Guess what is on the ballot in Alabama? There is an initiative to create a state constitutional amendment that would outlaw Sharia Law. Pat Robertson was the driving force behind this movement. Oklahoma has already passed such an amendment, but the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional. Other states have passed similar laws, but they called them “foreign laws”, instead of Sharia.
Now, no one that I know has ever called Pat Robertson one of the great thinkers of our time. But, maybe, just maybe he is onto something. Now before you start calling me Islamaphobic, please hear me out on this. The problem for conservatives on this issue is that they haven’t thought this out completely. That is not surprising since they don’t think out anything beyond knee-jerk reactions.
See, according to the conservatives behind this initiative, Sharia Law only refers to Islamic Laws. They are wrong. It basically refers to the moral code and religious law of a prophetic religion. It is clear that Christianity is also a prophetic religion. Therefore, Sharia Law can be Christian as well as Islamic or Judean.
So, let’s look at just a couple of broad interpretations of Sharia Law. First, under Sharia Law, women are considered second class citizens. They are openly discriminated against. It is even legal for a husband to beat his wife for insubordination. It is illegal for a female heir to inherit the same amount as a male heir. Women are not allowed to earn the same pay as men doing the same work. Therefore, if Alabama passes this initiative, it is right to assume that unequal pay for the same work would be illegal in Alabama. Therefore, every woman who is currently not being paid the same salary for the same work as their male counterparts must be given an immediate raise.
Sharia Law prohibits all forms of homosexuality, including same-sex marriage. It allows private citizens to discriminate against homosexuals. If the initiative in Alabama is passed, it will instantly become illegal for Alabama not to recognize same-sex marriages or to allow any discrimination against homosexuals. That includes being able to fire someone simply because they are homosexual.
These are just two issues that would have to be overturned or recognized if Sharia Law is banned in Alabama. If the state refuses to recognize same-sex marriage or allow women to continue to receive less pay than a man doing the same work, they would be allowing Sharia Law to be practiced in their state. That would be against their own laws.
Furthermore, all prayers in all government activities, like opening of the state assembly or in public schools would also be immediately banned. Sharia Law clearly allows for prayers at such places. Therefore, the state would have to immediately outlaw all forms of prayer in public areas. Plus, the Ten Commandments would have to be taken down from all of the Alabama court houses and other government buildings.
Religious scenes like the Nativity Scene would be immediately outlawed on all government property regardless of who pays for it. By allowing such religious scenes to continue to be displayed would be a violation of the ban on Sharia Law which clearly endorses such activities.
The list goes on and on. What the conservatives in Alabama with their initiative of banning Sharia Law actually is doing is taking religion completely out of government. So, it could be argued that they are merely endorsing the First Amendment that already enforces a separation of church and state.
Since American Law is known for its broad interpretations, all of these items are real possibilities if Alabama is successful in outlawing Sharia Law. Maybe that would be a good thing. I am quite sure that imaginative lawyers could find arguments using the anti-Sharia Law to poke holes in other social issues like birth control, abortion, voter suppression, and others.
If this initiative does pass, instead of immediately challenging the constitutionality of it, lawyers should start using the ban to stop the discrimination that is the norm in many parts of the country, including Alabama. I would love to see a good lawyer use these idiotic laws against the conservatives to finally smash their conservative social agenda. That would be a fight worth watching. Besides the conservative fight against using this law to outlaw their agenda would show the country once and for all their hypocrisy in just about everything.