Muslim Melee Over Headscarves in NYC

Bill Mattocks

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs...headscarf-ban/2011/08/31/gIQAsmWwrJ_blog.html

A New York amusement park was shut down Tuesday after local police scuffled with Muslim visitors upset over the parks headscarf ban.

About 3,000 Muslims from New York City visited Rye Playland in Westchester County to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan. When they arrived, women wearing headscarves found they could not go on some of the rides, as all headgear is prohibited so that hats dont fall onto the tracks.

When families lined up to get refunds, fights broke out and police arrived on the scene, the New York Daily News reports.

I have little doubt that this will shortly be seized upon by both liberal and conservative groups and used for their own purposes.

What appears to have actually happened is that there is a ban on headgear at the park. This is due to safety reasons. Many Muslims showed up due to an Islamic holiday, were unaware of the ban, and became distraught when told to remove their headgear or not ride the rides. Some queued up for refunds, and the story was passed that they were being denied rides because they were Muslims. Fights broke out.

The Muslims in question were clearly wrong; the police acted correctly. However, I fear that this will simply become yet another "See how they are?" post with ascerbic comments about "more from the religion of peace." Mainly because this was a local issue, the Muslims in question misunderstood the situation and it escalated with poor choices and illegal actions being taken by the Muslims in question, but it will be taken to insinuate that all Muslims are this way. It was just a communication problem, combined with some hotheads who broke the law in response. Yeah, they're Muslim, but that neither excuses them nor condemns the religion.
 
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Bill Mattocks

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Really, what else is there to say? Miscommunication indeed.

Well, I notice that Fox News is taking it in the direction of "this was a test of our defenses and willingness to bow down to Muslim demands." The various quotes being attributed to Muslims who were there clearly seem to indicate that a few of the riders who were told to remove their scarves choose to take it as an attack on their religion and not a safety rule that applied to all headgear. I also see that many of those who jumped into the fray when they saw the police throwing women on the ground and arresting them did not understand that if you assault the police, yeah, you get thrown to the ground and arrested. Doesn't matter WHO you are.

So lots of blame here. I think the blame for the fighting is clearly on the Muslims who fought with the police. But I don't think it was a test of our defenses or some kind of overall indicator of Muslim behavior.
 

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Well, I notice that Fox News is taking it in the direction of "this was a test of our defenses and willingness to bow down to Muslim demands." The various quotes being attributed to Muslims who were there clearly seem to indicate that a few of the riders who were told to remove their scarves choose to take it as an attack on their religion and not a safety rule that applied to all headgear. I also see that many of those who jumped into the fray when they saw the police throwing women on the ground and arresting them did not understand that if you assault the police, yeah, you get thrown to the ground and arrested. Doesn't matter WHO you are.

So lots of blame here. I think the blame for the fighting is clearly on the Muslims who fought with the police. But I don't think it was a test of our defenses or some kind of overall indicator of Muslim behavior.

Ah, yes, Fox pouring oil into the fire...maybe we can turn a flash in the pan into a raging forest fire yet...

Would have been interesting to be there to know how it actually went down.
I mean, you tell a veiled Muslim woman to take the scarf off, it's pretty much like telling a non Muslim woman to please get naked....it takes a little tact to convey that request without getting slapped, too.
 
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Bill Mattocks

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Ah, yes, Fox pouring oil into the fire...maybe we can turn a flash in the pan into a raging forest fire yet...

Would have been interesting to be there to know how it actually went down.
I mean, you tell a veiled Muslim woman to take the scarf off, it's pretty much like telling a non Muslim woman to please get naked....it takes a little tact to convey that request without getting slapped, too.

Well, I'm guessing here, but this is how it seems to be reading:

Ride operator tells women wearing headscarves that they have to take them off or they cannot ride the ride, due to safety reguluations.
Women tell ride operator that they cannot remove their headscarves because of their religion.
Ride operator tells them that they can get a refund on the price of the ride ticket, but they cannot ride with their headscarves on.
Women get in line to get refund.
Women explain why they can't ride.
Some people present misunderstand and think they're being denied the right to ride because they are Muslim. An argument among the Muslims in line ensues.
Some of the girls wearing headscarves and thinking they are being discriminated against confront the park security guards. Raising their voices, screaming and yelling, and refusing to exit the line for the ride or take off their headscarves.
Guards take action on the women, including throwing them down and handcuffing them.
Muslim men see this and decide it is Muslim women being dishonored, and jump into the fray.
Police arrive en masse with dogs and so on, and a brawl ensues.
Two cops injured, many Muslims injured, lots of arrests.

