In what Indiana‘s governor and his supporters describe as defense of any given individual’s religious convictions, detractors roundly decry as blatant discrimination against the LGBT community. Possibly the best explanation of Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) rendered down to two sentences would be that as reported by CBS News on March 30, 2015, “Supporters say it protects a person or business owner from government persecution when following their religious beliefs. But opponents say the measure gives businesses a free pass to refuse gay and lesbian customers on religious grounds.”
Despite the Hoosier State’s Governor Mike Pence stressing the new law wouldn’t legalize discrimination against certain individuals or groups, but instead would protect the religious convictions of service providers such as pro-life pharmacists forced to sell abortifacients (abortion-inducing drugs), a number of high profile pro-LBGT advocates have slammed Pence and the Indiana legislature. One of the more prominent would be Apple CEO Tim Cook, who the Gawker.com news portal tagged in 2011 as “The Most Powerful Gay Man in America.”
As reported by CBS, Cook took to the editorial pages of The Washington Post slam the RFRA as he believes it “goes against the very principles our nation was founded on.” Not done yet, Cook also opined “On behalf of Apple, I’m standing up to oppose this new wave of legislation wherever it emerges. I’m writing in the hopes that many more will join this movement.”
However, Cook made no mention of Apple Inc. expanding to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia last year. As reported by Arabian Business on Dec. 20, 2014, Apple opened two new stores in Riyadh and Al Khobar. According to Apple’s official website, the corporation has well over 14 retail stores within the Kingdom, as well as numerous other stores the width and breadth of the Muslim World. A number of the same Muslim-majority nations also adhere to Islamic Shari’a law which clearly states homosexuality to be illegal.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia takes it a bit further. Saudi Arabia executes homosexuals. Publicly executing homosexuals isn’t the only Shari’a compliant move taken in the oil rich nation. Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, the powerful Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, declared in 2012 that it is “necessary to destroy all the [Christian] churches of the region.” Not finished with calling for the death of homosexuals or bulldozing churches, the Sheikh also gave the official thumbs-up for 10-year-old girls to be married off against their will.
Category Archives: Islam
Texas Town Supports Forbidding Sharia Law Despite Plea From New Islamic Tribunal; Mayor Says Citizens Need To Respect US Law
“As Mayor of the City of Irving, I took an oath to uphold the laws of the State of Texas and the Constitution of the United States,” Duyne wrote. “American citizens need to remember that their rights are guaranteed by the Constitution and I believe no one should subjugate themselves to anything less.”
Some versions of sharia law, which have been implemented in Muslim nations like Saudi Arabia or Pakistan, enforce strict punishments that often violate basic human rights. For example, under sharia law, a thief may have his hand chopped off, while a person that commits adultery can be stoned to death. Sharia law also tends to place strong restrictions on the rights of women.
Although Duyne admits that she does not quite fully understand how the Irving tribunal will operate, she wrote that she will not hesitate to crack down on the tribunal should it impose rulings contradictory to state and federal laws.
“While I am working to better understand how this ‘court’ will function and whom will be subject to its decisions, please know if it is determined that there are violations of basic rights occurring, I will not stand idle and will fight with every fiber of my being against this action,” Duyne asserted. “Our nation cannot be so overly sensitive in defending other cultures that we stop protecting our own. The American Constitution and our guaranteed rights reign supreme in our nation and may that ever be the case.”
In an interview with local media, an Irving imam, Moujahed Bakhach, explained that the tribunal will simply act as a source of koranic mediation for conflicts among the Muslims in the community. He feels people might get the wrong idea about sharia law because of how barbarically it is implemented in other nations around the world.
“We are not here to invade the White House or invade Austin. … We are humble and want to settle a problem between Muslims,” Bakhach said. “Maybe in their mind, the misconception about what they see through the media is that shariah means cut the head, chop the heads, cut the hands, and we are not into that.”
In a recent interview with The Blaze, Duyne said that when she met with members of the tribunal to discuss their issues, they blamed her for “stirring up all kinds of Islamophobia.” She added that they asked her about a “dozen times” to issue an apology and retraction, and publish an explanation for her February Facebook statement. Duyne denied those requests.
