Should President Obama and Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Apologize For A Failed Foreign Policy Leading To Genocide and Democide in Iraq, Syria, and Libya? — Yes, but They Never Take Responsibility For Their Failures But Blame It On Others — No Wonder Carson and American People Oppose A Muslim President — ‘How Do You Spell Genocide? O-B-A-M-A’ — Videos

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Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 537: September 21, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 536: September 18, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 535: September 17, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 534: September 16, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 533: September 15, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 532: September 14, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 531: September 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 530: September 10, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 529: September 9, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 528: September 8, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 527: September 4, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 526: September 3, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 525: September 2, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 524: August 31, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 523: August 27, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 522: August 26, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 521: August 25, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 520: August 24, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 519: August 21, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 518: August 20, 2015  

Pronk Pops Show 517: August 19, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 516: August 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 515: August 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 514: August 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 513: August 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 512: August 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 511: August 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 510: August 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 509: July 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 508: July 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 507: July 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 506: July 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 505: July 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 504: July 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 503: July 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 502: July 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 501: July 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 500: July 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 499: July 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 498: July 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 497: July 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 496: June 30, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 495: June 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 494: June 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 493: June 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 492: June 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 491: June 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 490: June 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 489: June 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 488: June 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 487: June 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 486; June 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 485: June 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 484: June 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 483: June 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 482; June 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 481: June 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 480: June 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 479: June 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 478: June 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 477: June 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 476: June 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 475: June 1, 2015

Story 1: Should President Obama and Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Apologize For A Failed Foreign Policy Leading To Genocide and Democide in Iraq, Syria, and Libya? — Yes, but They Never Take Responsibility For Their Failures But Blame It On Others — No Wonder Carson and American People Oppose A Muslim President —  ‘How Do You Spell Genocide? O-B-A-M-A’ — Videos

United States Constitution

Article VI

All debts contracted and engagements entered into, before the adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.

This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding.

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/articlevi

U.S. Bill of Rights

Amendment I (1): Freedom of religion, speech, and the press; rights of assembly and petition
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

https://www.constitutionfacts.com/us-constitution-amendments/bill-of-rights/

Sharia Law

Shariah law

Sharia law is the law of Islam. The Sharia (also spelled Shariah or Shari’a) law is cast from the actions and words of Muhammad, which are called “Sunnah,” and the Quran, which he authored.

The Sharia law itself cannot be altered, but the interpretation of the Sharia law, called “figh,” by imams is given some leeway.

As a legal system, the Sharia law covers a very wide range of topics. While other legal codes deal primarily with public behavior, Sharia law covers public behavior, private behavior and private beliefs. Of all legal systems in the world today, Islam’s Sharia law is the most intrusive and strict, especially against women.

According to the Sharia law:

•  Theft is punishable by amputation of the right hand (above).
•  Criticizing or denying any part of the Quran is punishable by death.
•  Criticizing or denying Muhammad is a prophet is punishable by death.
•  Criticizing or denying Allah, the moon god of Islam is punishable by death.
•  A Muslim who becomes a non-Muslim is punishable by death.
•  A non-Muslim who leads a Muslim away from Islam is punishable by death.
•  A non-Muslim man who marries a Muslim woman is punishable by death.
•  A man can marry an infant girl and consummate the marriage when she is 9 years old.
•  Girls’ clitoris should be cut (per Muhammad‘s words in Book 41, Kitab Al-Adab, Hadith 5251).
•  A woman can have 1 husband, but a man can have up to 4 wives; Muhammad can have more.
•  A man can unilaterally divorce his wife but a woman needs her husband’s consent to divorce.
•  A man can beat his wife for insubordination.
•  Testimonies of four male witnesses are required to prove rape against a woman.
•  A woman who has been raped cannot testify in court against her rapist(s).
•  A woman’s testimony in court, allowed only in property cases, carries half the weight of a man’s.
•  A female heir inherits half of what a male heir inherits.
•  A woman cannot drive a car, as it leads to fitnah (upheaval).
•  A woman cannot speak alone to a man who is not her husband or relative.
•  Meat to be eaten must come from animals that have been sacrificed to Allah – i.e., be Halal.
•  Muslims should engage in Taqiyya and lie to non-Muslims to advance Islam.
•  The list goes on.

http://www.billionbibles.org/sharia/sharia-law.html

HUMAN GENOCIDE DOCUMENTARY. IRAQ AND SYRIA . ISIS, USA, UN ::: 2ND AUGUST 2014

Christians in Iraq are heeding an ultimatum by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to convert to Islam, get out or be killed.

Reports from the Middle East say that large numbers of Christians have fled the northern city of Mosul — now under control of the ISIL — after a message warning them to get out by Saturday was broadcast by loudspeakers on the city’s mosques.

An ISIL document reviewed by AFP said that there would be “nothing for them but the sword” if Christians didn’t adhere to the deadline.

The ISIL announcement also said that Christians could stay and pay a tax, often known as a “jizya,” though the exact amount was unspecified. A jizya is a historical policy of allowing non-Muslims to keep their own religion and their property if they pay a certain amount to Islamic rulers.

In centuries past, there have been examples of Christians paying the tax and living peacefully with Muslims. Recently however, it has often been exploited as a form of extortion against non-Muslims.

Many Christian families fleeing Mosul didn’t seem to put much trust in the promise of peace.

The aim of this documentary is to raise awareness.
WE ARE URGING ALL: PEOPLE TO SPEAK UP AND DO SOMETHING!!!

help world’s

TO DONATE FOR OUR CHRISTIANS PLEASE VISIT:
http://theacero.org/donate/

Fox’s Oliver North: ‘How Do You Spell Genocide? O-B-A-M-A’

Priests from Iraq and Syria: what’s happening in the Middle East is genocide

What Is Sharia Law?

How Is Sharia Law Dangerous for Western Society?

484. Is Islam A Religion Of Peace?

485. Was Muhammad A Prophet Of Peace?

493. What Is Sharia Law?

Enforcing Sharia in Raqqa: The Islamic State (Part 3)

Shocking documentary about Islam – The world’s most dangerous cult! ISIS ISLAMIC STATE

ISIS – “Islamic” Extremism? | Full Documentary – HD

Is Sharia Law Coming to America?

Sharia Law In America‽

David woods story of sharia law in America!

\

Shariamerica: Islam, Obama, and the Establishment Clause

US caught working to impose Islamic Sharia Law

Irving, Texas says “take a hike” to foreign (i.e. Sharia) laws

Ann Coulter on Muslims

Ben Carson Does Not Believe a Muslim Should Be President Meet The Press

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said today he would not support a Muslim as president on meet the press The retired neurosurgeon also said Islam, as a religion, was inconsistent with the Constitution. Carson told NBC’s “Meet the Press” he believed a president’s faith should matter “depending on what that faith is.” “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that,” Carson said. “If it’s [a president’s faith] inconsistent with the values and principles of America, then of course it should matter.” Carson, who has been near the top of several presidential polls, said he would consider voting for a Muslim in Congress “[depending] on who that Muslim is and what their policies are.” ABC News has reached out to Carson’s campaign for comment.
Ben Carson Does ‘Not Advocate’ A Muslim As President Sun, Sep 20 Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson tells Chuck Todd that the faith of a presidential candidate should matter to voters “if it is inconsistent with the values … of America.”

GOP candidate Carson: Muslim shouldn’t be elected president

Cruz says no religious test for the presidency

The Alex Jones Show (VIDEO Commercial Free) Sunday September 20 2015: Sharia vs. Constitution

Muslim-American group calls on Ben Carson to drop out

Important: 260 Million Unarmed Civilians Killed – Democide = Death By Government

Sharia Law and the U.S. Constitution

[Update I:  I have streamlined the following post to be easily readable to the average layman, but informative enough for a lawyer or law professor to learn a bit more on the similarities and differences between Sharia and U.S. Law]

Is Sharia compatible with the U.S. Constitution?

The simple answer is of course “no”.

But lets take a look at some aspects of Sharia Law and where it may or may not conflict with the U.S. Constitution.  (For disclosure I am not a lawyer nor a legal expert in Sharia or U.S. Law.)

First, what is Sharia?

Wikipedia states Sharia refers to the sacred law of Islam.  All Muslims believe Sharia is God’s law, but they have differences between themselves as to exactly what it entails.  Which will be difficult to discern what to apply when, but we’ll labor along for the sake of discussion.

In Western countries, where Muslim immigration is more recent, Muslim minorities have introduced Sharia family law, for use in their own disputes. Attempts to impose Sharia have been accompanied by controversy, violence, and even warfare (Second Sudanese Civil War).

The recent incidents at the Arab International Festival have reinforced the poor image of Sharia inside the United States and its incompatibility with American culture and law.

The following is a truncated version with a couple of modifications (eliminating repetitious ibids and links) of multiple Wikipedia entries [with my comments]:

Legal and Court Proceedings:

Wikipedia states that Sharia judicial proceedings have significant differences with other legal traditions, including those in both common law and civil law.

1. Sharia courts do not generally employ lawyers; plaintiffs and defendants represent themselves.

2. Trials are conducted solely by the judge, and there is no jury system.

3. There is no pre-trial discovery process, no cross-examination of witnesses, and no penalty of perjury (on the assumption that no witness would thus endanger his soul) Unlike common law, judges’ verdicts do not set binding precedents under the principle of stare decisis and unlike civil law, Sharia does not utilize formally codified statutes (these were first introduced only in the late 19th century during the decline of the Ottoman Empire, cf. mecelle).

4. Instead of precedents and codes, Sharia relies on medieval jurist’s manuals and collections of non-binding legal opinions, or fatwas, issued by religious scholars (ulama, particularly a mufti); these can be made binding for a particular case at the discretion of a judge.

5. Sharia courts’ rules of evidence also maintain a distinctive custom of prioritizing oral testimony and excluding written and documentary evidence (including forensic and circumstantial evidence), on the basis that it could be tampered with or forged.

6. A confession, an oath, or the oral testimony of a witness are the only evidence admissible in a Sharia court, written evidence is only admissible with the attestations of multiple, witnesses deemed reliable by the judge, i.e. notaries.

7. Testimony must be from at least two witnesses, and preferably free Muslim male witnesses, who are not related parties and who are of sound mind and reliable character; testimony to establish the crime of adultery, or zina must be from four direct witnesses.

8. Forensic evidence (i.e. fingerprints, ballistics, blood samples, DNA etc.) and othercircumstantial evidence is likewise rejected in hudud cases in favor of eyewitnesses, a practice which can cause severe difficulties for women plaintiffs in rape cases.

9. Testimony from women is given only half the weight of men [in most sources outside of Wikipedia Sharia states that a woman’s testimony only carries the weight of 1/4th of a man’s], and testimony from non-Muslims may be excluded altogether (if against a Muslim).

10. In lieu of written evidence, oaths are accorded much greater weight; rather than being used simply to guarantee the truth of ensuing testimony, they are themselves used as evidence.

11. Plaintiffs lacking other evidence to support their claims may demand that defendants take an oath swearing their innocence, refusal thereof can result in a verdict for the plaintiff.

12. Sharia courts, with their tradition of pro se representation, simple rules of evidence, and absence of appeals courts, prosecutors, cross examination, complex documentary evidence and discovery proceedings, juries and voir dire proceedings, circumstantial evidence, forensics, case law, standardized codes, exclusionary rules, and most of the other infrastructure of civil and common law court systems, have as a result, comparatively informal and streamlined proceedings. [that’s one way of putting it]

13. This can provide significant increases in speed and efficiency (at the cost of the safeguards provided in secular legal systems), and can be an advantage in jurisdictions where the general court system is slow or corrupt, and where few litigants can afford lawyers. (end Wikipedia)

This is not a concise review of the difference nor similarities between U.S. Law and Sharia.  It is only meant to educate us on what Sharia law is in comparison to our legal system.

http://the-american-catholic.com/2010/06/25/sharia-law-and-the-u-s-constitution/

Sharia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Islamic law” redirects here. For Islamic jurisprudence, see Fiqh.

 

Sharia applies in full, covering personal status issues as well as criminal proceedings

 

Sharia applies in personal status issues (such as marriage, divorce, inheritance, and child custody)

 

Regional variations in the application of Sharia

 

Members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation where Sharia plays no role in the judicial system

Sharia or sharia law (Arabic: شريعة‎ (IPA: [ʃaˈriːʕa]), is the Islamic legal system[1] derived from the religious precepts of Islam, particularly the Quran and the Hadith. The term sharia comes from the Arabic language term sharīʿah, which means a body of moral and religious law derived from religious prophecy, as opposed to human legislation.[2][3][4]

Sharia deals with many topics, including crime, politics, and economics, as well as personal matters such as sexual intercourse, hygiene, diet, prayer, everyday etiquette and fasting. Adherence to sharia has served as one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Muslim faith historically.[5] In its strictest and most historically coherent definition, sharia is considered in Islam as the infallible law of God.[6]

There are two primary sources of sharia: the Quran, and the Hadiths (opinions and life example of Muhammad).[7] For topics and issues not directly addressed in these primary sources, sharia is derived. The derivation differs between the various sects of Islam (Sunni and Shia), and various jurisprudence schools such as Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, Hanbali andJafari.[8][9] The sharia in these schools is derived hierarchically using one or more of the following guidelines: Ijma(usually the consensus of Muhammad’s companions), Qiyas (analogy derived from the primary sources), Istihsan(ruling that serves the interest of Islam in the discretion of Islamic jurists) and Urf (customs).[8][10]

Sharia is a significant source of legislation in various Muslim countries. Some apply all or a majority of the sharia code, and these include Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Yemen andMauritania. In these countries, sharia prescribed punishments such as beheading, flogging and stoning continue to be practiced judicially or extra-judicially.[11][12] The introduction of sharia is a longstanding goal for Islamist movements globally, including in Western countries, but attempts to impose sharia have been accompanied by controversy,[13]violence,[14] and even warfare.[15] Most countries do not recognize sharia; however, some countries in Asia, Africa and Europe recognize parts of sharia and accept it as the law on divorce, inheritance and other personal affairs of their Islamic population.[16] In Britain, the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal makes use of sharia family law to settle disputes, and this limited adoption of sharia is controversial.[17]

The concept of crime, judicial process, justice and punishment embodied in sharia is different from that of secular law.[18] The differences between sharia and secular laws have led to an ongoing controversy as to whether sharia is compatible with secular forms of government, human rights, freedom of thought, and women’s rights.[19][20][21]

Etymology and origins[edit]

Scholars describe the word sharia (/ʃɑːˈriːɑː/, also shari’a, šarīʿah) as an archaic Arabic word denoting “pathway to be followed” (analogous to the Hebrew termHalakhah [“The Way to Go”]),[22] or “path to the water hole”. The latter definition comes from the fact that the path to water is the whole way of life in an arid desert environment.[23]

The etymology of sharia as a “path” or “way” comes from the Quranic verse[Quran 45:18]: “Then we put thee on the (right) Way of religion so follow thou that (Way), and follow not the desires of those who know not.”[22] Malik Ghulam Farid in his Dictionary of the Holy Quran, believes the “Way” in 45:18 (quoted above) derives from shara’a (as prf. 3rd. p.m. sing.), meaning “He ordained”. Other forms also appear: shara’u[Quran 45:13] as (prf. 3rd. p.m. plu.), “they decreed (a law)”[Quran 42:21]; and shir’atun (n.) meaning “spiritual law”[Quran 5:48].[24]

The Arabic word sharīʿa has origins in the concept of ‘religious law’; the word is commonly used by Arabic-speaking peoples of the Middle East and designates a prophetic religion in its totality. Thus, sharīʿat Mūsā means religious law of Moses (Judaism), sharīʿat al-Masīḥ means religious law of Christianity, sharīʿat al-Madjūs means religious law of Zoroastrianism.[3]

The Arabic expression شريعة الله (God’s Law) is a common translation for תורת אלוהים (‘God’s Law’ in Hebrew) and νόμος τοῦ θεοῦ (‘God’s Law’ in Greek in the New Testament [Rom. 7: 22]).[25] In contemporary Islamic literature, sharia refers to divine law of Islam as revealed by prophet Muhammad, as well as in his function as model and exemplar of the law.[3]

Sharia in the Islamic world is also known as Qānūn-e Islāmī (قانون اسلامی).[citation needed]

History

In Islam, the origin of sharia is the Qu’ran, and traditions gathered from the life of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad (born ca. 570 CE in Mecca).[26]

Sharia underwent fundamental development, beginning with the reigns of caliphs Abu Bakr (632–34) and Umar (634–44) for Sunni Muslims, and Imam Ali for Shia Muslims, during which time many questions were brought to the attention of Muhammad’s closest comrades for consultation.[27] During the reign of Muawiya b. Abu Sufyan ibn Harb, ca. 662 CE, Islam undertook an urban transformation, raising questions not originally covered by Islamic law.[27] Since then, changes in Islamic society have played an ongoing role in developing sharia, which branches out into fiqh and Qanun respectively.

