I was travelling most of August, so imagine my surprise in returning home to find Nice splashed all over the news yet again… but this time for the completely ridiculous and reactionary burkini ban! …And the viral video of armed Nice police passing their time making women disrobe on the beach for ‘good morals’?! Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.
The burkini ban sprouted from an extremely misguided knee-jerk reaction against radical Islamic terrorism… which the attack in Nice wasn’t, by the way! News stories keep co-mingling the Paris and Nice attacks as if they were the same thing, but they were absolutely not. The Nice attack had far more in common with the pathetic German Wings pilot that wanted to end his sad life in a blaze of glory by plowing an airplane into a French hillside taking as many innocent people with him as possible. That’s what this was here in Nice, no more no less, except instead of an airplane, a truck.
Here are 5 things that you might not know about the Nice attack:
- While perhaps technically a Muslim, the perpetrator was not at all religious: he ate pork, drank alcohol, took drugs, was a petty criminal and a womanizer, didn’t pray, didn’t observe Ramadan, and never went to the mosque.
- He was a lone wolf and had no direction from anyone in Isis. Isis was more than happy to take credit for the carnage but actually had absolutely nothing to do with either the planning or execution. It was all him.
- He had been planning his attack for over a year: He had photos on his phone from the 2015 Nice Bastille Day. Ominously, his photos were not of the fireworks, but only of the crowds of families and children that lined the Promenade des Anglais. His interest in Isis only started just two weeks before the long-planned attack date, maybe as a way to find a justification.
- The very first person that he swerved onto the sidewalk to mow down and kill was a veiled Muslim mother of seven, wearing a full hijab. If he was making a statement against Western values, would this really have been his first target?
- A third of the 86 people killed by this psychopath were Muslim. And now their families can’t go to the beach? Hello?
It is normal that people want someone or something to blame for an act so incomprehensible, but to turn their fury on women’s swimwear, seems very strange indeed.
Update: The Nice Burkini ban was suspended by the courts last Thursday, with the ruling that the terror attack in July was insufficient grounds to justify it.