Preppy with a dash of Islamaphobe: Abercrombie & Fitch 'wrong' for firing hijab-wearing girl
A federal judge in San Francisco has ruled that retailer Abercrombie and Fitch was wrong to fire a Muslim store employee for wearing a hijab.
The firm had fired Hani Khan from its Hollister store in San Mateo in 2010. At the time, Abercrombie claimed that the outfit violated the policy governing the look of its employees, the Associated Press reported.
The firm had argued that a consistent look across all stores was a crucial part of its marketing strategy. In her ruling, US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers said that the firm had failed to show that Ms. Khan's had affected the company's sales.
The First Amendment of the US Constitution makes religious freedom a guaranteed right of every person residing in the United States. However, since 9/11, Muslim women wearing hijabs have been singled out in public spaces and workplaces on religious grounds. Most recently after the Boston marathon bombings, a Palestinian woman wearing a hijab was assaulted and abused in public.
Unlike the French government which has banned the wearing of hijab in public schools, the American government has protected the rights of Muslim women to be faithful to their religious beliefs. In his famous speech in Cairo in 2009, President Obama memorably said:
Freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one's religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.
What do you think? Will Abercrombie and Fitch's sacking a woman for wearing a hijab affect your decision to shop at their stores?