Irshad Manji, an intellectual I greatly admire, especially for her stand for secular society, just taught me something today through her blog: the sharia seems now to be fully operating in the UK
. If this is true (and it might not be
), this is indeed bad news. That said, if inside a community, a parallel legal system is applied, even with both parties agreeing
to submit themselves to it and then to its judgment, it is a de facto
breach in the rule of law. What's wrong with this country? Don't we have enough with the Christian fundies already? We need as well to give the integrist elements in the Muslim community legal legitimacy? This is bad, bad, bad news. I have nothing about any believer, might he be Christian or Muslim, or whatever. But one cannot, should not, make two different kind of citizens, ruled by different kind of laws. The whole point of living in a democracy is that everybody is equal in the law, but a faith-based judiciary system just throws all that in the window. It creates faith-based ghettos, it makes people prisoners of their own communities, it's morally wrong and legally baffling. In my blog entry about 9/1
1, I mentioned the sharia and wondered if we loved enough our freedom to fight for it. More than ever, I am worried about it.
Thank god that didn't pass in Ontario.
Yes, but it was a close call. The sharia, although not recognized (yet), is used by an important part of the Muslim community in the UK, which is in itself quite worrying. Many immigrant women who don't speak English and came over here through marriage are at the mercy of their in-laws.
I can't believe this still happens.. what century is this anyway???
Well, the sharia is not technically recognized in the UK, but as people using it don't go through the usual legal channels, they are in effect cutting themselves from the law of the land. The UK has been soft on religious fanatics of all religions for years now, so it does not come up as a surprise, but it is worrying. That said, if it hadn't been for the vigilance of some people in Canada, the sharia would have been recognized in Ontario.
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