Anti-Sharia Movements’ Unintended Consquences For Jews, Native Americans, & Others - update 5/16/13

Anti-Sharia Movements’ Unintended Consquences For Jews, Native Americans, and Others

by Sheila Musaji


  In the article Islamic Sharia and Jewish Halakha Arbitration Courts, The American Muslim has been following the development of this anti-Sharia movement.  That article discusses many issues, including Constitutional issues and issues of freedom of religion.

We already have a Constitution that clearly overrules any possible application of law that would in any way impair the Constitutional rights of Americans.  As I said in the article on Sharia and Halakha

As an American Muslim I would be opposed to any suggestion that Sharia replace our American legal system for American Muslims or any other Americans, and I would be the first to fight any such possibility.

However, the inclusion of Sharia arbitration or alternative dispute resolution that might be utilized by Muslims who so choose after signing a binding arbitration agreement (signed by both parties in a dispute), or that might file an amicus brief with the court is not an alarming new idea.  In fact, it is an existing option for religious communities.  Any decision rendered by a tribunal or a panel of mediators is subject to appeal to the courts and must be consistent with American law and our Constitution.

One issue that was touched on in that article has become much more obvious as time passes is the issue of UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES.

 
RAMIFICATIONS FOR U.S. CITIZENS INVOLVED IN INTERNATIONAL LAW CASES

Rep. Phil Jensen who introduced an anti-Sharia bill in South Dakota ultimately backed away from the bill.  Tim Murphy noted that this may have had something to do with the unintended consequences of such bills.  He notes

“According to Roger Baron, a professor of family law at the University of South Dakota, the ammendment’s prohibition on foreign laws would remove the state from a number of agreements concerning child custody and child abduction. Because those agreements hinge on reciprocity, “foreign countries will not enforce our custody decrees,” he warned in a letter to policymakers in Pierre, which he provided to Mother Jones. “The result will be that a disappointed custody litigant will have every motivation to improperly take the child to a foreign country and remain beyond the reach of international law.”

In other words, the Sharia ban would replace a non-existent problem (in testimony this week, proponents of a Sharia ban could not produce a single South Dakota case in which Islamic law had been a problem) with a bunch of very real ones. And to that, add a long list of other potential problems: Thomas Barnett, executive director of the South Dakota State Bar, told legislators that a similar bill would in effect prohibit courts from citing Common Law; a representative of Citibank, which is headquartered in Sioux Falls, testified that the same bill would hurt its ability to honor contracts overseas (and by extension, South Dakota); and the ACLU argued that, as in Oklahoma, a proposed ban would impede the administration of tribal courts.

But on Thursday, after first speaking for 10 minutes on various crimes committed by Muslims abroad and in the United States (none of which occured in South Dakota), Jensen announced a major discovery: It is apparently already illegal in South Dakota to behead your wife. “It was discovered by our judiciary [committee] that we already have in our code protections that should cover the concerns addressed,” he explained. Well, yeah. The committee then voted unanimously to kill the proposal.

This time, Jensen never addressed the unintended consequences of his bill, nor did he respond to a request for comment from Mother Jones. The fight’s not over, though. Next month, the legislature will still reconsider* SB 201, a statuatory ban on the use of foreign laws that don’t grant “the same fundamental liberties, rights, and privileges.” It’s nearly identical to the anti-Sharia laws that have passed in Tennessee and Louisiana, as well as ongoing proposals in more than a dozen other states.

Rep. Sally Kern of Oklahoma submitted a revised anti-Sharia bill.  As Think Progress notes Kern’s bill still violates the free exercise and establishment clauses of the First Amendment — the violation that compelled a federal judge to block SQ 755 in the first place. CAIR-OK Director Muneer Awad notes that “in an attempt to target Islam without using the wording” of SQ 755, HB 1552 “will actually target all religions” by denying “people the use of Jewish Law, Catholic Law, or any other religious law” in private contracts “while also jeopardizing international business contracts that include forms of arbitration, choice of law clauses, or foreign law clauses” — just like SQ 755. Indeed, SQ 755 is so poorly written that would ban the long-standing rights and sovereignty of Native Americans.

These people are so blinded by bigotry that they are not thinking through the unintended consequences of attempting to limit the Constitutional rights of one group of Americans.  Such injustices toward any single minority always spill over and begin to have consequences for other minorities, and ultimately for the entire society.

 

RAMIFICATIONS FOR OTHER RELIGIONS & COMMUNITIES

THE JEWISH COMMUNITY

Another “unintended consequence” of the anti-Sharia movement - San Francisco has a proposal to ban circumcision of male children on the November ballot. 

The JTA (a Jewish publication) notes that:

Although experts say it is highly unlikely the measure will pass—very few state propositions pass, much less one this controversial—the mere fact that it reached the ballot, and in such a major city, has caused much concern for Jews and their allies.

Opponents of the bill see it as a violation of the Constitution’s protection of religious rights and an infringement on physicians’ ability to practice medicine. More than that, however, the measure is being seen as a frontal attack on a central tenet of Judaism.

“The stakes are very high,” said Nathan Diament, director of the Orthodox Union’s Institute for Public Affairs. “Circumcision is a fundamental aspect of Jewish ritual practice and Jewish identity. While we certainly hope the prospect of its being enacted is remote, the precedent it would set and the message it would send would be terrible, not just in the United States but around the world.

...  The Jewish community responded immediately and loudly to the San Francisco ballot initiative, with denunciations from across the nation. The American Jewish Committee called it a “direct assault on Jewish religious practice” that was “unprecedented in American Jewish life.” The Orthodox Union said the measure is “likely illegal” and is “patently discriminatory against Jews and Muslims.”

That the anti-Sharia craze would also become an anti-Halakha issue was something that could be seen coming from the beginning.  Another article discusses two of these issues:

Two traditions that have been mainstays of Judaism are under attack in different parts of the world these days for the same reason: people who feel morally superior have decided that circumcision and Jewish dietary requirements for animal slaughter are cruel and inhumane.

