UKIP's Paul Nuttall has suddenly decided that this country needs to ban the burqa - that is the covering some Muslim women wear over their faces.
I suspect that most people confuse the burqa with the niqab and the hijab which cover the head and face to different extents - but the principles around this debate are the same for all.
His arguments are confused and lacking logic and come at a time when UKIP is falling behind in the polls.
He argues that it is not about 'singling out Muslims' which is strange since (as far as I know) only Muslim women wear them. He says that it is about security and that 'you need to see people's faces' and that it is about integration.
He is not suggesting that any other 'bans' are brought in to ensure that everyone shows there faces at all times - not for motor cyclists when not riding their bikes for instance; not for men with full beards - not for people wearing face enveloping hoodies - not for anyone else - just Muslim women.
He says that to make CCTV effective, and make us all safer, we need to see people's faces.
He acknowledges that we are meant to be the most surveilled society in world but far from being concerned about this he seems keen that we need to make fullest use of it - in the case of Muslim women anyway.
Just for good measure - he says that it is also about 'integration' - presumably he and his supporters are waiting to integrate in some fashion with the few Muslim ladies who wear the burqa just as soon as they remove them - something for these women to look forward to I am sure.
If not - just what does he mean by integration? What is going to be happening in relation to these women, that will improve overall integration, once they have to remove their burqas that is not happening now?
Does he imagine that other people will suddenly start interacting with these women in a way that they are prevented from doing so at the moment?
It is touching that UKIP are suddenly so keen on integrating with these Muslim ladies - very inclusive of them!
It seems obvious that any law to ban burqas would discriminate against Muslim women alone and there is no evidence that it would make us safer - other than people like Paul Nuttall saying it would. I hope that Parliament would have a problem passing any such law on that basis.
Any such law would mean that at some stage some police officer somewhere in the UK would be faced (as it were) with either arresting an otherwise innocent women out shopping for the day or forcing her to remove the burqa - not a great thing for this country to aspire to.
Personally, I am not a great fan of anyone covering their faces in public - but then I am not fond of aggressive looking males wondering around with vicious looking dogs - but my not liking it isn't good grounds to outlaw anyone else doing doing things or wearing what they like.
Of all the people out and about in our towns and cities - a lady pushing a pram wearing a burqa is not, in my opinion, a threat to me or anyone else.
This is about the worst kind of politics. This is politics that picks on minorities who cannot defend themselves in order to gain votes and says more about Paul Nuttall and UKIP's polling numbers than it does about a small number of ladies who cover their faces when they go shopping.Suggest a correction