Against the backdrop of the ten-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, a heightened interest in the role of Islam in American society and the subsequent clash of civilizations remains. Specifically, public concern continues to grow across the country about the use of Sharia Law, or Islamic Law, within American courts. As a result, well over a dozen state legislatures have introduced or passed legislation that prohibits or limits the use of Sharia Law or foreign law in state courts. These bills have taken two distinct forms: Sharia-specific and facially-neutral bills. Regardless of classification, these legislative efforts have triggered a number of constitutional concerns, with critics arguing that the bills violate the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment. Critics argue that the laws have a sectarian purpose and an effect of advancing one religion at the expense of another and thus fail the Supreme Court’s jurisprudential test. Moreover, these critics argue that the laws burden the practice of religious faith. Indeed, this debate has undeniably opened a Pandora’s Box of constitutional concerns. Meanwhile, the bills’ proponents vigorously reject the accusation that the bills are hostile to Muslims or religious freedoms. They argue that the bills are designed to proactively safeguard the secular constitutional role of government by prohibiting religious influence, specifically that of Sharia Law.
The Republican National Convention adopted an amendment in the spirit of American Laws for American Courts (ALAC) legislation to their platform
- Setting the Record Straight on American Laws for American Courts Legislation (counterjihadreport.com)
- GOP Platform Addresses Sharia Encroachment (counterjihadreport.com)
- FAQ for State Legislators On American Laws for American Courts (counterjihadreport.com)
AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel David Yerushalmi is featured in a PBS report entitled “Shariah Controversy,” which highlights “the debate over banning U.S. courts from considering Islamic law in their decision-making.” As you know, Yerushalmi is the principal author of the American Laws for American Courts (ALAC) model legislation, which was enacted into law by several states and is pending in many others. This legislation, crafted especially for states, is an effort to insulate state courts from the growing tendency to embrace constitutionally offensive foreign laws, including sharia.
Surprisingly, the PBS report is relatively balanced; but it includes an interesting quip from Rabbi David Saperstein, director and chief legal counsel for the leftwing Union for Reform Judaism’s Religious Action Center. Saperstein also delivered an invocation at the 2008 Democratic National Convention shortly before Barack Obama accepted the nomination as the Democrat presidential candidate. In the report, Saperstein claims that the efforts to enact ALAC legislation is “un-American at the deepest and most profound level.”
David Saperstein is very much like the ubiquitous reform rabbi who speaks as though he is giving a sermon and his sermons always sound like a diatribe from a humanist. Words like “un-American”, “deep”, “profound” are sure to be in tow. From an orthodox perspective, one must ask a “reform” Jew, “What about what you claim to be Jewish is in fact Jewish? Where in the world is the source for this nonsense that all peoples and cultures are of equal merit?” All of Judaism is about discerning between the holy and the profane. By reducing everything to the holy one has reduced everything to the profane.
Superficially articulate spokesmen like Saperstein rely upon the inability or unwillingness of most of their fellow travelers to think past three levels of argument. This allows the following syllogism:
- Only science, as in mathematical physics, provides Man with certain knowledge.
- No man/woman can know any absolute truth other than the certainty of science.
- All moral, political, and philosophical judgments (i.e., Reason, ethics, morality) are outside of mathematical physics; therefore, they are absolutely unknowable. They are mere beliefs; fully exchangeable opinion. No basis to distinguish a Judeo-Christian moral truth or political order from any other.
As Loewenberg has pointed out, based in part on the works of Klein, Voegelin, and Strauss, this is the destruction of Western thought or what has been understood as the natural tension between Reason (Athens) and Revelation (Jerusalem) in Western Philosophy.
Once you’ve arrived here, there are only two bases for political order. We have come to this understanding — the Founders did — from Hobbes and Locke. If all but science (not science as in theory but as in mathesis universalis) is but meaningless and fully interchangeable opinion (A=B, B=C, … X=X1, therefore on any given day, A=X1), a political society seeking to choose the right political order may be “required” to agree that A=T or tyranny in its active phase. That is, if there is no basis for truth, and there is only personal “taste” or unprovable opinion, the way for society to agree on order is by one opinion being enforced through power.
The other approach to political order is through “procedure” or “process”. This has been AFLC Advisory Board Member and bestselling author Andrew C. McCarthy’s contribution to the contemporary discussion. Because there can be no truth, there can only be valid elections or “due process”. Thus, a “fair” election is one where you vote and merely count the votes accurately. The result on that day at that place becomes the truth for that time and that place. But, that truth is entirely relative and temporal and there is no basis to invest it with any lasting constitutional claim of truth.
