Author Topic: Is this public pool giving special privileges to a certain religious group?  (Read 550 times)

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Offline rangerrebew

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Is this public pool giving special privileges to a certain religious group?

Posted By Breanna Deutsch On 9:45 PM 11/27/2013 In | No Comments


If you thought government sponsored segregation was a thing of the past, look no further than Tukwilla, Washington.

Over the past few weeks, the  gender-exclusive swimming hours at Tuckwilla’s public pool has ignited a heated debate about whether or not special accommodations should be made for certain groups of people.

Every Sunday afternoon the city pool closes its doors to men, and allows women, many of whom do not want swim in front of men for religious reasons, to swim in private for a 90-minute time slot.

Pool management got the idea for gender-segregated swimming periods after two Muslim sisters began renting out the pool a few years ago so that women could use the facilities without being seen by men.

In June of 2013 the pool management turned this privilege into a public program.

One of the sisters, Jamila Farole, explained to King Five News that she needed the private swimming time because her religion did not permit her to swim in the presence of men.

“In Islam, women need to have their privacy and preserve their modesty,” says Farole.

Not only were male staff and swimmers from the surrounding community not allowed in or near the pool during this time, but the Farole says she “would have the windows covered and also the doors so no outsiders could see in.”

“This isn’t just something I’m doing… It’s a commandment from God; men and women are not to mix together. That’s my religious belief,” Farole said at a recent Tuckwilla city council meeting.

This past summer, pool management made the women-only hours into a public program.

Some Tuckwilla residents have vocally condemned these new gender-segregated swimming periods.

Robert Neuffer, who filed a formal complaint with the Human Rights Commission on the grounds that the program was discriminatory, told King Five News the single-gender swimming periods were, “wrong, no matter how you state it no matter how it is, it’s wrong.”

“I feel that any religion that discriminates against men or women that I don’t have to respect that,” he added.

In a Seattle Times article that discussed the women-only swim time, commenters also spoke out against the program.

One of the top-rated comments, written by someone under the name of “2Times,” stated “This is a PUBLIC pool. If you don’t want to swim in public, don’t. If your religious beliefs forbid you to swim in public, find other accommodations. To expect a public facility to accommodate your religion or your insecurity issues at the expense or inconvenience of others, is selfish to say the least.”

Another commenter called “Motnam” said, “We have civil rights laws in this country and guaranteed liberty for women. The idea that women come to this country and do not take advantage of that liberating environment, but prefer to be treated like chattel, by the rules of a 13th century ideology is disgusting. If they want to live like second class citizens, what the hell did they come here for in the first place?”

Malcom Neely, an aquatics coordinator at the Tukwilla pool, told The Daily Caller News Foundation that they have no plans of ending the program. He said that during the 90 minutes set aside for women on Sunday’s they typically get 20 to 30 swimmers, “a pretty good number.”

During the male-only swimming time, which they began in order to create an equal opportunity for men to swim alone, has not been doing so well.

“The men’s swimming hours have not been as popular. We are just getting a few guys… Typically below ten,” says Neely.

When asked if the Tukwila public pool would be willing to make special accommodations for religious groups in the future, he responded “I am not sure. I guess we have not gotten there. That would be another trial.”

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Article printed from The Daily Caller: http://dailycaller.com

URL to article: http://dailycaller.com/2013/11/27/is-this-public-pool-giving-special-privileges-to-a-certain-religious-group/
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Offline Cincinnatus

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“This isn’t just something I’m doing… It’s a commandment from God; men and women are not to mix together. That’s my religious belief,” Farole said at a recent Tuckwilla city council meeting.

Hmmm, does anyone else recall the days when "imposing your religion on others" was considered a bad thing?
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Offline Atomic Cow

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Hmmm, does anyone else recall the days when "imposing your religion on others" was considered a bad thing?

Liberals always scream bloody murder about, but only if it applies to Christians or Catholics.
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Offline EC

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I can't see much wrong with women only and men only times at the pool - we have had them for years, along with parent and toddler mornings and day time restrictions on adult use while schoolchildren are using the pool.
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Offline Cincinnatus

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I can't see much wrong with women only and men only times at the pool - we have had them for years, along with parent and toddler mornings and day time restrictions on adult use while schoolchildren are using the pool.

