Hijab, Sports and Racism


Elham Syed Javad 26, a Muslim industrial designer in Montreal (Quebec) has come up with a Hijab which would satisfy religious feelings of Muslim women taking part in competative sports and the ‘Islamophobe’ sport officials who refuse to allow Hijab-wearing Muslim girls to participate in sport on lame accuses of ‘safety concern’. “Your beliefs shouldn’t prevent you from playing sports,” says Elham, who doesn’t wear Hijab in her daily life.

Elham’s ‘sports Hijab’ (photo above by Peter Mccabe, courtesy of Toronto Star) fits tightly around the head and is part of a sports shirt underneath. It is tested by some Muslim athletes at a martial arts tournament last weekend and passed with flying colors.

Canada is a multicultural society, but due to pro-Israel politicians and government officials and mainstream media propaganda – Muslims who make Canada’s largest religious minority – are targeted the most for their religious beliefs, especially since September 11, 2001.

A small Quebec town Herouxville published a code of conduct for migrants which among other things advised them that it was unacceptable to “kill women by stoning them in public, burning them alive, burning them with acid, circumcising them, etc.” Maybe the town elders were not aware of the survey that they were living in the society in which more than 23% of school girls have sexual experience before the age of 13.

In February 25, 2007 – A referee ordered 11-year-old Asmahan Mansour of the pitch during a National tournament game for wearing Hijab. Her team and four others walked out of tournament in protest.

In December 2007, the bosses of Quebec’s two major unions told the Bouchard-Taylor commission that Muslim public servants, teacher and judges should not be allowed to wear Islamic symbols (Hijab, etc.).

In December 2007, the Alberta Soccer Association put a temporary ban on Al-Ikhwat (Sisterhood) soccer team from playing for safety reasons (13 of its 18 members wear Hijab) – CBC, December 6, 2007.

Family of 14-year-old Safaa Menhem demanded an apology from the referee who refused to allow her to play indoor soccer while wearing Hijab – The Gazette (Montreal) November 26, 2007.

The Canadian Press reported on May 14, 2007 – Muslim women who participate in competitions sanctioned by the World Tae Kwon Do Federation will not be allowed to wear Hijab. The ruling came in response to two Muslim girls being banned to take part in a competition in Longueuil, Quebec.

11-year-old Hagar Outbih was banned to participate in a judo tournament in Winnipeg because of her Hijab – Canadian Press, November 19, 2007.

On May 21, 2008 – the Bouchard-Taylor commission in his report submitted to Quebec provincial government concluded: “There is nothing wrong with Hijab. It’s no real threat to Quebec values. And most women wear it here by choice, not because of coercion.”

However, Israeli ambassador Alan Baker was not happy with the commission ruling. He showed his concern (reported in Globe and Mail, May 8, 2008) over the growing number of Muslim Canadians who might cause a shift in Canada’s Middle East policy. He said that Muslim communities have had impact on foreign policies of such countries as France (Muslims elected a Zionist Jew, Sarkozy, as President of France, right!!!).


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