09/18/10-by Bridgette P. LaVictoire
Newt Gingrich has forgotten that there is already a ban on sharia law in the United Sates, and it is called the First Amendment of the Constitution. Of course, this pesky Amendment is one of those that people like Mr. Gingrich and the people at the Values Voters Summit have no problems wanting to forget when it comes to their own Christian version of theocratic law including the banning of homosexuality and abortion, and censoring what people say on television and in books.
“We should have a federal law that says sharia law cannot be recognized by any court in the United States,” Gingrich stated to a standing ovation. He imagines a law that would oust judges who tried to use sharia law. Of course, since court cases have to be based upon case law, legislative law, or the Constitution, it seems impossible to say that someone would use sharia to bolster their case in court. While the courts have been known to rely upon scholarship from outside the United States, and especially from case law going back into the distant past of English history, they do not tend to go outside of the common law traditions, of which sharia is not.
Of course, Gingrich is playing into the usual run of Islamophobia that is rampant among many on the right at this time, and is wrapping into it an attack made upon Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, who Rightwingers tend to feel have a sympathy to sharia even though that has never actually been proven as being anything more than wind out of Gingrich and company’s collective backsides. This is also playing into those who oppose the buildings of mosques and other Islamic centers around the United States.
There are some two million Muslims in the United States, and many first generation Muslims came to the United States to get away from sharia in their homelands. Additionally, according to General David Petraeus and others, this Islamophobia has done little more than to endanger American troops overseas and to make it very easy for the terrorists to portray the US as waging a crusade against Islam.
It is also, it should be pointed out, a violation of the Constitution to use religion to craft or write laws via the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Of course, that is something that the American Theocrats, sometimes called American Taliban or Talibangelists, want to ignore as it also means that they should not be engaging in forcing Christianity into the laws of the United States and banning homosexuality, abortion, etc.