On July 15, international media outlets reported the European Union’s top court ruling that companies may ban Muslim employees from wearing a headscarf under certain conditions.
While the ruling states that “justification must correspond to a genuine need on the part of the employer,” considering widespread anti-Muslim sentiments in the EU, the ruling is essentially a green light to limit social and economic participation of Muslims.
The latest among a series of anti-Muslim legal actions in the EU cannot and should not be analyzed only through the legal prism.
Evaluation of notorious anti-Muslim rulings, widespread in the EU, if conducted only through the legal lens, provides an indirect justification for anti-Muslim policies camouflaged by legality and legal jargons.
The latest decision is nothing more than a political act to literally squeeze Muslims out of Europe and limit their societal impact.
After the latest ban, Muslim women will find it even harder to secure employment.
All this is happening in a continent that touts women’s rights and freedom.
Europe’s (and the West generally) concept of freedom for women means they can bare themselves but not cover up.
The EU court’s latest ruling provides just enough of a loophole for political institutions not to be labeled as blatantly anti-Muslim.
Worded carefully, with clear political considerations of EU’s soft power in mind, the ruling serves as additional pressure on Muslims to abandon key tenets of their faith.
At the same time, it gives EU enough space to continue to market itself as a bastion of “freedom” and “equality.”
The ground realities, however are different.
The top court’s ruling violates article 10 of the EU constitution that guarantees freedom of religion for all people residing within its borders.
It also reflects the total failure of EU’s soft power appeal.
Muslims—both men and women but especially women—have rejected the West’s hedonistic culture.
This terrifies the West, hence its hysterical reaction.
The latest Islamophobic ban will continue to produce undesirable political outcomes for Europe.
Ghettoization and increased racism now underpinned by legal cover, will lead to the destabilization of EU at the social level.
Further, it will dissuade many Muslims from participating in the electoral process through established political parties.
This, however, might produce an unintended positive outcome for Muslim communities in Europe.
It will push them away from elite-dominated political parties and encourage Muslims to participate in elections as independent candidates.
The confederative nature of EU provides legal and social opportunities for people to participate in local politics across EU borders.
Muslims can potentially form a pan-European Muslim political bloc outside the stifling influence of local establishment political parties.
The EU’s confederative set-up allows a stronger Muslim community in one locale to compensate for the political, economic, and social weaknesses of Muslims in another.
For example, Muslims in France can serve as a powerful voting bloc for Muslims in the Czech Republic.
By utilizing their numbers in France, they can assist Muslims in the Czech Republic to push for policies through EU institutions.
Muslims already have a national political infrastructure within many EU countries.
If Muslim organizations in Europe decide to convert their administrative and human capital into a united political voting bloc, they will be a political force to reckon with.
The key to success of this strategy lies with Muslims adopting participation in the electoral process as independents.
Today, in most EU countries Muslim are used as scapegoats or political football.
This has been the case mainly because Muslims have been placing too much faith in EU’s establishment connected political parties.
The latest EU ruling might serve as a catalyst for Muslims to initiate a political mechanism which would give them political leverage to end their dependence on a racist political caste.