Wearing the veil, Islam of France, Halal or Kosher meat. What are the differences between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen on the subjects that interest Muslims and Jews in France?
A week before the second round of the presidential election, which must decide between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, the French are more than ever torn between giving the president a second chance or signing a 5-year contract with chaos in France.
If the campaign of the far-right candidate, Marine Le Pen, went like a letter in the mail, thanks to a smoothed image, appearing at the limit less “extreme” against the polemicist Eric Zemmour (whose score collapsed after her speech rained for a while), today her demons are catching up with her.
In addition to the weakness of its economic program which already reveals flaws, other divisive subjects which had been relegated to the background during the first round, resurface for this last match which will have to decide between it and Emmanuel Macron.
Her selfie taken with a young veiled girl, a cleverly orchestrated communication operation to give her an image of a woman open to difference, tolerant of Islam, has in fact no impact on the content of her program and its extreme positions vis-à-vis Islam in particular.
And it is on his fight against Islam in France, which also touches on the fundamentals of the Jewish religion, that his program makes all the difference for the Jewish and Muslim community in France and therefore differentiates it from Emmanuel Macron.
Wearing the veil, beard, yarmulke and religious symbols
On this aspect, although it is oriented specifically against Muslim women in France, Marine Le Pen will have to target all the religious communities present in France, whether they are Jews, Muslims or Christians.
The project of the far-right candidate plans to ban the wearing of the veil in public space. According to her, veiled women would do it because they were forced to, which is obviously false.
Its text is well calculated, it only targets the Muslim religion. It distinguishes between wearing a headscarf and an “Islamist” headscarf, and de facto exempts all other women who would like to wear a headscarf in the street, in particular nuns, even if they would normally fall under the its “ban”.
According to the representative of the far right, she would not however prohibit “a religious sign”, she distinguishes an “Islamist uniform”. By playing on words, it would thus seek not to oblige all the other religions to submit to the prohibition of ostentatious religious signs.
Emmanuel Macron, also has a record contrasted by controversial positions on Islam, in particular by remarks made by his Minister of National Education Jean-Michel Blanquer denouncing “Islamo-leftism” in universities, or by his Minister of the Interior with its law on separatism and the dissolution of associations and the closing of mosques…
However, he did not go so far as to endorse the headscarf ban. “To ban any religious sign in the public space is not secularism,” he declared in early April on Brut. On April 15, he returned to the charge by denouncing an extreme project which would make France “the first country in the world which prohibits the veil in public space”.
For the president, a candidate for re-election, if Marine Le Pen’s project were to be implemented, the French Constitution would oblige him to also ban the kippa, the cross, and all other religious signs, so that he would not there is no discrimination between believers of different faiths.
If Marine Le Pen’s plan were to pass, veiled women in the street would have to be ticketed and could have to pay a fine. If Marine Le Pen focuses her speech only on the veil, in reality, it is only a detail of a bill dating from February 2021.
Article 10 of this proposal would like to prohibit in the public space “signs or outfits constituting by themselves an unequivocal and ostentatious affirmation of Islamist ideologies”. Thus, “certain” beards, which are thicker than others, could be prohibited, as they are considered “Islamist”.
And outfits like jellabas or outfits for praying would also be prohibited. Except that in the bosom of these clothing prohibitions, should also appear the outfits of religious Jews and Christians.
For the Jews of France, seeing Marine Le Pen at the head of the country is just as problematic as for the Muslims. “We must remember the past remarks of Mrs. Le Pen, who also wanted to ban the wearing of the kippah to Jews, presented as a + small sacrifice + in the name of the fight against Islamism”, declared to Le Monde, the president of the central Consistory, and lawyer, Elie Korchia.
“From then on, you have to position yourself on programmatic elements. And, with the chief rabbi of France, we speak in the name of the defense of religious freedom”, added the one who called with the chief rabbi of France, Haïm Korsia, to vote for Emmanuel Macron
Halal and Kosher meat
Another subject unites the Jews and Muslims of France around the candidacy of Emmanuel Macron. And there, it is about the freedom of the religious practice and their way of nourishing themselves.
Marine Le Pen’s program plans to ban the traditional slaughter of these two religions, non-negotiable conditions of their way of eating as dictated by their religion. With the ban on Halal and Kosher slaughter, the candidate threatens to open the third largest Jewish community in the world and the largest in Europe.
She would like to prohibit the slaughter without prior stunning of cattle, which is contrary to the religious rites of Muslims and Jews who cannot eat the meat of an unconscious animal. This would therefore prohibit a thriving halal and kosher meat industry.
Emmanuel Macron was indignant at this measure, in his speech following his passage to the second round. He said he was against “a France that prevents Muslims and Jews from eating as prescribed by their religion”.
Reacting to this ban on the slaughter of religious cattle, Elie Korchia considered that it was a “very violent charge” against the Jews in France. “This question is fundamental for us. It worries us all the more since the president of Mrs Le Pen’s party, Jordan Bardella, has declared that he wants to ban the import of kosher meat as well,” he said.
“This really calls into question the way in which French people of the Jewish faith can continue to live in our country. It is a very violent charge to our way of living our religion,” added the religious representative.
For him, such a measure represents a serious attack on the freedom of religious practice and “it very clearly calls into question the possibility of continuing to practice our religion, as we have always done”.
He also recalls that for Jewish citizens, just as for Muslim citizens, this is “a serious attack on the possibility of freely exercising their religious practice, which is a foundation of our Constitution”. he wrote in a press release also signed by Haïm Korsia, the chief rabbi of France.