My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Should veils be allowed when testifying in court???

Well, no...everybody has got to see the face....
A court battle in which a woman is fighting for the right to wear a religious veil while testifying had lawyers arguing yesterday whether the eyes and a voice are enough to assess the credibility of a witness on the stand.

The woman, an alleged sexual assault victim, wears the niqab -- a Muslim veil which covers the entire face except for the eyes.

While lawyers for the men accused of assaulting the woman argue seeing her face as she testifies is a fundamental right, the woman's legal counsel says the courts routinely observe and protect religious rights.

The case, unfolding in Ontario Superior Court, is believed to be the first of its kind in Canada.

The face is needed to assess a witness' demeanour and credibility, said lawyer Jack Pinkofsky, who represents the defendants in the sexual assault case.

"You can't separate the spoken word from the face," said Pinkofsky, who argued even the twitch of an eyebrow forms part of the evidence a judge or jury can use to convict. "The face of justice cannot be faceless."

Wearing a veil wouldn't harm the court's ability to assess the woman's demeanour, her lawyers said, noting tone of voice and body language are important and the eyes complete the picture. "You can read everything in the eyes. The eyes are the window to the soul," David Butt, the alleged victim's lawyer, said outside of court.


Blogger L said...

Well yes, the veil must go. Does she really want a conviction? We are in Canada and do not read eyes only very well. I can see restricting the public for religious purposes, but not the judge and jury. Why are the lawyers being so dumb?

10:36 PM  

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