What you refuse to understand is that, contrarily to the original costumes and dresses the muslim community has been wearing for more than sixty years in France, this new *fashion* of hijjab / veil ... has a mainly religious, i.e proselytist, meaning.
I don't refuse to understand anything, I'm just not sure what that has to do with anything I've said. If, as you claim, the burkini is only a fashion then let to be fashionable, because fashions change.
Nor do I consider religious and "proselytist" necessarily synonymous, although they may sometimes be.
As for each woman's right to dress the way she feels, I'm a bit surprised nobody defends them when they live in SA, Iran, Kuwait, Yemen.....( fracking long list...)
This thread isn't about Saudi Arabia, or Iran, or Kuwait, or Yemen or any Muslim majority country. Having been brought up in Middle Eastern countries, I am much more surprised that not more is said about the rampant homosexuality in those countries, where homosexuality (or at least sodomy) is widely practised but is often punishable by death.
But I thought we were talking about France.
As for your happiness at the harmonious relations between muslims and the rest of the population in New Zealand, I find it quite ridiculously disingenious : with less than 0.8% of the population, they are just about invisible...
Okay, you find it disingenuous, even ridiculously so. The fact remains that I live in a country that has a remarkably harmonious relationship with its Muslim communities.
France does not have an exact figure for their numbers as it is unlawful to enquire / poll / ask about personal beliefs ( would you believe it is about personal freedom ? ), so one could only derive an estimation based on the origins of the population : with the four generations of North Africans and the people from west Africa, plus about 150 000 converts ( btw, that figure represents four times the total number of muslims living in NZ, which puts your allegation into perspective), the total is about 7 million, roughly 11% of France's to-day's demography.
Not exactly the same situation as in kiwiland, I guess.
But it was France who let - allowed, invited, encouraged or didn't discourage - all those Muslims to move to France.
Of course, it isn't the same situation at all as in "Kiwiland", but - I didn't make an allegation. I made a statement (that "I am happy to live in a country, etc....."). Just as I am I happy to go to France, as I am next month, a country where I have only ever had good times.
Expect soon the dress laws to be a lot more harshly applied : four women - who had the right to wear islamic dresses - have just been arrested for preparing a terrorist attack. Only their amateurism and silliness - the poor things had not really studied the physics of fire - prevented a multiple gas bottle explosion near Notre Dame.
Then those women, if found guilty, should be punished to the full extent of the law, but I don't understand what that has to do with anything I've said.
Contrarily to what you think, the problem of islamic integration in France is in fact made a lot more difficult by the rise of provocations from the more militant groups ( those you call *devout*, they come from now rather well known communities ).
Sure they do, although I object to you putting words - or definitions - in my mouth. In my experience not all devout people embrace extremism and not all extremists are actually devout.
Last thought : it looks reading the posts on this thread that this is a country-wide situation : Not so . Have you ever heard of problems in the bay of Biscay, Brittany or Normandy ?
As a matter of fact out of the 4170 km of coast line, only a very few, well identified areas were concerned, and these areas are not the places were we have the densest muslim population... just the Côte d'Azur where dozens of people were killed / maimed and where, in fact, after the attack there was a very moving sense of sticking together, both muslims and others...
That couldn't have pleased the extremists, could it ?
Again, I'm not sure what point you are trying to make. I believe that the only way we can go forward is by joining together, both others and Muslims. But that joining together does not require that they abandon their religion nor that I abandon my non-belief.