What’s the best way to keep Islamic extremists from entering your country?
One Danish politician’s answer: boobs.
To steer away violent Muslim extremists, Peter Skaarup, foreign policy spokesman of the far-right Danish People’s party, suggested that footage of topless sunbathing women be incorporated into Denmark’s immigration welcome package:
Topless bathing probably isn’t a common sight on Pakistani beaches, but in Denmark it is still considered quite normal. I honestly believe that by including a couple of bare breasts in the movie, extremists may have to think twice before deciding to come to Denmark.
If you’re coming from a strict, religious society, that might make you stop and think, “Oh no, I don’t want to be a part of that.”
This is not some fringe party’s crazy talk. The Dansk Folkspartei—Skaarup’s political party—sat on 13.8 percent of the Danish vote last election. His suggestion is actually being taken seriously, to some degree.
Luckily, not that seriously. Here’s Praveen Swami over at the Telegraph pointing out the obvious:
Mr. Skaarup has made the mistake of reading through puritanical Islamist literature, and concluding that it constitutes a guide to the mindset of the movement’s adherents … Few Islamists, in fact, have any serious grasp of Islamic theology or heritage; their religiosity is for the most part gestural.
There’s a difference between Islamic conservatism and Islamist radicalism, which Mr. Skaarup needs to get. Both the evidence and my instincts lead me to believe that the young men who make up the Islamist rank-and-file will, most likely, react to bare breasts in much the same manner as other young men.
Naser Khader, a member of the Danish parliament and founder of the Moderate Muslims movement, agreed:
A pair of naked breasts is no protection against extremism. It’s quite the opposite: fundamentalists are so obsessed with sex that they will be pouring in over the borders. Maybe we should try with naked pigs.
Personally, I think that this is all pretty ridiculous. Muslim or not, human beings have complicated motivations. A poster or a short clip of a topless woman may be distasteful and offensive to an incoming extremist, but will it seriously make him turn on his heels and leave?
Immigrating (or, I would imagine, being an extremist) isn’t frivolous. Assuming that a topless video will deter terrorists on the other hand…
—Photo Let Ideas Compete/Flickr