The formative period of fiqh stretches back to the time of the early Muslim communities. In this period, jurists were more concerned with pragmatic issues of authority and teaching than with theory.[28] Progress in theory was started by 8th and 9th century Islamic scholars Abu Hanifa, Malik bin Anas, Al-Shafi’i, Ahmad ibn Hanbal and others.[8][29] Al-Shafi‘i is credited with deriving the theory of valid norms for sharia (uṣūl al-fiqh), arguing for a traditionalist, literal interpretation of Quran, Hadiths and methodology for law as revealed therein, to formulate sharia.[30][31]

A number of legal concepts and institutions were developed by Islamic jurists during the classical period of Islam, known as the Islamic Golden Age, dated from the 7th to 13th centuries. These shaped different versions of sharia in different schools of Islamic jurisprudence, called fiqhs.[32][33][34]

The Umayyads initiated the office of appointing qadis, or Islamic judges. The jurisdiction of the qadi extended only to Muslims, while non-Muslim populations retained their own legal institutions.[35] Under the Umayyads Islamic scholars were “sidelined” from administration of justice and attempts to systematically uphold and develope Islamic law would wait for Abbasid rule.[36] The qadis were usually pious specialists in Islam. As these grew in number, they began to theorize and systemize Islamic jurisprudence.[37] The Abbasid made the institution of qadi independent from the government, but this separation wasn’t always respected.[38]

Both the Umayyad caliph Umar II and the Abbasids had agreed that the caliph could not legislate contrary to the Quran or the sunnah. Imam Shafi’i declared: “atradition from the Prophet must be accepted as soon as it become known…If there has been an action on the part of a caliph, and a tradition from the Prophet to the contrary becomes known later, that action must be discarded in favor of the tradition from the Prophet.” Thus, under the Abbasids the main features of sharia were definitively established and sharia was recognized as the law of behavior for Muslims.[39]

In modern times, the Muslim community have divided points of view: secularists believe that the law of the state should be based on secular principles, not on Islamic legal doctrines; traditionalists believe that the law of the state should be based on the traditional legal schools;[40] reformers believe that new Islamic legal theories can produce modernized Islamic law[41] and lead to acceptable opinions in areas such as women’s rights.[42] This division persists until the present day (Brown 1996, Hallaq 2001, Ramadan 2005, Aslan 2006, Safi 2003, Nenezich 2006).

There has been a growing religious revival in Islam, beginning in the eighteenth century and continuing today. This movement has expressed itself in various forms ranging from wars to efforts towards improving education.[43][44]

Definitions and disagreements

Sharia, in its strictest definition, is a divine law, as expressed in the Quran and Muhammad’s example (often called the sunnah). As such, it is related to but different from fiqh, which is emphasized as the human interpretation of the law.[45][46] Many scholars have pointed out that the sharia is not formally a code,[47] nor a well-defined set of rules.[48] The sharia is characterized as a discussion on the duties of Muslims[47] based on both the opinion of the Muslim community and extensive literature.[49] Hunt Janin and Andre Kahlmeyer thus conclude that the sharia is “long, diverse, and complicated.”[48]

From the 9th century onward, the power to interpret and refine law in traditional Islamic societies was in the hands of the scholars (ulema). This separation of powers served to limit the range of actions available to the ruler, who could not easily decree or reinterpret law independently and expect the continued support of the community.[50] Through succeeding centuries and empires, the balance between the ulema and the rulers shifted and reformed, but the balance of power was never decisively changed.[51] Over the course of many centuries, imperial, political and technological change, including the Industrial Revolution and the French Revolution, ushered in an era of European world hegemony that gradually included the domination of many of the lands which had previously been ruled by Islamic empires.[52][53] At the end of the Second World War, the European powers found themselves too weakened to maintain their empires as before.[54] The wide variety of forms of government, systems of law, attitudes toward modernity and interpretations of sharia are a result of the ensuing drives for independence and modernity in the Muslim world.[55][56]

According to Jan Michiel Otto, Professor of Law and Governance in Developing Countries at Leiden University, “Anthropological research shows that people in local communities often do not distinguish clearly whether and to what extent their norms and practices are based on local tradition, tribal custom, or religion. Those who adhere to a confrontational view of sharia tend to ascribe many undesirable practices to sharia and religion overlooking custom and culture, even if high-ranking religious authorities have stated the opposite.” Otto’s analysis appears in a paper commissioned by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.[57]

Sources of sharia law

Main article: Sources of sharia

There are two sources of sharia (understood as the divine law): the Quran and the Sunnah. The Quran is viewed as the unalterable word of God. It is considered in Islam to be an infallible part of sharia. The Quran covers a host of topics including God, personal laws for Muslim men and Muslim women, laws on community life, laws on expected interaction of Muslims with non-Muslims, apostates and ex-Muslims, laws on finance, morals, eschatology, and others.[58][59] The Sunnah is the life and example of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. The Sunnah’s importance as a source of sharia, is confirmed by several verses of the Quran (e.g.[Quran 33:21]).[60] The Sunnah is primarily contained in the hadith or reports of Muhammad’s sayings, his actions, his tacit approval of actions and his demeanor. While there is only one Quran, there are many compilations of hadith, with the most authentic ones forming during the sahih period (850 to 915 CE). The six acclaimed Sunni collections were compiled by (in order of decreasing importance) Muhammad al-Bukhari, Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi, Al-Nasa’i, Ibn Majah. The collections by al-Bukhari and Muslim, regarded the most authentic, contain about 7,000 and 12,000 hadiths respectively (although the majority of entries are repetitions). The hadiths have been evaluated on authenticity, usually by determining the reliability of the narrators that transmitted them.[61] For Shias, the Sunnah include life and sayings of The Twelve Imams.[62]

Quran versus Hadith

Muslims who reject the Hadith as a source of law, sometimes referred to as Quranists,[63][64] suggest that only laws derived exclusively from the Quran are valid.[65]They state that the hadiths in modern use are not explicitly mentioned in the Quran as a source of Islamic theology and practice, they were not recorded in written form until more than two centuries after the death of the prophet Muhammed.[63] They also state that the authenticity of the hadiths remains a question.[66][67]

The vast majority of Muslims, however, consider hadiths, which describe the words, conduct and example set by Muhammad during his life, as a source of law and religious authority second only to the Qur’an.[68] Similarly, most Islamic scholars believe both Quran and sahih hadiths to be a valid source of sharia, with Quranic verse 33.21, among others,[69][70] as justification for this belief.[64]

Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah.

It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and His Messenger to have any option about their decision: if any one disobeys Allah and His Messenger, he is indeed on a clearly wrong Path.

For vast majority of Muslims, sharia has historically been, and continues to be derived from both the Quran and the Hadiths.[64][68][70] The Sahih Hadiths of Sunni Muslims contain isnad, or a chain of guarantors reaching back to a companion of Muhammad who directly observed the words, conduct and example he set – thus providing the theological ground to consider the hadith to be a sound basis for sharia.[64][70] For Sunni Muslims, the musannaf in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim is most trusted and relied upon as source for Sunni Sharia.[71] Shia Muslims, however, do not consider the chain of transmitters of Sunni hadiths as reliable, given these transmitters belonged to Sunni side in Sunni-Shia civil wars that followed after Muhammad’s death.[72] Shia rely on their own chain of reliable guarantors, trusting compilations such as Kitab al-Kafi and Tahdhib al-Ahkam instead, and later hadiths (usually called akhbār by Shi’i).[73][74] The Shia version of hadiths contain the words, conduct and example set by Muhammad and Imams, which they consider as sinless, infallible and an essential source of sharia for Shi’ite Muslims.[72][75]However, in substance, the Shi’ite hadiths resemble the Sunni hadiths, with one difference – the Shia hadiths additionally include words and actions of its Imams (al-hadith al-walawi), the biological descendants of Muhammad, and these too are considered an important source for sharia by Shi’ites.[73][76]

Disagreements on Quran

Main article: Naskh (tafsir)
Authenticity and writing of Quran

Some scholars such as John Wansbrough have challenged the authenticity of the Quran and whether it was written in the time of Muhammad.[77] In contrast, Estelle Whelan has refuted Wansbrough presenting evidence such as the inscriptions on the Dome of the Rock.[78][79] John Burton states that medieval era Islamic texts claiming Quran was compiled after the death of the Prophet were forged to preserve the status-quo.[80] The final version of the Quran, states Burton, was compiled while the Prophet was still alive.[81] Most scholars accept that the Quran as is used for Sharia, was compiled into the final current form during the caliphate of Uthman.[82][83]

Abrogation and textual inconsistencies

From the founding of Islam, the Muslim community has also debated the authenticity of compiled verses and the consistency within the Quran.[84][85] The inconsistencies in deriving sharia from the Quran, were recognized and formally complicated by verses 2.106 and 16.101 of the Quran, which are known as the “verses of abrogation (Naskh)”,[86]

When We substitute one revelation for another, – and Allah knows best what He reveals (in stages),– they say, “Thou art but a forger”: but most of them understand not.

The principle of abrogation has been historically accepted and applied by Islamic jurists on both the Quran and the Sunnah.[84][86] Sharia is thus determined through a chronological study of the primary sources, where older revelations are considered invalid and overruled by later revelations.[86][87] While an overwhelming majority of historical and modern Islamic scholars have accepted the principle of abrogation for the Quran and the Sunnah, some modern scholars disagree that the principle of abrogation necessarily applies to the Quran.[88]

Islamic jurisprudence (Fiqh)

Main article: Fiqh

Fiqh (school of Islamic jurisprudence) represents the process of deducing and applying sharia principles, as well as the collective body of specific laws deduced from sharia using the fiqh methodology.[8] While Quran and Hadith sources are regarded as infallible, the fiqh standards may change in different contexts. Fiqh covers all aspects of law, including religious, civil, political, constitutional and procedural law.[89] Fiqh deploys the following to create Islamic laws:[8]

  1. Injunctions, revealed principles and interpretations of the Quran (Used by all schools and sects of Islam)
  2. Interpretation of the Sunnah (Muhammad’s practices, opinions and traditions) and principles therein, after establishing the degree of reliability of hadith’s chain of reporters (Used by all schools and sects of Islam)

If the above two sources do not provide guidance for an issue, then different fiqhs deploy the following in a hierarchical way:[8]

  1. Ijma, collective reasoning and consensus amongst authoritative Muslims of a particular generation, and its interpretation by Islamic scholars. This fiqh principle for sharia is derived from Quranic verse 4:59.[90] Typically, the recorded consensus of Sahabah (Muhammad’s companions) is considered authoritative and most trusted. If this is unavailable, then the recorded individual reasoning (Ijtihad) of Muhammad companions is sought. In Islam’s history, some Muslim scholars have argued that Ijtihad allows individual reasoning of both the earliest generations of Muslims and later generation Muslims, while others have argued that Ijtihad allows individual reasoning of only the earliest generations of Muslims. (Used by all schools of Islam, Jafari fiqh accepts only Ijtihad of Shia Imams)[8][91]
  2. Qiyas, analogy is deployed if Ijma or historic collective reasoning on the issue is not available. Qiyas represents analogical deduction, the support for using it in fiqh is based on Quranic verse 2:59, and this methodology was started by Abu Hanifa.[92] This principle is considered weak by Hanbali fiqh, and it usually avoids Qiyas for sharia. (Used by all Sunni schools of Islam, but rejected by Shia Jafari)[8][10]
  3. Istihsan, which is the principle of serving the interest of Islam and public as determined by Islamic jurists. This method is deployed if Ijtihad and Qiyas fail to provide guidance. It was started by Hanafi fiqh as a form of Ijtihad (individual reasoning). Maliki fiqh called it Masalih Al-Mursalah, or departure from strict adherence to the Texts for public welfare. The Hanbali fiqh called it Istislah and rejected it, as did Shafi’i fiqh. (Used by Hanafi, Maliki, but rejected by Shafii, Hanbali and Shia Jafari fiqhs)[8][10][30]
  4. Istihab and Urf which mean continuity of pre-Islamic customs and customary law. This is considered as the weakest principle, accepted by just two fiqhs, and even in them recognized only when the custom does not violate or contradict any Quran, Hadiths or other fiqh source. (Used by Hanafi, Maliki, but rejected by Shafii, Hanbali and Shia Jafari fiqhs)[8][10]
Schools of law
Main article: Madhhab

Map of the Muslim world with the main schools of Islamic law (madhhab)

A Madhhab is a Muslim school of law that follows a fiqh (school of religious jurisprudence). In the first 150 years of Islam, there were many madhhab. Several of the Sahābah, or contemporary “companions” of Muhammad, are credited with founding their own. In the Sunni sect of Islam, the Islamic jurisprudence schools of Medina (Al-Hijaz, now in Saudi Arabia) created the Maliki madhhab, while those in Kufa (now in Iraq) created the Hanafimadhhab.[93] Abu al-Shafi’i, who started as a student of Maliki school of Islamic law, and later was influenced by Hanafi school of Islamic law, disagreed with some of the discretion these schools gave to jurists, and founded the more conservative Shafi’i madhhab, which spread from jurisprudence schools in Baghdad (Iraq) and Cairo (Egypt).[94] Ahmad ibn Hanbal, a student of al-Shafi’i, went further in his criticism of Maliki and Hanafi fiqhs, criticizing the abuse and corruption of sharia from jurist discretion and consensus of later generation Muslims, and he founded the more strict, traditionalist Hanbali school of Islamic law.[95] Other schools such as the Jaririwere established later, which eventually died out.

Sunni sect of Islam has four major surviving schools of sharia: Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, Hanbali; one minor school is named Ẓāhirī. Shii sect of Islam has three: Ja’fari(major), Zaydi and Ismaili.[96][97][98] There are other minority fiqhs as well, such as the Ibadi school of Khawarij sect, and those of Sufi and Ahmadi sects.[89][99] All Sunni and Shia schools of sharia rely first on the Quran and the sayings/practices of Muhammad in the Sunnah. Their differences lie in the procedure each uses to create Islam-compliant laws when those two sources do not provide guidance on a topic.[100] The Salafi movement creates sharia based on the Quran, Sunnah and the actions and sayings of the first three generations of Muslims.[101]

Hanafi-based sharia spread with the patronage and military expansions led by Turkic Sultans and Ottoman Empire in West Asia, Southeast Europe, Central Asia and South Asia.[102][103] It is currently the largest madhhab of Sunni Muslims.[104] Maliki-based sharia is predominantly found in West Africa, North Africa and parts of Arabia.[104] Shafii-based sharia spread with patronage and military expansions led by maritime Sultans, and is mostly found in coastal regions of East Africa, Arabia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and islands in the Indian ocean.[105] The Hanbali-based sharia prevails in the smallest Sunni madhhab, predominantly found in the Arabian peninsula.[104] The Shia Jafari-based sharia is mostly found in Persian region and parts of West Asia and South Asia.

Categories of law

Along with interpretation, each fiqh classifies its interpretation of sharia into one of the following five categories: fard (obligatory), mustahabb (recommended),mubah (neutral), makruh (discouraged), and haraam (forbidden). A Muslim is expected to adhere to that tenet of sharia accordingly.[106]

  • Actions in the fard category are those mandatory on all Muslims. They include the five daily prayers, fasting, articles of faith, obligatory giving of zakat (charity, tax) to zakat collectors,[107][108] and the hajj pilgrimage to Mecca.[106]
  • The mustahabb category includes proper behaviour in matters such as marriage, funeral rites and family life. As such, it covers many of the same areas as civil law in the West. Sharia courts attempt to reconcile parties to disputes in this area using the recommended behaviour as their guide. A person whose behaviour is not mustahabb can be ruled against by the judge.[109]
  • Mubah category of behaviour is neither discouraged nor recommended, neither forbidden nor required; it is permissible.[106]
  • Makruh behaviour, while it is not sinful of itself, is considered undesirable among Muslims. It may also make a Muslim liable to criminal penalties under certain circumstances.[109]
  • Haraam behaviour is explicitly forbidden. It is both sinful and criminal. It includes all actions expressly forbidden in the Quran. Certain Muslim dietary and clothing restrictions also fall into this category.[106]

The recommended, neutral and discouraged categories are drawn largely from accounts of the life of Muhammad. To say a behaviour is sunnah is to say it is recommended as an example of the life and sayings of Muhammad. These categories form the basis for proper behaviour in matters such as courtesy and manners, interpersonal relations, generosity, personal habits and hygiene.[106]

Areas of Islamic law

Main article: Topics of sharia law

The areas of Islamic law include:

Other classifications

Shari’ah law has been grouped in different ways, such as:[110][111] Family relations, Crime and punishment, Inheritance and disposal of property, The economic system, External and other relations.