...  Until such time as hunting and fishing are no longer acceptable sports; until such time as all 7 billion people on Earth agree to fulfill God’s ideal of humanity being exclusively nurtured on herbs, fruits and vegetables, governments should not be telling people of any religious tradition, let alone those who introduced God to humanity, how to fulfill the Divine Will.

So now, not only halal, but also kosher rules are coming under fire.

Justin Elliott reports that

...  some Jewish groups are now lobbying against anti-sharia bills that have been drafted—possibly as a way to preempt constitutional challenges—to bar any and all foreign or religious law in U.S. courts, not just sharia:

“The laws are not identical, but as a general rule they could be interpreted broadly to prevent two Jewish litigants from going to a beit din,” a Jewish religious court, said Abba Cohen, the Washington director of Agudath Israel of America, an Orthodox umbrella group. “That would be a terrible infringement on our religious freedom.”

A number of recent beit din arbitrations that were taken by litigants to civil courts—on whether a batch of etrogim met kosher standards; on whether a teacher at a yeshiva was rightfully dismissed; and on the ownership of Torah scrolls—would have no standing under the proposed laws.

A spokesman for the Orthodox Union explained that a prohibition on religious law would be a problem in situations when Jewish law comes up in civil courts:

Such laws “are problematic particularly from the perspective of the Orthodox community—we have a beit din system, Jews have disputes resolved according to halachah,” Diament said. “We don’t have our own police force, and the mechanism for having those decisions enforced if they need to be enforced is the way any private arbitration is enforced”—through contract law in the secular court system.

Ron Kampeas in the Jewish week reports that:

The threats posed by the anti-sharia laws—passed by referendum in Oklahoma and under consideration in 13 other states, according to a study by the liberal Center for American Progress—led Agudah and the Orthodox Union to join in an American Jewish Committee-spearheaded letter to state legislatures urging them to reject such laws.

“The impact of this legislation goes well beyond prohibiting religious tribunal resolution of monetary or ministerial disputes,” says one of the letters, to the Arizona state Senate. “It would apparently prohibit the courts from looking to key documents of church, synagogue or mosque governance—religious law—to resolve disputes about the ownership of a house of worship, selection and discipline of ministers, and church governance.”

The unlikely combination of signatories, which also include the American Civil Liberties Union, the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty and Americans United for Separation of Church and State, signal the breadth of opposition to the legislation targeting Islamic law.

One ADL statement in opposition to the anti-Sharia movements across the country noted in part:

Directly targeting Shariah law or disguised in terms of protecting against the “application of foreign law,” these offensive and completely unwarranted measures target a phantom threat. Such bills do not merely attack Islam, but rather they are an assault on all persons of faith because they hurt the free exercise rights of all Americans.

...  Anti-Shariah measures are redundant and wholly unnecessary. They are also harmful to religious freedom. For instance, Jewish beit din tribunals following the requirements of secular arbitration law arbitrate disputes ranging from divorce to multimillion-dollar claims. Christian religious panels such as the Peacemakers Ministries/Institute for Christian Conciliation function in a similar manner.

Operating within constitutional parameters, there are numerous cases where courts have enforced the arbitration decisions of Jewish and Christian tribunals or incorporated such tribunals’ factual determinations into rulings. Anti-Shariah measures likely would prohibit this judicial practice. Furthermore, some of these measures would raise questions about statutes that take into consideration or reference religious laws, including prohibitions on false advertising of kosher food.

Anti-Shariah measures are nothing more than another example of politicians playing to bigotry and fear to score political points. Polarization, vitriol and fear must be replaced by reasoned and civil debate. An excellent place to start is proving to be right here in Texas, where legislators of good faith are rejecting this offensive and harmful anti-Shariah legislation.


THE NATIVE AMERICAN COMMUNITY

The various Indian tribal groups are considered sovereign nations.  Many of them have treaties with the U.S. government

Trevor Brown reports that

David Narcomey, a business owner and member of the Seminole Nation, said he sees dangers beyond just the religious issues at stake over the controversial Sharia law state question…  “This could blossom into a major threat to the sovereignty of our Indian nations,” Narcomey said. “There really is just a remote chance it could happen, but Pandora’s box can be opened with just that one case.”

...  Oklahoma University law professor Taiawagi Helton, along with many other legal experts, said he thinks there are First Amendment problems by singling out the one religion. But Helton said the lesser-discussed language created by the state question that courts cannot look to the “legal precepts of other nations or cultures” could pose a problem if it is applied to tribal legal cases.

Helton, who specializes in American Indian law, said the “ambiguous” language could be interpreted in a way for the state to reject rulings based on tribal laws. He said an “opportunistic” person could argue tribal laws do not apply in arbitration cases or when the state is called to resolve a dispute.

Barbara Warner, executive director of the Oklahoma Indian Affairs Commission, said she too has heard concerns the state question could carry a “detrimental” impact to tribes.

The Oklahoma Indian Affairs Commission released an analysis of the anti-Sharia law that said in part:

The referendum proposes an amendment to Article VII, Section 1 of the Oklahoma Constitution to forbid state courts from considering or using international law, and specifically Sharia Law, in rendering decisions.  While aimed at prohibiting the influence of Islamic law on Oklahoma court decisions, the text of the proposed amendment reveals that it could also damage the sovereignty of all Oklahoma tribes in the process.  It completely ignores the possibility that an Oklahoma state court may be called upon to apply the law of any of the 39 Indian tribes located with the borders of Oklahoma to resolve a dispute.

...  The language of this proposed amendment starkly reminds us that some Oklahoma lawmakers forgot that our nation and state were built on the principles, blood, and backs of other nations and cultures, namely, out [sic] tribes. It also ignores that Oklahoma tribes have become valuable economic partners with the State that it cannot afford to ignore or exclude.