That's just my take on it. The whole thing went south when the girls who decided that they were being discriminated against decided to take action. Their fault; they should have known that you get arrested if you physically confront security guards or police and tell them what you will and won't do. They are to blame, IMHO. I still don't think it's a 'Muslim thing'. I think it's a 'stupid people can't follow the rules' thing.
 

granfire

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Well, I'm guessing here, but this is how it seems to be reading:

Ride operator tells women wearing headscarves that they have to take them off or they cannot ride the ride, due to safety reguluations.
Women tell ride operator that they cannot remove their headscarves because of their religion.
Ride operator tells them that they can get a refund on the price of the ride ticket, but they cannot ride with their headscarves on.
Women get in line to get refund.
Women explain why they can't ride.
Some people present misunderstand and think they're being denied the right to ride because they are Muslim. An argument among the Muslims in line ensues.
Some of the girls wearing headscarves and thinking they are being discriminated against confront the park security guards. Raising their voices, screaming and yelling, and refusing to exit the line for the ride or take off their headscarves.
Guards take action on the women, including throwing them down and handcuffing them.
Muslim men see this and decide it is Muslim women being dishonored, and jump into the fray.
Police arrive en masse with dogs and so on, and a brawl ensues.
Two cops injured, many Muslims injured, lots of arrests.

That's just my take on it. The whole thing went south when the girls who decided that they were being discriminated against decided to take action. Their fault; they should have known that you get arrested if you physically confront security guards or police and tell them what you will and won't do. They are to blame, IMHO. I still don't think it's a 'Muslim thing'. I think it's a 'stupid people can't follow the rules' thing.

well, you know that old game when you whisper a word into your neighbors ear and by the time it makes the round the message is hardly decypherable anymore?
Lastly, who knows the tone tone that was used in the exchange (on either side, actually) that sparked the tempers.
 

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Loose clothing, and headscarves are almost always loose, have gotten caught in machinery and killed people.
IMO, the park should apologize for wanting to ensure the people's safety.
 

granfire

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Loose clothing, and headscarves are almost always loose, have gotten caught in machinery and killed people.
IMO, the park should apologize for wanting to ensure the people's safety.

that is not really the point.

I think if you can communicate the issue in a non confrontational manner...
BTW, head scarves are not always lose. Most I have seen are pretty tightly wrapped around the head and pinned in place with little to no chance of it coming undone.
Your general fashionable sagging shorts on the other hand, plus lose shirts and layered hoodies....

I think the park was (as far as I can tell) NOT in the wrong by enforcing the no headware rule, though they probably envisioned baseball hats clogging the gears.

However, the devil lays in the detail.

(not sure how observant those folks were of their holiday, but Ramadan has a history of causing a lot of sleepless nights and cranky people.)
 

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In the story I read, the park is saying that they told the group that organized the trip about the rule several times before the day of the event and it apparently wasn`t passed on. But with a group of about 3,000 people who may or may not all speak the same language someone is bound to miss out on hearing all the details.
 
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Bill Mattocks

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In the story I read, the park is saying that they told the group that organized the trip about the rule several times before the day of the event and it apparently wasn't passed on. But with a group of about 3,000 people who may or may not all speak the same language someone is bound to miss out on hearing all the details.

Try going to a karate tournament where the requirements are clearly posted and communicated over and over again. MOUTHGUARD REQUIRED TO SPAR. So why do some people show up without them and claim they didn't know? Two lines, PREREGISTERED ONLY and ALL OTHERS and people stand in the wrong line for an hour and then complain they didn't know what it meant. NO TIME OUTS - and parents and coaches jump in the ring, yelling for timeout. I could go on and on. It does not seem to matter how many times you say it or print it or send it out in email, a small percentage never manage to absorb what it is you're saying or choose to disregard it. I honestly don't know how they get through life. I can only imagine the scenario you describe; I'm sure it was a huge failure of communication on both the tour operators and the tourist side. I doubt the park was responsible for this.
 

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Well, I'm guessing here, but this is how it seems to be reading:

Ride operator tells women wearing headscarves that they have to take them off or they cannot ride the ride, due to safety reguluations.
Women tell ride operator that they cannot remove their headscarves because of their religion.
Ride operator tells them that they can get a refund on the price of the ride ticket, but they cannot ride with their headscarves on.
Women get in line to get refund.
Women explain why they can't ride.
Some people present misunderstand and think they're being denied the right to ride because they are Muslim. An argument among the Muslims in line ensues.
Some of the girls wearing headscarves and thinking they are being discriminated against confront the park security guards. Raising their voices, screaming and yelling, and refusing to exit the line for the ride or take off their headscarves.
Guards take action on the women, including throwing them down and handcuffing them.
Muslim men see this and decide it is Muslim women being dishonored, and jump into the fray.
Police arrive en masse with dogs and so on, and a brawl ensues.
Two cops injured, many Muslims injured, lots of arrests.

