Swiss vote against minarets but they should be allowed in augmented reality
Part of my family is Swiss, so I followed the recent referendum on minarets with more interest than I normally would. They have voted to ban construction of minarets on mosques. But the debate seems to have missed a key point. The world is no longer limited to physical appearance. We now have augmented reality, albeit just the very first instances. In a few years time, augmented reality will be well developed and will feature heavily in everyday life. Today we use mobile phone displays but soon many of us will use some sort of head-up display, and we will see all manner of computer generated information and images superimposed on our real world field of view. Social, political, religious and business groups will use augmented reality to produce customised overlays that include their particular symbols. So for muslims, this could be used to produce the image of a minaret, for anyone interested in seeing it. Muslims can have virtual minarets, and as many as they want, without interfering with the physical reality of a mosque. French Muslims can have virtual burqas too if they like. And everyone else can choose whether they want to see them or not.
Virtuality is an excellent vehicle for allowing different tribes of all kinds to live peacefully side by side. They can agree what common ground they have an make laws on physical architecture, dress codes or whatever that apply to everyone. And then they can use augmented reality to customise it and personalise it, at tribal or individual level.
Ban on minarets? No problem any more. just build them in virtual space and everyone can be happy.