Reliance of the Traveller“, an English translation of a fourteenth-century CE reference on the Shafi’i school of fiqh written by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri, organizes sharia law into the following topics: Purification, prayer, funeral prayer, taxes, fasting, pilgrimage, trade, inheritance, marriage, divorce and justice.

In some areas, there are substantial differences in the law between different schools of fiqh, countries, cultures and schools of thought.

Disagreement on the objectives of Islamic law

Main article: Maqasid

A number of scholars have advanced “objectives” (مقاصد maqaṣid al-Shariah also “goals” or “purposes”) they believe the Sharia is intended to achieve. Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali argued that they were the preservation of Islamic religion, and in the temporal world the protection of life, progeny, intellect and wealth of Muslims.[112][113]Yazid et al summarize sharia’s objective to be recognize the limitations of reason, and complement the role of reason with revelation.[114] They state that objective of sharia in Islamic finance is to provide rules and regulations from the Quran and Sunnah.[114]

Jan Otto writes that moderate Muslims and puritan Muslims differ in their interpretation of the objectives of sharia.[115] The moderate Muslims consider sharia to be a flexible code of law, where technicalities of its wording cannot subvert sharia’s objectives to “help Muslims in their quest for submission, humility, gratitude before God, and a quest for Godliness”.[115] In contrast, according to Otto, puritan Muslims believe that sharia is a strict, complete and exact set of rules that one must submit to, by strict compliance, because it is only “through meticulous obedience, Muslims will avoid punishment of God in after-life and will enter heaven” which is the ultimate objective, and it does not matter if some sharia “law is harsh or that its application results in social suffering, this perception is considered delusional”.[115]

Application

Application by country

Use of Sharia by country:

  Sharia plays no role in the judicial system
  Sharia applies to Muslim’s personal law
  Sharia applies in full, including criminal law
  Regional variations in the application of sharia

Most Muslim-majority countries incorporate sharia at some level in their legal framework, with many calling it the highest law or the source of law of the land in their constitution.[116][117] Most use sharia for personal law (marriage, divorce, domestic violence, child support, family law, inheritance and such matters).[118][119] Elements of sharia are present, to varying extents, in the criminal justice system of many Muslim-majority countries.[12]Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Brunei, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sudan andMauritania apply the code predominantly or entirely.[12][120]

Most Muslim-majority countries with sharia-prescribed hudud punishments in their legal code, do not prescribe it routinely and use other punishments instead.[116][121] The harshest sharia penalties such as stoning, beheadingand the death penalty are enforced with varying levels of consistency.[122]

Since 1970s, most Muslim-majority countries have faced vociferous demands from their religious groups and political parties for immediate adoption of sharia as the sole, or at least primary legal framework.[123] Some moderates and liberal scholars within these Muslim countries have argued for limited expansion of sharia.[124]

With the growing muslim immigrant communities in Europe, there have been reports in some media of “no-go zones” being established where sharia law reigns supreme.[125][126] However, there is no evidence of the existence of “no-go zones”, and these allegations are sourced from anti-immigrant groups falsely equating low-income neighborhoods predominantly inhabited by immigrants as “no-go zones.”[127][128]

Enforcement

Main articles: Islamic religious police and Hisbah

Sharia is enforced in Islamic nations in a number of ways, including mutaween and hisbah.[citation needed]

The mutaween (Arabic: المطوعين، مطوعيةmuṭawwiʿīn, muṭawwiʿiyyah)[129] are the government-authorized or government-recognized religious police (or clericalpolice) of Saudi Arabia. Elsewhere, enforcement of Islamic values in accordance with sharia is the responsibility of Polisi Perda Syariah Islam in Aceh province ofIndonesia,[130] Committee for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Gaza Strip) in parts of Palestine, and Basiji Force in Iran.[131]

Official from the Department ofPropagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, beating a woman inAfghanistan for violating local interpretation of sharia.[132][133]

Hisbah (Arabic: حسبةḥisb(ah), or hisba) is a historic Islamic doctrine which means “accountability”.[134] Hisbah doctrine holds that it is a religious obligation of every Muslim that he or she report to the ruler (Sultan, government authorities) any wrong behavior of a neighbor or relative that violates sharia or insults Islam. The doctrine states that it is the divinely sanctioned duty of the ruler to intervene when such charges are made, and coercively “command right and forbid wrong” in order to keep everything in order according to sharia.[135][136][137] Some Salafist suggest that enforcement of sharia under the Hisbah doctrine is the sacred duty of all Muslims, not just rulers.[135] The doctrine of Hisbah in Islam has traditionally allowed any Muslim to accuse another Muslim, ex-Muslim or non-Muslim for beliefs or behavior that may harm Islamic society. This principle has been used in countries such as Egypt, Pakistan and others to bring blasphemy charges against apostates.[138]For example, in Egypt, sharia was enforced on the Muslim scholar Nasr Abu Zayd, through the doctrine of Hasbah, when he committed apostasy.[139][140] Similarly, in Nigeria, after twelve northern Muslim-majority states such as Kano adopted sharia-based penal code between 1999 and 2000, hisbah became the allowed method of sharia enforcement, where all Muslim citizens could police compliance of moral order based on sharia.[141] In Aceh province of Indonesia, Islamic vigilante activists have invoked Hasbah doctrine to enforce sharia on fellow Muslims as well as demanding non-Muslims to respect sharia.[142]Hisbah has been used in many Muslim majority countries, from Morocco to Egypt and in West Asia to enforce sharia restrictions on blasphemy and criticism of Islam over internet and social media.[143][144][145]

Legal and court proceedings

Sharia judicial proceedings have significant differences from other legal traditions, including those in both common law and civil law. Sharia courts traditionally do not rely on lawyers; plaintiffs and defendants represent themselves. Trials are conducted solely by the judge, and there is no jury system. There is no pre-trial discoveryprocess, and no cross-examination of witnesses. Unlike common law, judges’ verdicts do not set binding precedents[146][147] under the principle of stare decisis,[148]and unlike civil law, sharia is left to the interpretation in each case and has no formally codified universal statutes.[149]

The rules of evidence in sharia courts also maintain a distinctive custom of prioritizing oral testimony.[150] Witnesses, in a sharia court system, must be faithful, that is Muslim.[151] Male Muslim witnesses are deemed more reliable than female Muslim witnesses, and non-Muslim witnesses considered unreliable and receive no priority in a sharia court.[152][153] In civil cases, a Muslim woman witness is considered half the worth and reliability than a Muslim man witness.[154][155] In criminal cases, women witnesses are unacceptable in stricter, traditional interpretations of sharia, such as those found in Hanbali madhhab.[151]

Criminal cases

A confession, an oath, or the oral testimony of Muslim witnesses are the main evidence admissible, in sharia courts, for hudud crimes, that is the religious crimes of adultery, fornication, rape, accusing someone of illicit sex but failing to prove it, apostasy, drinking intoxicants and theft.[156][157][158] Testimony must be from at least two free Muslim male witnesses, or one Muslim male and two Muslim females, who are not related parties and who are of sound mind and reliable character. Testimony to establish the crime of adultery, fornication or rape must be from four Muslim male witnesses, with some fiqhs allowing substitution of up to three male with six female witnesses; however, at least one must be a Muslim male.[159] Forensic evidence (i.e., fingerprints, ballistics, blood samples, DNA etc.) and othercircumstantial evidence is likewise rejected in hudud cases in favor of eyewitnesses, a practice which can cause severe difficulties for women plaintiffs in rape cases.[160][161]

Muslim jurists have debated whether and when coerced confession and coerced witnesses are acceptable. The majority opinion of jurists in the Hanafi madhhab, for example, ruled that torture to get evidence is acceptable and such evidence is valid, but a 17th-century text by Hanafi jurist Muhammad Shaykhzade argued that coerced confession should be invalid; Shaykhzade acknowledged that beating to get confession has been authorized in fatwas by many Islamic jurists.[162]

Civil cases

Quran recommends written contracts in the case of debt-related transactions, and oral contracts for commercial and other civil contracts.[155][163] Marriage is solemnized as a written financial contract, in the presence of two Muslim male witnesses, and it includes a brideprice (Mahr) payable from a Muslim man to a Muslim woman. The brideprice is considered by a sharia court as a form of debt. Written contracts are paramount, in sharia courts, in the matters of dispute that are debt-related, which includes marriage contracts.[164] Written contracts in debt-related cases, when notarized by a judge, is deemed more reliable.[165]

In commercial and civil contracts, such as those relating to exchange of merchandise, agreement to supply or purchase goods or property, and others, oral contracts and the testimony of Muslim witnesses triumph over written contracts. Sharia system has held that written commercial contracts may be forged.[165][166]Timur Kuran states that the treatment of written evidence in religious courts in Islamic regions created an incentive for opaque transactions, and the avoidance of written contracts in economic relations. This led to a continuation of a “largely oral contracting culture” in Muslim nations and communities.[166][167]

In lieu of written evidence, oaths are accorded much greater weight; rather than being used simply to guarantee the truth of ensuing testimony, they are themselves used as evidence. Plaintiffs lacking other evidence to support their claims may demand that defendants take an oath swearing their innocence, refusal thereof can result in a verdict for the plaintiff.[168] Taking an oath for Muslims can be a grave act; one study of courts in Morocco found that lying litigants would often “maintain their testimony ‘right up to the moment of oath-taking and then to stop, refuse the oath, and surrender the case.”[169] Accordingly, defendants are not routinely required to swear before testifying, which would risk casually profaning the Quran should the defendant commit perjury;[169] instead oaths are a solemn procedure performed as a final part of the evidence process.

Sentencing
Main article: Diyya

Sharia courts treat women and men as unequal, with Muslim woman’s life and blood-money compensation sentence (Diyya) as half as that of a Muslim man’s life.[170][171] Sharia also treats Muslims and non-Muslims as unequal in the sentencing process.[172] Human Rights Watch and United States’ Religious Freedom Report note that in sharia courts of Saudi Arabia, “The calculation of accidental death or injury compensation is discriminatory. In the event a court renders a judgment in favor of a plaintiff who is a Jewish or Christian male, the plaintiff is only entitled to receive 50 percent of the compensation a Muslim male would receive; all other non-Muslims [Buddhists, Hindus, Jains, Atheists] are only entitled to receive one-sixteenth of the amount a male Muslim would receive”.[173][174][175]

Saudi Arabia follows Hanbali sharia, whose historic jurisprudence texts considered a Christian or Jew life as half the worth of a Muslim. Jurists of other schools of law in Islam have ruled differently. For example, Shafi’i sharia considers a Christian or Jew life as a third the worth of a Muslim, and Maliki‘s sharia considers it worth half.[172] The legal schools of Hanafi, Maliki and Shafi’i Sunni Islam as well as those of twelver Shia Islam have considered the life of polytheists and atheists as one-fifteenth the value of a Muslim during sentencing.[172]

Support

Anti-democracy, pro-Sharia public demonstration in 2014 in Maldives.

A 2013 survey based on interviews of 38,000 Muslims, randomly selected from urban and rural parts in 39 countries using area probability designs, by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found that support for making sharia the official law of the land is very high in many Muslim-majority countries: Afghanistan (99%), Iraq (91%), Niger (86%), Malaysia (86%), Pakistan (84%), Morocco (83%), Bangladesh (82%), Egypt (74%), Indonesia (72%), Jordan (71%), Uganda (66%), Ethiopia (65%), Mali (63%), Ghana (58%), and Tunisia (56%).[176] In Muslim regions of Southern-Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the support is less then 50%: Kosovo (20%), Albania (12%), Russia (42%), Kyrgyzstan (35%), Tajikistan (27%), Turkey (12%), Azerbaijan (8%).[176]

In Muslim-majority countries and among Muslims who say sharia should be the law of the land, a percentage between 74% (Egypt) and 19% (Kazakhstan) want sharia law to apply to non-Muslims as well.[177]

A 2008 YouGov poll in the United Kingdom found 40% of Muslim students interviewed wanted sharia in British law.[178]

Since the 1970s, the Islamist movements have become prominent; their goals are the establishment of Islamic states and sharia not just within their own borders; their means are political in nature. The Islamist power base is the millions of poor, particularly urban poor moving into the cities from the countryside. They are not international in nature (one exception being the Muslim Brotherhood). Their rhetoric opposes western culture and western power.[179] Political groups wishing to return to more traditional Islamic values are the source of threat to Turkey’s secular government.[179] These movements can be considered neo-Sharism.[180]

Extremism

Fundamentalists, wishing to return to basic Islamic religious values and law, have in some instances imposed harsh sharia punishments for crimes, curtailed civil rights and violated human rights. Extremists have used the Quran and their own particular version of sharia to justify acts of war and terror against Muslim as well as non-Muslim individuals and governments, using alternate, conflicting interpretations of sharia and their notions of jihad.[181][182]

The sharia basis of arguments of those advocating terrorism, however, remain controversial. Some scholars state that Islamic law prohibits the killing of civilian non-combatants; in contrast, others interpret Islamic law differently, concluding that all means are legitimate to reach their aims, including targeting Muslim non-combatants and the mass killing of non-Muslim civilians, in order to universalize Islam.[181] Islam, in these interpretations, “does not make target differences between militaries and civilians but between Muslims and unbelievers. Therefore it is legitimated (sic) to spill civilians’ blood”.[181] Other scholars of Islam, interpret sharia differently, stating, according to Engeland-Nourai, “attacking innocent people is not courageous; it is stupid and will be punished on the Day of Judgment […]. It’s not courageous to attack innocent children, women and civilians. It is courageous to protect freedom; it is courageous to defend one and not to attack”.[181][183]

Criticism

A protester opposing the Park51project, carries an anti-sharia sign.

Compatibility with democracy

Further information: Islamic ethics, Islam and democracy, Shura and Ijma

Ali Khan states that “constitutional orders founded on the principles of sharia are fully compatible with democracy, provided that religious minorities are protected and the incumbent Islamic leadership remains committed to the right to recall”.[184][185]Other scholars say sharia is not compatible with democracy, particularly where the country’s constitution demands separation of religion and the democratic state.[186][187]

Courts in non-Muslim majority nations have generally ruled against the implementation of sharia, both in jurisprudence and within a community context, based on sharia’s religious background. In Muslim nations, sharia has wide support with some exceptions.[188] For example, in 1998 the Constitutional Court of Turkey banned and dissolved Turkey’s Refah Party on the grounds that “Democracy is the antithesis of Sharia”, the latter of which Refah sought to introduce.[189][190]

On appeal by Refah the European Court of Human Rights determined that “sharia is incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy”.[191][192][193] Refah’s sharia-based notion of a “plurality of legal systems, grounded on religion” was ruled to contravene the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. It was determined that it would “do away with the State’s role as the guarantor of individual rights and freedoms” and “infringe the principle of non-discrimination between individuals as regards their enjoyment of public freedoms, which is one of the fundamental principles of democracy”.[194]

Human rights

Several major, predominantly Muslim countries have criticized the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) for its perceived failure to take into account the cultural and religious context of non-Western countries. Iran declared in the UN assembly that UDHR was “a secular understanding of the Judeo-Christian tradition”, which could not be implemented by Muslims without trespassing the Islamic law.[195] Islamic scholars and Islamist political parties consider ‘universal human rights’ arguments as imposition of a non-Muslim culture on Muslim people, a disrespect of customary cultural practices and of Islam.[196][197] In 1990, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, a group representing all Muslim majority nations, met in Cairo to respond to the UDHR, then adopted the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam.[198][199]

Ann Elizabeth Mayer points to notable absences from the Cairo Declaration: provisions for democratic principles, protection for religious freedom, freedom of association and freedom of the press, as well as equality in rights and equal protection under the law. Article 24 of the Cairo declaration states that “all the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic shari’a“.[200]

In 2009, the journal Free Inquiry summarized the criticism of the Cairo Declaration in an editorial: “We are deeply concerned with the changes to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by a coalition of Islamic states within the United Nations that wishes to prohibit any criticism of religion and would thus protect Islam’s limited view of human rights. In view of the conditions inside the Islamic Republic of Iran, Egypt, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, the Sudan, Syria, Bangdalesh, Iraq, and Afghanistan, we should expect that at the top of their human rights agenda would be to rectify the legal inequality of women, the suppression of political dissent, the curtailment of free expression, the persecution of ethnic minorities and religious dissenters — in short, protecting their citizens from egregious human rights violations. Instead, they are worrying about protecting Islam.”[201]

