The controversy is a good example of the conflict between the rights of individuals to make their own choices and the need for society as a whole to maintain cohesion. There is no doubt that the burkini is an affront to present day western values as it stigmatises women's bodies as morally 'indecent' and thus unfit for public display. It should be remembered that the burkini is not too dissimilar to the voluminous swimwear worn by women a century ago in Britain. In both cases the justification for this obsession with extreme female 'modesty' was to appease religious sensitivities. Most people in western society can now see that this outlook was nothing more than an irrational superstition, and that women's bodies at their best can be aesthetically very pleasing, and even when they may not be, they are still completely harmless.
France, like Britain, has sleepwalked into the calamitous folly of allowing millions of immigrants into their countries whose first loyalty is to their religious indoctrination. Many in these separated communities are inherently hostile to modern western values. As we have seen in recent times some of their more zealous members feel sufficiently motivated to murder and main their fellow citizens in pursuit of their faith's dogma. So it is not difficult to understand why many French people do not particularly wish to be reminded of the superstitious symbols of this violent religious primitivism when visiting their beaches.
So the French ban is not an attempt by the state to tell women what they must wear. Instead it is to draw a line, and send out a clear signal, that the secular values of their society will be upheld and that there will be no surrender to primitive religious superstition. This does undoubtedly infringe individual choice, but it should be remembered that the only people wearing this impractical and gross beachwear are Muslim women who, since a very early age, would have been indoctrinated by upholders of their faith into believing that excessive and absurd notions of 'modesty' are somehow virtuous.