When headscarves block a vision

The Rhetoric

“There is a certain reason why the rules are like this. We want the kids to be in the same uniform, to identify together…and integrate with one another.”
DPM Lee Hsien Loong on why schools disallow tudung, Straits Times, Jan 28, 2002

The Reality

“Pupils aren’t mixing, study finds. Study of 4,400 neigbourhood school pupils shows that most children prefer to stick with friends of the same race.”
Straits Times, July 26, 2003

“What evidence is there to show that schoolgirls wearing tudung will cause racial disharmony? On the contrary, allowing students to wear their headscarves to schools will expose schoolchildren to diverse cultural practices at a young age. We can teach them that differences in our clothes and religion and language are good things, and that they should be embraced. This is what will enhance racial harmony.”
Dr Chee Soon Juan at the Speakers’ Corner on Feb 15, 2002. He was fined $3000 and subsequently barred from the next election.

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