It is no secret that Muslim immigrants are having a difficult time adjusting to Europe. Many of them are not used to living in a liberal democracy where all human rights are respected, and they definitely aren’t used to women being treated as equals.
Such was the case when two Muslim teenager immigrants in Switzerland refused to shake the hand of their female teacher.
They claimed doing so would “violate” their religious beliefs.
Here is how the Swiss responded.
Switzerland has suspended the citizenship process for the family of two teenage Muslim brothers who refused to shake hands with female teachers.
The brothers aged 14 and 15 said physical contact with women who were not family members was against their faith.
Officials in Therwil then told them not to shake male teachers’ hands to avoid gender discrimination.
But politicians insisted that shaking hands was part of the national culture.
If you won’t abide by the basics of a national culture, should you be allowed to become a citizen?
This has sparked a conversation in Switzerland about integration and religious tolerance.
Swiss Muslim groups have chimed in.
There are about 350,000 Muslims in Switzerland, which has a population of 8 million.
Some Swiss Muslim groups said there was no religious justification for refusing to shake a female teacher’s hand and urged the Swiss not to give in to extremist demands. But one Islamic organisation said a handshake between men and women was prohibited.
There have been similar disputes where Muslim parents have demanded that their daughters be exempt from swimming lessons.
However, Muslim families have won court victories against schools that attempted to ban the full face veil.
So it seems to be that Switzerland is at a crossroads. Do they give in to sharia or do they respect their history of democracy and freedom?
More on another crisis in Switzerland in this video:
Are the Swiss reacting to this crisis properly? Share your thoughts!