Sharia a campaign issue?


POSTED: Thursday, April 26, 2012 - 9:29pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 - 10:37am

There’s been a lot of talk nationally about the use of other legal systems in US courtrooms.
The most worrisome for some is what they perceive as the increasing use of Sharia or Islamic law in this country.
But is it really being used, and why has this issue even intruded into our Smith County Sheriff’s race?

So, what is it exactly? And what are the odds you will ever have to worry about it being a factor in the Smith County Courthouse?

Well, the answer to the first question is, it is religious law in the faith of Islam. In fact, it’sw redundant. Sharia means law.
The answer to the second question is, the odds are slim and none.
And one candidate for Sheriff, Larry Smith, says he won’t enforce it if asked to.

The other candidates, Bobby Garmon, chris Green and Donn Rust, find it a law. Why would that have anything to do with the job of Sheriff?”

Marc Stern is an attorney with the American Jewish Committee.
“But there’s no legal possibility of this happening," He says. "No political probability of this happening. There doesn’t even seem to be any substantial feelings within the Islamic community in the United States to have that happen. So, no. the short answer is no, there’s no basis for it.  If an Orthodox Jewish couple or a Catholic couple or a Muslim couple go into a civil court to get a divorces, which they have to do, the court is not going to say, well, you’re Jewish or Catholic or Muslim, and therefore going to apply that body of law. The courts uniformely, without exception apply secular, domestic law. The courts won’t enforce religious law on unwilling people. The establishment clause of the constitution makes that illegal in possibility. And there are no cases to the contrary.”
Now, there was one case, by one judge in New Jersey 2 years ago, that used Sharia as the basis for a decision. He was overruled and there have been no others.

Any contract entered into by members of any religious faith, can specify any terms they mutually agree to.

They can agree to abide by Sharia, Talmudic, Catholic, or Protestant principles.

In the event of a legal dispute, the only thing the court will decide, is did they abide by the agreement, not whether any of those principles make sense.

Courts have made those sorts of decisions for years, though.

Here’s where the confusion comes in. There are cities like Dearborn, Michigan, with a large Muslim population. And some city ordinances reflect their faith, like the public broadcast of the call to prayer.

But that isn't using Sharia in court, only in local ordinances.

And, there are other cities who’s local laws reflect the faith of their population. Blue laws  or the ban on liquor sales in Tyler have religious origins.

Salt Lake City has local laws that reflect it’s Mormon majority. You may have trouble finding a Starbucks, but if you go to court, it’s the same law as in New York, Chicago, or Houston...or Tyler.

And that isn’t going to change.

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Worry if you like. Talmudic law has been a part of court cases as well. Add that to your worry list. My Episcopal Church is wrangling over dissident congregations and church property disputes. Throw them in as well. You can't be too careful.

Well, TX, I am theauthor of the piece, and you have demonstrated your lack of knowledge about the legal system. The New Jersey case was mentioned in the story, if you will notice, and it was quickly overruled by an Appeals court. The other case you cite is an example of a court using the rules the two parties have agreed to use. Those rules may be Talmudic, Catholic, Baptist or Sharia. The court just decides, did you abide by the terms you yourself set. Nice try.

So the fact that it was overturned is proof that we have nothing to worry about in the future?
Your story quoted an expert as saying the following regarding the possible use of Sharia Law:
"there’s no legal possibility of this happening," You said the odds of sharia being used here were "slim and none."
I was taking on the absolute you posited that it can't happen here. That is pure arrogance. We MUST be on guard that this type of thing does not happen here. Ignoring attempts is sophistry.

here are two examples that took me all of 3 minutes to find.
Call me an alarmist but should we just ignore the possibility completely? I think that is ignorant and imprudent advise if you know anything about the goal of a Caliphate. ( KETK might want to look up that word, it is key)

Why are you let fear govern your thinking? I think you are just being a Chicken-Little crying out that the sky is falling.

ketk "staff" emailed me on my personal email account where they informed me as follows:

The office or jurisdiction of a caliph. The last caliphate was held by Ottoman Turkish sultans until it was abolished by Kemal Atatürk in 1924.

Now I challenge them to look into the Caliphate conferences that have taken place in THE UNITED STATES as recently as last year. The goal is to reestablish a global caliphate. But let's talk about political correctness and the right....right?

Hello....there are already several cases on record in the United States where the judges have used Sharia law. KETK et al cannot be this dense. IT takes 5 minutes to find these cases online with proper sourcing. Yet another sad example of the confirmation bias so evident in their stories and opinion pieces.

KETK has it right because any of the cases you are referencing don't set any precedents nor do they matter to anyone except the participants (allowing sharia canons in divorce arbitration if both parties agree isn't that bad since arbitrations aren't very enforceable).

To take it further though, would you have a problem if LDS canons were used to help guide a court decision decided in Utah? Quakers in Pennsylvania? Again.. Chicken Little, the sky really isn't falling.

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