Thus, the living constitution of the progressives, the Progressive Truth of Time-History-Progress itself, this then is the only transcendence available to man. If that rings of Hegel, there is a reason for that.
It follows, then, that there can be no moral truth or superiority to a Judeo-Christian value of the individual over the collective because there can be no truth other than progress. This “progress” is what “Rabbi” Saperstein means when he refers to what is “American” at the “most profound level”. For the Progressive, ”profundity” is the deep truth that there is no truth.
Now, we see the perfect storm — or opportunity — for the Left to join the sharia faithful in their destruction of the Judeo-Christian West. For the Progressive, the hatred of a Judeo-Christian moral or political truth is of necessity the last barrier to the syllogism noted above. For the Sharia-Muslim faithful, Judaism simply and Christianity in political society operate to literally deny the truth of the Koran and the “Law”. As long as the value and the integrity of the individual reigns supreme over the collectiveUmma, the Ulema will not be able to argue that A=T, as in the tyranny of sharia.
It is this anti-philosophic “goal” of the destruction of Western philosophy which so neatly allies Progressives and the Sharia Faithful. Their allied raison d’etre is the destruction of Western political order based upon the Judeo-Christian tension between Reason and Revelation, where both give way but neither concedes nor demands a totalitarian dominance in matters political. And, at the core of this tension and recognition (i.e., “tolerance” proper) between Reason and Revelation is the respect we accord the individual over the collective.
The reason American Laws for American Courts legislation is needed is because in most states there is no statute that articulates public policy on the issue of foreign laws in state courts. Up to now, judges have been left to “make law” in these cases. It is the proper role of the legislative branch to set public policy in such cases, which is what American Laws for American Courts has now accomplished in Kansas.
By Rep. Peggy Mast
Recently my American Laws for American Courts legislation that Governor Brownback signed into law in May has come under unfounded criticism and fraudulent attacks from poorly researched articles that have contained numerous inaccuracies.
Critics have mischaracterized the law we passed in Kansas to protect the individual constitutional rights of our citizens against foreign laws and foreign legal doctrines to such an extent that I am left wondering whether these critics have actually read the law they have been attacking.
In particular, some incorrectly tie our new American Laws for American Courts law in Kansas to the infamous and counterproductive anti-Shariah constitutional amendment passed in Oklahoma back in 2010, which has been struck down in federal court.
My bill was closely modeled on the model “American Laws for American Courts” legislation promoted by the American Public Policy Alliance (APPA) (http://publicpolicyalliance.org/?page_id=38).
Unlike the Oklahoma amendment, this legislation has never been challenged in court since being signed into law more than two years ago in Louisiana and Tennessee and is, as APPA legal scholar Stephen Gele says, “perfectly constitutional.”
For instance, Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Chapman’s research was so sloppy that he completely mischaracterized American Laws for American Courts as forbidding “courts from applying Islamic Shariah law in any case.”
This is simply wrong.
Other critics have also stated that American Laws for American Courts prohibits state courts from basing decisions on any foreign laws or other legal codes.
Once again, this is simply wrong.
One of the particular critics of ALAC lists as one of his accomplishments: “obtaining the dismissal of a lawsuit filed in the US in favor of a parallel proceeding in Germany.” He was actually fighting on behalf of foreign jurisdiction when the foreign jurisdiction would not guarantee US constitutional rights. How objective is that?
It is true that American Laws for American Courts was crafted to protect Americans’ constitutional rights against the infiltration of foreign law. As such it is NOT a blanket ban on any foreign law or foreign legal doctrine, including Shariah.
American Laws for American Courts protects Americans from the application of foreign laws when the application of a foreign law would result in the violation of a right guaranteed by the constitution of the state or of the United States, including but not limited to due process, freedom of religion, speech, or press, and any right of privacy or marriage as specifically defined by the constitution of the state.
There is no mention of Shariah in the legislation simply because the legislation was not designed to target Shariah.
So why are Muslim Brotherhood front groups such as HAMAS-tied CAIR and the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) so vehemently opposed to American Laws for American Courts?
Because they know that out of all the foreign laws and foreign legal doctrines that have shown up in US court cases, legal systems based on Shariah are the ones which most commonly run afoul of US constitutional rights. Now that states are taking action to prevent these occurrences, pro-Shariah forces are howling mad.
But they can’t challenge American Laws for American Courts in court because all the law does is reinforce US constitutional rights. What could be unconstitutional about that?
