What's wrong with modesty?
The whole concept
of burquas and female social status is alien to Christians who haven't read Paul's discourse on the place of women in church and in public. Any talk of the propriety of the maintenance of gender roles now is a political heresy that gets men and women alike profoundly mad at you. Men don't mind it until they realize that if the middle east's philosophy on morality were practiced with purity, a man who looked at another woman other then their own wife would have as much to fear from loss off life and limb as the women who's purity Islam strenuously tries to protect.
I personally chose a wife who I see as an equal and who I have no problem arguing with so long as neither of us go to bed angry. I don't mind when other men look at her because I have made it a life's art to make her so satisfied that the thought of straying holds no enchantment for her. I admit that I am not immune to the concept of jealousy but I have found that not doing anything to prevent that innate form of paranoia to set in is silly.
Islam takes a more physical and practical approach to things. In the thinking of the Muslim community it is foreign to think of giving women a voice in matters they consider as a man's duty because if a man were doing their duty by their wife then their wife would feel so coddled and loved within their sphere that their women folk would have no cause to worry about such things.
The only part of this tradition that I cant stomach is when the roles of men and women are enforced by the sword so to speak and sometimes quite literally. It also makes me favor such beliefs as the Tia community have on this subject when I note that in Tia-land executions of the law such as the observations made during the epic, "Anna and the King," are made without regard to gender in all cases. I have not observed that the Muslim community always observes the evenhandedness of justice in such cases. I have noticed however that they can cause societal vendetta over it that is recognized by law as a valid form of justice. Does the difference between state executed justice between the genders matter verses private executions between males when one feels like they were wronged by the other? Who can say?
Anyone who considers their religion to be even based on the bible really has no room to condemn such things when the old testament is replete with examples of the lord through Moses declaring that violations of morality are punishable by death. It is amusing that by the time of Christ, the religionists of the time had twisted the original edicts much the way as some poor examples of Islamic executions of justice had. At one point Christ had to point out that he who was without sin in that respect should be charged with carrying out justice. None who stood to condemn the women taken in adultery was willing to face their consciences on the matter, especially when Christ wrote their sins in the dirt.
On the whole, Islam exists and is largely trying to live their religion the best that they know how. In as much as they do so with honesty and justice I really cant fault them for that. They often outshine many in the US who destroy their lives with immorality and lack of chastity. So long as they play fairly what is the harm of a little extra fabric to keep their women safe from the lusts of the undisciplined? Any Man who has a daughter of teenage years would be a liar to say that he didn't wish it were acceptable to do the same.