So that’s that then. Honestly, are you seriously telling me that women burned their bras for this?? The very fabric of society…or at least the beach, is about to be torn apart. Now let’s be frank here. A great deal of us go to the beach not just because it’s a great place to go on a sunny day and because there’s nothing like a swim in the sea to cool down, but because it’s also where the beautiful people go. We’ve all seen them. Male adonosis with muscles on their muscles. All pecks and disturbingly white teeth. The racks of fake breasts hanging over the tops of skimpy skin-tight swimsuits like puppies straining at a lease. The legs that go on forever and arses tighter than a Glaswegian.

But this beach party of beautiful bodies is in danger of being gate-crashed by the…….burkini? And I’m warning you all now. If this thing takes off then at this rate they’ll be more material on display on the beach than in an Indian sweatshop!! And the beaches of Spain, Portugal and Italy et al will look like homes for colonies of seals. But sadly as much as I might want to agree with our French friends here I simply cannot. Of course we have to have a certain sympathy  because as they perceive themselves to be losing their war against terrorism in recent months, they can at least make hand-fisted attempts to assert what it means to be French which includes forcing women to be half-naked on any beach in Cannes. It’s an attractive thought. I mean, you can’t just turn up on a beach in this day and age covered from head to toe and showing only the bare minimum of flesh. It’s offensive, and all women need to realise this. A half-naked woman is essential for communication and that by not allowing them on the beach is an assault on a man’s right to get aroused!! Now I’d never thought of it before, but I love the idea of armed police standing over a woman demanding that she shows parts of her body which she sees as private and intimate. It’s certainly another reason to head down to the seafront. On the other hand think of be unintended benefits that the burkini can bring. It can over up all of those ugly meaningless tattoos that make people look as if they’ve been vomited on. And with so much ugly blubber on show the burkini will certainly reduce the unattractive body quota.

Yet I’m against any ban on these hot fashion statements because if nothing else, we should always take any opportunity to exhibit the beautiful difference between us here in the liberated west and those less liberated from certain parts of the unliberated Middle East. Try walking along a beach in Saudi Arabia or the UAE wearing budgie smugglers and see how far you get.  You’ll have your speedos sliced away from you quicker than you can Abu Akhabar.

But at the end of the day, all jokes aside, the burkini is nothing more than a garment and a sign of religious modesty and, while many may disapprove of it that should at least respect it. The more important aspect of this religious clothing issue is the Burka because it covers the face and thereby signifies a refusal to integrate. It shows a disrespect to the host country and of course should be banned. So I’ll take the burkini over the burka any day of the week. It’s ironic isn’t it that so many of these women wish to escape the oppression of their native countries only to go out of their way to assert a religion that treats them as second class citizens? It’s always struck me as sad that there are these religious edicts that proscribe women from wearing whatever they please in public and it’s even more sad that so many of them are happy to go along with it. Funny how the Muslim men have no such prohibitions. It’s ok for them to swan around John Lewis wearing their Armani suits and reeking of Davidoff while their wife has a venetian blind covering her face that can only be wound up between sips of coffee.

But as far as I’m concerned if a woman of any religious persuasion or none wants to cover her arms and legs when she goes to the beach then I don’t see how it’s anybody else’s business. And to argue that this ban has everything to do with religion and nothing to do with xenophobia is a sign of indifference to the discrimination affecting minorities in France.

It’s a bit ironic don’t you think that not so long ago you had to take off all your clothes to get noticed. Now we’re facing the real possibility when the day arrives when the men will be diving into the Med wearing a three piece suit while the women sit around in the black full-length beach attire, smouldering away in the thirty degree heat like a stack of second-hand rubber tyres. Not a pretty picture I grant you but that’s no reason to call for a ban. Anyway I’m still waiting for a reply from the BBC in relation to Gary Lineker, who I demand to be arrested for presenting Match of the Day in his underwear!

Laters

30th August 2016.