This brings us to another point that the critics have failed to uncover: Shariah law can and has appeared in court cases in the United States-and has even been upheld by activist judges in US state courts in clear violation of individual constitutional rights.
Last year, the Center for Security Policy conducted a preliminary survey of state court cases in which one or both parties to a dispute attempted to invoke Shariah law. The Center published the results in a study entitled Shariah Law and American State Courts.
The study details 50 sample cases in which parties invoked Shariah, including 15 trial court cases and 12 appellate court cases in which Shariah was actually applied. Importantly, frequently, Shariah manifested itself not as Shariah, but as Pakistani law, Saudi law, Egyptian law or some other foreign law that is based on Shariah.
Read more: Family Security Matters
Representative Peggy Mast is a Republican member of the Kansas House of Representatives, representing the 76th district. She has served since 1997 and is currently the Assistant Majority Leader.
- Kansas House Unanimously Passes Anti-Sharia Bill
- American Laws for American Courts Wins Major Bipartisan Victory in Kansas Legislature
- ‘It’s Perfectly Constitutional’: Kansas Governor Signs Bill Blocking Islamic Law in Courts and Government Agencies
- CAIR’s Sharia Fog Machine
- FAQ for State Legislators On American Laws for American Courts
Kansas bill protecting fundamental constitutional rights from foreign laws goes to governor’s desk following bi-partisan legislative victory
- ALAC passed with broad bipartisan support in Kansas, just as it did previously in Tennessee, Louisiana and Arizona. The APPA has previously stated that their goal is to extend ALAC’s constitutional protections to all 50 states by 2020.
- ALAC was also passed by overwhelming margins in state Houses in Florida, Oklahoma, New Hampshire, and Missouri, the Indiana Senate, and the Judiciary Committees of Florida, Georgia and Alabama, only to be scuttled in last-minute interventions by special interests acting against the wishes of the vast majority of voters and legislators.
- The following statistics demonstrate the strong and growing support by majorities of legislators for ALAC across the United States:
- Louisiana Senate Vote: 33-3
- Louisiana House Vote: 94-0
- Tennessee House Vote: 96-0
- Tennessee Senate Vote: 32-0
- Oklahoma House Vote: 76-3
- Indiana Senate Vote: 50-0
- Missouri House of Representatives Vote: 110-46
- Florida House Vote: 92-24
- Florida House Civil Justice Subcommittee: 13-0
- Florida House Judiciary Committee: 14-1
- Florida Senate Judiciary Committee: 6-0
- Alabama Senate Judiciary Committee: 9-0
- Georgia House Judiciary Committee: 7-2
- CAIR asks Kansas Governor Not To Sign Anti-Sharia Bill (Vinienco.com)
- Muslim group CAIR urges Kansas governor to allow sharia law (creeping sharia)
By Louis Palme, Islam Watch: In February, 2012, CAIR produced a 38-page legislative lobbying kit to help Muslims lobby against “American Laws for American Courts” legislation that is being considered in 22 states. It can be downloaded from the Internet at: http://www.cair.com/portals/0/pdf/CAIR-Securing-Religious-Liberty-Handbook.pdf
CAIR’s recommended tactics and talking points reflect an effort to obscure the true nature of Sharia Law and, instead, to smear the proposed legislation as a violation of their religious freedom and a racist or bigoted attack on Muslims. CAIR also accuses sponsors of “American Laws for American Courts” legislation of tapping into public fear in order to score political points. Those opposed subordinating American laws in the United States to ancient tribal customs can learn a great deal about how to formulate effective countermeasures by reading the CAIR document, primarily through penetrating the fog and forcing the proponents of Sharia Law to discuss its actual content and implications.
CAIR’S MOTIVES: The title of CAIR’s handbook, “Securing Religious Liberty,” implies that somehow their First Amendment right to freedom of religion is being threatened by the American Laws for American Courts initiatives. The United States is one of the most religiously tolerant countries in the world, and people of all faiths are allowed to build houses of worship, proselytize openly, and perform their religious rites in private and public without government or public interference. Sharia Law, however, goes way beyond religious practices. It allows young women to be married without their consent; it allows men to marry up to four wives; it allows men to beat their unruly wives; and it denies women numerous legal rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and state laws. Most of Sharia Law, as a matter of fact, has nothing to do with religious worship or practices.
