I would like to thank the Register for its April 11 Rekha Basu column, “Hear Muslim Concerns, Rather Than Act Blindly.” Basu calls for asking Muslim women what they want in our legal system to protect them against “honor killings”?
“Honor killings” are cultural practices in some countries, which are not sanctioned by Islamic law/Sharia. There are laws in Sharia against such killings, as Sharia does not allow family members or other citizens to take laws in their own hands, regardless of where they reside.
Instead of passing laws against establishment of Sharia, we should question how many of these “honor killings” have happened in say the last 10 years amongst Muslims. Is the incidence of spousal violence/murder higher amongst Muslims families compared to other families?
Basu rightly points out lawmakers who are trying to pass amendments to our Constitution do not know of any cases where Sharia is/was used to defend these heinous crimes.
Our Constitution forbids discrimination against any religion. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land and not Sharia. Third, American Muslims are not asking Sharia laws to be implemented in the U.S. on anyone.
What they want is to be treated fairly and let them voluntarily follow the personal laws of Sharia (e.g., civil, dietary, inheritance and family laws) just like other religions, like Catholics, Jews, Hindus, Sikhs, etc., follow in the U.S.
If Iowans want to help American Muslims, we should all stand up against this constitutional amendment against Sharia. We should start discussions with Muslims regarding Sharia and ask them how it helps them being better, productive law-abiding citizens of this great country.
— Sal Syed, Ames