more thorough search.)

    If you’re new to J&M, and haven’t already checked out the previous cartoons, be sure to see the thread started by HaggisForBrains on about Burka Avenger ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Dan says:

    Further questions:

    How easy is it to get away with a male-male marriage in Saudi Arabia?
    How many Saudi men are in one and don’t know?

  19. floridakitesurfer says:

    In response to your question I found this article.
    It is long, but I feel that I really learned something.

  20. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    According to The World’s Stupidest Laws (o’Mara Books, 2005 ed.) it is illegal for a woman to wear a corset in Excelsior Springs, Missouri because ‘the privilege of admiring the curvaceous, unencumbered body of a young woman should not be denied to the normal, red-blooded American Male’.

    Sort of redresses (sic) the balance a little. Mind you, the same town also prohibits ‘worrying’ squirrels. Makes one wonder whether the two laws are related in some way…..

  21. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    Oh, and if Jesus is a precious pearl then Mrs o’Sagan has a load of jewellery made from his mother. ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Author, some of your punch lines are rapier cuts. This one, the simple word “no”, is a bullet. I don’t know how you do it, but keep ’em coming.
    FloridaKiteSurfer, thanks for that link. Fascinating. Institutionalized hypocrisy at its finest.

  23. percyF says:

    Whew! Jesus has never looked hotter.

  24. hotrats says:

    If your husband thinks you need to wear a burqa, does that make him a burq?

  25. Chiefy says:

    The last panel says it all. The burqa is not about lust or temptation. It’s about control.

    hotrats, I think the husband is the burqer, and his wife is the burqee.

  26. Jerry M says:

    Burkas aren’t always black, in Afghanistan they can be any number of colors. In Saudi Arabia what the woman wears is usually an Abaya, and those are black.

  27. hotrats says:

    To avoid a charge of cultural elitism, I should point out to non-English fellow miscreants that in the UK ‘berk’ is a term of disapprobation, these days mild enough to be used on TV, roughly equivalent to ‘idiot’ or ‘jerk’.

    Few people outside London realise that it was originally Cockney rhyming slang, short for ‘Berkely Hunt’, a famous troupe of fox-botherers. I leave it to you to join the dots (think of a ruder word for ‘jerk’ that rhymes with ‘hunt’).

  28. hotrats says:

    Chiefy and HfB:
    Some further comments on RAS syndrome added to the previous thread.

  29. Dan says:

    @floridakitesurfer – Thanks. Very interesting. I wish every idle quip on the internet begat such a worthwhile reply.

    @hotrats – Runt?

  30. botanist says:

    Try again Dan ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. E.A. Blair says:

    It’s a word referring to a woman that ends in the letters “-u-n-t” – I have it! “Aunt!”

  32. steeve says:

    Like the ‘Beloved aunt’ in Curb Your Enthusiasm

  33. HaggisForBrains says:

    Hotrats – Surely the shortened form of Berkeley Hunt should be bark, not berk, unless it’s Merkin rhyming slang.

  34. JohnM says:

    Nice link, FKS. I liked the image of over-zealous ant-whisperers getting a permanent dent in the chin. Reminiscent of how Louis Armstrong came to be known as Satchmo.

  35. JohnM says:

    @HoB – Isn’t Cockney accentuation likely to have ‘Berkeley’ pronounced rather differently to the “Gloucester posh” spoken by members of the hunt?

  36. JohnM says:

    I hope y’all knows HoB means HfB

  37. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    JohnM says:
    September 13, 2013 at 7:45 pm
    I hope yโ€™all knows HoB means HfB

    Hmm, not as catchy as ‘Beanz meanz Heinz’.

  38. ccdarling says:

    I miss the Barmaid’s comment in this one. ” A man in a burqa walks into a bar…”

  39. hotrats says:

    Who is y’all, and why do you hope he or she ‘knows’ this?

  40. IanB says:

    Squirrel worrying there’s something to have on your record, I wonder if that’s what US immigration mean by moral turpitude?

  41. JohmM says:

    I was, in effect, apologising for and simultaneously correcting my typo, writing an acronym HoB instead of HfB – referring to Haggis for Brains.

  42. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    So who is HoB?
    Harlot of Beelzebub?

  43. hotrats says:

    Yes, dear boy, I ‘got’ that, just wondered why you are using a 3rd-person singluar verb (‘knows’) with a 2nd-person indeterminate subject (‘y’all’). Is it a comment on the level of linguistic incompetence typical of the sort of people who say, “y’all”?

