Judge halts Oklahoma’s ban on Islamic law

You may or may not know that on Nov. 2, 70 percent of Oklahomans voted for a constitutional amendment that would prohibit state courts from considering…Islamic law when making decisions.

The move was presented by its supporters as something of a preemptive strike against Islam having, let’s say, undue influence over the affairs of Oklahoma.

Well, a federal judge has decided not to certify the election results until she considers a challenge to the law from a Muslim Oklahoman.

The Muslim in question, Muneer Awad, 27,  executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Oklahoma, says the amendment would be discriminatory, preventing for instance the execution of his will when he dies.

According to the Oklahoman, the judge wrote: “This order addresses issues that go to the very foundation of our country, our (U.S.) Constitution, and particularly, the Bill of Rights. Throughout the course of our country’s history, the will of the ‘majority’ has on occasion conflicted with the constitutional rights of individuals, an occurrence which our founders foresaw and provided for through the Bill of Rights.”

CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad had this to say: “Today marks another day in American history in which our courts have defended the Constitution against those who would deny its protections to a minority community. We agree with Judge Miles-LaGrange and the U.S. Supreme Court that ‘fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote.'”

Oklahomans consider ‘pre-emptive’ strike against Muslim law

State lawmakers in Oklahoma are considering a ballot measure in November that would require courts to base their decisions on federal and state laws.

What other kinds of laws might courts in Oklahoma base their decisions on, you ask?

Well, the measure is apparently designed to ensure that courts in Soonerland never base their decisions on Shariah — Muslim law.

It’s a “pre-emptive strike,” advocates say. There are only a few thousand Muslims in Oklahoma out of some 3.6 million people.

From the Edmond Sun in Edmond, Okla. — a small city near Oklahoma City:

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State Rep. Rex Duncan, R-Sand Springs, primary author of HJR 1056, said Oklahoma is the first state to pass such legislation and he hopes other states will follow.

Duncan, an attorney who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, said the amendment is needed because judges in other states and on the federal bench have increasingly cited international law in their decisions. He said he feels that action is inappropriate in a sovereign state.

Duncan said Sharia law is entrenched in the United Kingdom.

“It is a cancer upon the survivability of the UK,” Duncan said. “SQ 755 will constitute a pre-emptive strike against Sharia law coming to Oklahoma.”

State Sen. Anthony Sykes, R-Moore, a co-author of HJR 1056, said American courts are being more frequently challenged that international law should trump U.S. law.

“Sharia law coming to the U.S. is a scary concept,” Sykes said. “Hopefully the passage of this constitutional amendment will prevent it in Oklahoma.”

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CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper told the paper that anti-Islam rhetoric is approaching “Nazi-like” levels and is the “flip side of the anti-Semitic coin.”

Saad Mohammed of the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City tells the paper that 80 percent of the U.S. Constitution is compatible with Sharia. “Sharia is more of a protection than something used to oppress,” he said.

Oklahoma is a strongly evangelical state and home to Oral Roberts University in Tulsa. Oral Roberts is one of the state’s favorite sons, along with Paul Harvey and Will Rogers.

Oklahomans may vote on the measure this fall.