How Many Burqa-Clad Women Brush Past Me?

A reader writes:

A bunch. I live in the extremely multi-ethnic Uptown neighborhood of Chicago. The high-rise across the street from me has a large fundamentalist Muslim community living in it, and there are several dozen fully-veiled women who live in the building. I run into them at the bus stop, the grocery store, McDonald’s – pretty much all over my ‘hood.

And although I’m an uber-liberal urbanite who embraces my multi-culti neighborhood, I have to confess: there is nothing creepier than having a burqa-wearing woman coming at you in the cereal aisle. I’ve lived here for years and see them all the time, but I can’t help but find them spooky. They’re wraith-like and eerie. I know I’m not supposed to admit that, but it’s true.

I understand that it is (theoretically) their choice to wear the veil, but the same is not true of their daughters. I have seen few sadder things in my life than the day I ran into one of my neighbors at the store, and saw that her adorably goofy and energetic little daughter had suddenly been converted into a somber, ghostly, black-clad shadow of herself. That was the first time I felt like a burqa ban might not be such a bad idea….

2006-2011 archives for The Daily Dish, featuring Andrew Sullivan

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Just In