There is no requirement in Islam for Muslim women to cover their face. Rather, the practice reflects a mode of male control over women. Its association with Islam originates in Saudi Arabia, which seeks to export the practice of veiling — along with other elements of its extremist Wahhabist brand of Islam.
If readers have any doubt about this issue, they should take a look at the holiest place for Muslims — the grand mosque in Mecca. For over 1,400 years, Muslim men and women have prayed in what we believe is the House of God. And for all these centuries, female visitors have been explicitly prohibited from covering their faces.
For the better part of the 20th century, Muslim reformists, from Egypt to India, campaigned against this terrible tribal custom imposed by Wahhabi Islam.
This is an open thread. Please leave a comment.