A school in upstate New York has apologized for reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in Arabic after complaints from district residents who lost family members in the Afghanistan war.
The pledge was read in Arabic during Wednesday morning announcements at Pine Bush High School, 65 miles northwest of New York City.
Some students were angered and responded with catcalls. District Superintendent Joan Carbone told the Times Herald-Record of Middletown (http://goo.gl/jLTyPS ) that she received complaints from residents who lost relatives in Afghanistan and from Jewish parents.
The Arabic reading of the pledge has “divided the school in half,” she told the newspaper.
The district said the school’s foreign language department arranged to have the pledge recited in different languages for National Foreign Language Week, which was last week.
Andrew Zink, the senior class president, usually gives the morning announcements and recites the pledge. He said he allowed an Arabic-speaking student to handle the pledge duties Wednesday.
“The intention was to promote the fact that those who speak a language other than English still pledge to salute this great country,” the district said in its statement.
In 2013, the parents of several Jewish students attending Pine Bush elementary and middle schools said their children were the targets of anti-Semitic harassment from classmates. The families filed a federal civil rights lawsuit, claiming district officials turned a blind eye to the behavior. In November, a federal judge in White Plains ruled the case could go forward.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu may have looked like he stood alone at the podium as he addressed Congress this week.
But as he hammered away at his view that a nuclear deal with Iran would dangerously empower an Iranian regime already in full expansion mode, his words no doubt drew vigorous nods from what might seem a surprising group: Arab leaders from Saudi Arabia to Egypt.
Already alarmed at the gains the Shiite government in Tehran is making in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and now apparently in Yemen, Sunni Arab leaders worry that an American accord with Iran on its nuclear program will seal the deal on a decade of expanding Iranian influence.
“The focus has been on Netanyahu and his concerns about a nuclear deal, as if he were the only one, but the Arabs are increasingly alarmed at the prospect of a flawed nuclear deal and what that would mean for the region,” says James Phillips, senior research fellow for Middle Eastern affairs at the Heritage Foundation in Washington.
That “alarm” has sharpened in recent months with the growing perception among Arabs that the Obama administration sees Iran as a “useful ally” in the fight against the Islamic State, Mr. Phillips says.
Netanyahu opened by expressing his humility for the invite, calling Congress the “most important legislative body in the world.” He then apologized for the speech itself becoming controversial. “That was never my intention,” he stated. “I want to thank you, Democrats and Republicans, for your common support for Israel, year after year, decade after decade. I know that on whichever side of the aisle you sit, you stand with Israel.”
That clever gambit – an attempt to kill the Obama administration and the boycotting Democrats with kindness – placed President Obama’s puerile spitefulness on Israel in stark contrast. That, of course, was the point. Every time Netanyahu spelled out the ways in which the Obama administration had helped Israel – instances that were, by and large, pro forma commitments every American president makes to Israel – he forced Obama into a corner. Turning the other political cheek turned out to be a powerful weapon.
Obama is forwarding Iran’s march, despite Iran’s obvious intention to destroy the West. Many commentators have described Netanyahu as the true leader of the free world, given President Obama’s unwillingness to speak on behalf of a free world. He made that case today before Congress:
Iran’s regime is as radical as ever. Its cries of Death to America, the same nation it calls the Great Satan, are as loud as ever. This shouldn’t be surprising…[Iran’s] ideology is rooted in militant Islam. That’s why this regime will always be an enemy of America.
“Militant Islam.” The two words Obama refuses to say in that order.
Netanyahu vowed, “as PM of Israel, I can promise you one more thing. Even if Israel has to stand alone, Israel will stand. But I know that Israel does not stand alone, I know that America stands with Israel, I know that you stand with Israel.”
More of a leader than Obama could ever hope to be. He shows a passion for his country Obama has never expressed.
Terrorists from Islamic State, or ISIS, in northern Syria Sunday released 19 Assyrian Christians, out of the hundreds they had captured last week, but refused to set free a 6-year-old girl, whom they are likely using as a “bargaining chip,” an activist group said.