H. Patrick Glenn states that sharia is structured around the concept of mutual obligations of a collective, and it considers individual human rights as potentially disruptive and unnecessary to its revealed code of mutual obligations. In giving priority to this religious collective rather than individual liberty, the Islamic law justifies the formal inequality of individuals (women, non-Islamic people).[202] Bassam Tibi states that sharia framework and human rights are incompatible.[203] Abdel al-Hakeem Carney, in contrast, states that sharia is misunderstood from a failure to distinguish sharia from siyasah (politics).[204]

Freedom of speech

Blasphemy in Islam is any form of cursing, questioning or annoying God, Muhammad or anything considered sacred in Islam.[205][206][207] The sharia of various Islamic schools of jurisprudence specify different punishment for blasphemy against Islam, by Muslims and non-Muslims, ranging from imprisonment, fines, flogging, amputation, hanging, or beheading.[205][208][209] In some cases, sharia allows non-Muslims to escape death by converting and becoming a devout follower of Islam.[210]

Blasphemy, as interpreted under sharia, is controversial. Muslim nations have petitioned the United Nations to limit “freedom of speech” because “unrestricted and disrespectful opinion against Islam creates hatred”.[211] Other nations, in contrast, consider blasphemy laws as violation of “freedom of speech”,[212] stating that freedom of expression is essential to empowering both Muslims and non-Muslims, and point to the abuse of blasphemy laws, where hundreds, often members of religious minorities, are being lynched, killed and incarcerated in Muslim nations, on flimsy accusations of insulting Islam.[213][214]

Freedom of thought, conscience and religion

According to the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights,[215] every human has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change their religion or belief. Sharia has been criticized for not recognizing this human right. According to scholars[19][216][217] of Islamic law, the applicable rules for religious conversion under sharia are as follows:

  • If a person converts to Islam, or is born and raised as a Muslim, then he or she will have full rights of citizenship in an Islamic state.[218]
  • Leaving Islam is a sin and a religious crime. Once any man or woman is officially classified as Muslim, because of birth or religious conversion, he or she will be subject to the death penalty if he or she becomes an apostate, that is, abandons his or her faith in Islam in order to become an atheist, agnostic or to convert to another religion. Before executing the death penalty, sharia demands that the individual be offered one chance to return to Islam.[218]
  • If a person has never been a Muslim, and is not a kafir (infidel, unbeliever), he or she can live in an Islamic state by accepting to be a dhimmi, or under a special permission called aman. As a dhimmi or under aman, he or she will suffer certain limitations of rights as a subject of an Islamic state, and will not enjoy complete legal equality with Muslims.[218]
  • If a person has never been a Muslim, and is a kafir (infidel, unbeliever), sharia demands that he or she should be offered the choice to convert to Islam and become a Muslim; if he or she rejects the offer, he or she may become a dhimmi. failure to pay the tax may lead the non-muslim to either be enslaved, killed or ransomed if captured.[218]

According to sharia theory, conversion of disbelievers and non-Muslims to Islam is encouraged as a religious duty for all Muslims, and leaving Islam (apostasy), expressing contempt for Islam (blasphemy), and religious conversion of Muslims is prohibited.[219][220] Not all Islamic scholars agree with this interpretation of sharia theory. In practice, as of 2011, 20 Islamic nations had laws declaring apostasy from Islam as illegal and a criminal offense. Such laws are incompatible with the UDHR’s requirement of freedom of thought, conscience and religion.[221][222][223][224] In another 2013 report based on international survey of religious attitudes, more than 50% of Muslim population in 6 out of 49 Islamic countries supported death penalty for any Muslim who leaves Islam (apostasy).[225][226] However it is also shown that the majority of Muslims in the 43 nations surveyed did not agree with this interpretation of sharia.

Some scholars claim sharia allows religious freedom because a Shari’a verse teaches, “there is no compulsion in religion.”[227] Other scholars claim sharia recognizes only one proper religion, considers apostasy as sin punishable with death, and members of other religions as kafir (infidel);[228] or hold that Shari’a demands that all apostates and kafir must be put to death, enslaved or be ransomed.[229][230][231][232] Yet other scholars suggest that Shari’a has become a product of human interpretation and inevitably leads to disagreements about the “precise contents of the Shari’a.” In the end, then, what is being applied is not sharia, but what a particular group of clerics and government decide is sharia. It is these differing interpretations of Shari’a that explain why many Islamic countries have laws that restrict and criminalize apostasy, proselytism and their citizens’ freedom of conscience and religion.[233][234]

LGBT rights

Main article: LGBT in Islam

Homosexual intercourse is illegal under sharia law, though the prescribed penalties differ from one school of jurisprudence to another. For example, only a few Muslim-majority countries impose the death penalty for acts perceived as sodomy and homosexual activities: Iran,[235] Saudi Arabia,[236] and Somalia.[237] In other Muslim-majority countries such as Egypt, Iraq, and the Indonesian province of Aceh,[238] same-sex sexual acts are illegal,[239] and LGBT people regularly face violence and discrimination.[240]

Women

Domestic violence

Many scholars[20][241] claim Shari’a law encourages domestic violence against women, when a husband suspects nushuz (disobedience, disloyalty, rebellion, ill conduct) in his wife.[242] Other scholars claim wife beating, for nashizah, is not consistent with modern perspectives of the Quran.[243]

One of the verses of the Quran relating to permissibility of domestic violence is Surah 4:34.[244][245] In deference to Surah 4:34, many nations with Shari’a law have refused to consider or prosecute cases of domestic abuse.[246][247][248][249] Shari’a has been criticized for ignoring women’s rights in domestic abuse cases.[250][251][252][253] Musawah, CEDAW, KAFA and other organizations have proposed ways to modify Shari’a-inspired laws to improve women’s rights in Islamic nations, including women’s rights in domestic abuse cases.[254][255][256][257]

Personal status laws and child marriag

Shari’a is the basis for personal status laws in most Islamic majority nations. These personal status laws determine rights of women in matters of marriage, divorce and child custody. A 2011 UNICEF report concludes that Shari’a law provisions are discriminatory against women from a human rights perspective. In legal proceedings under Shari’a law, a woman’s testimony is worth half of a man’s before a court.[154]

Except for Iran, Lebanon and Bahrain which allow child marriages, the civil code in Islamic majority countries do not allow child marriage of girls. However, with Shari’a personal status laws, Shari’a courts in all these nations have the power to override the civil code. The religious courts permit girls less than 18 years old to marry. As of 2011, child marriages are common in a few Middle Eastern countries, accounting for 1 in 6 all marriages in Egypt and 1 in 3 marriages in Yemen.UNICEF and other studies state that the top five nations in the world with highest observed child marriage rates — Niger (75%), Chad (72%), Mali (71%), Bangladesh (64%), Guinea (63%) — are Islamic-majority countries where the personal laws for Muslims are sharia-based.[258][259]

Rape is considered a crime in all countries, but Shari’a courts in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Syria and Tunisia in some cases allow a rapist to escape punishment by marrying his victim, while in other cases the victim who complains is often prosecuted with the crime of Zina (adultery).[154][260][261]

Women’s right to property and consent

Sharia grants women the right to inherit property from other family members, and these rights are detailed in the Quran.[262] A woman’s inheritance is unequal and less than a man’s, and dependent on many factors.[Quran 4:12][263] For instance, a daughter’s inheritance is usually half that of her brother’s.[Quran 4:11][263]

Until the 20th century, Islamic law granted Muslim women certain legal rights, such as the right to own property received as Mahr (brideprice) at her marriage, that Western legal systems did not grant to women.[264][265] However, Islamic law does not grant non-Muslim women the same legal rights as the few it did grant Muslim women. Sharia recognizes the basic inequality between master and women slave, between free women and slave women, between Believers and non-Believers, as well as their unequal rights.[266][267] Sharia authorized the institution of slavery, using the words abd (slave) and the phrase ma malakat aymanukum (“that which your right hand owns”) to refer to women slaves, seized as captives of war.[266][268] Under Islamic law, Muslim men could have sexual relations with female captives and slaves without her consent.[269][270]

Slave women under sharia did not have a right to own property, right to free movement or right to consent.[271][272] Sharia, in Islam’s history, provided religious foundation for enslaving non-Muslim women (and men), as well as encouraged slave’s manumission. However, manumission required that the non-Muslim slave first convert to Islam.[273][274] Non-Muslim slave women who bore children to their Muslim masters became legally free upon her master’s death, and her children were presumed to be Muslims as their father, in Africa,[273] and elsewhere.[275]

Starting with the 20th century, Western legal systems evolved to expand women’s rights, but women’s rights under Islamic law have remained tied to Quran, hadiths and their faithful interpretation as sharia by Islamic jurists.[270][276]

Parallels with Western legal systems

Elements of Islamic law have influenced western legal systems. As example, the influence of Islamic influence on the development of an international law of the sea” can be discerned alongside that of the Roman influence.[277]

Makdisi states Islamic law also influenced the legal scholastic system of the West.[278] The study of legal text and degrees have parallels between Islamic studies of sharia and the Western system of legal studies. For example, the status of faqih (meaning “master of law“), mufti (meaning “professor of legal opinions“) andmudarris (meaning “teacher”), which were later translated into Latin as magister, professor and doctor respectively.[278]

There are differences between Islamic and Western legal systems. For example, sharia classically recognizes only natural persons, and never developed the concept of a legal person, or corporation, i.e., a legal entity that limits the liabilities of its managers, shareholders, and employees; exists beyond the lifetimes of its founders; and that can own assets, sign contracts, and appear in court through representatives.[279] Interest prohibitions also imposed secondary costs by discouraging record keeping, and delaying the introduction of modern accounting.[280] Such factors, according to Timur Kuran, have played a significant role in retarding economic development in the Middle East.[281]

See also

Further reading

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia

Ben Carson says no Muslim should ever become US president

  • 2016 hopeful: ‘I would not advocate we put a Muslim in charge of this nation’
  • Retired neurosurgeon says Islam is not consistent with US constitution

The Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson has said no Muslim should be president of the United States of America.

In an interview with NBC for broadcast on Sunday morning, the retired neurosurgeon said: “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that.”

Carson’s discussion with Meet the Press host Chuck Todd centered around controversy that arose this week when Donald Trump – the real-estate mogul keeping Carson in second place in the polls – failed to correct an audience member at a New Hampshire campaign rally who said President Obama was a Muslim.

The audience member also appeared to advocate the forcible removal of Muslims from the US.

On Saturday, in a series of tweets on the subject, Trump defended himself and said: “Am I morally obligated to defend the president every time somebody says something bad or controversial about him? I don’t think so!”
Trump: I was not obligated to correct questioner who called Obama Muslim
Read more
He also addressed the issue in an appearance before an evangelical audience in Iowa, at which he brandished a Bible and said: “You see, I’m better than you thought.”

In such circles, Trump has lost some support to Carson.

In his NBC interview, Carson was asked: “So do you believe that Islam is consistent with the constitution?”

“No,” he said, “I don’t, I do not.”

Article VI of the US constitution states: “No religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”

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The first amendment to the constitution begins: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof …”

Carson, a Christian, is a member of the Seventh Day Adventist church. In October, he will publish a new book, written with his wife Candy Carson and entitled A More Perfect Union: What We the People Can Do to Reclaim Our Constitutional Liberties.

In publicity material issued by Penguin Random House, Carson is quoted as saying: “I believe that making a difference starts with understanding our amazing founding document, the US constitution.

“And as someone who has performed brain surgery thousands of times, I can assure you that the constitution isn’t brain surgery.

He adds that he and his wife wrote the book to “help defend” the constitution “from those who misinterpret and undermine it”.

Carson did have a constituency to speak to, however. In a recent poll, 38% of voters said they would not vote for a Muslim president.
Quiet rise of Ben Carson is shaking up Republican presidential race
Read more
The Ohio governor, John Kasich, who is polling an average of 2.5%, enough for 10th place out of 16, was also asked by NBC if he “would ever have a problem with a Muslim becoming president”.

Kasich, one of the more moderate candidates in the GOP field, also had to field a question about whether he was a Republican at all. He did not say he would have a problem with a Muslim president, but nor did he dismiss the question.

“You know, I mean, that’s such a hypothetical question,” Kasich said. “The answer is, at the end of the day, you’ve got to go through the rigours, and people will look at everything.

“But, for me, the most important thing about being president is you have leadership skills, you know what you’re doing, and you can help fix this country and raise this country. Those are the qualifications that matter to me.”

Carson was also asked if he would consider voting for a Muslim candidate for Congress.

He said: “Congress is a different story, but it depends on who that Muslim is and what their policies are, just as it depends on what anybody else says, you know.”

Two members of Congress, both Democrats, are Muslim: Keith Ellison of Minnesota was elected to the House of Representatives in 2007 and André Carson of Indiana followed in 2008.

Every American should be disturbed … national figures are engaging in and tolerating blatant acts of religious bigotry
Representative Keith Ellison
This week, Ellison carried a clock around Congress to show support for Ahmed Mohamed, a 14-year-old boy who was arrested at his school in Irving, Texas, over suspicions a homemade clock was in fact a bomb.

On Sunday Ellison, the first Muslim ever elected to Congress, released a statement in answer to Carson’s comments.

“For Ben Carson, Donald Trump, or any other Republican politician to suggest that someone of any faith is unfit for office is out of touch with who we are as a people,” he said.

“It’s unimaginable that the leading GOP presidential candidates are resorting to fear mongering to benefit their campaigns, and every American should be disturbed that these national figures are engaging in and tolerating blatant acts of religious bigotry.”

 

Ahmed Mohamed is tired, excited to meet Obama – and wants his clock back
Read more
According to the Pew Research Center, the 114th Congress contains 491 Christians, of which 306 are Protestant, split between 13 sects though without any declared Anabaptists, Quakers or Pietists.

Another 164 members of Congress are Catholic, while 16 are Mormon and five Orthodox Christian. As well as the two Muslims there are 28 Jewish and two Buddhist members of Congress; there is one Hindu member, one Unitarian Universalist and one “unaffiliated”.

Nine members of Congress either told the Pew researchers they didn’t know what religion they were, or refused to answer the question.

On Meet the Press, Carson continued: “And, you know, if there’s somebody who’s of any faith, but they say things, and their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed, and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them.”

Asked if he believed President Obama was both born in the US – another issue raised at the Trump rally on Thursday and not rebutted by the candidate – and a Christian, Carson said: “I believe that he is. I have no reason to doubt what he says.”

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/20/ben-carson-no-muslim-us-president-trump-obama

Carson says he does not agree with a Muslim being elected president

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson suggested Sunday that a Muslim should not be president, extending the new and unexpected religion debate on the 2016 campaign trail.

“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation,” Carson, a Christian and retired neurosurgeon, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “I absolutely would not agree with that.”

Carson, a top-tier 2016 candidate and popular among the GOP’s evangelical wing, made the statement after fellow Republican candidate Donald Trump was addressed by a man during a rally Thursday in New Hampshire who said President Obama is a Muslim.

“We have a problem in this country,” the unidentified man said. “It’s called Muslim. … You know our current president is one.”

Obama says he is a Christian. But Trump has declined to address the issue, saying he is not “morally obligated” to set straight the record.

Carson also described the Islamic faith as inconsistent with the Constitution. However, he did not specify in what way Islam ran counter to constitutional principles.

Carson said he believes Obama is a Christian and has “no reason to doubt what he says.”

He also said he would consider voting for a Muslim running for Congress, depending on “who that Muslim is and what their policies are.”

Carson also made a distinction when it came to electing Muslims to Congress, calling it a “different story” from the presidency that “depends on who that Muslim is and what their policies are, just as it depends on what anybody else says.”

Congress has two Muslim members, Democratic Reps. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Andre Carson of Indiana.

“If there’s somebody who’s of any faith, but they say things, and their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed, and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them,” Carson said.

Trump on Sunday told ABC’s “This Week” that he doesn’t talk about other people’s faith and that Obama is “very capable of defending himself.”

He also said the politically correct statement is that Muslims are not a problem in the United States but the reality is that “some” associated with terrorism pose a worldwide threat.

“We can say … everything’s wonderful,” Trump said. “But certainly it is a problem. … if I want to say no, not at all, people would laugh at me.”

Fellow GOP contender and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told ABC about the Muslim debate: “This has nothing to do with the future of our country. These issues have been discussed ad nauseam over the last few years. It’s a big waste of time. Barack Obama will not be president in a year and a half. It’s time to start talking about the future of America and the people that are at home.”

Carson’s comments drew strong criticism from the country’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

“To me this really means he is not qualified to be president of the United States,” said the group’s spokesman, Ibrahim Hooper. “You cannot hold these kinds of views and at the same time say you will represent all Americans, of all faiths and backgrounds.”

Hooper said the Constitution expressly forbids religious tests for those seeking public office and called for the repudiation of “these un-American comments.”

