‘Supporting respect for the principles of the Republic’- A Promising Macron Bill Advantage
French President Emmanuel Macron’s landmark project has seen approval as the newly passed bill will now acknowledge that mosques, schools and sports clubs cannot overlook French culture and values.
This has left the Islamic clergy a little jittery and unsure about their authority in France. With 65 abstentions, the bill was passed in the National Assembly House by a majority vote of 96. Macron has been arms and about after a French teacher was shot dead in broad daylight for using a cartoon depiction of an Islamic prophet to teach his children in school.
Systematic acts of violence rocked France amidst the pandemic scuffle for vaccines later last year. But Macron did not mince his words when he said, he would not tolerate such heinous religious crime in his country and would look for a permanent solution.
Critics however feel that Macron has been trying to consolidate his power towards the forthcoming elections. The proposed law is being seen as a political ploy to lure the right wing to Macron centrist party.
The bill has been called ‘Supporting respect for the principles of the Republic’. It is being seen as a wide ranging bill that covers most aspects of French life. However, it being contested by Muslim community residing in France and elsewhere. It is worth noting that Islam is the second most noted religion followed in France.
The bill will be brought in front of the Conservative controlled Senate in end of March, but by then, it is being seen as a bill that will pass and not receive any resistance.
While there is suspected whiff of political agenda in the passing of the bill, the ground reality is that the bill mentions neither Muslims nor Islam in name. Instead it has pointed out that it was important to snuff out encroaching fundamentalism that had continued to subvert French values, notably the nation’s foundational value of secularism and gender equality.
Ironically, all of this actually looks like an indication that Islam has to be curtailed in it functioning in France, at least. The bill will go onto ban virginity certificates and crack down on polygamy or forced marriage, practices not formally attached to a religion but prominent in Islam.
The bill would also ensure that children can attend regular school starting from the age of 3 years, a way to target the predominance of home schooling, and provide training to all public employees in secularism. The bill has also guaranteed that Islamic run non-profits, mosques and religious organisations do not get funding help from foreign interests or homegrown Salafists with a ‘rigourous interpretation of Islam’ as a prominent media agency put it.
This indeed puts a stop to countries like Iran and Qatar who have gained advantage by funding such organisations and encouraged terrorism activities in Europe and West.