… that the British legal establishment supports a judge’s insistence that a woman accused of a crime remove her burqa in the courtroom.
Michael Turner QC, chairman of the criminal bar association, insists Judge Murphy made the correct decision. He told Radio 4: “The public are entitled to see an individual who is entering their plea.
“If you carry it forward to the trial process and a person in a full burka intends to give evidence, is it right that the jury cannot see the person giving evidence?
“Our whole courtroom is set up so that a jury can see a witness give evidence and the reaction of that witness is very important in terms of the jury’s thinking.”
A similar principle applies in the university classroom. Professors who cannot see their students cannot teach them very well, since they have lost one important way of knowing whether students are understanding them. We rely on facial expressions – among other clues – to tell us how we’re doing.