To understand CAIR’s true motivation for opposing legislation that would reaffirm the supremacy of U.S. laws, one needs to understand how Islam developed into a world-wide religion. The prophet of Islam, Muhammad, began preaching his new cult in Mecca in 610 A.D. For twelve years he preached and tried to convert people to Islam, but gained only 50 to 100 followers. Finally, when he lost the patronage of his uncle Abu Talib, those opposing his religion threatened him so much that he took flight with his band of followers to Yathrib (Medina). With no resources or income, his followers began robbing caravans for their livelihood. Taking booty and raping captive women was not only sanctioned by the God of Islam, but the criminal activity attracted hundreds of new followers. During the next ten years, the number of Muslims grew from 100 to over 100,000, and their divinely sanctioned terror and pillage allowed them to expand their territory with impunity. In short, Islam was spread and maintained by the sword, and without violence or the threat of violence, Islam would probably die off in a generation. That is what CAIR is concerned about with the ALAC legislation.
It is not the religious aspects of Sharia Law which CAIR and other Islamic organizations need to defend, because those are for the most part righteous and humanitarian in their intent. After all, what civil society would pass laws against prayer, giving alms, fasting, or making a pilgrimage to Mecca? Rather, Sharia Law is critical to CAIR and other Islamic organizations for sustaining the religious following – including everything from ensuring submission of family members and the community through violence and the threat of violence to intimidating and preventing any criticism of Islam by non-Muslims through the same tactics – often called jihad. Here are the key elements Sharia Law uses to enforce compliance and respect, as spelled out in the classic manual of Islamic Sacred Law, Reliance of the Traveler:
By Brigitte Gabriel, Frank Gaffney, Jr.
The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) has launched a propaganda campaign attacking a state legislative initiative that is designed to protect the constitutional rights of all Americans, including Muslims.
That initiative is known as American Laws for American Courts (ALAC).
CAIR claims this bill would have the opposite effect – infringing upon Muslims’ and others’ right to freedom of religion. CAIR’s real motivation, however, is not to safeguard the U.S. Constitution, but rather to promote the insinuation here of Shariah, a totalitarian Islamic political-military-legal doctrine. Shariah requires and enforces discrimination against women, children, homosexuals, atheists, members of other religions such as Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and Christians, as well as Muslims who repudiate the dictates of that doctrine.
A review of the actual language of the American Laws for American Courts legislation shows that CAIR is deliberately and falsely characterizing it as anti-Shariah. As we shall see, ALAC is not targeted at either Shariah or Islam. Unlike a constitutional amendment to the State of Oklahoma’s constitution that was approved in 2010 by seventy percent of the voters, neither term is mentioned anywhere in ALAC’s bill language. (A complete comparison can be found here: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/09/american_laws_for_american_courts.html_ .)
ALAC’s very different approach was vindicated when the Council on American Islamic Relations succeeded in challenging the Oklahoma amendment on the grounds that it singled out Shariah law and therefore was ruled unconstitutional. Instead, ALAC is crafted to prevent the infringement in our court system on individual liberties by any foreign laws or legal doctrines, a phenomenon known as “transnationalism.”
This is made necessary since America has unique values of liberty that do not exist in many foreign legal systems. Among those guaranteed rights and privileges are: freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, due process and equal protection under the law, the right to privacy and the right to keep and bear arms.
Unfortunately, increasingly, foreign laws and legal doctrines that would restrict or deny these liberties are finding their way into U.S. court cases, thanks largely to the rulings of transnationalist judges. In some instances, these judges are permitting the use of Shariah to adjudicate disputes on their dockets.
The appeal of the American Laws for American Courts model for preventing such intrusions of unconstitutional foreign laws is evident from the fact that it has been enacted to date in three states: Tennessee in April 2010, in Louisiana in June 2010 and in Arizona in May 2011. And ALAC’s fundamental constitutionality is evident in the fact that neither CAIR nor anyone else has filed a legal challenge to any of these three laws, let alone succeeded in getting ALAC struck down.
Knowing that a legal challenge to American Laws for American Courts is hopeless, CAIR has stooped to launching dishonest and misleading attacks against an initiative designed to preserve our freedoms.
How, one might ask, can an American organization oppose legislation that is crafted to form a reinforcing bulwark to protect our most fundamental freedoms against foreign laws that do not respect them? The answer lies, in part, with the nature of the Council on American Islamic Relations.
The Department of Justice has named CAIR as a front for the Muslim Brotherhood (and its Palestinian franchise: the officially designated terrorist group, Hamas). Evidence introduced in the Holy Land Foundation trial established that the Brotherhood’s mission in America is “a kind of civilization jihad…in destroying Western civilization from within” by our hands. Using our courts to undermine our liberties and Constitution “from within” is one of the most important and effective techniques for advancing this subversive civilization jihad. Two federal courts have refused to strike CAIR’s designation as a Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas co-conspirator and/or joint venturer.