If SQ 755 is approved, the lack of specific tribal law language could easily be interpreted by a state judge to leave no room to refer to a tribe’s law to determine the existence of a valid waiver of a tribe’s sovereign immunity, for example. Thus, SQ 755 has the potential to provide state court judges with yet another opportunity to further erode tribal sovereignty. A state court judge could rely on the amendment’s absence of recognition of any tribal law to avoid or disavow its application.Tribes and tribal members should be aware of this glaring omission for Oklahoma courts to look to and apply our tribal laws when appropriate, and vote on this question accordingly.

Gale Courey Toensing reports in Indian Country Today that

The movement against Sharia (or Shariah) not only targets Muslim Americans and their First Amendment right to freedom of religion, but also threatens American Indian sovereignty, law and the government-to-government relationship between indigenous nations and state and federal governments, says Gabriel Galanda, a member of the Round Valley Indian Tribes and partner in the law firm Galanda Broadman of Seattle. “The various state laws being passed or proposed would quite literally prevent any state court judge from ever considering the laws of sovereign Indian nations, including tribal common law,” he says. “Anti-Sharia laws also fly in the face of the United States’s recent adoption of the [U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples], especially insofar as such laws could disallow state courts from ever considering the declaration and its import domestically.”

...  Banning any kind of religion or spiritual practice is a mistake, says Mohawk spiritual leader and Longhouse Chief Tom Porter, Bear Clan. “It’s a danger to everybody. This country is supposed to have been founded on the principle of people being allowed to practice any religion they want, so I don’t know how they can make a law against any religion,” he says.

The Haudenosaunee (or Iroquois) Confederacy—the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca and Tuscarora Indian nations—have a moral guide called the Code of Handsome Lake that is analogous in some ways to Sharia. Handsome Lake was an Iroquois prophet in the 18th and 19th centuries, and his code derived from a vision sent to the Iroquois people, Porter says. “The vision said that the white people from Europe who came here will use five things to control and manipulate and take over the Indian people, who had innocence like children; they hadn’t learned quite how to manipulate like the Europeans did.”

As is true with Islam, Christianity and Judaism, Iroquois people follow the Code of Handsome Lake to varying degrees. “Some people follow it and some people don’t,” says Kay Ionataiewas Olan, Mohawk, Wolf Clan, a storyteller and educator who has worked as Porter’s assistant. “Some people take from it what they feel is appropriate for their life and what their understanding is about how we’re supposed to live our lives and don’t necessarily accept everything in the code.”

Legislating against Sharia “opens the door” to similar actions against others, she says. “It’s setting a precedent and sending out a message that it’s okay for one group to dictate how other people think and act. If there are people who think they can decide which freedoms can be allowed and which don’t have to be respected, then we don’t know who they’re going to disrespect next. It’s a little frightening—no, it’s very frightening—to think there’s a group that thinks this is okay.”

... Galanda heartily endorses Miles-LaGrange’s ruling and cautions that “anti-Sharia laws could set Indian law back decades, if not centuries. By that I mean that statutory and common-law notions of state-tribal full faith and credit and comity—in other words, honoring the decisions of each other’s courts—could be vitiated,” he says, explaining that under an anti-Sharia provision, state courts could no longer consider tribal laws that bear on issues ranging, for example, from whether a tribe waived its sovereign immunity for commercial dispute, to whether a tribe has codes or customs and traditions regarding what is in the best interest of an Indian child in an Indian Child Welfare Act dispute.

The National Native American Bar Association (NNABA), of which Galanda is an officer, is so concerned that the ban on Sharia and international law in state courts could lead to the prohibition of states’ consideration of tribal law that it passed a resolution in April opposing any such law. Amidst a flurry of “whereas” clauses, the resolution says, “NNABA hereby denounces any state law or effort that seeks or operates to outlaw a state court’s consideration of tribal law, or to forbid a state court from honoring the laws or decisions of other states in which courts consider tribal law.”

Galanda thinks even more needs to be done. “Indian country should stand in opposition to the anti-Sharia movement,” he says. This anti-Sharia contagion is not being spread in our drinking water—there is an organized effort to instill fear of Islam and Sharia.

Even the Harvard Civil Rights - Civil Liberties Law Review hs expressed concern over the possible unintended consequences of the anti-Sharia legislation, saying: A little talked about issue that raises extremely serious sovereignty concerns is the wording of the Oklahoma measure that prohibits state courts from considering, not only Sharia law, but also the law of other “countries, states, and tribes.” Courts have traditionally given tribal courts broad jurisdiction and resisted incursion because of the risk of violating treaties between the U.S. and what are considered to be sovereign nations. These concerns militate decisively in favor of striking down the Oklahoma law.


UPDATE 5/16/2013

A new report has been published by the Center for American Progress (CAP).  The 66 page report Foreign Law Bans:  Legal Uncertainties and Practical Problems  was written by Fazia Patel, Matthew Duss, and Amos Toh.  You can download the PDF here They note in their introduction that:

Over the past two years, a number of state legislatures have moved to ban the use of foreign or international law in legal disputes. As of the date of this report, lawmakers in 32 states have introduced and debated these types of bills. Foreign law bans have already been enacted in Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, and Arizona, while a related ban on the enforcement of “any religious code” has been enacted in South Dakota. Most recently, intensive campaigning by the Anti-Defamation League and religious freedom groups resulted in the defeat of a proposed foreign law ban in Florida. But at least five states are poised to pass similar measures in 2013 and 2014: Missouri, Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, and Iowa. Table 1 below illustrates the anti-foreign law movement across the country.