In a separate appearance on NBC, fellow 2016 GOP candidate Ohio Gov. John Kasich, was asked whether he would have a problem with a Muslim in the White House.

“The answer is, at the end of the day, you’ve got to go through the rigors, and people will look at everything. But, for me, the most important thing about being president is you have leadership skills, you know what you’re doing and you can help fix this country and raise this country. Those are the qualifications that matter to me.”

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who taped Sunday an episode of Iowa Press, an Iowa Public Television program, was asked if he agreed with Carson’s statements on Muslims being president. “The Constitution specifies that there shall be no religious test for public office, and I am a constitutionalist,” Cruz said.

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said, “It’s hard to understand what’s so difficult about supporting an American citizen’s right to run for president.

“But unsurprisingly, this left Republicans scratching their heads. Of course a Muslim, or any other American citizen, can run for president, end of story.”

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2015/09/21/carson-suggests-muslim-should-not-be-elected-president/

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Story 1: Should President Obama and Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Apologize For A Failed Foreign Policy Leading To Genocide and Democide in Iraq, Syria, and Libya? — Yes, but They Never Take Responsibility For Their Failures But Blame It On Others — No Wonder Carson and American People Oppose A Muslim President —  ‘How Do You Spell Genocide? O-B-A-M-A’ — Videos

United States Constitution

Article VI

All debts contracted and engagements entered into, before the adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.

This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding.

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/articlevi

U.S. Bill of Rights

Amendment I (1): Freedom of religion, speech, and the press; rights of assembly and petition
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

https://www.constitutionfacts.com/us-constitution-amendments/bill-of-rights/

Sharia Law

Shariah law

Sharia law is the law of Islam. The Sharia (also spelled Shariah or Shari’a) law is cast from the actions and words of Muhammad, which are called “Sunnah,” and the Quran, which he authored.

The Sharia law itself cannot be altered, but the interpretation of the Sharia law, called “figh,” by imams is given some leeway.

As a legal system, the Sharia law covers a very wide range of topics. While other legal codes deal primarily with public behavior, Sharia law covers public behavior, private behavior and private beliefs. Of all legal systems in the world today, Islam’s Sharia law is the most intrusive and strict, especially against women.

According to the Sharia law:

•  Theft is punishable by amputation of the right hand (above).
•  Criticizing or denying any part of the Quran is punishable by death.
•  Criticizing or denying Muhammad is a prophet is punishable by death.
•  Criticizing or denying Allah, the moon god of Islam is punishable by death.
•  A Muslim who becomes a non-Muslim is punishable by death.
•  A non-Muslim who leads a Muslim away from Islam is punishable by death.
•  A non-Muslim man who marries a Muslim woman is punishable by death.
•  A man can marry an infant girl and consummate the marriage when she is 9 years old.
•  Girls’ clitoris should be cut (per Muhammad‘s words in Book 41, Kitab Al-Adab, Hadith 5251).
•  A woman can have 1 husband, but a man can have up to 4 wives; Muhammad can have more.
•  A man can unilaterally divorce his wife but a woman needs her husband’s consent to divorce.
•  A man can beat his wife for insubordination.
•  Testimonies of four male witnesses are required to prove rape against a woman.
•  A woman who has been raped cannot testify in court against her rapist(s).
•  A woman’s testimony in court, allowed only in property cases, carries half the weight of a man’s.
•  A female heir inherits half of what a male heir inherits.
•  A woman cannot drive a car, as it leads to fitnah (upheaval).
•  A woman cannot speak alone to a man who is not her husband or relative.
•  Meat to be eaten must come from animals that have been sacrificed to Allah – i.e., be Halal.
•  Muslims should engage in Taqiyya and lie to non-Muslims to advance Islam.
•  The list goes on.

http://www.billionbibles.org/sharia/sharia-law.html

HUMAN GENOCIDE DOCUMENTARY. IRAQ AND SYRIA . ISIS, USA, UN ::: 2ND AUGUST 2014

Christians in Iraq are heeding an ultimatum by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to convert to Islam, get out or be killed.

Reports from the Middle East say that large numbers of Christians have fled the northern city of Mosul — now under control of the ISIL — after a message warning them to get out by Saturday was broadcast by loudspeakers on the city’s mosques.

An ISIL document reviewed by AFP said that there would be “nothing for them but the sword” if Christians didn’t adhere to the deadline.

The ISIL announcement also said that Christians could stay and pay a tax, often known as a “jizya,” though the exact amount was unspecified. A jizya is a historical policy of allowing non-Muslims to keep their own religion and their property if they pay a certain amount to Islamic rulers.

In centuries past, there have been examples of Christians paying the tax and living peacefully with Muslims. Recently however, it has often been exploited as a form of extortion against non-Muslims.

Many Christian families fleeing Mosul didn’t seem to put much trust in the promise of peace.

The aim of this documentary is to raise awareness.
WE ARE URGING ALL: PEOPLE TO SPEAK UP AND DO SOMETHING!!!

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Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said today he would not support a Muslim as president on meet the press The retired neurosurgeon also said Islam, as a religion, was inconsistent with the Constitution. Carson told NBC’s “Meet the Press” he believed a president’s faith should matter “depending on what that faith is.” “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that,” Carson said. “If it’s [a president’s faith] inconsistent with the values and principles of America, then of course it should matter.” Carson, who has been near the top of several presidential polls, said he would consider voting for a Muslim in Congress “[depending] on who that Muslim is and what their policies are.” ABC News has reached out to Carson’s campaign for comment.
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Sharia Law and the U.S. Constitution

[Update I:  I have streamlined the following post to be easily readable to the average layman, but informative enough for a lawyer or law professor to learn a bit more on the similarities and differences between Sharia and U.S. Law]

Is Sharia compatible with the U.S. Constitution?

The simple answer is of course “no”.

But lets take a look at some aspects of Sharia Law and where it may or may not conflict with the U.S. Constitution.  (For disclosure I am not a lawyer nor a legal expert in Sharia or U.S. Law.)

First, what is Sharia?

Wikipedia states Sharia refers to the sacred law of Islam.  All Muslims believe Sharia is God’s law, but they have differences between themselves as to exactly what it entails.  Which will be difficult to discern what to apply when, but we’ll labor along for the sake of discussion.

In Western countries, where Muslim immigration is more recent, Muslim minorities have introduced Sharia family law, for use in their own disputes. Attempts to impose Sharia have been accompanied by controversy, violence, and even warfare (Second Sudanese Civil War).

The recent incidents at the Arab International Festival have reinforced the poor image of Sharia inside the United States and its incompatibility with American culture and law.

The following is a truncated version with a couple of modifications (eliminating repetitious ibids and links) of multiple Wikipedia entries [with my comments]:

Legal and Court Proceedings:

Wikipedia states that Sharia judicial proceedings have significant differences with other legal traditions, including those in both common law and civil law.

1. Sharia courts do not generally employ lawyers; plaintiffs and defendants represent themselves.

2. Trials are conducted solely by the judge, and there is no jury system.

3. There is no pre-trial discovery process, no cross-examination of witnesses, and no penalty of perjury (on the assumption that no witness would thus endanger his soul) Unlike common law, judges’ verdicts do not set binding precedents under the principle of stare decisis and unlike civil law, Sharia does not utilize formally codified statutes (these were first introduced only in the late 19th century during the decline of the Ottoman Empire, cf. mecelle).

4. Instead of precedents and codes, Sharia relies on medieval jurist’s manuals and collections of non-binding legal opinions, or fatwas, issued by religious scholars (ulama, particularly a mufti); these can be made binding for a particular case at the discretion of a judge.

5. Sharia courts’ rules of evidence also maintain a distinctive custom of prioritizing oral testimony and excluding written and documentary evidence (including forensic and circumstantial evidence), on the basis that it could be tampered with or forged.

6. A confession, an oath, or the oral testimony of a witness are the only evidence admissible in a Sharia court, written evidence is only admissible with the attestations of multiple, witnesses deemed reliable by the judge, i.e. notaries.

7. Testimony must be from at least two witnesses, and preferably free Muslim male witnesses, who are not related parties and who are of sound mind and reliable character; testimony to establish the crime of adultery, or zina must be from four direct witnesses.

8. Forensic evidence (i.e. fingerprints, ballistics, blood samples, DNA etc.) and othercircumstantial evidence is likewise rejected in hudud cases in favor of eyewitnesses, a practice which can cause severe difficulties for women plaintiffs in rape cases.

9. Testimony from women is given only half the weight of men [in most sources outside of Wikipedia Sharia states that a woman’s testimony only carries the weight of 1/4th of a man’s], and testimony from non-Muslims may be excluded altogether (if against a Muslim).

10. In lieu of written evidence, oaths are accorded much greater weight; rather than being used simply to guarantee the truth of ensuing testimony, they are themselves used as evidence.

11. Plaintiffs lacking other evidence to support their claims may demand that defendants take an oath swearing their innocence, refusal thereof can result in a verdict for the plaintiff.

12. Sharia courts, with their tradition of pro se representation, simple rules of evidence, and absence of appeals courts, prosecutors, cross examination, complex documentary evidence and discovery proceedings, juries and voir dire proceedings, circumstantial evidence, forensics, case law, standardized codes, exclusionary rules, and most of the other infrastructure of civil and common law court systems, have as a result, comparatively informal and streamlined proceedings. [that’s one way of putting it]

13. This can provide significant increases in speed and efficiency (at the cost of the safeguards provided in secular legal systems), and can be an advantage in jurisdictions where the general court system is slow or corrupt, and where few litigants can afford lawyers. (end Wikipedia)

This is not a concise review of the difference nor similarities between U.S. Law and Sharia.  It is only meant to educate us on what Sharia law is in comparison to our legal system.

http://the-american-catholic.com/2010/06/25/sharia-law-and-the-u-s-constitution/

Sharia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Islamic law” redirects here. For Islamic jurisprudence, see Fiqh.

 

Sharia applies in full, covering personal status issues as well as criminal proceedings

 

Sharia applies in personal status issues (such as marriage, divorce, inheritance, and child custody)

 

Regional variations in the application of Sharia

 

Members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation where Sharia plays no role in the judicial system

Sharia or sharia law (Arabic: شريعة‎ (IPA: [ʃaˈriːʕa]), is the Islamic legal system[1] derived from the religious precepts of Islam, particularly the Quran and the Hadith. The term sharia comes from the Arabic language term sharīʿah, which means a body of moral and religious law derived from religious prophecy, as opposed to human legislation.[2][3][4]

Sharia deals with many topics, including crime, politics, and economics, as well as personal matters such as sexual intercourse, hygiene, diet, prayer, everyday etiquette and fasting. Adherence to sharia has served as one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Muslim faith historically.[5] In its strictest and most historically coherent definition, sharia is considered in Islam as the infallible law of God.[6]

There are two primary sources of sharia: the Quran, and the Hadiths (opinions and life example of Muhammad).[7] For topics and issues not directly addressed in these primary sources, sharia is derived. The derivation differs between the various sects of Islam (Sunni and Shia), and various jurisprudence schools such as Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, Hanbali andJafari.[8][9] The sharia in these schools is derived hierarchically using one or more of the following guidelines: Ijma(usually the consensus of Muhammad’s companions), Qiyas (analogy derived from the primary sources), Istihsan(ruling that serves the interest of Islam in the discretion of Islamic jurists) and Urf (customs).[8][10]

Sharia is a significant source of legislation in various Muslim countries. Some apply all or a majority of the sharia code, and these include Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Yemen andMauritania. In these countries, sharia prescribed punishments such as beheading, flogging and stoning continue to be practiced judicially or extra-judicially.[11][12] The introduction of sharia is a longstanding goal for Islamist movements globally, including in Western countries, but attempts to impose sharia have been accompanied by controversy,[13]violence,[14] and even warfare.[15] Most countries do not recognize sharia; however, some countries in Asia, Africa and Europe recognize parts of sharia and accept it as the law on divorce, inheritance and other personal affairs of their Islamic population.[16] In Britain, the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal makes use of sharia family law to settle disputes, and this limited adoption of sharia is controversial.[17]

The concept of crime, judicial process, justice and punishment embodied in sharia is different from that of secular law.[18] The differences between sharia and secular laws have led to an ongoing controversy as to whether sharia is compatible with secular forms of government, human rights, freedom of thought, and women’s rights.[19][20][21]

Etymology and origins[edit]

Scholars describe the word sharia (/ʃɑːˈriːɑː/, also shari’a, šarīʿah) as an archaic Arabic word denoting “pathway to be followed” (analogous to the Hebrew termHalakhah [“The Way to Go”]),[22] or “path to the water hole”. The latter definition comes from the fact that the path to water is the whole way of life in an arid desert environment.[23]

The etymology of sharia as a “path” or “way” comes from the Quranic verse[Quran 45:18]: “Then we put thee on the (right) Way of religion so follow thou that (Way), and follow not the desires of those who know not.”[22] Malik Ghulam Farid in his Dictionary of the Holy Quran, believes the “Way” in 45:18 (quoted above) derives from shara’a (as prf. 3rd. p.m. sing.), meaning “He ordained”. Other forms also appear: shara’u[Quran 45:13] as (prf. 3rd. p.m. plu.), “they decreed (a law)”[Quran 42:21]; and shir’atun (n.) meaning “spiritual law”[Quran 5:48].[24]

The Arabic word sharīʿa has origins in the concept of ‘religious law’; the word is commonly used by Arabic-speaking peoples of the Middle East and designates a prophetic religion in its totality. Thus, sharīʿat Mūsā means religious law of Moses (Judaism), sharīʿat al-Masīḥ means religious law of Christianity, sharīʿat al-Madjūs means religious law of Zoroastrianism.[3]

The Arabic expression شريعة الله (God’s Law) is a common translation for תורת אלוהים (‘God’s Law’ in Hebrew) and νόμος τοῦ θεοῦ (‘God’s Law’ in Greek in the New Testament [Rom. 7: 22]).[25] In contemporary Islamic literature, sharia refers to divine law of Islam as revealed by prophet Muhammad, as well as in his function as model and exemplar of the law.[3]

Sharia in the Islamic world is also known as Qānūn-e Islāmī (قانون اسلامی).[citation needed]

History

In Islam, the origin of sharia is the Qu’ran, and traditions gathered from the life of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad (born ca. 570 CE in Mecca).[26]

Sharia underwent fundamental development, beginning with the reigns of caliphs Abu Bakr (632–34) and Umar (634–44) for Sunni Muslims, and Imam Ali for Shia Muslims, during which time many questions were brought to the attention of Muhammad’s closest comrades for consultation.[27] During the reign of Muawiya b. Abu Sufyan ibn Harb, ca. 662 CE, Islam undertook an urban transformation, raising questions not originally covered by Islamic law.[27] Since then, changes in Islamic society have played an ongoing role in developing sharia, which branches out into fiqh and Qanun respectively.

The formative period of fiqh stretches back to the time of the early Muslim communities. In this period, jurists were more concerned with pragmatic issues of authority and teaching than with theory.[28] Progress in theory was started by 8th and 9th century Islamic scholars Abu Hanifa, Malik bin Anas, Al-Shafi’i, Ahmad ibn Hanbal and others.[8][29] Al-Shafi‘i is credited with deriving the theory of valid norms for sharia (uṣūl al-fiqh), arguing for a traditionalist, literal interpretation of Quran, Hadiths and methodology for law as revealed therein, to formulate sharia.[30][31]

A number of legal concepts and institutions were developed by Islamic jurists during the classical period of Islam, known as the Islamic Golden Age, dated from the 7th to 13th centuries. These shaped different versions of sharia in different schools of Islamic jurisprudence, called fiqhs.[32][33][34]

The Umayyads initiated the office of appointing qadis, or Islamic judges. The jurisdiction of the qadi extended only to Muslims, while non-Muslim populations retained their own legal institutions.[35] Under the Umayyads Islamic scholars were “sidelined” from administration of justice and attempts to systematically uphold and develope Islamic law would wait for Abbasid rule.[36] The qadis were usually pious specialists in Islam. As these grew in number, they began to theorize and systemize Islamic jurisprudence.[37] The Abbasid made the institution of qadi independent from the government, but this separation wasn’t always respected.[38]

Both the Umayyad caliph Umar II and the Abbasids had agreed that the caliph could not legislate contrary to the Quran or the sunnah. Imam Shafi’i declared: “atradition from the Prophet must be accepted as soon as it become known…If there has been an action on the part of a caliph, and a tradition from the Prophet to the contrary becomes known later, that action must be discarded in favor of the tradition from the Prophet.” Thus, under the Abbasids the main features of sharia were definitively established and sharia was recognized as the law of behavior for Muslims.[39]

In modern times, the Muslim community have divided points of view: secularists believe that the law of the state should be based on secular principles, not on Islamic legal doctrines; traditionalists believe that the law of the state should be based on the traditional legal schools;[40] reformers believe that new Islamic legal theories can produce modernized Islamic law[41] and lead to acceptable opinions in areas such as women’s rights.[42] This division persists until the present day (Brown 1996, Hallaq 2001, Ramadan 2005, Aslan 2006, Safi 2003, Nenezich 2006).