  44. JohnM says:

    Yes – perhaps.
    Yes – definitely.

  45. JoJo says:

    E.A. Blair says:

    I wonder what a Muslim Ferengi would do?

    Have her ears ritually amputated as a young girl..?

  46. Kevin Alexander says:

    Ried Malenfant says “And if I were a Muslim entrepreneur I would start a fashion chain named Burqa King โ€ฆ.”
    In Saudi Arabia they would have walk thru windows.

  47. MarkyWarky says:

    Does anyone here have experience of “modern” catholic schools in the UK, who would be willing to discuss them away from here (or on here, but it’s off topic)?

    I have a dilema; I despise the idea of faith schools, and will not under any circumstances pretend to be a believer, but we’re moving house to the other end of the country, and the best school by a long way is the Catholic one. Because my daughter’d be joining part way through a year, we may well be able to get a place despite being at the very bottom of the admissions policy. Can the Catholic element be ignored for the sake of an otherwise decent education?

  48. omg says:

    I will be off topic as well… I don’t know where they come from, but they are some interesting billboards.

  49. hotrats says:

    Can the Catholic element be ignored for the sake of an otherwise decent education?

    I would say you can have one or the other. The ‘Catholic element’ is wilful misinformation, backed up with a cultural ethos of mystification, intolerance and guilt. A Catholic school, by definition, is there to inculcate its death-cult bullshit in those too young and inexperienced to recognise it for what it is, and if your daughter is intelligent and rational she will encounter a great deal of peer-group hostility from the brainwashed, and righteous indignation from those charged with the job of her indoctrination.

    It may be a ‘good school’, but they will try to teach her Catholic maths (3=1) Catholic biology (virgin birth) and Catholic metaphysics (endless hell fire). IMHO It would have to be much more than ‘otherwise decent’ to make up for this.

  50. MarkyWarky says:

    Cheers Hotrats. See, I agree with you, but the fact is that it doesn’t appear to bother countless parents who’ll do whatever it takes to get their kids in, so I’m left wondering whether the actual experience the kids receive isn’t quite as bad as we make it out to be?

  51. botanist says:

    MarkyW – is she old enough and strong enough to think for herself and resist the indoctrination? You know her best, is it right for her despite the religion? Do you mind that lots of her new friends will be sheeplike followers?

  52. MarkyWarky says:

    botanist, she’s nine, and a strong willed thinker who asks all the right questions, but like everyone at that age, she’s also open to influence.

    But I think your question “Do you mind that lots of her new friends will be sheeplike followers?” might have made my mind up. Yes, I’d mind a lot.

  53. JohnM says:

    @ MarkyW
    If the teaching fraternity at the school is Jesuit or Jesuit influenced, the education received may be more secular than you might expect. I did some supply work at one of these years ago and it would have been difficult to identify it as a religious school at the pedagogic level.

  54. botanist says:

    JohnM – so how can we help MarkyW tell the difference? It’s hard for a strong minded 9yr old, she knows what’s right! Finding like-minded friends in school will be hard. Does she have other interests Marky? – outside school – that will enable her to find and link up with sensible kids her age? Cos in a church school she will be in a minority group. Is that bad for HER? Is she strong enough?
    OK – so I would actually go and ‘interview’ the school head and teachers. Get a feel for the ‘strength’ of the religious teaching – perhaps by subterfuge. If they agree with your ‘assumed’ views then run, if they argue a more balanced approach then OK.
    But the home environment has the greatest influence Marky. If she goes there let them teach 3=1 and then explain why that’s nonsense!
    Keep talking to her, wherever she goes. Perhaps have this discussion at home with her involved too. Then she will be certain that you want the best for her.
    Whatever decision you make YOU are the greatest influence in her life, cos YOU are her Dad. She will know that, you might doubt it ๐Ÿ™‚
    PS – let us know what your (and your wife’s and your daughter’s) decision is. And way down the line – maybe – how she fares.

  55. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    Marky, I’m assuming the school is the best in the area in terms of GCSE results, but that doesn’t neccesarily mean the teaching is of a higher standard. Even the worst rated schools manage to get plenty of kids through with A* grades, which suggests to me that children will learn no matter where they go – as long as they want to learn (I went to the worst possible school in the worst possible part of town ((we were that poor, there were 14 of us in a shoebox, etc)) but still sat and passed my ‘A’ levels two years early).