Although packaged as an effort to protect American values and democracy, the bans spring from a movement whose goal is the demonization of the Islamic faith. Beyond that, however, many foreign law bans are so broadly phrased as to cast doubt on the validity of a whole host of personal and business arrangements. Their enactment could result in years of litigation as state courts struggle to construe what these laws actually mean and how they interact with well-established legal doctrines. The legal uncertainties created by foreign law bans are the reason why a range of business and corporate interests as well as representatives of faith communities have mobilized against them. The American Bar Association, the country’s largest and most respected association of legal professionals, has also passed a resolution opposing the bans.

The most vociferous proponents of foreign law bans are a small network of activists who cast Muslim norms and culture, which they collectively and inaccurately labeled as Sharia law, as one of the greatest threats to American freedom since the Cold War. Ground zero for this effort was Oklahoma, and the lessons learned there provided a template for anti-Sharia efforts in other states. On Election Day 2010 Oklahoma voters overwhelmingly approved the Save Our State referendum, a ballot initiative that banned the use of Sharia in the state’s courts. While the Oklahoma measure was immediately challenged in court, and ultimately struck down as unconstitutionally discriminatory toward American Muslims, its proponents launched a nationwide movement to recast anti-Sharia measures as bans on foreign and international law. This involved removing specific references to Islam in order to help the measures pass legal muster and successfully tapping into deep-rooted suspicions about the influence of foreign laws over the American legal system. While the intent of foreign law bans is clear, proponents of these bans hope that the foreign law veneer will save the measures from being invalidated on constitutional grounds.

Most foreign law bans are crafted so that they seem to track the rules normally followed by courts when considering whether to apply foreign law. State courts consider drawing upon foreign law in situations ranging from contract disputes where the parties have selected the law of another nation as controlling, to cases where the validity of a marriage or custody arrangement concluded in another country are questioned. And state courts routinely apply foreign law provided it does not violate U.S. public policy. State courts, for example, will not recognize polygamous marriages, which are permitted in some Muslim countries, and most of them will not recognize marriages between same-sex couples, which are permitted in many European countries. While cases involving foreign law occasionally impinge upon American public policy concerns, most are quite uncontroversial. A typical case involving foreign law—described by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in a recent speech—would be one where the Court, for example, was called on to decide whether a corporation organized in the British Virgin Islands was a citizen or subject of a foreign state. The answer to the question depended on English law, and so the Court naturally looked to that body of law, said Justice Scalia.

The very premise of foreign law bans, however, is that law that comes from outside the United States is something to be feared. The bans depart sufficiently from current practice and jeopardize well-established rules regulating the application of foreign law in American courts. Several of the bans suggest that the use of foreign law is prohibited not only when the law at issue in a particular case is at variance with constitutional values, but also when the legal system of the country from which the law emerges is itself not in conformity with these values. That is to say laws from countries that do not protect rights in the same way that the United States does should be prohibited in U.S. courts. Kansas, for example, prohibits state courts from relying on foreign laws from any system that does not grant the same measure of rights provided under the U.S. and Kansas constitutions. The anti-foreign law bill that was recently signed into law in Oklahoma, as well as bills under consideration in Missouri and Iowa, are similar in scope. By essentially engaging state courts in wholesale evaluations of foreign legal systems, these bans open up the type of broad inquiry that is inimical to the case-by-case approach typically applied by American courts.

Through a detailed examination of the anti-Sharia movement and a look at how U.S. courts have traditionally approached foreign and religious law, this report shows that the foreign law bans are both anti-Muslim in intent and throw into question the status of a range of contractual arrangements involving foreign and religious law. The report begins by explaining how the anti-Sharia movement evolved into an anti-foreign law campaign in order to avoid the patently unconstitutional practice of explicitly targeting Muslims.

It next explains the role of foreign and international law in American courts and the difference between the two. The international law to which the United States subscribes—for example, treaties ratified by the Senate—is part of the law of the land by virtue of the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution. Foreign law, on the other hand, is the domestic law of other countries and is used by American courts only where its application does not violate public policy. This section explains that while the use of foreign sources in constitutional interpretation is hotly contested, the consideration of foreign law in everyday disputes—such as those involving contracts—is largely uncontroversial and that courts have long used carefully calibrated tools to ensure that application of foreign laws does not violate U.S. policy.

We then turn to the specifics of the foreign law bans and demonstrate that some bans are inconsistent with the practice of U.S. courts and that all bans create uncertainty about how non-U.S. legal sources will be treated. The foreign law bans also raise serious questions under separation of powers principles, as well as the Full Faith and Credit and Contract clauses of the Constitution. The report next details the possible disruptive consequences of foreign law bans, particularly for American families and businesses, and then uncovers the true purpose of foreign law bans. Simply put, it is to target Muslims. Based on this context, we argue that the bans are vulnerable to challenge under the First Amendment and several state constitutions as unduly burdening the free exercise of religion.

The report concludes by recommending that state legislatures considering such bills should reject them, and those that have passed foreign law bans should repeal them. The bans set out to cure an illusory problem but could create a myriad of unintended real ones. These bans, moreover, send a message that a state is unreceptive to foreign businesses and minority groups, particularly Muslims. And, as this report details, these bans sow confusion about a variety of personal and business arrangements. The issues raised by foreign law bans may lead to decades of litigation as state courts examine their consequences and struggle to interpret them in ways that avoid constitutional concerns and discrimination against all minority faiths.