There has been a growing religious revival in Islam, beginning in the eighteenth century and continuing today. This movement has expressed itself in various forms ranging from wars to efforts towards improving education.[43][44]

Definitions and disagreements

Sharia, in its strictest definition, is a divine law, as expressed in the Quran and Muhammad’s example (often called the sunnah). As such, it is related to but different from fiqh, which is emphasized as the human interpretation of the law.[45][46] Many scholars have pointed out that the sharia is not formally a code,[47] nor a well-defined set of rules.[48] The sharia is characterized as a discussion on the duties of Muslims[47] based on both the opinion of the Muslim community and extensive literature.[49] Hunt Janin and Andre Kahlmeyer thus conclude that the sharia is “long, diverse, and complicated.”[48]

From the 9th century onward, the power to interpret and refine law in traditional Islamic societies was in the hands of the scholars (ulema). This separation of powers served to limit the range of actions available to the ruler, who could not easily decree or reinterpret law independently and expect the continued support of the community.[50] Through succeeding centuries and empires, the balance between the ulema and the rulers shifted and reformed, but the balance of power was never decisively changed.[51] Over the course of many centuries, imperial, political and technological change, including the Industrial Revolution and the French Revolution, ushered in an era of European world hegemony that gradually included the domination of many of the lands which had previously been ruled by Islamic empires.[52][53] At the end of the Second World War, the European powers found themselves too weakened to maintain their empires as before.[54] The wide variety of forms of government, systems of law, attitudes toward modernity and interpretations of sharia are a result of the ensuing drives for independence and modernity in the Muslim world.[55][56]

According to Jan Michiel Otto, Professor of Law and Governance in Developing Countries at Leiden University, “Anthropological research shows that people in local communities often do not distinguish clearly whether and to what extent their norms and practices are based on local tradition, tribal custom, or religion. Those who adhere to a confrontational view of sharia tend to ascribe many undesirable practices to sharia and religion overlooking custom and culture, even if high-ranking religious authorities have stated the opposite.” Otto’s analysis appears in a paper commissioned by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.[57]

Sources of sharia law

Main article: Sources of sharia

There are two sources of sharia (understood as the divine law): the Quran and the Sunnah. The Quran is viewed as the unalterable word of God. It is considered in Islam to be an infallible part of sharia. The Quran covers a host of topics including God, personal laws for Muslim men and Muslim women, laws on community life, laws on expected interaction of Muslims with non-Muslims, apostates and ex-Muslims, laws on finance, morals, eschatology, and others.[58][59] The Sunnah is the life and example of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. The Sunnah’s importance as a source of sharia, is confirmed by several verses of the Quran (e.g.[Quran 33:21]).[60] The Sunnah is primarily contained in the hadith or reports of Muhammad’s sayings, his actions, his tacit approval of actions and his demeanor. While there is only one Quran, there are many compilations of hadith, with the most authentic ones forming during the sahih period (850 to 915 CE). The six acclaimed Sunni collections were compiled by (in order of decreasing importance) Muhammad al-Bukhari, Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi, Al-Nasa’i, Ibn Majah. The collections by al-Bukhari and Muslim, regarded the most authentic, contain about 7,000 and 12,000 hadiths respectively (although the majority of entries are repetitions). The hadiths have been evaluated on authenticity, usually by determining the reliability of the narrators that transmitted them.[61] For Shias, the Sunnah include life and sayings of The Twelve Imams.[62]

Quran versus Hadith

Muslims who reject the Hadith as a source of law, sometimes referred to as Quranists,[63][64] suggest that only laws derived exclusively from the Quran are valid.[65]They state that the hadiths in modern use are not explicitly mentioned in the Quran as a source of Islamic theology and practice, they were not recorded in written form until more than two centuries after the death of the prophet Muhammed.[63] They also state that the authenticity of the hadiths remains a question.[66][67]

The vast majority of Muslims, however, consider hadiths, which describe the words, conduct and example set by Muhammad during his life, as a source of law and religious authority second only to the Qur’an.[68] Similarly, most Islamic scholars believe both Quran and sahih hadiths to be a valid source of sharia, with Quranic verse 33.21, among others,[69][70] as justification for this belief.[64]

Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah.

It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and His Messenger to have any option about their decision: if any one disobeys Allah and His Messenger, he is indeed on a clearly wrong Path.

For vast majority of Muslims, sharia has historically been, and continues to be derived from both the Quran and the Hadiths.[64][68][70] The Sahih Hadiths of Sunni Muslims contain isnad, or a chain of guarantors reaching back to a companion of Muhammad who directly observed the words, conduct and example he set – thus providing the theological ground to consider the hadith to be a sound basis for sharia.[64][70] For Sunni Muslims, the musannaf in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim is most trusted and relied upon as source for Sunni Sharia.[71] Shia Muslims, however, do not consider the chain of transmitters of Sunni hadiths as reliable, given these transmitters belonged to Sunni side in Sunni-Shia civil wars that followed after Muhammad’s death.[72] Shia rely on their own chain of reliable guarantors, trusting compilations such as Kitab al-Kafi and Tahdhib al-Ahkam instead, and later hadiths (usually called akhbār by Shi’i).[73][74] The Shia version of hadiths contain the words, conduct and example set by Muhammad and Imams, which they consider as sinless, infallible and an essential source of sharia for Shi’ite Muslims.[72][75]However, in substance, the Shi’ite hadiths resemble the Sunni hadiths, with one difference – the Shia hadiths additionally include words and actions of its Imams (al-hadith al-walawi), the biological descendants of Muhammad, and these too are considered an important source for sharia by Shi’ites.[73][76]

Disagreements on Quran

Main article: Naskh (tafsir)
Authenticity and writing of Quran

Some scholars such as John Wansbrough have challenged the authenticity of the Quran and whether it was written in the time of Muhammad.[77] In contrast, Estelle Whelan has refuted Wansbrough presenting evidence such as the inscriptions on the Dome of the Rock.[78][79] John Burton states that medieval era Islamic texts claiming Quran was compiled after the death of the Prophet were forged to preserve the status-quo.[80] The final version of the Quran, states Burton, was compiled while the Prophet was still alive.[81] Most scholars accept that the Quran as is used for Sharia, was compiled into the final current form during the caliphate of Uthman.[82][83]

Abrogation and textual inconsistencies

From the founding of Islam, the Muslim community has also debated the authenticity of compiled verses and the consistency within the Quran.[84][85] The inconsistencies in deriving sharia from the Quran, were recognized and formally complicated by verses 2.106 and 16.101 of the Quran, which are known as the “verses of abrogation (Naskh)”,[86]

When We substitute one revelation for another, – and Allah knows best what He reveals (in stages),– they say, “Thou art but a forger”: but most of them understand not.

The principle of abrogation has been historically accepted and applied by Islamic jurists on both the Quran and the Sunnah.[84][86] Sharia is thus determined through a chronological study of the primary sources, where older revelations are considered invalid and overruled by later revelations.[86][87] While an overwhelming majority of historical and modern Islamic scholars have accepted the principle of abrogation for the Quran and the Sunnah, some modern scholars disagree that the principle of abrogation necessarily applies to the Quran.[88]

Islamic jurisprudence (Fiqh)

Main article: Fiqh

Fiqh (school of Islamic jurisprudence) represents the process of deducing and applying sharia principles, as well as the collective body of specific laws deduced from sharia using the fiqh methodology.[8] While Quran and Hadith sources are regarded as infallible, the fiqh standards may change in different contexts. Fiqh covers all aspects of law, including religious, civil, political, constitutional and procedural law.[89] Fiqh deploys the following to create Islamic laws:[8]

  1. Injunctions, revealed principles and interpretations of the Quran (Used by all schools and sects of Islam)
  2. Interpretation of the Sunnah (Muhammad’s practices, opinions and traditions) and principles therein, after establishing the degree of reliability of hadith’s chain of reporters (Used by all schools and sects of Islam)

If the above two sources do not provide guidance for an issue, then different fiqhs deploy the following in a hierarchical way:[8]

  1. Ijma, collective reasoning and consensus amongst authoritative Muslims of a particular generation, and its interpretation by Islamic scholars. This fiqh principle for sharia is derived from Quranic verse 4:59.[90] Typically, the recorded consensus of Sahabah (Muhammad’s companions) is considered authoritative and most trusted. If this is unavailable, then the recorded individual reasoning (Ijtihad) of Muhammad companions is sought. In Islam’s history, some Muslim scholars have argued that Ijtihad allows individual reasoning of both the earliest generations of Muslims and later generation Muslims, while others have argued that Ijtihad allows individual reasoning of only the earliest generations of Muslims. (Used by all schools of Islam, Jafari fiqh accepts only Ijtihad of Shia Imams)[8][91]
  2. Qiyas, analogy is deployed if Ijma or historic collective reasoning on the issue is not available. Qiyas represents analogical deduction, the support for using it in fiqh is based on Quranic verse 2:59, and this methodology was started by Abu Hanifa.[92] This principle is considered weak by Hanbali fiqh, and it usually avoids Qiyas for sharia. (Used by all Sunni schools of Islam, but rejected by Shia Jafari)[8][10]
  3. Istihsan, which is the principle of serving the interest of Islam and public as determined by Islamic jurists. This method is deployed if Ijtihad and Qiyas fail to provide guidance. It was started by Hanafi fiqh as a form of Ijtihad (individual reasoning). Maliki fiqh called it Masalih Al-Mursalah, or departure from strict adherence to the Texts for public welfare. The Hanbali fiqh called it Istislah and rejected it, as did Shafi’i fiqh. (Used by Hanafi, Maliki, but rejected by Shafii, Hanbali and Shia Jafari fiqhs)[8][10][30]
  4. Istihab and Urf which mean continuity of pre-Islamic customs and customary law. This is considered as the weakest principle, accepted by just two fiqhs, and even in them recognized only when the custom does not violate or contradict any Quran, Hadiths or other fiqh source. (Used by Hanafi, Maliki, but rejected by Shafii, Hanbali and Shia Jafari fiqhs)[8][10]
Schools of law
Main article: Madhhab

Map of the Muslim world with the main schools of Islamic law (madhhab)

A Madhhab is a Muslim school of law that follows a fiqh (school of religious jurisprudence). In the first 150 years of Islam, there were many madhhab. Several of the Sahābah, or contemporary “companions” of Muhammad, are credited with founding their own. In the Sunni sect of Islam, the Islamic jurisprudence schools of Medina (Al-Hijaz, now in Saudi Arabia) created the Maliki madhhab, while those in Kufa (now in Iraq) created the Hanafimadhhab.[93] Abu al-Shafi’i, who started as a student of Maliki school of Islamic law, and later was influenced by Hanafi school of Islamic law, disagreed with some of the discretion these schools gave to jurists, and founded the more conservative Shafi’i madhhab, which spread from jurisprudence schools in Baghdad (Iraq) and Cairo (Egypt).[94] Ahmad ibn Hanbal, a student of al-Shafi’i, went further in his criticism of Maliki and Hanafi fiqhs, criticizing the abuse and corruption of sharia from jurist discretion and consensus of later generation Muslims, and he founded the more strict, traditionalist Hanbali school of Islamic law.[95] Other schools such as the Jaririwere established later, which eventually died out.

Sunni sect of Islam has four major surviving schools of sharia: Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, Hanbali; one minor school is named Ẓāhirī. Shii sect of Islam has three: Ja’fari(major), Zaydi and Ismaili.[96][97][98] There are other minority fiqhs as well, such as the Ibadi school of Khawarij sect, and those of Sufi and Ahmadi sects.[89][99] All Sunni and Shia schools of sharia rely first on the Quran and the sayings/practices of Muhammad in the Sunnah. Their differences lie in the procedure each uses to create Islam-compliant laws when those two sources do not provide guidance on a topic.[100] The Salafi movement creates sharia based on the Quran, Sunnah and the actions and sayings of the first three generations of Muslims.[101]

Hanafi-based sharia spread with the patronage and military expansions led by Turkic Sultans and Ottoman Empire in West Asia, Southeast Europe, Central Asia and South Asia.[102][103] It is currently the largest madhhab of Sunni Muslims.[104] Maliki-based sharia is predominantly found in West Africa, North Africa and parts of Arabia.[104] Shafii-based sharia spread with patronage and military expansions led by maritime Sultans, and is mostly found in coastal regions of East Africa, Arabia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and islands in the Indian ocean.[105] The Hanbali-based sharia prevails in the smallest Sunni madhhab, predominantly found in the Arabian peninsula.[104] The Shia Jafari-based sharia is mostly found in Persian region and parts of West Asia and South Asia.

Categories of law

Along with interpretation, each fiqh classifies its interpretation of sharia into one of the following five categories: fard (obligatory), mustahabb (recommended),mubah (neutral), makruh (discouraged), and haraam (forbidden). A Muslim is expected to adhere to that tenet of sharia accordingly.[106]

  • Actions in the fard category are those mandatory on all Muslims. They include the five daily prayers, fasting, articles of faith, obligatory giving of zakat (charity, tax) to zakat collectors,[107][108] and the hajj pilgrimage to Mecca.[106]
  • The mustahabb category includes proper behaviour in matters such as marriage, funeral rites and family life. As such, it covers many of the same areas as civil law in the West. Sharia courts attempt to reconcile parties to disputes in this area using the recommended behaviour as their guide. A person whose behaviour is not mustahabb can be ruled against by the judge.[109]
  • Mubah category of behaviour is neither discouraged nor recommended, neither forbidden nor required; it is permissible.[106]
  • Makruh behaviour, while it is not sinful of itself, is considered undesirable among Muslims. It may also make a Muslim liable to criminal penalties under certain circumstances.[109]
  • Haraam behaviour is explicitly forbidden. It is both sinful and criminal. It includes all actions expressly forbidden in the Quran. Certain Muslim dietary and clothing restrictions also fall into this category.[106]

The recommended, neutral and discouraged categories are drawn largely from accounts of the life of Muhammad. To say a behaviour is sunnah is to say it is recommended as an example of the life and sayings of Muhammad. These categories form the basis for proper behaviour in matters such as courtesy and manners, interpersonal relations, generosity, personal habits and hygiene.[106]

Areas of Islamic law

Main article: Topics of sharia law

The areas of Islamic law include:

Other classifications

Shari’ah law has been grouped in different ways, such as:[110][111] Family relations, Crime and punishment, Inheritance and disposal of property, The economic system, External and other relations.

Reliance of the Traveller“, an English translation of a fourteenth-century CE reference on the Shafi’i school of fiqh written by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri, organizes sharia law into the following topics: Purification, prayer, funeral prayer, taxes, fasting, pilgrimage, trade, inheritance, marriage, divorce and justice.

In some areas, there are substantial differences in the law between different schools of fiqh, countries, cultures and schools of thought.