    That said, the environment has to be right for your daughter. If she’s determined to do well I’d suggest sending her to the Catholic school if it performs far better than the next-best, simply because children are ‘orrible little things who like nothing better than making the brighter kids’ lives a misery just because they’re bright; there will obviously be less of this in a school where a higher proportion of the pupils are the bright kids.
    She might have to deal with all the religious nonsense, but there’ll be less bullying and less distraction in classes from those who don’t want to- or simply can’t learn.
    I wouldn’t worry about her friends; if the kids from the Catholic School near me are anything to go by, they’re no more or less religious than anybody else, they’re just kids who can only go by what they’ve been taught (and if you’re anything like me, you can do a little good when they visit by encouraging them to think about what they’ve been told, just as you would with your own daughter, though maybe not so overtly; just little hints and comments here and there……).

    I’m sure that with you around to provide an antidote to any nonsense she might be exposed to, then if the Catholic option really is the best for your daughter’s education, then I say go for it – as long as they teach evolution as scientific theory and not as ‘just’ a theory, and that they don’t ‘teach the controversy (which I don’t thing they do nowadays anyway, but it’s vital to check).

    And now for something completely different:

    ccdarling says:
    September 14, 2013 at 5:08 pm
    I miss the Barmaidโ€™s comment in this one. โ€ A man in a burqa walks into a barโ€ฆโ€

    OUCH! If his vision hadn’t been impaired by the burqa he might have seen that bar and avoided concussion. ๐Ÿ™‚

  56. IanB says:

    I am wondering if Author had a time machine since this came up yesterday ๐Ÿ˜€

  57. two cents' worth says:

    Marky, as I mentioned in the discussion under a previous strip (, I survived 10 years of Roman Catholic education in the U.S.A., and, aside from the religious education, I got a good foundation that served me well in college. I agree with botanist–visit the school, talk to the teachers and staff, and see whether the school would meet your daughter’s needs and nurture her strengths. Also, ask whether she would be required to attend the religious education classes and services (mass). There was a student in my RC high school who was not RC, and she was excused from religious ed. classes and masses. She spent that time studying in the library.

    In addition, when you visit the school, you could inquire about the number and/or percentage of the students who are not RC. Ask about arranging to talk to those students and/or their parents about your concerns, such as what they like and dislike about the school, how they are treated there, whether there is any religious brainwashing or pressure to convert, etc.

    For what it’s worth, my dad (who was brought up RC from birth) attended a prestigious RC high school run by Jesuits, and he says that they’ll make you a either a believer for life or an atheist for life. Dad now calls himself an agnostic leaning towards atheism. Your daughter is not old enough for high school, but she is “a strong willed thinker who asks all the right questions,” and she has the advantage of having you as her parent. If she attends the RC school, you can help her learn a valuable life skill: how to spot and resist others’ attempts to brainwash her.

    If nothing else, attending an RC school will give your daughter experience in working with people whose beliefs differ from hers. It will give her opportunities to think through her own beliefs (or lack thereof), to practice debating about beliefs, and to increase her ability to defend her worldview.

    It may feel to you as if sending your daughter to the RC school would be like giving her her first swimming lesson by tossing her into the deep end of the pool. But if you were to insist that she be schooled only with atheists, you would be like my cousin and his wife (Jehovah’s Witnesses) who kept their children out of the pool completely by home-schooling them, because they did not want their children to come into contact with anyone who did not share their faith. If there is no good secular school available to serve as the shallow end of the pool, you’re faced with a trade-off: (1) place her in the RC school and supplement her moral/ethical/philosophical education at home a bit more than you’re doing now, while also keeping a close eye on her science education; or (2) place her in the best secular school you can find and supplement her education on practically all subjects (which might not be difficult, if your daughter enjoys reading, and if you take advantage of resources such as Khan Academy). Only you know yourself and your daughter well enough to make this decision. Good luck!