 

 

 

SEE ALSO - ON ANTI-SHARIA MOVEMENT AND UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES:

Anti-Sharia Laws Stir Concerns that Halachah Could Be Next, Ron Kampeas http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/national/anti_sharia_laws_stir_concerns_halachah_could_be_next

Anti-Sharia Legislation Is Bad For The Jews, Adam Serwer http://prospect.org/csnc/blogs/adam_serwer_archive?month=05&year=2011&base_name=antisharia_legislation_is_bad

The Anti-Shariah Movement and Jewish Law, Jacob Bender http://www.aslanmedia.com/news-a-politics/301-world/3162-the-anti-shariah-movement-and-jewish-law

Bill on Humane Slaughter Yields New Front for Muslim Tensions http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/06/27/bill-on-humane-slaughter-yields-new-front-for-muslim-tensions/

Campaign Against Sharia Law a Threat to Indian Country, Gale Courey Toensing http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2011/09/the-racists-are-coming-campaign-against-sharia-law-a-threat-to-indian-country/

Circumcision ban comic book shows ‘grotesque anti-Semitic imagery,’ ADL says http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/circumcision-ban-comic-book-shows-grotesque-anti-semitic-imagery-adl-says-1.365834

In Banning Sharia Law, Oklahoma Voters May Have Voted Against Native American Rights, Too, Tanya Somanader http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2010/11/11/129512/oklahoma-sharia-native-americans/

Jews and Muslims united for sharia?, Justin Elliott http://www.salon.com/news/islam/?story=%2Fpolitics%2Fwar_room%2F2011%2F05%2F06%2Fjews_against_anti_sharia_laws

Oklahoma Voters May Have Accidentally Voted Against Ten Commandments, Too, George Zornick http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2010/11/06/128505/oklahoma-ten-commandments/

Oklahoma voters may have also banned Native American rights, David Edwards http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/11/11/oklahoma-voters-banned-native-american-rights/

Threat of Incursion of Shariah Law into U.S. Courts is Unfounded, Karen Gross, ADL Austin Community Director & Justine Fanarof, Jean and Jerry Moore Southwest Civil Rights Area Coordinator http://www.adl.org/ADL_Opinions/Civil_Rights/20110601-Austin+American+Statesman+Op-ed.htm

The Threat of Sharia Law: It’s All a Matter of Myth Making, Abraham Foxman http://jewishexponent.com/article/24256/Opinion_The_Threat_of_Sharia_Law/

Tribes fear side effects of SQ 755,  Trevor Brown http://normantranscript.com/headlines/x1110251934/Tribes-fear-side-effects-of-SQ-755

Unintended consequences of anti-Sharia legislation, Muqtedar Khan http://www.altmuslim.com/a/a/b/4039/

Why American Indians Are Watching The Fate Of The Oklahoma Sharia Ban, Rachel Slajda http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/11/why_american_indians_are_watching_the_fate_of_the.php 

Would Oklahoma anti-Sharia law violate tribal treaties?  http://harvardcrcl.org/2010/11/26/would-oklahoma-anti-sharia-law-violate-tribal-treaties/