Disagreement on the objectives of Islamic law

Main article: Maqasid

A number of scholars have advanced “objectives” (مقاصد maqaṣid al-Shariah also “goals” or “purposes”) they believe the Sharia is intended to achieve. Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali argued that they were the preservation of Islamic religion, and in the temporal world the protection of life, progeny, intellect and wealth of Muslims.[112][113]Yazid et al summarize sharia’s objective to be recognize the limitations of reason, and complement the role of reason with revelation.[114] They state that objective of sharia in Islamic finance is to provide rules and regulations from the Quran and Sunnah.[114]

Jan Otto writes that moderate Muslims and puritan Muslims differ in their interpretation of the objectives of sharia.[115] The moderate Muslims consider sharia to be a flexible code of law, where technicalities of its wording cannot subvert sharia’s objectives to “help Muslims in their quest for submission, humility, gratitude before God, and a quest for Godliness”.[115] In contrast, according to Otto, puritan Muslims believe that sharia is a strict, complete and exact set of rules that one must submit to, by strict compliance, because it is only “through meticulous obedience, Muslims will avoid punishment of God in after-life and will enter heaven” which is the ultimate objective, and it does not matter if some sharia “law is harsh or that its application results in social suffering, this perception is considered delusional”.[115]

Application

Application by country

Use of Sharia by country:

  Sharia plays no role in the judicial system
  Sharia applies to Muslim’s personal law
  Sharia applies in full, including criminal law
  Regional variations in the application of sharia

Most Muslim-majority countries incorporate sharia at some level in their legal framework, with many calling it the highest law or the source of law of the land in their constitution.[116][117] Most use sharia for personal law (marriage, divorce, domestic violence, child support, family law, inheritance and such matters).[118][119] Elements of sharia are present, to varying extents, in the criminal justice system of many Muslim-majority countries.[12]Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Brunei, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sudan andMauritania apply the code predominantly or entirely.[12][120]

Most Muslim-majority countries with sharia-prescribed hudud punishments in their legal code, do not prescribe it routinely and use other punishments instead.[116][121] The harshest sharia penalties such as stoning, beheadingand the death penalty are enforced with varying levels of consistency.[122]

Since 1970s, most Muslim-majority countries have faced vociferous demands from their religious groups and political parties for immediate adoption of sharia as the sole, or at least primary legal framework.[123] Some moderates and liberal scholars within these Muslim countries have argued for limited expansion of sharia.[124]

With the growing muslim immigrant communities in Europe, there have been reports in some media of “no-go zones” being established where sharia law reigns supreme.[125][126] However, there is no evidence of the existence of “no-go zones”, and these allegations are sourced from anti-immigrant groups falsely equating low-income neighborhoods predominantly inhabited by immigrants as “no-go zones.”[127][128]

Enforcement

Main articles: Islamic religious police and Hisbah

Sharia is enforced in Islamic nations in a number of ways, including mutaween and hisbah.[citation needed]

The mutaween (Arabic: المطوعين، مطوعيةmuṭawwiʿīn, muṭawwiʿiyyah)[129] are the government-authorized or government-recognized religious police (or clericalpolice) of Saudi Arabia. Elsewhere, enforcement of Islamic values in accordance with sharia is the responsibility of Polisi Perda Syariah Islam in Aceh province ofIndonesia,[130] Committee for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Gaza Strip) in parts of Palestine, and Basiji Force in Iran.[131]

Official from the Department ofPropagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, beating a woman inAfghanistan for violating local interpretation of sharia.[132][133]

Hisbah (Arabic: حسبةḥisb(ah), or hisba) is a historic Islamic doctrine which means “accountability”.[134] Hisbah doctrine holds that it is a religious obligation of every Muslim that he or she report to the ruler (Sultan, government authorities) any wrong behavior of a neighbor or relative that violates sharia or insults Islam. The doctrine states that it is the divinely sanctioned duty of the ruler to intervene when such charges are made, and coercively “command right and forbid wrong” in order to keep everything in order according to sharia.[135][136][137] Some Salafist suggest that enforcement of sharia under the Hisbah doctrine is the sacred duty of all Muslims, not just rulers.[135] The doctrine of Hisbah in Islam has traditionally allowed any Muslim to accuse another Muslim, ex-Muslim or non-Muslim for beliefs or behavior that may harm Islamic society. This principle has been used in countries such as Egypt, Pakistan and others to bring blasphemy charges against apostates.[138]For example, in Egypt, sharia was enforced on the Muslim scholar Nasr Abu Zayd, through the doctrine of Hasbah, when he committed apostasy.[139][140] Similarly, in Nigeria, after twelve northern Muslim-majority states such as Kano adopted sharia-based penal code between 1999 and 2000, hisbah became the allowed method of sharia enforcement, where all Muslim citizens could police compliance of moral order based on sharia.[141] In Aceh province of Indonesia, Islamic vigilante activists have invoked Hasbah doctrine to enforce sharia on fellow Muslims as well as demanding non-Muslims to respect sharia.[142]Hisbah has been used in many Muslim majority countries, from Morocco to Egypt and in West Asia to enforce sharia restrictions on blasphemy and criticism of Islam over internet and social media.[143][144][145]

Legal and court proceedings

Sharia judicial proceedings have significant differences from other legal traditions, including those in both common law and civil law. Sharia courts traditionally do not rely on lawyers; plaintiffs and defendants represent themselves. Trials are conducted solely by the judge, and there is no jury system. There is no pre-trial discoveryprocess, and no cross-examination of witnesses. Unlike common law, judges’ verdicts do not set binding precedents[146][147] under the principle of stare decisis,[148]and unlike civil law, sharia is left to the interpretation in each case and has no formally codified universal statutes.[149]

The rules of evidence in sharia courts also maintain a distinctive custom of prioritizing oral testimony.[150] Witnesses, in a sharia court system, must be faithful, that is Muslim.[151] Male Muslim witnesses are deemed more reliable than female Muslim witnesses, and non-Muslim witnesses considered unreliable and receive no priority in a sharia court.[152][153] In civil cases, a Muslim woman witness is considered half the worth and reliability than a Muslim man witness.[154][155] In criminal cases, women witnesses are unacceptable in stricter, traditional interpretations of sharia, such as those found in Hanbali madhhab.[151]

Criminal cases

A confession, an oath, or the oral testimony of Muslim witnesses are the main evidence admissible, in sharia courts, for hudud crimes, that is the religious crimes of adultery, fornication, rape, accusing someone of illicit sex but failing to prove it, apostasy, drinking intoxicants and theft.[156][157][158] Testimony must be from at least two free Muslim male witnesses, or one Muslim male and two Muslim females, who are not related parties and who are of sound mind and reliable character. Testimony to establish the crime of adultery, fornication or rape must be from four Muslim male witnesses, with some fiqhs allowing substitution of up to three male with six female witnesses; however, at least one must be a Muslim male.[159] Forensic evidence (i.e., fingerprints, ballistics, blood samples, DNA etc.) and othercircumstantial evidence is likewise rejected in hudud cases in favor of eyewitnesses, a practice which can cause severe difficulties for women plaintiffs in rape cases.[160][161]

Muslim jurists have debated whether and when coerced confession and coerced witnesses are acceptable. The majority opinion of jurists in the Hanafi madhhab, for example, ruled that torture to get evidence is acceptable and such evidence is valid, but a 17th-century text by Hanafi jurist Muhammad Shaykhzade argued that coerced confession should be invalid; Shaykhzade acknowledged that beating to get confession has been authorized in fatwas by many Islamic jurists.[162]

Civil cases

Quran recommends written contracts in the case of debt-related transactions, and oral contracts for commercial and other civil contracts.[155][163] Marriage is solemnized as a written financial contract, in the presence of two Muslim male witnesses, and it includes a brideprice (Mahr) payable from a Muslim man to a Muslim woman. The brideprice is considered by a sharia court as a form of debt. Written contracts are paramount, in sharia courts, in the matters of dispute that are debt-related, which includes marriage contracts.[164] Written contracts in debt-related cases, when notarized by a judge, is deemed more reliable.[165]

In commercial and civil contracts, such as those relating to exchange of merchandise, agreement to supply or purchase goods or property, and others, oral contracts and the testimony of Muslim witnesses triumph over written contracts. Sharia system has held that written commercial contracts may be forged.[165][166]Timur Kuran states that the treatment of written evidence in religious courts in Islamic regions created an incentive for opaque transactions, and the avoidance of written contracts in economic relations. This led to a continuation of a “largely oral contracting culture” in Muslim nations and communities.[166][167]

In lieu of written evidence, oaths are accorded much greater weight; rather than being used simply to guarantee the truth of ensuing testimony, they are themselves used as evidence. Plaintiffs lacking other evidence to support their claims may demand that defendants take an oath swearing their innocence, refusal thereof can result in a verdict for the plaintiff.[168] Taking an oath for Muslims can be a grave act; one study of courts in Morocco found that lying litigants would often “maintain their testimony ‘right up to the moment of oath-taking and then to stop, refuse the oath, and surrender the case.”[169] Accordingly, defendants are not routinely required to swear before testifying, which would risk casually profaning the Quran should the defendant commit perjury;[169] instead oaths are a solemn procedure performed as a final part of the evidence process.

Sentencing
Main article: Diyya

Sharia courts treat women and men as unequal, with Muslim woman’s life and blood-money compensation sentence (Diyya) as half as that of a Muslim man’s life.[170][171] Sharia also treats Muslims and non-Muslims as unequal in the sentencing process.[172] Human Rights Watch and United States’ Religious Freedom Report note that in sharia courts of Saudi Arabia, “The calculation of accidental death or injury compensation is discriminatory. In the event a court renders a judgment in favor of a plaintiff who is a Jewish or Christian male, the plaintiff is only entitled to receive 50 percent of the compensation a Muslim male would receive; all other non-Muslims [Buddhists, Hindus, Jains, Atheists] are only entitled to receive one-sixteenth of the amount a male Muslim would receive”.[173][174][175]

Saudi Arabia follows Hanbali sharia, whose historic jurisprudence texts considered a Christian or Jew life as half the worth of a Muslim. Jurists of other schools of law in Islam have ruled differently. For example, Shafi’i sharia considers a Christian or Jew life as a third the worth of a Muslim, and Maliki‘s sharia considers it worth half.[172] The legal schools of Hanafi, Maliki and Shafi’i Sunni Islam as well as those of twelver Shia Islam have considered the life of polytheists and atheists as one-fifteenth the value of a Muslim during sentencing.[172]

Support

Anti-democracy, pro-Sharia public demonstration in 2014 in Maldives.

A 2013 survey based on interviews of 38,000 Muslims, randomly selected from urban and rural parts in 39 countries using area probability designs, by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found that support for making sharia the official law of the land is very high in many Muslim-majority countries: Afghanistan (99%), Iraq (91%), Niger (86%), Malaysia (86%), Pakistan (84%), Morocco (83%), Bangladesh (82%), Egypt (74%), Indonesia (72%), Jordan (71%), Uganda (66%), Ethiopia (65%), Mali (63%), Ghana (58%), and Tunisia (56%).[176] In Muslim regions of Southern-Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the support is less then 50%: Kosovo (20%), Albania (12%), Russia (42%), Kyrgyzstan (35%), Tajikistan (27%), Turkey (12%), Azerbaijan (8%).[176]

In Muslim-majority countries and among Muslims who say sharia should be the law of the land, a percentage between 74% (Egypt) and 19% (Kazakhstan) want sharia law to apply to non-Muslims as well.[177]

A 2008 YouGov poll in the United Kingdom found 40% of Muslim students interviewed wanted sharia in British law.[178]

Since the 1970s, the Islamist movements have become prominent; their goals are the establishment of Islamic states and sharia not just within their own borders; their means are political in nature. The Islamist power base is the millions of poor, particularly urban poor moving into the cities from the countryside. They are not international in nature (one exception being the Muslim Brotherhood). Their rhetoric opposes western culture and western power.[179] Political groups wishing to return to more traditional Islamic values are the source of threat to Turkey’s secular government.[179] These movements can be considered neo-Sharism.[180]

Extremism

Fundamentalists, wishing to return to basic Islamic religious values and law, have in some instances imposed harsh sharia punishments for crimes, curtailed civil rights and violated human rights. Extremists have used the Quran and their own particular version of sharia to justify acts of war and terror against Muslim as well as non-Muslim individuals and governments, using alternate, conflicting interpretations of sharia and their notions of jihad.[181][182]

The sharia basis of arguments of those advocating terrorism, however, remain controversial. Some scholars state that Islamic law prohibits the killing of civilian non-combatants; in contrast, others interpret Islamic law differently, concluding that all means are legitimate to reach their aims, including targeting Muslim non-combatants and the mass killing of non-Muslim civilians, in order to universalize Islam.[181] Islam, in these interpretations, “does not make target differences between militaries and civilians but between Muslims and unbelievers. Therefore it is legitimated (sic) to spill civilians’ blood”.[181] Other scholars of Islam, interpret sharia differently, stating, according to Engeland-Nourai, “attacking innocent people is not courageous; it is stupid and will be punished on the Day of Judgment […]. It’s not courageous to attack innocent children, women and civilians. It is courageous to protect freedom; it is courageous to defend one and not to attack”.[181][183]

Criticism

A protester opposing the Park51project, carries an anti-sharia sign.

Compatibility with democracy

Further information: Islamic ethics, Islam and democracy, Shura and Ijma

Ali Khan states that “constitutional orders founded on the principles of sharia are fully compatible with democracy, provided that religious minorities are protected and the incumbent Islamic leadership remains committed to the right to recall”.[184][185]Other scholars say sharia is not compatible with democracy, particularly where the country’s constitution demands separation of religion and the democratic state.[186][187]

Courts in non-Muslim majority nations have generally ruled against the implementation of sharia, both in jurisprudence and within a community context, based on sharia’s religious background. In Muslim nations, sharia has wide support with some exceptions.[188] For example, in 1998 the Constitutional Court of Turkey banned and dissolved Turkey’s Refah Party on the grounds that “Democracy is the antithesis of Sharia”, the latter of which Refah sought to introduce.[189][190]

On appeal by Refah the European Court of Human Rights determined that “sharia is incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy”.[191][192][193] Refah’s sharia-based notion of a “plurality of legal systems, grounded on religion” was ruled to contravene the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. It was determined that it would “do away with the State’s role as the guarantor of individual rights and freedoms” and “infringe the principle of non-discrimination between individuals as regards their enjoyment of public freedoms, which is one of the fundamental principles of democracy”.[194]

Human rights

Several major, predominantly Muslim countries have criticized the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) for its perceived failure to take into account the cultural and religious context of non-Western countries. Iran declared in the UN assembly that UDHR was “a secular understanding of the Judeo-Christian tradition”, which could not be implemented by Muslims without trespassing the Islamic law.[195] Islamic scholars and Islamist political parties consider ‘universal human rights’ arguments as imposition of a non-Muslim culture on Muslim people, a disrespect of customary cultural practices and of Islam.[196][197] In 1990, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, a group representing all Muslim majority nations, met in Cairo to respond to the UDHR, then adopted the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam.[198][199]

Ann Elizabeth Mayer points to notable absences from the Cairo Declaration: provisions for democratic principles, protection for religious freedom, freedom of association and freedom of the press, as well as equality in rights and equal protection under the law. Article 24 of the Cairo declaration states that “all the rights and freedoms stipulated in this Declaration are subject to the Islamic shari’a“.[200]

In 2009, the journal Free Inquiry summarized the criticism of the Cairo Declaration in an editorial: “We are deeply concerned with the changes to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by a coalition of Islamic states within the United Nations that wishes to prohibit any criticism of religion and would thus protect Islam’s limited view of human rights. In view of the conditions inside the Islamic Republic of Iran, Egypt, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, the Sudan, Syria, Bangdalesh, Iraq, and Afghanistan, we should expect that at the top of their human rights agenda would be to rectify the legal inequality of women, the suppression of political dissent, the curtailment of free expression, the persecution of ethnic minorities and religious dissenters — in short, protecting their citizens from egregious human rights violations. Instead, they are worrying about protecting Islam.”[201]

H. Patrick Glenn states that sharia is structured around the concept of mutual obligations of a collective, and it considers individual human rights as potentially disruptive and unnecessary to its revealed code of mutual obligations. In giving priority to this religious collective rather than individual liberty, the Islamic law justifies the formal inequality of individuals (women, non-Islamic people).[202] Bassam Tibi states that sharia framework and human rights are incompatible.[203] Abdel al-Hakeem Carney, in contrast, states that sharia is misunderstood from a failure to distinguish sharia from siyasah (politics).[204]

Freedom of speech

Blasphemy in Islam is any form of cursing, questioning or annoying God, Muhammad or anything considered sacred in Islam.[205][206][207] The sharia of various Islamic schools of jurisprudence specify different punishment for blasphemy against Islam, by Muslims and non-Muslims, ranging from imprisonment, fines, flogging, amputation, hanging, or beheading.[205][208][209] In some cases, sharia allows non-Muslims to escape death by converting and becoming a devout follower of Islam.[210]

Blasphemy, as interpreted under sharia, is controversial. Muslim nations have petitioned the United Nations to limit “freedom of speech” because “unrestricted and disrespectful opinion against Islam creates hatred”.[211] Other nations, in contrast, consider blasphemy laws as violation of “freedom of speech”,[212] stating that freedom of expression is essential to empowering both Muslims and non-Muslims, and point to the abuse of blasphemy laws, where hundreds, often members of religious minorities, are being lynched, killed and incarcerated in Muslim nations, on flimsy accusations of insulting Islam.[213][214]

Freedom of thought, conscience and religion

According to the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights,[215] every human has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change their religion or belief. Sharia has been criticized for not recognizing this human right. According to scholars[19][216][217] of Islamic law, the applicable rules for religious conversion under sharia are as follows:

  • If a person converts to Islam, or is born and raised as a Muslim, then he or she will have full rights of citizenship in an Islamic state.[218]
  • Leaving Islam is a sin and a religious crime. Once any man or woman is officially classified as Muslim, because of birth or religious conversion, he or she will be subject to the death penalty if he or she becomes an apostate, that is, abandons his or her faith in Islam in order to become an atheist, agnostic or to convert to another religion. Before executing the death penalty, sharia demands that the individual be offered one chance to return to Islam.[218]
  • If a person has never been a Muslim, and is not a kafir (infidel, unbeliever), he or she can live in an Islamic state by accepting to be a dhimmi, or under a special permission called aman. As a dhimmi or under aman, he or she will suffer certain limitations of rights as a subject of an Islamic state, and will not enjoy complete legal equality with Muslims.[218]
  • If a person has never been a Muslim, and is a kafir (infidel, unbeliever), sharia demands that he or she should be offered the choice to convert to Islam and become a Muslim; if he or she rejects the offer, he or she may become a dhimmi. failure to pay the tax may lead the non-muslim to either be enslaved, killed or ransomed if captured.[218]

According to sharia theory, conversion of disbelievers and non-Muslims to Islam is encouraged as a religious duty for all Muslims, and leaving Islam (apostasy), expressing contempt for Islam (blasphemy), and religious conversion of Muslims is prohibited.[219][220] Not all Islamic scholars agree with this interpretation of sharia theory. In practice, as of 2011, 20 Islamic nations had laws declaring apostasy from Islam as illegal and a criminal offense. Such laws are incompatible with the UDHR’s requirement of freedom of thought, conscience and religion.[221][222][223][224] In another 2013 report based on international survey of religious attitudes, more than 50% of Muslim population in 6 out of 49 Islamic countries supported death penalty for any Muslim who leaves Islam (apostasy).[225][226] However it is also shown that the majority of Muslims in the 43 nations surveyed did not agree with this interpretation of sharia.

