Stephen Harper shared his thoughts on whether women should be allowed to wear niqabs at Canadian citizenship ceremonies, and now Twitter users are sharing theirs too.
In fact, so many people have tweeted responses to the prime minister’s recent comments on the subject that, as of Wednesday afternoon, a hashtag meant to mock said comments was trending Canada-wide.
Do you have photos or stories to share in response to Harper's niqab comments? Reach us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by tweeting your photos to @CBCTrending.
Such is the nature of digital democracy.
The #DressCodePM hashtag sprung up on Twitter Wednesday morning, less than 24 hours after a debate on the oath and the niqab took place in the House of Commons.
“We don't allow people to … to cover their faces during citizenship ceremonies,” said Harper, who has called The Federal Court’s move to strike down a 2011 ban on niqabs “offensive.”
“And why would Canadians, contrary to our own values, embrace a practice at that time that is not transparent, that is not open and, frankly, is rooted in a culture that is anti-women?” he continued during Tuesday’s debate. “Mr. Speaker, that is unacceptable to Canadians, unacceptable to Canadian women..."
Both Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and NDP Leader Tom Mulcair have criticized the prime minister’s viewpoint on the niqab — Trudeau during a speech in Toronto on Monday evening, and Mulcair on Wednesday as he left the NDP’s weekly caucus meeting.
“When he talks about a culture of 1.8 billion human beings as being anti-woman — he just decreed that yesterday in the House of Commons,” said Mulcair on Wednesday. “They're trying now to back away from it, but he said what he said and that's very divisive and it's irresponsible, and it's undignified from a Canadian prime minister."
Opposition parties aren’t alone in their criticism of Harper’s assertion that it's “offensive” for women to cover their faces, however, as photos on the aforementioned #DressCodePM hashtag shows.
Thousands have tried to get their point across by asking the prime minister on Twitter if what they are wearing — either for cultural, practical, or personal reasons — would meet with his seal of approval.
Many are also using the hashtag simply to take shots at the idea that any woman in Canada should have to seek approval from anyone, to wear anything, ever.
Need clarification. Does PM Harper need to approve my wife's clothing or can any man do it? #dresscodePM— Rob Nickerson (@TheRobNickerson) March 11, 2015
I am wearing black jeans and a long sleeved black cardigan today. Am I looking oppressed, Mr. Harper? Just checking. #dresscodePM— Canteach (@canteach) March 11, 2015
Telling women what to wear is no different than telling us what we can or cannot do with our bodies. #dresscodePM— toni (@popoffculture) March 11, 2015
You can see what else people are sharing on the #DressCodePM hashtag right here.