- CAIR has been named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism finance trial in U.S. history, the 2008 United States vs. Holy Land Foundation case in Dallas, Texas.
No fewer than four CAIR leaders have been convicted of felonies, including terrorism.
CAIR has a memorandum of understanding with the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation, the world’s most powerful multinational organization and, with 57 members, its largest – second only to the United Nations. The OIC is, like CAIR, dedicated to the imposition of Shariah doctrine and the criminalization of any “blasphemy” against Shariah law.
- The FBI has terminated relations with CAIR as a matter of policy.
- The IRS has reportedly revoked the non-profit status of CAIR’s national organization.
- CAIR is being sued for engaging in fraud against several of its members.
With this important background on the nature of the Council on American Islamic Relations, let’s analyze its critique of American Laws for American Courts by reviewing in the boxes below key passages from the legislation. (The entire model act can be found here: http://publicpolicyalliance.org/?page_id=38.)
Such a review prompts ten questions concerning CAIR’s opposition to this bill and we will address each, in turn.
“AN ACT to protect rights and privileges granted under the United
States or [State] Constitution.”
Questions for the Council on American Islamic Relations:
1. Why is CAIR opposing legislation designed to protect the rights and privileges granted under our U.S. and state constitutions? What is CAIR’s motivation? Do they think Muslims either don’t deserve or do not want to enjoy the same constitutional rights to which all citizens of this country are entitled? Or is CAIR trying to establish that Muslims are entitled to such rights (notably, freedom of religion and freedom of speech) but other people deemed inferior, for whatever reason (for example, for being “infidels”) may not be allowed the same rights as Muslims?
2. Exactly which constitutional rights protected by ALAC does CAIR find offensive or “Islamophobic”? (This made-up term is used by Shariah’s adherents to brand anything or anyone who “gives offense” to their doctrine or its enforcers.) The most important non-Brotherhood Muslim organization in this country, the American Islamic Leadership Coalition, has already endorsed American Laws for American Courts when it was introduced in Michigan. (http://publicpolicyalliance.org/?p=632) Does CAIR consider them “Islamophobic,” as well?
“The [general assembly/legislature] finds that it shall be the public policy of this state to protect its citizens from the application of foreign laws when the application of a foreign law will result in the violation of a right guaranteed by the constitution of this state or of the United States, including but not limited to due process, freedom of religion, speech, or press, and any right of privacy or marriage as specifically defined by the constitution of this state.”
Questions for the Council on American Islamic Relations:
3. Does CAIR dispute that Article VI of the U.S. Constitution makes it “the supreme law of the land” and, therefore, that all other laws, including Shariah, must be subordinated to it where there is a conflict? There are, of course, myriad areas in which Shariah is at odds with constitutional rights (e.g., women’s ability to divorce, inherit property, enjoy custody of their children and engage or refuse to engage in sexual relations, homosexuality, freedom of expression, etc.) In such instances, would CAIR have the Constitution defer to Shariah?
4. Which rights does CAIR wish to have violated by or subordinated to foreign law? Does it favor unequal treatment for and/or brutalizing of women, homosexuals, apostates, Jews and others in accordance with Shariah?
“As used in this act, “foreign law, legal code, or system” means any law, legal code, or system of a jurisdiction outside of any state or territory of the United States, including, but not limited to, international organizations and tribunals, and applied by that jurisdiction’s courts, administrative bodies, or other formal or informal tribunals.”
Questions for the Council on American Islamic Relations:
5. How can this definition be construed as applying uniquely to Shariah? In fact, it applies equally to all foreign laws. Period. What is more, it does not preclude the application of any foreign law, including Shariah – except insofar as it violates constitutional rights or state public policy.
6. In view of ALAC’s key definition, isn’t it disingenuous and misleading to depict American Laws for American Courts as an “anti-Shariah” bill? CAIR is certainly mischaracterizing ALAC in the campaign that it and other Muslim Brotherhood fronts have been mounting against such legislation. Given the clarity of the language in question, one can only conclude that these Brotherhood groups are doing so knowingly for the purpose of deceiving the American people.
7. Which “foreign law, legal code, or system” does CAIR wish to see incorporated into American constitutional law? Is CAIR seeking the imposition of all foreign laws, even where they violate the U.S. Constitution, or just Shariah?