That's just my take on it. The whole thing went south when the girls who decided that they were being discriminated against decided to take action. Their fault; they should have known that you get arrested if you physically confront security guards or police and tell them what you will and won't do. They are to blame, IMHO. I still don't think it's a 'Muslim thing'. I think it's a 'stupid people can't follow the rules' thing.

You're probably spot on with this Bill! I mean, there've been many incidents where someones hair or clothing, gets pulled into a machine, and in some cases, ending in death. Had these women been allowed on, and something like that happened, imagine the chaos then. IMO, this is a clear case of misunderstanding. Of course, I'd be willing to bet that some of the people being denied access to ride, automatically assumed it was a racial thing, rather than a safety thing.
 

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Try going to a karate tournament where the requirements are clearly posted and communicated over and over again. MOUTHGUARD REQUIRED TO SPAR. So why do some people show up without them and claim they didn't know? Two lines, PREREGISTERED ONLY and ALL OTHERS and people stand in the wrong line for an hour and then complain they didn't know what it meant. NO TIME OUTS - and parents and coaches jump in the ring, yelling for timeout. I could go on and on. It does not seem to matter how many times you say it or print it or send it out in email, a small percentage never manage to absorb what it is you're saying or choose to disregard it. I honestly don't know how they get through life. I can only imagine the scenario you describe; I'm sure it was a huge failure of communication on both the tour operators and the tourist side. I doubt the park was responsible for this.

Amazing isn't it...that there're so many people out there that seem to lack common sense. I mean really....how hard is it, to comprehend....you need a mouthpiece. Can't get any simpler than that. How the hell do some of these people function in day to day life?? LOL!
 
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Bill Mattocks

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Of course, I'd be willing to bet that some of the people being denied access to ride, automatically assumed it was a racial thing, rather than a safety thing.

That's the way I imagine it also.

Person 1: What are you doing in the refund line? I thought you were riding that ride.
Person 2: I have to get a refund, they would not let me on the ride.
Person 1: Why not?
Person 2: They told me I had to remove my headscarf or I could not ride.
Person 1: What? Why?
Person 2: They said it was a safety issue.
Person 1: That's BS! Hey, everybody! They're not letting us ride the rides because we're Muslim!


Even if you have a hundred people who understand that there is a safety rule in place and that since they can't remove their headscarves and the park operator can't let them ride due to safety issues, they have to just shrug and get a refund, if one person decides to blow their top and make an issue out of it, you have the potential for this kind of issue. Imagine one person in line who is, say, something like some of the posters on MT The Study - everything that happens is 'about' their pet peeve. So if they can't ride because of the headscarf, it must be because they're Muslim. That's all it takes - one goofball who decides that everything bad that happens is because they're being oppressed - the opposite side of the coin of the goofball who decides that everything bad that a member of a group does is representative of the entire group.
 

MA-Caver

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That's the way I imagine it also.

Person 1: What are you doing in the refund line? I thought you were riding that ride.
Person 2: I have to get a refund, they would not let me on the ride.
Person 1: Why not?
Person 2: They told me I had to remove my headscarf or I could not ride.
Person 1: What? Why?
Person 2: They said it was a safety issue.
Person 1: That's BS! Hey, everybody! They're not letting us ride the rides because we're Muslim!


Even if you have a hundred people who understand that there is a safety rule in place and that since they can't remove their headscarves and the park operator can't let them ride due to safety issues, they have to just shrug and get a refund, if one person decides to blow their top and make an issue out of it, you have the potential for this kind of issue. Imagine one person in line who is, say, something like some of the posters on MT The Study - everything that happens is 'about' their pet peeve. So if they can't ride because of the headscarf, it must be because they're Muslim. That's all it takes - one goofball who decides that everything bad that happens is because they're being oppressed - the opposite side of the coin of the goofball who decides that everything bad that a member of a group does is representative of the entire group.
I agree and it's probably what happened and it reinforces a thing that I've noticed over the years. It takes only one guy to screw it all up for everyone else.

I do see the Muslim's standpoint, having been harassed, stereotyped, experienced prejudice and so on since that day in September 10 years ago. Not their fault surely but I can appreciate how they're feeling. Problem is some are taking it as every thing is against them because of their faith. That was wrong and a cool head would've been assertive enough to find out or pay attention to what someone was telling them "it's a safety issue... and it's their RULES", instead of jumping to conclusions that they're being discriminated against and throw a hissy over it.
 
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