Religion connected to dress code controversies

Religion can often make people bullies.

Religion connected to dress code controversies

I’d like to add some information to the editor’s comments about the Chilliwack School Board dress code controversy. I have some personal experience involving my granddaughter approximately six to seven years ago. She was about 15-16 at the time.

First, I agree with everything the editor said. I only have some things to add.

My granddaughter went to a Chilliwack Christian day camp to explore religion. She was curious since she had no home training. Her experience was awful. She was sent home for wearing provocative clothing. She felt very dejected. It made her very confused. I assured her that her choice of clothing had no effect on how people think, of which she was told. Their thoughts had already been formulated before they saw you, I said. It is not up to her to even try to control others’ thoughts or defuse them out of fear of imminent violence or threat. It is unwise to make people paranoid over how they dress, either male or female. Each individual is responsible for their own actions, not the so-called provocateur. Bullies use “provocateurs” to bully. Religion can often make people bullies. It has happened and is happening.

My granddaughter was in a private situation, since it was church sponsored. Church and state should be separated, to my knowledge, by a virtually impenetrable barrier. Any religion that seeps in should be just that, accidental, but immediately nipped in the bud.

As far as the Chilliwack School Board goes, the two trustees in question, Darrell Furgason and Heather Maahs have reputations that suggest strong fanatical religious connections and beliefs. Furguson is a Biblical creationist and has a PhD in those studies. Maahs has conveniently opted out of the conversation, but has been known to oppose LGBT rights in the past, due to her religious convictions. She’s used the silence tactic to get re-elected by avoiding the controversy.

A simple Internet search brought up the information. The Citizen, not generally investigatory with their journalism, failed, in my opinion, to point out the fanatical religious ties of the aforementioned trustees. It’s a fact, not opinion. It would be speculation on our part to assume their religious conviction has anything to do with their trustee decisions. It would also be quite ignorant to assume their religious convictions has nothing to do with their warped view of gender role responsibility. Religion, it seems, has always put the onus on women where sexual attraction is concerned. It is women’s responsibility to be involved in controlling men’s desires, passions, and lust.

Really? Can anyone control that in anyone else? Desires and passions, lust, etc., are formulated within individuals without being inspired. It’s intrinsic. People, both genders, dress provocatively all the time. It’s an expression of oneself, an experiment in life. One should not be threatened by it. It isn’t the catalyst in why boys act aggressively, unless they’re ignorant as can be. We, as individuals, cannot be held responsible for other’s ignorance. Putting the onus on women to control men’s desires comes from men and fanatical Christian women. The Muslim religion is even more fanatical about female dress code, but men can wear just about anything. All these acts might fall under misogyny.

Gad, how is this not obvious? In Brazil, the Bolsonaro regime, anti-LGBT with strong mafioso and paramilitary ties, also has strong evangelical Christian religious fanaticism to “legitimize” their bullying. Politicians often use religion as a tactic, to back their claims. You’re either on board or not.

My suggestion: religion and politics work well together in one way only, empowering bullies. Not all individual religious fanatics are bullies, but as a whole, all religion bullies. The message, “My way or the highway”. They even say it to competing religions, Muslim sect against Muslim sect, Christian sect against Christian sect. I’ve heard evangelicals speak abhorrently toward Catholic dogma, for example. They hate the idea of pain and sacrifice as the keys to the Kingdom. Whereas Buddhists, for example, see ignorance as the source of all our pain, of which I tend to agree. I stay away from fear of the unknown, of which religion preys upon and individuals have learned to use to their personal advantage, like to get elected. Chilliwack is right in the midst of the Canadian “Bible belt” and is not disconnected from its neighbour to the south.

Daniel Ferreira


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