The 19 Assyrians from the village of Tel Goran in Syria’s al-Hasakah province were released after local Arab leaders negotiated with ISIS for three days, Assyrian International News Agency, or AINA, said Sunday.
The Assyrians have arrived safely at St. Mary’s Church in Hasakah, the group said.
Those released include 17 women and two men. Many more from the village of Tel Goran and hundreds from other villages remain captive.
An elderly woman who was released said ISIS did not release her son and two other men who were guarding the village.
ISIS also refused to let a 6-year-old girl go, according to the released hostages, who believe the terror group plans to use the girl as a “bargaining chip.” The girl’s mother was released but she refused to go and stayed with her daughter.
The hostages who returned had not been harmed.
ISIS has announced that Lebanon will be the next state to fall under the sway of its “caliphate.” According to Beirut’s Daily Star newspaper, the only reason ISIS hasn’t attacked yet in force is because they haven’t decided on the mission’s commander.
The Lebanese army is one of the least effective in the Middle East—and that’s saying something in a region where the far more capable Syrian and Iraqi armies are utterly failing to safeguard what should be their own sovereign territory.
So France is going to send a three billion dollar package of weapons to Lebanon and the Saudis are going to pay for it. It won’t solve the problem any more than a full-body cast will cure cancer, but it beats standing around and not even trying.
The Lebanese, of course, are in far more immediate danger. They can feel ISIS’ hot breath on their necks. The army has been scrapping with them along the Syrian border for some time now. A majority of Lebanon’s population is either Christian, Shia, or Druze, and all three populations rightly see ISIS as a potentially genocidal threat to their very existence. Even the Sunnis, though, fear and loathe ISIS. Other than the nominal sectarian sameness—ISIS also is Sunni—Lebanon’s culturally liberal Sunnis have little more in common with ISIS than the French or Italians do.
A serious invasion of Lebanon by ISIS could unleash a bloodbath that makes the civil war in Syria look like a bar fight with pool sticks and beer mugs. It would be tantamount to a Nazi invasion. Every family in Lebanon is armed to the gills thanks to the state being too weak and divided to provide basic security, but people anywhere in the world facing psychopathic mass-murderers will fight with kitchen knives and even their fingernails and teeth if they have to.
So ISIS will eventually lose if thrusts into Lebanon, but the cost could be unspeakable. Few of Lebanon’s prior invaders murdered innocent people with such gleeful ferocity. If ISIS makes any headway at all in that country, the rest of us will see just how barbaric they really are when they violently encounter large numbers of people unlike themselves. And the odds that the West will get sucked even deeper into the great war of the Eastern Mediterranean will only loom larger.
In his bloviating speech on Thursday at his summit on countering violent extremism, President Obama bent over backwards to make nice with Islam.
This is the same president who said in April 2009, “Although, as I mentioned, we have a very large Christian population, we do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values. I think modern Turkey was founded with a similar set of principles.”
It is fair to say that modern Turkey was not founded upon the same principles as the United States. It is also fair to say that Islam has not been woven into the fabric of our country since its founding, at least not in any meaningful sense.
That does not mean that there were no Muslims in America at the founding — many African slaves were originally Muslim, and were forcibly converted from that faith. But to say that Islam as a religion has been “woven into the fabric of our country since our founding” is simply false. The first wave of Muslim immigrants to the United States did not begin until well after the Civil War. The first mosque in the United States was not built until 1915, by most reports.
Islam had zero impact on the founders or their philosophy – less than zero, given that the founders despised the religion, or what they knew of it. President Obama fictionalized this history at an Iftar dinner in 2012:
As I’ve noted before, Thomas Jefferson once held a sunset dinner here with an envoy from Tunisia — perhaps the first Iftar at the White House, more than 200 years ago. And some of you, as you arrived tonight, may have seen our special display, courtesy of our friends at the Library of Congress — the Koran that belonged to Thomas Jefferson. And that’s a reminder, along with the generations of patriotic Muslims in America, that Islam — like so many faiths — is part of our national story.
Well, not so much. That magical “first Iftar” was a meeting between Sidi Solima Mellimelli, an emissary of the brutal Barbary pirates, and the president. Jefferson had over Mellimelli in an attempt to bribe him into submission after the USS Constitution captured ships from the bey of Tunis. Mellimelli requested food, lodgings, and concubines.