It would appear England, though dominated by Liberalism, is not in the grips of the rampant egalitarianism one finds in the US. I, too, see nothing wrong with segregated swimming times for various groups but our Liberals wail loudly at any sign differences are recognized and public policy accommodated to that fact. At least when it is some group Liberals favor or is practiced by some group they do not. That also incorporates the "imposing your religion" meme.

It's not really the separation which is at issue but the constant, unending, obnoxious hypocrisy and double standards.
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Offline EC

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I can't see much wrong with women only and men only times at the pool - we have had them for years, along with parent and toddler mornings and day time restrictions on adult use while schoolchildren are using the pool.

It would appear England, though dominated by Liberalism, is not in the grips of the rampant egalitarianism one finds in the US. I, too, see nothing wrong with segregated swimming times for various groups but our Liberals wail loudly at any sign differences are recognized and public policy accommodated to that fact. At least when it is some group Liberals favor or is practiced by some group they do not. That also incorporates the "imposing your religion" meme.

It's not really the separation which is at issue but the constant, unending, obnoxious hypocrisy and double standards.

True. Don't mind teasing you guys from time to time about what is happening, but don't like to go too hard on the criticism, both for "glass houses" reasons and the fact that at least you are trying to stem the tide.

Rampant Egalitarianism would never make much headway here. We are a class based society and resist change bitterly (and rather successfully). Our liberals have a different definition of "fairness" to yours.
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Offline mountaineer

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“I feel that any religion that discriminates against men or women that I don’t have to respect that,” he added.
Islam discriminates against and even abuses women, and now it's getting official government approval to do so.
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Offline EC

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http://www.seattleglobalist.com/2013/11/21/women-only-swim-tukwila-discrimination-complaint/17982

A lot more detail, and a lot more balance than the original piece. Pull quote:

Quote
“When you separate males and females, it is usually designed to make females less of a person,” said Neuffer, who hopes that the program will return to being privately funded. “This whole concept here is that when women and men are separated, we lose touch with each other, eventually. It is bad for the women, and then it is bad for the men.”

Neuffer points to the religious nature of the program, but says he’s not against Islam.

“I’m a first amendment nut,” he asserted, “but I do not have to defend beliefs that make women less than human beings. I’ve seen it abroad, and I don’t want it here”.


And, as a precautionary note: Mr. Neuffer should be a tad more careful what he puts out there. It took me an entire 15 seconds to find his address, telephone number, age, profession and much more.

Keep your details private, people. Please?
« Last Edit: November 28, 2013, 07:31:24 PM by EC »
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Offline EC

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A swift follow up. Folk might think that Mr. Neuffer is some right wing whack job - after all, he invoked first ammendment and is one of those dangerous, unbalanced vets the progressives fear so much.

The list of associations his wife belongs to makes interesting reading.

        Association of Aquatic Professionals
        California Self-Insurers Association
        Global Drowning Prevention Forum
        Injured Workers Law & Advocacy Group
        Jones Act and Longshore Claims Professionals
        National Workers' Compensation and Disability Conference & Expo
        Return To Work Roundtable
        WORK COMP ANALYSIS GROUP
        WORK COMP Insurance, TPA, Self-Insured, State and Municipal Government Professional Network
        WORKERS COMPENSATION & HEALTHCARE TRANSFORMATION COUNCIL
        Wellness is a Business Strategy
        Work Comp Cost Management
        WorkCompCentral
        Workers Compensation Cost Containment Professional Network
        Workers Compensation Roundtable

The bolded one is nicely ironic for women who are trying to learn to swim in order NOT to drown.

Storm in a tea cup, this one.
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Offline Chieftain

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Islam discriminates against and even abuses women, and now it's getting official government approval to do so.

Yes, and if the public officials responsible for this pool denied them on that grounds they would be wrong to do so, and I think you know that.

The bottom line here is that this is a local issue, and if the community who pays for this is fine with it then so am I.



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