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Veiled problems

First, I want to say that I know one or two Muslim men, and they are nice blokes. One, our ex-appartment caretaker was a family man, of Egyptian origin. I don’t know how devout he was, but his wife dressed traditionally, although she did not wear a veil, so I suppose they were both practicing Muslims. Anyway, this chap was very pleasant and friendly and had a very gentle and unassuming character and certainly did not conjure up any images of being a potential suicide bomber or anything terrible like that. The other Muslim I know is under thirty, single and has his own transport business – well, one van so far, but I imagine he will expand when he is ready. Also Egyptian, this chap seems so spend a lot of time renewing his residency permit, permesso di soggiorno. He too, is a very pleasant chap. He is not devout, but does respect Ramadan.

At the moment in Italy, the subject of banning the wearing of veils is being discussed by the government. Now, I’m not wholly against, as I once was, I’ll admit, the wearing of veils, but banning them completely does seem too extreme a solution to a situation which possibly would never have arisen if it were not for 9/11 etc. There must be better ways for encouraging integration. Perhaps some simple form of induction course for immigrants, great and small, should be implemented in order to help immigrants understand a little about Italian culture (This would have been useful for me too). After all, it only seems reasonable to me that if you want to live in another country then you should make some effort to fit in with the locals or ‘when in Rome do as the Romans do’ to coin a particularly apt expression.

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Societies are becoming, or have become multi-cultural and multi-denominational nowadays, so perhaps something could also be done at school to help youngsters of all backgrounds to understand those about them.

It is a shame that the actions of minorities seem to have such a negative effect on majorities, but that does seem to be life, alas.

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