ALAC: Operative Provision
“Any court, arbitration, tribunal, or administrative agency ruling or decision shall violate the public policy of this State and be void and unenforceable if the court, arbitration, tribunal, or administrative agency bases its rulings or decisions in the matter at issue in whole or in part on any law, legal code or system that would not grant the parties affected by the ruling or decision the same fundamental liberties, rights, and privileges granted under the U.S. and [State] Constitutions, including but not limited to due process, freedom of religion, speech, or press, and any right of privacy or marriage as specifically defined by the constitution of this state.”
Questions for the Council on American Islamic Relations:
8. What legal authority is the Council on American Islamic Relations defending by its attack on American Laws for American Courts? Specifically, we need to know: What does CAIR prefer by way of a court, arbitration panel, tribunal or administrative agency that bases its decisions on a code that would not grant our fundamental liberties, rights and privileges?
Clearly, as we have seen, ALAC has been drafted in order to provide guidance so that legal disputes in our courts do not result in the violation of the fundamental liberties, rights and privileges enshrined in the U.S. and our state Constitutions.
Thanks to the guarantees incorporated into the Constitution, no U.S. citizen or legal resident should be denied such liberties. Ensuring that is the case, however, is why ALAC is needed, particularly with respect to women and children. These communities have been identified by international human rights organizations as the principal victims of discriminatory foreign laws.
9. Why does CAIR oppose an inclusive bill extending civil liberties and due process to all citizens and legal residents, given the proven cases of discrimination, especially against Muslim women resulting from too much deference to foreign laws?
There is a certain irony at work here, as shown in an analysis of a sample of legal cases in the United States where Shariah has been successfully introduced to resolve the matter (www.shariahinamericancourts.com): The most frequent victims of the trampling of constitutional rights by foreign legal codes in actual cases in the United States, are Muslim women and their families.
That’s bad enough. But CAIR’s stance suggests that it seeks to relegate all women – not just Muslim ones – to an inferior status incompatible with the equal rights they are entitled to enjoy under the U.S. Constitution.
ALAC: Explicit Exclusions
“This subsection shall not apply to a church, religious corporation, association, or society, with respect to the individuals of a particular religion regarding matters that are purely ecclesiastical, to include, but not be limited to, matters of calling a pastor, excluding members from a church, electing church officers, matters concerning church bylaws, constitution, and doctrinal regulations and the conduct of other routine church business, where 1) the jurisdiction of the church would be final; and 2) the jurisdiction of the courts of this State would be contrary to the First Amendment of the United States and the Constitution of this State.”
Question for the Council on American Islamic Relations:
10. Why is CAIR opposed to preserving and protecting religious freedom for all Americans, as spelled out explicitly in the American Laws for American Courts act?
CAIR falsely maintains that American Laws for American Courts trespasses against religious freedom. That assertion is laid bare as patently dishonest by reading this important passage from the model American Laws for American Courts legislation: Far from denying religious freedom, American Laws for American Courts expressly champions and protects that liberty guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and by state constitutions adopted pursuant to it.
CAIR and its allies have been known to claim that American Laws for American Courts would interfere with canon law or Jewish law. As the plain language of the bill makes clear, this is patently untrue. Indeed, prominent interfaith leaders – including experts in the legal codes of their respective faiths – have endorsed American Laws for American Courts, including Rabbi Aryeh Spero, Rabbi Jonathan Hausman, J.D. and the Reverend Canon J. Philip Ashey, Esq. (See the Interfaith letter of support for American Laws for American Courts at http://publicpolicyalliance.org/?p=653).
In short, American Laws for American Courts is a necessary and constitutional initiative that protects our fundamental freedoms against all foreign legal regimes that would threaten them. Representations to the contrary, particularly from groups like CAIR that are tied to the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization seeking our destruction, should be seen for what they are – fraudulent deceptions – and rejected in the most effective possible way: by ensuring that every state in the union joins Tennessee, Louisiana and Arizona in enacting American Laws for American Courts.
Brigitte Gabriel is an international terrorism analyst and the Founder and President of ACT! for America, the nation’s largest grassroots citizen action network dedicated to preserving national security and combating the threat of radical Islam. She is the author of two New York Times Best Sellers, Because they Hate: A Survivor of Islamic Terror Warns America; and They Must Be Stopped: Why we must defeat radical Islam and how we can do it.
Frank Gaffney is the Founder and President of the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C. The Center is a not-for-profit, non-partisan educational corporation established in 1988. Under Mr. Gaffney’s leadership, the Center has been nationally and internationally recognized as a resource for timely, informed and penetrating analyses of foreign and defense policy matters.