Jefferson already knew of Islam, having been educated in 1786 after Barbary pirates attempted to blackmail America into monetary tribute. At that time, the Barbary emissary justified piracy with reference to the Koran, according to a report from Jefferson:
The Ambassador answered us that it was founded on the Laws of the Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners.
#1 Wal-Mart Greeters
Who better to meet and greet shoppers — and urge them to load their shopping carts to overflowing — than hooded and black-robed jihadists who will decapitate anyone who dares to oppose them?
#2 Part of the Establishment of Free Community Colleges
As the president never tires of saying, we must “invest” more in the education and training of our young people —including, as he sees it, young jihadists who are contemptuous of everything Western education has to offer.
#3 Posters, Flags, and All Kinds of Signage
The Islamic State is already on record in promising to fly its black flag over the White House. If that is the kind of thing young jihadists like to do, why not encourage them to fly their flag and to raise their banners at other public buildings around the country?
#4 Border Security
The jihadists know all about border security.
#5 Tax Collection and Revenue Enhancement
The Obama administration could employ thousands or even millions of jihadists as old-style tax farmers or tax collectors — personally empowered to go out into the field to collect money from anyone lucky enough to continue to possess it.
#6 Obamacare Death Panels
In addition to their new duties as tax collectors, jihadists could therefore have a role in the implementation or enforcement of Obamacare.
#7 Social Media
The astounding growth of the Islamic State over the past year has been due in no small part to its mastery of the Internet and social media to recruit new members from all over the world and to launch terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East and Europe. Surely, the new Obama jobs-for-jihadists plan will find a way to channel their social media moxie in more innocent ways — as the president himself did recently in clowning around with a selfie stick… making the video of himself for HealthCare.gov that went viral.
#8 Infrastructure Building and Demolition
Let the jihadists have at our roads, bridges, dams, and port facilities.
#9 Early Childhood Education and Development
No time is too soon for children to be taken from their parents and turned over to educators trained by the state. Those who have been trained in this way (including many jihadists) can train others.
#10 Sustainability / Reducing our Carbon Footprint
The jihadists want to turn the clock back more than 1,200 years — teaching us all to live like goat herders. What’s not to like about that? We have everything to learn from them about reducing our carbon footprint.
This past week has been dominated by comments by the president in which he continues to insist that the brutal acts of violence by the Islamic State (ISIS) and other Islamic terrorist groups are completely unrelated to Islam, to the point that he and his administration look absurd in their efforts to avoid using words like “radical Islam” or variations of it.
Let me explain why there’s more to all this than simply semantics, starting with this proposition: Engaging in acts of deception and self-deception is unwise. Yet that is precisely what Mr. Obama is doing. He persists in putting forth a false narrative that he insists is a true one. And then there is the supreme arrogance of the president, assuming that his pronouncements about Islam will be received by the Muslim world like pronouncements of the Pope will be received by the Catholic world. Of course, this is a man who declared that if elected president he would stop the rise of the oceans and heal the planet, so it shouldn’t shock us that he believes his shallow and incomplete theological interpretations of Islam will carry weight across the Islamic world.
Memo to Mr. Obama: They won’t. Having you lecture the Islamic world about the true nature of Islam actually strengthens the jihadists, who will be thrilled to get in a theological debate in which the Christian president of the United States offers one view and Islamic jihadists and imams offer another.
You might also think an American president would understand that in order to defeat an enemy you need to understand the nature of the enemy you face; that in order to win a war, you need to understand the nature of the war you are in. But you would be wrong. Mr. Obama understands neither, which explains why he’s so inept at prosecuting this war and why the Islamic State is extending its reach beyond Syria and Iraq into nations like Algeria, Afghanistan, Yemen, and Libya.
The president, then, is utterly clueless and misdiagnosing the problem. Think if you had a pain in your chest and assumed it was heart burn when it was a heart attack. That would be a problem, since to address the threat you have to diagnosis it correctly. When it comes to Islamism, Mr. Obama is badly misdiagnosing the threat we face.