The burkini should be an article of assimilation, but fear and misinterpretation has made it an instrument of oppression. Burkinis allow women of the Muslim faith the opportunity to go to the beach like anyone else, giving them a doorway into cultural and social assimilation while preserving their religious beliefs. However, through inexplicable logic it makes these women targets of ostracism.
As a part of Western culture people are free to be who they are, and believe in what they do. That acceptability is a crucial aspect of western nations. The issue with the burkini ban is that it takes that freedom away and perpetuates anti-Western sentiment. Westerners are seen as disrespecting Muslim way of life and oppressing those who follow it, and through that lens, they grow to despise Western ways of life, which feeds into radical Islamist ideas.
Women are free to be nude on (certain) beaches, and by the same right appointed them that, they should be allowed to be covered.
That being said, comparing the burkini to the habit is not completely accurate because while they are both garments that represent a certain faith, the habit is not worn by all women of the Catholic faith. It is only worn by nuns, who are ordained into the church and serve it not as lay people but as a part of the clergy. It is their official clothing that tells the world that they are nuns–that they have dedicated their lives to the Church.
The burkini, on the other hand, is worn by traditional Muslim women but, it is not an official clothing (swimsuit)for women dedicating themselves to their faith. There is no version of a nun in Islam, and that is what makes the situation incomparable, not the clothing itself.
That however, does not change how wrong it is to social ostracize and humiliate these women when all they are doing is exercising their right to wear what they want and follow their own faith.
If it’s really banning religious symbols, then that should be a universal ban, not one targeting a certain religion.
These women are not provoking the public, just as a nude woman on the beach isn’t provoking the public.
Trauma and sensitivity is one thing, and it is understandable why the people are afraid and angry, but this makes it worse. Muslims died on July 14 as well, and now their families are subject to oppressive laws on top of that. They get it the worse– to have experienced their family members killed and now to be reminded of that in a horrendous way, all because of religion.