Originally published at:
Pennsylvania Judge Mark Martin ruled that it was ok for a Muslim immigrant to physically attack and choke an American citizen because the Muslim was unaware that Sharia law did not apply in Pennsylvania.
Muslim immigrant Talaag Elbayomy attacked Ernie Perce who was dressed up as a “Zombie Muhammed” when he represented the group called Atheists of Central Pennsylvania in the Mechanicsburg parade.
Ernie Perce posted this Youtube.com video titled “Muslim attacks atheist.” He claims he was grabbed and choked as Elbayomy tried to yank his “Muhammed of Islam” sign off of his costume. Perce’s friend who accompanied him as the “Zombie Pope” was not attacked. Talaag Elbayomy argued that he was obligated to respond to Perce’s offensive mocking of the prophet Muhammed. Elbayomy said that if anyone committed a crime (against Islamist commands, Sharia) it was Perce.
“Elbayomy reportedly admitted to a police officer, Sgt. Bryan Curtis, that he attempted to rip Perce’s fake beard off, remove his ‘Muhammed of Islam’ sign and choke him.” According to Pamela Geller’s article in the Daily Caller.
Judge Martin dismissed the case against Elbayomy saying it was Perce’s word against Elbayomy’s even though the defendant admitted to accosting Perce and the attack was captured on video. Judge Martin said that Perce strayed “way outside” First Amendment protections. “I think you misinterpreted things. Before you start mocking someone else’s religion you may want to find out a little bit more about it it makes you look like a doofus and Mr. (Defendant) is correct. In many Arabic speaking countries something like this is definitely against the law there. In their society in fact it can be punishable by death and it frequently is in their society.” More of a transcript of the court proceedings is posted below.
Judge Martin railed victim Ernie Perce for six minutes for being so insensitive toward Muslims as to dress in a costume that mocked Muhammed at a parade.
Youtube.com video of the court hearing:
news report on ABC 27 TV:
How many times have citizens been told by the court that ignorance of the law is no excuse? But not so in Judge Martin’s court where Sharia law from foreign countries takes precedence over American laws in Pennsylvania.
Judge Mark Martin’s statements and ruling in effect declared in an American court that Muslim immigrants may use Sharia law as a legal defense to attack American citizens who mock their faith and that ignorance of American law is an excuse for Muslim immigrants who violate state law.
Judge Mark Martin appears to have ignored his oath of office to uphold the United States Constitution when he elevated Sharia law over that First Amendment which states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or the free exercise thereof” and gave authority to a foreign law not authorized by Article Six of the United States Constitution which states “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”
Victim Ernie Perce claims that he has received over 500 death threats. No wonder now that an American judge has ruled that Sharia law is legitimate legal grounds for attacking people who mock Muhammed. How many of these death threats are coming from American Muslims who now believe the ruling applies to them as well?
And how far can Islamists go in their demonstration of angst against inconsiderate infidels. Judge Martin stated “In their society in fact it can be punishable by death.”
Judge Martin, who obviously holds such strong beliefs that are contrary to the United States Constitution, should have recused himself. However, he did not recuse himself. Instead, he judicially injected his personal bias in a manner that created an injustice for the victim and harmed the public policy of the American people.
Advocating attacks on non-believers that could even result in death is the worst and most extreme command over Sharia minded followers.
Jonathon Turley, a law professor at George Washington University writes “That Judge Martin should be removed from the bench and severely sanctioned goes almost without saying. He clearly had no business hearing the case in the first place, since he seems to carry an emotional bias. He also needs to retake a constitutional law course. Otherwise, a real can of worms has been opened up, permitting violence against people exercising free speech.”
The Court of Judicial Discipline of the Common Wealth of Pennsylvania states regarding removal of a judicial officer “The Pennsylvania Constitution has always provided for the removal of public officials, including judicial officers, through the process of impeachment and trial of impeachment. That process vests in the House of Representatives the sole power to impeach, and requires the Senate to conduct a trial of the impeachment. Article VI, §5 of the Constitution requires the concurrence of at least two-thirds of the Senate members “present” to convict an impeached public official.” Click here to read entire article.
Please send your email calling for Judge Martin’s removal from office. Florida Family Association agrees so strongly with Mr. Turley and many others that Judge Mark Martin should be removed from the bench that we have prepared an email for you to send to Pennsylvania Speaker of the House of Representatives, Senate President, Governor, Attorney General and the Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania calling for Judge Martin’s removal.
