Thursday, November 4, 2010

This is just Insane

On election day, there were numerous ballot initiatives present in numerous states. In Oklahoma, one of these initiatives was to ban Sharia law in Oklahoma. The initiative passed.

Wait, really?

First of all, the passage of this amendment to the Oklahoma constitution directly conflicts with the United States Constitution. The 1st amendment includes the phrase "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion ... " This doesn't just mean respecting as in a positive feeling of esteem, it also mean in pertaining to a religion. Banning part of a religion, is thus, a violation of the Constitution.

In addition, according to the Rick Tepker from the University of Oklahoma Law school (in the article), there has never been a previous case in the state in which Sharia law was applied in Oklahoma. Let me be clear, there has never been a case in Oklahoma with Sharia law applied. Never. So why make an intolerant law?

Republican State Representative Rex Duncan, the author of the amendment, called it a ""pre-emptive strike." A "pre-emptive strike" against what? Islam? With the use of the phrase "pre-emptive strike" to explain such a reasoning, it is clear that Duncan considers the religion of Islam an enemy. Why would one refer to an action as a strike, if one did not intend to cause harm? With the intent of harm, comes some sort of animosity or ill-will.

This is thoroughly ridiculous, especially in a state where no instance has warranted any sort of law like that and a law that comes into direct confrontation with the 1st amendment. It just goes to show Muslims in the United States and abroad that we aren't as tolerant as our ideals put us as.

Tepker makes a point that since Sharia law is banned, part of religion, does "this means that the courts can no longer consider the Ten Commandments. Isn't that a precept of another culture and another nation?" The law hurts our image abroad, especially in the Middle East. How do we ever expect to gain the goodwill of citizens in the Middle East if our public diplomacy efforts are continuously hampered by intolerant actions like these? The appropriate thing to do now is for leaders to denounce the law and have it repealed. After all, it is un-constitutional.

Some Americans need to realize that Islam is not the enemy, it is extremist organizations. I can't believe that a law likes this gets passed in a country who prides itself on freedom and liberty. It just goes to show that there is another dimension to U.S.-Middle East relations; and it's disgusting.

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