Belgium is soon to become the first nation to ban the wear of Muslim veils in public (there are already laws against the fully covering burqa and niqab). France and the Netherlands are considering similar laws, and Quebec (European as it is) is set to ban veils among public employees.
The liberal MP who sponsored the Belgian bill explained: "We cannot allow someone to claim the right to look at others without being seen. ... Wearing the burqa in public is not compatible with an open, liberal, tolerant society."
Only in Europe may openness, liberality and tolerance be invoked in the context of the government dictating, by force of law, what clothes a person is permitted to wear. I recall Muslim girls who were not allowed to attend school in France (due to a headscarf ban) holding signs that read: "Thanks for sending us back to the 14th Century, France."