A legal adviser for the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee is demanding that a Georgia judge apologize for jailing a woman who refused to remove her hijab, the traditional Muslim head covering, in court.
Abed A. Ayoub writes:
The hijab is worn by millions of Muslim women in accordance with their belief in Islam. Some choose to wear a hijab, a symbol of modesty, while others do not…
In America, a majority of Muslim women who choose to wear a hijab cover only their hair, leaving the face visible for identification, as was the case with the woman sent to jail by [Judge Keith] Rollins.
Asking a Muslim woman to remove her hijab upon entering a courtroom is similar to asking a nun to remove her religious habit, a Jewish man to remove his yarmulke or a Sikh man to remove his turban.
Ayoub also makes the legal case that Rollins’ actions were unconstitutional.
Title III of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prevents an individual from being deprived of or threatened with the loss of equal protection of the laws on account of race, color, religion or national origin by being denied equal use of any public facility. Denial of access to a courtroom based on religion is blatant discrimination.
Read the rest of the statement in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.