Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has dismissed the idea of a burkini ban in Canada, for he believes his country is inclusive to everyone’s rights. Trudeau’s comments come after he was asked about France’s controversial decision to ban burkinis and as some Quebec lawmakers are considering outlawing them as well.
Trudeau has been applauded for his progressive views, and the burkini ban is something he is standing up against. At least 15 towns in southeast France have banned the body-concealing Islamic swimsuit. These towns include Nice (also the target of a jihadist attack in July), which fined a woman for wearing a burkini to the beach. And the Muslim garments are also banned in Cannes, the Corsican village Sisco, and Villeneuve-Loubet.
As the ban is spreading across southeast France, lawmakers in the primarily French-speaking Quebec are considering its own burkini ban. Trudeau dismissed this notion and defended individual rights:
“We should be past tolerance in Canada. In Canada, can we speak of acceptance, openness, friendship, understanding? It is about where we are going and what we are going through every day in our diverse and rich communities.”
Trudeau went on to say he did not want Canada to become a country where a government preaches tolerance but didn’t act on it. He said, “Tolerating someone means accepting their right to exist on the condition that they don’t disturb us too, too much.”