SEE ALSO ON ANTI-SHARIA MOVEMENT GENERALLY

ACT for America launches media blitz to win yes vote in Oklahoma anti-Sharia ballot http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2010/10/21/right-wing-group-launches-media-blitz-to-win-yes-vote-in-oklahoma-anti-sharia-ballot/ 
The advance of the anti-Muslim movement across America, Paul Woodward http://mondoweiss.net/2010/09/the-advance-of-the-anti-muslim-movement-across-america.html
All Bigoted Islamophobic Roads Lead to Frank Gaffney, Richard Allen Smith http://www.vetvoice.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=4332
The American Muslim Community and Rep. Peter King’s “Islamic” Radicalization Hearings, Sheila Musaji (section on linkage with anti-Sharia movement) http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_american_muslim_community_and_rep._peter_kings_islamic_radicalizat/
American Muslims must defend the Constitution of the United States , Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/american_muslims_must_defend_the_constitution_of_the_united_states/
America’s Ideals Are Being Challenged By Cordoba House Controversy, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/cordoba_house/
Anti-Mosque Coalition’s Website Owned By Neo-Conservative Islamophobe Frank Gaffney, Alex Seitz-Wald http://thinkprogress.org/2010/08/24/gaffney-mosque-website/
Anti-Sharia Advocates: We’ve Not Yet Begun to Fight, Tim Murphy http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/12/sharia-fever-catch-it
Anti-Sharia Law: A Solution In Search Of A Problem, Daniel Mach and Jamil Dakwar http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/20/anti-sharia-law-a-solutio_n_864389.html
Apostasy and Freedom of Faith in Islam, Sheila Musaji http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/apostasy_and_freedom_of_faith_in_islam/0016063
The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Sharia Debate, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/archbishop_of_canterbury_and_sharia/
The Archbishop of Canterbury’s Trouble with Shariah, Yahya Birt http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_archbishop_of_canterburys_trouble_with_shariah/
Are Opponents of Shariah Anti-Islam?, Farzana Hassan-Shahid http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_are_opponents_of_shariah_anti_islam/
Are Sharia Laws and Human Rights Compatible?, Emran Qureishi & Heba Ezzat http://qantara.de/webcom/show_article.php/_c-373/_nr-6/i.html
Michele Bachmann Endorses Call for Anti-Muslim Inquisition, Daniel Luban http://thefastertimes.com/diplomacy/2010/09/16/a-new-report-offers-prescriptions-for-an-anti-muslim-inquisition/
Bent on Confusing the Public about Islam:  The Far Right Exploits Rifqa Bary’s Case to Distort Islam, Louay Safi http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/bent_on_confusing_the_public_about_islam_the_far_right_exploits_rifqa_barys/
Center for Security Policy background http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/Center_for_Security_Policy
Challenge to Islamic Jurisprudence, Robert D. Crane http://www.globaljusticemovement.net/articles/islamicjurisprudence-rdc-0305.htm
Clearing the fog of Shariah, Daisy Khan http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_philosophy_of_sharia_the_clear_path/
Conservatives Chew Up Their Own in Battle Over Islamic Community Center, Bill Berkowitz http://blog.buzzflash.com/contributor/3601Conservative Feud Grows Over Muslims White House Staffers, Shahed Amanullah http://www.altmuslim.com/a/a/b/1726/
Henry Cooper background, Rightweb http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/Cooper_Henry_F_Hank
Cordoba House:  Hope From the Ashes of Tragedy, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/muslim_cultural_center_and_mosque/
Cordoba House versus Team B:  Key to the Global 21st Century,  Dr. Robert D. Crane http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/cordoba_house_versus_team_b_key_to_the_global_21st_century/0018230
Stephen Coughlin: Islamofascist Nonsense, Larry Johnson http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2008/01/09/islamofascist_nonsense/
Discussion of Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf’s views on Sharia, Enver Masud http://www.twf.org/Library/Sharia.html
Does the first amendment apply to Muslims?, John Guardiano http://www.frumforum.com/does-the-first-amendment-apply-to-muslims
Existing reports and studies on radicalization in the American Muslim Community http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/relevant_reports/0018437
FBI Leaking To Neocon Conspiracy-Theorist Frank Gaffney?  http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2010/08/23/fbi-leaking-to-neocon-conspiracy-theorist-frank-gaffney/
For critics of Islam,“sharia” becomes shorthand for extremism, Michelle Boorstein http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/25/AR2010082504298.html?sid=ST2010082506505
Forget ‘Ground Zero Mosque’, It’s the Great Sharia Conspiracy, Daniel Luban http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=52863
Fox & Friends crops Rauf’s CFR comments to fearmonger about Sharia law, Justin Berrier http://mediamatters.org/blog/201009140028
Fox Promotes NSS “Islamic Crescent Logo” Conspiracy Theory, Richard Bartholomew http://barthsnotes.wordpress.com/2010/04/16/fox-promotes-nss-islamic-crescent-logo-conspiracy-theory/
Free-speech hero or an anti-Islamic publicity hound? Geert Wilders is coming to America., Mark Hosenball http://www.newsweek.com/2009/02/16/the-flying-dutchman.html
The future of Shariah, Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na’im   http://www.law.emory.edu/fileadmin/faculty_documents/abduh/Chapter_1.doc
Gaffney: The left and Islamists are both “advancing the takedown of America”, http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201008230064
Gaffney: The President ‘May Actually Still Be’ A Muslim http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/06/09/gaffney-the-president-may-actually-be-a-muslim/
Frank Gaffney: At War with Islam http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2009/08/18/frank-gaffney-at-war-with-islam/
Frank Gaffney: Obama Duped America Like Hitler Duped Chamberlain http://www.alan.com/2009/06/08/frank-gaffney-obama-duped-america-like-hitler-duped-chamberlain/
The Gaffney Report aka ‘The Return of Dr Strangelove’, Abdul Cader Asmal http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_gaffney_report_aka_the_return_of_dr_strangelove/
GOPer can’t define, but wants to ban, sharia law, Justin Elliott http://www.salon.com/news/politics/war_room/2011/03/07/alabama_sharia_ban/index.html
Higher Objectives of Islamic Law (Maqasid ash-Sharia), Mohammed Hashim Kamali http://www.faithinallah.org/higher-objectives-of-islamic-law-maqasid-ash-sharia 
Pete Hoekstra, Shameless Buffoon, Steve Benen http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2009_12/021638.php
Hoekstra’s “epic grandstanding”, Jason Linkins   http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/11/11/rachel-maddow-takes-on-pe_n_353706.html
David Horowitz’s Blog Spouting Propaganda as Usual on Sharia http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/01/19/david-horowitz%e2%80%99s-blog-spouting-propaganda-as-usual/