  58. two cents' worth says:

    IanB, thanks for the link! Most of the people quoted in the article struck me as having reasonable views about whether and when women should be restricted from wearing full-face veils. However, I disagree with Ameena Blake, vice president of the Muslim Association of Britain. She asked, “Are women who wear the niqab, or face veil, really a threat to national security any more than a nun or any other individual who chooses to dress in a way that is maybe not the same as the majority of people?” While nuns, Sikhs, and others who dress in certain ways for religious reasons wear clothing that is not like what the majority of people wear, they do not hide their faces. In Western culture, people may cover their faces in specific situations for health or safety reasons (when they’re doing surgery or skiing, for example) or for entertainment reasons (such as when they’re acting in a play or attending a masquerade party, for instance); otherwise, only bandits and other villains cover their faces. The niqab looks more like a bandit’s mask than a surgical mask.

    In my opinion, women who wear the niqab can be somewhat more of a threat to national security than women who don’t wear it. When we are dealing in person with women who have covered their faces, we can’t be sure they are who they say they are, and we can’t get any clues about their intentions from their facial expressions. That said, I’m sure there are plenty of spies who do not wear the niqab and who succeed both in being accepted as who they say they are and in schooling their facial expressions so that they reveal nothing about their intentions.

    I think that it is reasonable to require women to reveal their faces in certain situations (such as when they are proving their identity in court), but, otherwise, women should have freedom of choice when it comes to wearing the niqab, just as they can choose whether or not to wear gloves and a hat every time they go out in public. With luck, as niqab wearers (and those who promote the niqab) become accustomed to living in societies where most women (and even many Muslim women) do not wear the niqab, the niqab will go completely out of style in those societies.

  59. HaggisForBrains says:

    Two cents’ worth – my tuppence worth is to agree with you, and also repeat your thanks to IanB.

  60. Today in western society, we women suffer from what I call: “The Inverse Burka”.
    Western society now wants women to dress and act like whores. Women’s clothes are made for pleasing men’s sight, not for being confortable nor useful. Happily women are not punished for not being slutty, just we receive a few complains from stupid people.

  61. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    If you think that women not being swaddled from head to toe and with just a slit for the eyes is all it takes to condemn them for ‘dressing and acting like whores’, I suggest you consult a better dictionary.

  62. MarkyWarky, if we were speaking of a boy, I’d be more inclined to say that it doesn’t matter, despite the reputation for the kind of intference Richard Dawkins reports. But my experience of women who were tainted, however briefly, by the Catholic sickness, is that the indoctrination is subtle and very hard to recognize, but truly nasty. So my advice, for what it is worth, is go secular if you possibly can. Good luck.

  63. hotrats says:

    Travelling Pics:
    Western society now wants women to dress and act like whores.

    Western society is half female. Does this half also want to dress and act like whores? Or is it just the men? Either way, a meaningless slander. ‘Acting like whores’, if it means anything, means standing on the street, offering sex for cash, which I don’t see increased evidence of.

    So it’s about ‘dressing like whores’ – a sentiment indistinguishable in the mind of the writer from ‘dressing like women’, that is to say, wearing whatever they like while modestly keeping their nipples, arses and genitalia covered. This is not in any sense an ‘Inverse Burka’; it is simply No Burka.

    Womenโ€™s clothes are made for pleasing menโ€™s sight, not for being confortable (sic) nor useful.

    To quote George Carlin, you just have to stand back in awe at the crass, pompous misogyny of this statement. The contempt for a woman’s comfort and freedom of movement it includes has its ultimate expression, surprise surprise, in the uncomfortable and restrictive burka.

    Travelling Pics, please note that the site has a rule about comments of a sexist nature which your post has clearly infringed.

  64. Delilah says:

    Nowhere in the Qur’anic text is there any religious compulsion for women to conceal their faces,which is a pre-Islamic practice and un-Muslim originating in ancient Persia and subsequently adopted by mysogynistic Muslim society. For Muslims to claim that the niqab/burka is Islamic is deceitful and disingenuous -it is little more than a primitive tribal habit. It is in fact illegal for masked women to undertake the pilgrimage to Mecca or perform their daily prayers, so why then do they need to cover up here?

  65. Acolyte of Sagan says:

    Delilah, maybe because they can hide their women away from us mortal men, but they daren’t hide them from Allah.

    Or maybe they’re just mysogynistic control freaks.

  66. Chugg11 says:

    I joined up here specifically to answer Marky Warky’s question: my son goes to a catholic secondary school and he’s still as atheist as I am! He says that it’s a very good school but when they start “going on about religion, I just shut my brain off.” From the mouths of babes…

  67. OMG A Flying Horse says:

    They’re not oppressed Women, they’re just Muslim Goths….


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