PARIS, France—With the looming French election in less than a month, comments from one of the contenders, leave Sikhs stunned as she passively dismisses their existence.
Marine Le Pen, a French lawyer and politician, and most notably, head of the National Front, an ultra-right-wing party, was questioned about the Sikh turban by an American news channel interviewer – she responded that Sikhs would certainly not be allowed to wear the turban in public.
The interview by the CBS channel’s 60 Minutes show, revolved around Le Pen’s alarmingly prejudiced stances against the Muslim community in France.
She was asked directly if she would allow Sikhs to wear the turban, to which she delivered her unapologetic reply.
When asked if she would allow Muslim people to wear headscarves, Le Pen states, “No, I am opposed to wearing headscarves in public, that’s not France.”
In response to Anderson Cooper’s question if a Sikh person be allowed to wear a turban, Le Pen states, “No, not in public. We don’t have a lot of Sikh people in France. We don’t really hear much from them, or about them, which is good news.”
France is a country that has already banned the wearing of the dastar (turban) in all government buildings and schools since 2004. The Sikh community in France has faced a huge struggle as they campaigned to overturn the ban, with no international support.Sikh24 Editors can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org