A case involving a Toronto woman’s right to testify in a niqab is now headed for the Supreme Court. Maybe it’s time to acknowledge that some accommodations are just plain unreasonable
Naiyra Fatah smiles when she recalls the year she first started wearing a burka, the Islamic garment that’s the sartorial equivalent of a tent. She was 13, and she loved cracking up her stepsister, then 15, as they walked to Lady McLaughlin Girls High School in Lahore.
It wasn’t easy clowning around when neither sister could see the other’s face. “So I would suck the fabric in through my mouth,” recalls Fatah, who is now 84. “My sister would always laugh so hard she would drop to the sidewalk.” Seeing my puzzled look, the elderly woman tosses a filmy floral scarf over her head and demonstrates. The effect is hilarious: a flowery ghost with a mouth that resembles the wrong end of the alimentary canal.