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Judge Mark Martin Contact information:
Mark W. Martin
Some Reference articles:
Daily Caller by Pamela Geller titled Hundreds of threats for assault victim in case dismissed by Quran-minded judge
National Review article titled The Sharia Court of Pennsylvania — the Transcript.
Questionable Things article titled Sharia law trumps constitution in Pennsylvania
Jonathan Turley article titled Penn Judge: Muslims Allowed to Attack People for Insulting Mohammad
The Investigative Project on Terrorism article titled Zombie Law in Pennsylvania
Atheist.org victim’s organization.
Some of the transcript from the court hearing.
Well, having had the benefit of having spent over two-and-a-half years in a predominantly Muslim country, I think I know a little bit about the faith of Islam. In fact, I have a copy of the Koran here, and I would challenge you, sir, to show me where it says in the Koran that Mohammed arose and walked among the dead.
[Unintelligible.] You misinterpreted things. Before you start mocking someone else’s religion you may want to find out a little bit more about it. That makes you look like a doofus.
And Mr. Thomas [Elbayomi's defense lawyer] is correct. In many other Muslim speaking countries – excuse me, in many Arabic speaking countries – call it “Muslim” – something like this is definitely against the law there. In their society, in fact, it could be punishable by death, and it frequently is, in their society.
Here in our society, we have a constitution that gives us many rights, specifically, First Amendment rights. It’s unfortunate that some people use the First Amendment to deliberately provoke others. I don’t think that’s what our forefathers really intended. I think our forefathers intended that we use the First Amendment so that we can speak our mind, not to piss off other people and other cultures, which is what you did.
I don’t think you’re aware, sir, there’s a big difference between how Americans practice Christianity – uh, I understand you’re an atheist. But, see, Islam is not just a religion, it’s their culture, their culture. It’s their very essence, their very being. They pray five times a day towards Mecca. To be a good Muslim, before you die, you have to make a pilgrimage to Mecca unless you are otherwise told you cannot because you are too ill, too elderly, whatever. But you must make the attempt.
Their greetings, “Salaam alaikum,” “Alaikum wa-salaam,” “May God be with you.” Whenever — it is very common — their language, when they’re speaking to each other, it’s very common for them to say, uh, “Allah willing, this will happen.” It is — they are so immersed in it.
Florida state lawmakers are enduring attacks from an organization many call a ”terrorist front group” who oppose legislation aimed at banning the use of Sharia law — the religious doctrine that’s applied by Islamists in their own countries – from courtrooms throughout Florida, claims a non-profit, public-interest group that investigates and exposes government corruption and crime.
Although the bill targets Sharia law, the legislation seeks to prohibit the application of any foreign law, code or system in legal cases, especially in family court. It was introduced after a state appeals court allowed a county judge in central Florida to consider “ecclesiastical Islamic law” to decide a civil case involving a mosque.
As a Florida state House committee considers the bill this week, the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a national organization that serves as the U.S. front for the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, is blasting it as an attempt to demonize Islam, states the Judicial Watch blog.
If the measure passes it will also restrict religious freedom, according to CAIR.
A few years ago CAIR pressured a south Florida county’s transit agency to drop bus advertisements considered by the group to be “misleading and bigoted” against Muslims. CAIR asserted that the ads created a campaign of hatred and intolerance because they gave the false impression that Muslims are “trapped” in their religion with no means of “escape,” thus facing certain death.
CAIR bills itself as a Muslim civil rights organization but top FBI counterterrorism chiefs, such as the late John O’Neill, describe it as an entity that promotes and finances terrorism.
According to a report from the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security: “The Council on American-Islamic Relations and its employees have combined, conspired, and agreed with third parties, including, but not limited to, the Islamic Association for Palestine, the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, the Global Relief Foundation, and foreign nationals hostile to the interests of the United States, to provide material support to known terrorist organizations, to advance the Hamas agenda, and to propagate radical Islam.”
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, and certain officers, directors, and employees, have acted in support of, and in furtherance of, this conspiracy, said the Senate report.
M. Zuhdi Jasser, a Muslim who challenges groups such as CAIR, in an NYPD-used training video The Third Jihad details how CAIR was created shortly after a secret 1993 meeting in Philadelphia involving members of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee. Their goal was to lead opposition to the 1993 Oslo accords and generate support for Hamas, the terrorist organization that now runs the government in Gaza.
Read the rest…
Jim Kouri, CPP, the fifth Vice President and Public Information Officer of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, has served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country.