How to talk about Shariah in Oklahoma, Eboo Patel http://onfaith.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/eboo_patel/2010/12/how_to_talk_about_shariah_in_o.html
International Humanitarian Law: Western Innovation Or Islamic Breakthrough, Mahmoud Mobarak http://english.webislam.com/?idt=1081
Introduction to Shariah and Fiqh, http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/law/shariahintroduction.html
Interview with Imam Feisal on Sharia, Laura Sheahen http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Islam/2005/02/Islam-And-America-Three-Years-After-911.aspx
Is Killing An Apostate in the Islamic Law?, Dr. Ibrahim B. Syed http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_is_killing_an_apostate_in_the_islamic_law/
Is Sharia law reconcilable with modernity?, Sh. Ali Gomaa http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/guestvoices/2010/08/is_sharia_law_reconcilable_with_modernity.html 
Islam and democracy - article collection http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/democracy_political_order/
Islamic Finance: A Question of Law or Justice?, Dr. Robert D. Crane http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamic_finance_a_question_of_law_or_justice/
Islamic Law:  A Thematic Primer on Human Rights, Dr. Robert D. Crane http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamic_law_a_thematic_primer_on_human_rights/
Islamic Sharia and Jewish Halakha Arbitration Courts, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamic_sharia_and_jewish_halakha_arbitration_courts/
Islamic (Sharia) Government, Ahmed Hulusi http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamic_sharia_government/
Islamophobia Machine Targets American Muslims, Nihad Awad http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamophobia_machine_targets_american_muslims/
Islamophobia no longer questioned - even by our elected representatives, Sheila Musaji (includes quotes by many elected officials) http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/islamophobia_no_longer_even_questioned/
Israelis, McCain Neocons Behind Anti-Islam “Obsession” DVD, Kurt Nimmo http://www.infowars.com/israelis-mccain-neocons-behind-anti-islam-obsession-dvd/
The Issue of Usury and Interest in Islamic Faith and Law, Dr. Abdulaziz Sachedina http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_issue_of_usury_and_interest_in_islamic_faith_and_law/
Legal Rationality vs. Arbitrary Judgement:  Re-examining the Tradition of Islamic Law, S. Parvez Manzoor http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/legal_rationality_vs_arbitrary_judgement_re_examining_the_tradition_of_isla/Media rife with anti-Muslim rhetoric in weeks leading up to 9-11 anniversary http://mediamatters.org/research/201009090008
Meet Wyoming’s Anti-Shari’ah Crusader, Sarah Posner http://www.religiondispatches.org/dispatches/sarahposner/4221/meet_wyoming%27s_anti-shari%27ah_crusader_/
The Misinformants: What ‘stealth jihad’ doesn’t mean, Lisa Miller http://www.newsweek.com/2010/08/28/stealth-jihad-conveys-paranoia.html
Moral Maturity of Two Year Olds: Reward and Punishment Mentality of Muslims, Pamela Taylor http://www.muslimwakeup.com/mainarchive/000171.php
Thomas More Law Center’s claim of Sharia Law in Dearborn defies reality, reason http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2011/02/thomas_more_law_centers_claim.html
Mosque debate is not a distraction, Glenn Greenwald http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/08/23/park51
MPAC’s Response to Frank Gaffney’s Slander http://www.mpac.org/article.php?id=249 
Muslim Americans and Shariah http://www.islamicity.com/politics/SHARIAH.HTM
NeoCons Make Unapologetic Call for McCarthyism against Muslims http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2010/09/16/the-neocons-make-unapologetic-call-for-mccarthyism-against-muslims/
Neoconservatives hate liberty as much as they love war, Glenn Greenwald http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2007/02/14/neoconservatism
New Rainbow of Islamic Knowledge and Religious Diversity: Zaytuna College, Dr. Ibram Rogers http://diverseeducation.com/blogpost/303/new-rainbow-of-islamic-knowledge-and-religious-diversity-zaytuna-college.html 
The New Anti-Semitism: Recent attacks on Islam in the United States echo old slurs against Jews, Daniel Luban http://www.tabletmag.com/news-and-politics/43069/the-new-anti-semitism-2/2/
Notion of Shura, Shura and Democracy, Tariq Ramadan http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/notion_of_shr_shr_or_democracy/
Nuclear Security Summit Logo Is Proof of What?, Sheila Musaji http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/symbols/
Obsession:  Deja Vu! Never Again?, Jeff Siddiqui http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/obsession_deja_vu_never_again/
Origins of Islamic Law http://www.crf-usa.org/terror/islam_law.htm
The Pathetic Desperation of the Anti-Kagan Campaign http://www.rightwingwatch.org/category/individuals/frank-gaffney
The philosophy of Sharia - the Clear Path, Faraz Rabbani http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_philosophy_of_sharia_the_clear_path/
Progressive radio show in NY serves up neocon moonshine about Islam, Philip Weiss http://mondoweiss.net/2009/12/progressive-radio-show-in-ny-serves-up-neocon-moonshine-about-islam.html
Re-examining primary and secondary sources of Shariah, Farzana Hassan-Shahid http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/re_examining_primary_and_secondary_sources_of_shariah/
REPORTS & STUDIES: — ACLU published Nothing to Fear: Debunking the Mythical “Sharia Threat” to Our Judicial System  — The Center for American Progress report UNDERSTANDING SHARIAH LAW:  Conservatives’ Skewed Interpretation Needs Debunking, by Wajahat Ali and Matthew Duss. — Center for American Progress report FEAR INC.: THE ROOTS OF THE ISLAMOPHOBIA NETWORK IN AMERICA.  The key researchers for this report were Wajahat Ali, Eli Clifton, Matthew Duss, Lee Fang, Scott Keyes, and Faiz Shakir.  The report itself is the result of a six month investigative project, and is 132 pages in length. Article about the report, with article collection here
Review: Documentary “America at a Crossroads”, Rafia Zakaria http://www.altmuslim.com/a/a/r/2479/
Right-Wing Nuts: “Obama is a Mooslim, Convert Mooslims” http://www.loonwatch.com/2009/09/right-wing-nuts-obama-is-a-mooslim-convert-mooslims/
The Right’s Anti-Islam Extremists, John Guardiano http://www.frumforum.com/confronting-the-rights-anti-islam-extremists
Rise of Professionalism in Moral Awareness, Robert D. Crane http://www.islam21.net/pages/keyissues/key1-29.htm
Pat Robertson continues fight against halal food http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/01/05/pat-robertson-continues-the-fight-against-halal-food/
Role of Morality in Politics, Robert D. Crane http://www.islam21.net/pages/keyissues/key1-35.htm
On Team B-ing, Spencer Ackerman http://attackerman.firedoglake.com/2010/09/16/on-team-b-ing/
Daniel Pipes Brings Weak Sauce: Sharia, Halakha, and Double Standards; Part 1 http://www.loonwatch.com/2009/10/weak-sauce/ 
Separation of church and state - article collection http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/separation_of_church_and_state/
