Creeping Sharia isn't just the name of a garage band made up of aging horticulture enthusiasts, it's also a worry of the Republican Party. Though the official platform draft won't be released until today, the RNC platform committee has reportedly adopted an amendment supporting a ban on the use of foreign law in American courts, a plank aimed at curbing the imaginary appeal of Islamic teachings.
Or is it not so imaginary after all?
Consider our schools. On a daily basis, children are exposed to Arabic teachings known as "Algebra." In physics class, they're exposed to foreign concepts like "azimuth." And it's not just the children. Our senior citizens aren't spared either. Whenever an ophthalmologist examines the retina, she's looking at a feature first named and elucidated by Islamic scholars. The cataract surgery performed on the lady holding that "keep government out of my Medicare" sign? The product of foreign Islamic teaching.
Yes, we know that the populist case against Islamic teachings has little to do with the science of the Islamic Golden Age. Allegedly retrograde attitudes toward women are at the heart of the attack. But even here, the Republicans have a point. Consider the Republican platform plank on abortion…
The Republican platform committee approved language on Tuesday seeking a constitutional amendment that would ban abortions with no exceptions for rape, incest, or danger to the life of a pregnant woman, a position Democrats quickly labeled the "Akin Plank," after embattled Representative Todd Akin of Missouri.
Sounds pretty Sharia-y. Except for all the nuance in contained in actual Muslim teaching…
All schools of Muslim law accept that abortion is permitted if continuing the pregnancy would put the mother's life in real danger. This is the only reason accepted for abortion after 120 days of the pregnancy.
Different schools of Muslim law hold different views on whether any other reasons for abortion are permitted, and at what stage of pregnancy if so.
Some schools of Muslim law permit abortion in the first 16 weeks of pregnancy, while others only permit it in the first 7 weeks.
In other words, the official Republican position on reproductive health is more extremist than that found in Sharia law. It all makes sense now. Sharia has to be rejected as too moderate on women's right, just as other sources of "foreign law" like the Magna Carta and English Common Law has to be rejected lest they threaten the planks on national security and civil liberties.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Abortion, Islam, Religion, Republican National Convention, Republicans