Setting the Record Straight on Sharia, An Interview with Intisar Rabb, Sally Steenland http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2011/03/rabb_interview.html
Sharia - collection of articles http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_fiqh_islamic_law_ethical_moral_issues/
Shariah and Contemporary Issues, By Dr. Adbul Basit http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_and_contemporary_issues/
Sharia and Fiqh: Understanding Ijtihad, Abu Munir Winkel http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/sharia_and_fiqh_understanding_ijtihad/
Shariah and Religious Absolutism, Farzana Hassan http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_and_religious_absolutism/
Sharia is not the problem http://www.independent.co.uk/extras/sunday-review/living/sharia-is-not-the-problem-785281.html
Shariah Law Explained, BBC special report http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7234870.stm
SHARIAH: Legacy of the Prophet:  The Role of Human Rights in Islamic Law, Dr. Robert D. Crane http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/shariah_legacy_of_the_prophet_the_role_of_human_rights_in_islamic_law/
Sharia and day to day existence, Dr. Sherman Jackson http://www.defendtheprophet.com/sharia-and-day-to-day-existence
Sharia in America, how Islamic laws change, Dr. Sherman Jackson http://www.defendtheprophet.com/sharia-in-america-how-religious-laws-change
Source Methodology in Islamic Jurisprudence, Taha Jabir al’Alwani, http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/law/alalwani_usulalfiqh/
South Dakota Considering Ban on Courts Using “Foreign Religious or Moral Code”  http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/02/04/south-dakota-considering-ban-on-courts-using-“foreign-religious-or-moral-code”/ 
Specter Embraces Pipes Islamophobia, Richard Silverstein http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2009/05/15/specter-embraces-pipes-islamophobia/
Tennessee bill would jail Shariah followers http://www.tennessean.com/article/20110223/NEWS0201/102230378/Tennessee-bill-would-jail-Shariah-followers
Tennessee bill not good law http://themoderatevoice.com/102431/tennessee-anti-sharia-bill-not-quite-as-advertised-but-still-not-good-law/
Tennessee Sharia law ban, Elizabeth Tenety http://onfaith.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/undergod/2011/02/sharia_law_ban_proposed_in_tennessee.html
Tennessee Legislation demonstrates ignorance, promotes hate http://www.tennessean.com/article/20110225/OPINION02/102250343/Legislation-demonstrates-ignorance-promotes-hate
Tennessee lawmaker would make practicing Islamic law a felony http://letters.salon.com/politics/war_room/2011/02/23/tennessee_islam_law_felony_bill/view/
Tennessee’s Anti-Muslim Bill is an American Disgrace, Daniel Tutt http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-tutt/tennessees-antimuslim-bil_b_863032.html
The Terror Industry And Anti-Jihadism, Who Benefits?, Richard Silverstein http://www.eurasiareview.com/201009168239/the-terror-industry-and-anti-jihadism-who-benefits.html
Ulama, Hegemony and Reform, Chandra Muzaffar, http://www.just-international.org/article.cfm?newsid=20000248 
Umar Faruq Abd-Allah says U.S. and Islamic Law Congruent http://media.www.dailytexanonline.com/media/storage/paper410/news/2007/04/03/University/Scholar.Says.U.s.Islamic.Law.Congruent-2819456.shtml
Understanding the Four Madhabs, Abdul Hakim Murad, http://members.cox.net/arshad/newmadhh.htm
Unity Through Schools of Thought, Abdal Hakim Murad http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/unity_through_schools_of_thought/
Unintended consequences of anti-Sharia legislation, Muqtedar Khan http://www.altmuslim.com/a/a/b/4039/
WASTING TIME ON UNNECESSARY LAWS   http://lezgetreal.com/2011/02/wasting-time-on-unnecessary-laws/
The Week in Sharia: Elvis Retreats, Texas Reloads, Tim Murphy http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/01/week-sharia-new-jersey-falls-texas-fights  - The Week in Sharia: Texas Has Its Sputnik Moment http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/02/week-sharia-texas-sputnik-moment
Welcome to the Shari‘ah Conspiracy Theory Industry, Sarah Posner http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/politics/4335/welcome_to_the_shari%E2%80%98ah_conspiracy_theory_industry
Allen West on Frank Gaffney’s radio program discussing anti-Sharia proposals http://www.islamophobiatoday.com/2011/01/04/allen-west-starting-the-crusade-against-muslims/
What everyone “knows” about Islam and Muslims for responses to many of the spurious claims http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/what_everyone_knows/
What Sharia law actually means, Justin Elliott http://www.salon.com/news/islam/?story=/politics/war_room/2011/02/26/sharia_the_real_story
What Shariah Law Is All About, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf http://www.huffingtonpost.com/imam-feisal-abdul-rauf/what-shariah-law-is-all-a_b_190825.html
Why Shariah?, Noah Feldman http://uruknet.info/?p=m43209&s1=h1
Who Decides Right or Wrong, Tariq Ramadan http://www.islamicity.com/articles/Articles.asp?ref=IC0306-2000
Who Owns Islamic Law?, David Glen http://www.ijtihad.org/who-owns-Islamic-law.htm
Will Muslims impose Sharia?, Dr. John Esposito http://www.defendtheprophet.com/answering-will-muslims-impose-shariah
Who’s Afraid of Shariah? , Sumbul ali-Karamali http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sumbul-alikaramali/whos-afraid-of-shariah_b_701331.html
Why the GOP embraced Islamophobia, Joe Conason http://www.salon.com/news/politics/republican_party/?story=/opinion/conason/2010/09/12/islamo
Woolsey’s World War IV Comments Reveal Truth About War on Iraq, Stan Moore http://dissidentvoice.org/Articles3/Moore_Woolsey.htm
Would Oklahoma anti-Sharia law violate Native American tribal treaties?  http://harvardcrcl.org/2010/11/26/would-oklahoma-anti-sharia-law-violate-tribal-treaties/
David Yerushalmi, Anti-Semitic White-Supremacist Orthodox Jew Tries To Ban Islam In US, Bruce Wilson http://www.talk2action.org/story/2007/12/27/20819/823
Yerushalmi: Devout Jewish Fascist, Richard Silverstein http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2007/08/24/david-yerushalmi-devout-jewish-fascist/
Yerushalmi: House Republicans pal around with anti-Muslim, anti-Black racist David Yerushalmi, Alex Kane http://mondoweiss.net/2010/09/house-republicans-pal-around-with-anti-muslim-anti-black-racist-david-yerushalmi.html
Yerushalmi:  Neocon ‘Team B’ Author: ‘Islam Was Born In Violence; It Will Die That Way’  http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2010/09/20/neocon-team-b-author-yerushalmi-islam-was-born-in-violence-it-will-die-that-way
Yerushalmi: How Many Muslims Contributed To New Right-Wing ‘Team B’ Report On Islamic Sharia Law? None, Matt Duss http://thinkprogress.org/2010/09/15/team-b-sharia-report/
Who’s Who of the Anti-Muslim/Anti-Arab/Islamophobia Industry with detailed responses to the work and claims of the key Islamophobes http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/a_whos_who_of_the_anti-muslimanti-arabislamophobia_industry/ 

 

Originally published 9/6/2011 - image from ACLU


Google