Some scholars claim sharia allows religious freedom because a Shari’a verse teaches, “there is no compulsion in religion.”[227] Other scholars claim sharia recognizes only one proper religion, considers apostasy as sin punishable with death, and members of other religions as kafir (infidel);[228] or hold that Shari’a demands that all apostates and kafir must be put to death, enslaved or be ransomed.[229][230][231][232] Yet other scholars suggest that Shari’a has become a product of human interpretation and inevitably leads to disagreements about the “precise contents of the Shari’a.” In the end, then, what is being applied is not sharia, but what a particular group of clerics and government decide is sharia. It is these differing interpretations of Shari’a that explain why many Islamic countries have laws that restrict and criminalize apostasy, proselytism and their citizens’ freedom of conscience and religion.[233][234]

LGBT rights

Main article: LGBT in Islam

Homosexual intercourse is illegal under sharia law, though the prescribed penalties differ from one school of jurisprudence to another. For example, only a few Muslim-majority countries impose the death penalty for acts perceived as sodomy and homosexual activities: Iran,[235] Saudi Arabia,[236] and Somalia.[237] In other Muslim-majority countries such as Egypt, Iraq, and the Indonesian province of Aceh,[238] same-sex sexual acts are illegal,[239] and LGBT people regularly face violence and discrimination.[240]

Women

Domestic violence

Many scholars[20][241] claim Shari’a law encourages domestic violence against women, when a husband suspects nushuz (disobedience, disloyalty, rebellion, ill conduct) in his wife.[242] Other scholars claim wife beating, for nashizah, is not consistent with modern perspectives of the Quran.[243]

One of the verses of the Quran relating to permissibility of domestic violence is Surah 4:34.[244][245] In deference to Surah 4:34, many nations with Shari’a law have refused to consider or prosecute cases of domestic abuse.[246][247][248][249] Shari’a has been criticized for ignoring women’s rights in domestic abuse cases.[250][251][252][253] Musawah, CEDAW, KAFA and other organizations have proposed ways to modify Shari’a-inspired laws to improve women’s rights in Islamic nations, including women’s rights in domestic abuse cases.[254][255][256][257]

Personal status laws and child marriag

Shari’a is the basis for personal status laws in most Islamic majority nations. These personal status laws determine rights of women in matters of marriage, divorce and child custody. A 2011 UNICEF report concludes that Shari’a law provisions are discriminatory against women from a human rights perspective. In legal proceedings under Shari’a law, a woman’s testimony is worth half of a man’s before a court.[154]

Except for Iran, Lebanon and Bahrain which allow child marriages, the civil code in Islamic majority countries do not allow child marriage of girls. However, with Shari’a personal status laws, Shari’a courts in all these nations have the power to override the civil code. The religious courts permit girls less than 18 years old to marry. As of 2011, child marriages are common in a few Middle Eastern countries, accounting for 1 in 6 all marriages in Egypt and 1 in 3 marriages in Yemen.UNICEF and other studies state that the top five nations in the world with highest observed child marriage rates — Niger (75%), Chad (72%), Mali (71%), Bangladesh (64%), Guinea (63%) — are Islamic-majority countries where the personal laws for Muslims are sharia-based.[258][259]

Rape is considered a crime in all countries, but Shari’a courts in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Syria and Tunisia in some cases allow a rapist to escape punishment by marrying his victim, while in other cases the victim who complains is often prosecuted with the crime of Zina (adultery).[154][260][261]

Women’s right to property and consent

Sharia grants women the right to inherit property from other family members, and these rights are detailed in the Quran.[262] A woman’s inheritance is unequal and less than a man’s, and dependent on many factors.[Quran 4:12][263] For instance, a daughter’s inheritance is usually half that of her brother’s.[Quran 4:11][263]

Until the 20th century, Islamic law granted Muslim women certain legal rights, such as the right to own property received as Mahr (brideprice) at her marriage, that Western legal systems did not grant to women.[264][265] However, Islamic law does not grant non-Muslim women the same legal rights as the few it did grant Muslim women. Sharia recognizes the basic inequality between master and women slave, between free women and slave women, between Believers and non-Believers, as well as their unequal rights.[266][267] Sharia authorized the institution of slavery, using the words abd (slave) and the phrase ma malakat aymanukum (“that which your right hand owns”) to refer to women slaves, seized as captives of war.[266][268] Under Islamic law, Muslim men could have sexual relations with female captives and slaves without her consent.[269][270]

Slave women under sharia did not have a right to own property, right to free movement or right to consent.[271][272] Sharia, in Islam’s history, provided religious foundation for enslaving non-Muslim women (and men), as well as encouraged slave’s manumission. However, manumission required that the non-Muslim slave first convert to Islam.[273][274] Non-Muslim slave women who bore children to their Muslim masters became legally free upon her master’s death, and her children were presumed to be Muslims as their father, in Africa,[273] and elsewhere.[275]

Starting with the 20th century, Western legal systems evolved to expand women’s rights, but women’s rights under Islamic law have remained tied to Quran, hadiths and their faithful interpretation as sharia by Islamic jurists.[270][276]

Parallels with Western legal systems

Elements of Islamic law have influenced western legal systems. As example, the influence of Islamic influence on the development of an international law of the sea” can be discerned alongside that of the Roman influence.[277]

Makdisi states Islamic law also influenced the legal scholastic system of the West.[278] The study of legal text and degrees have parallels between Islamic studies of sharia and the Western system of legal studies. For example, the status of faqih (meaning “master of law“), mufti (meaning “professor of legal opinions“) andmudarris (meaning “teacher”), which were later translated into Latin as magister, professor and doctor respectively.[278]

There are differences between Islamic and Western legal systems. For example, sharia classically recognizes only natural persons, and never developed the concept of a legal person, or corporation, i.e., a legal entity that limits the liabilities of its managers, shareholders, and employees; exists beyond the lifetimes of its founders; and that can own assets, sign contracts, and appear in court through representatives.[279] Interest prohibitions also imposed secondary costs by discouraging record keeping, and delaying the introduction of modern accounting.[280] Such factors, according to Timur Kuran, have played a significant role in retarding economic development in the Middle East.[281]

See also

Further reading

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia

Ben Carson says no Muslim should ever become US president

  • 2016 hopeful: ‘I would not advocate we put a Muslim in charge of this nation’
  • Retired neurosurgeon says Islam is not consistent with US constitution

The Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson has said no Muslim should be president of the United States of America.

In an interview with NBC for broadcast on Sunday morning, the retired neurosurgeon said: “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that.”

Carson’s discussion with Meet the Press host Chuck Todd centered around controversy that arose this week when Donald Trump – the real-estate mogul keeping Carson in second place in the polls – failed to correct an audience member at a New Hampshire campaign rally who said President Obama was a Muslim.

The audience member also appeared to advocate the forcible removal of Muslims from the US.

On Saturday, in a series of tweets on the subject, Trump defended himself and said: “Am I morally obligated to defend the president every time somebody says something bad or controversial about him? I don’t think so!”
Trump: I was not obligated to correct questioner who called Obama Muslim
Read more
He also addressed the issue in an appearance before an evangelical audience in Iowa, at which he brandished a Bible and said: “You see, I’m better than you thought.”

In such circles, Trump has lost some support to Carson.

In his NBC interview, Carson was asked: “So do you believe that Islam is consistent with the constitution?”

“No,” he said, “I don’t, I do not.”

Article VI of the US constitution states: “No religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”

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The first amendment to the constitution begins: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof …”

Carson, a Christian, is a member of the Seventh Day Adventist church. In October, he will publish a new book, written with his wife Candy Carson and entitled A More Perfect Union: What We the People Can Do to Reclaim Our Constitutional Liberties.

In publicity material issued by Penguin Random House, Carson is quoted as saying: “I believe that making a difference starts with understanding our amazing founding document, the US constitution.

“And as someone who has performed brain surgery thousands of times, I can assure you that the constitution isn’t brain surgery.

He adds that he and his wife wrote the book to “help defend” the constitution “from those who misinterpret and undermine it”.

Carson did have a constituency to speak to, however. In a recent poll, 38% of voters said they would not vote for a Muslim president.
Quiet rise of Ben Carson is shaking up Republican presidential race
Read more
The Ohio governor, John Kasich, who is polling an average of 2.5%, enough for 10th place out of 16, was also asked by NBC if he “would ever have a problem with a Muslim becoming president”.

Kasich, one of the more moderate candidates in the GOP field, also had to field a question about whether he was a Republican at all. He did not say he would have a problem with a Muslim president, but nor did he dismiss the question.

“You know, I mean, that’s such a hypothetical question,” Kasich said. “The answer is, at the end of the day, you’ve got to go through the rigours, and people will look at everything.

“But, for me, the most important thing about being president is you have leadership skills, you know what you’re doing, and you can help fix this country and raise this country. Those are the qualifications that matter to me.”

Carson was also asked if he would consider voting for a Muslim candidate for Congress.

He said: “Congress is a different story, but it depends on who that Muslim is and what their policies are, just as it depends on what anybody else says, you know.”

Two members of Congress, both Democrats, are Muslim: Keith Ellison of Minnesota was elected to the House of Representatives in 2007 and André Carson of Indiana followed in 2008.

Every American should be disturbed … national figures are engaging in and tolerating blatant acts of religious bigotry
Representative Keith Ellison
This week, Ellison carried a clock around Congress to show support for Ahmed Mohamed, a 14-year-old boy who was arrested at his school in Irving, Texas, over suspicions a homemade clock was in fact a bomb.

On Sunday Ellison, the first Muslim ever elected to Congress, released a statement in answer to Carson’s comments.

“For Ben Carson, Donald Trump, or any other Republican politician to suggest that someone of any faith is unfit for office is out of touch with who we are as a people,” he said.

“It’s unimaginable that the leading GOP presidential candidates are resorting to fear mongering to benefit their campaigns, and every American should be disturbed that these national figures are engaging in and tolerating blatant acts of religious bigotry.”

 

Ahmed Mohamed is tired, excited to meet Obama – and wants his clock back
Read more
According to the Pew Research Center, the 114th Congress contains 491 Christians, of which 306 are Protestant, split between 13 sects though without any declared Anabaptists, Quakers or Pietists.

Another 164 members of Congress are Catholic, while 16 are Mormon and five Orthodox Christian. As well as the two Muslims there are 28 Jewish and two Buddhist members of Congress; there is one Hindu member, one Unitarian Universalist and one “unaffiliated”.

Nine members of Congress either told the Pew researchers they didn’t know what religion they were, or refused to answer the question.

On Meet the Press, Carson continued: “And, you know, if there’s somebody who’s of any faith, but they say things, and their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed, and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them.”

Asked if he believed President Obama was both born in the US – another issue raised at the Trump rally on Thursday and not rebutted by the candidate – and a Christian, Carson said: “I believe that he is. I have no reason to doubt what he says.”

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/20/ben-carson-no-muslim-us-president-trump-obama

Carson says he does not agree with a Muslim being elected president

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson suggested Sunday that a Muslim should not be president, extending the new and unexpected religion debate on the 2016 campaign trail.

“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation,” Carson, a Christian and retired neurosurgeon, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “I absolutely would not agree with that.”

Carson, a top-tier 2016 candidate and popular among the GOP’s evangelical wing, made the statement after fellow Republican candidate Donald Trump was addressed by a man during a rally Thursday in New Hampshire who said President Obama is a Muslim.

“We have a problem in this country,” the unidentified man said. “It’s called Muslim. … You know our current president is one.”

Obama says he is a Christian. But Trump has declined to address the issue, saying he is not “morally obligated” to set straight the record.

Carson also described the Islamic faith as inconsistent with the Constitution. However, he did not specify in what way Islam ran counter to constitutional principles.

Carson said he believes Obama is a Christian and has “no reason to doubt what he says.”

He also said he would consider voting for a Muslim running for Congress, depending on “who that Muslim is and what their policies are.”

Carson also made a distinction when it came to electing Muslims to Congress, calling it a “different story” from the presidency that “depends on who that Muslim is and what their policies are, just as it depends on what anybody else says.”

Congress has two Muslim members, Democratic Reps. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Andre Carson of Indiana.

“If there’s somebody who’s of any faith, but they say things, and their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed, and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them,” Carson said.

Trump on Sunday told ABC’s “This Week” that he doesn’t talk about other people’s faith and that Obama is “very capable of defending himself.”

He also said the politically correct statement is that Muslims are not a problem in the United States but the reality is that “some” associated with terrorism pose a worldwide threat.

“We can say … everything’s wonderful,” Trump said. “But certainly it is a problem. … if I want to say no, not at all, people would laugh at me.”

Fellow GOP contender and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told ABC about the Muslim debate: “This has nothing to do with the future of our country. These issues have been discussed ad nauseam over the last few years. It’s a big waste of time. Barack Obama will not be president in a year and a half. It’s time to start talking about the future of America and the people that are at home.”

Carson’s comments drew strong criticism from the country’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

“To me this really means he is not qualified to be president of the United States,” said the group’s spokesman, Ibrahim Hooper. “You cannot hold these kinds of views and at the same time say you will represent all Americans, of all faiths and backgrounds.”

Hooper said the Constitution expressly forbids religious tests for those seeking public office and called for the repudiation of “these un-American comments.”

In a separate appearance on NBC, fellow 2016 GOP candidate Ohio Gov. John Kasich, was asked whether he would have a problem with a Muslim in the White House.

“The answer is, at the end of the day, you’ve got to go through the rigors, and people will look at everything. But, for me, the most important thing about being president is you have leadership skills, you know what you’re doing and you can help fix this country and raise this country. Those are the qualifications that matter to me.”

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who taped Sunday an episode of Iowa Press, an Iowa Public Television program, was asked if he agreed with Carson’s statements on Muslims being president. “The Constitution specifies that there shall be no religious test for public office, and I am a constitutionalist,” Cruz said.

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said, “It’s hard to understand what’s so difficult about supporting an American citizen’s right to run for president.

“But unsurprisingly, this left Republicans scratching their heads. Of course a Muslim, or any other American citizen, can run for president, end of story.”

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2015/09/21/carson-suggests-muslim-should-not-be-elected-president/

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Breaking News City of Peshawar, Pakistan, Army Run School Attacked, Resulted in Killing of 141 (132 Students) and 200 Wounded or Injured By 7 Taliban Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vests — Videos

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Story 1: Breaking News City of Peshawar, Pakistan, Army Run School Attacked, Resulted in Killing of 141 (132 Students) and 200 Wounded or Injured By 7 Taliban Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vests — Videos

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Pakistan Army school Terrorist Attack on Army School in Peshawar Video | Taliban attack school

army school ATTACK Pakistan: Peshawar army school ATTACK kills 21, 500 held hostage Video of attack Terrorist Attack on Army School in Peshawar Pakistan Video | Taliban attack school Pakistan
At least 126 people have been killed, including 84 children, after Taliban gunmen stormed a military school in the north-western Pakistani city of Peshawar, in the worst ever militant attack to hit the troubled region.

It was reported that one suicide bomber blew himself up in a room containing 60 children and a teacher was set on fire in front of pupils, with the children forced to watch.

The attack started with the gunmen entering the 500-pupil school – which has students aged 10 to 18 – in the early hours.

The jihadists shot their way into the building and went from classroom to classroom, shooting at random.

Army commandos quickly arrived at the scene and exchanged fire with the gunmen. Eye-witnesses described how students cowered under desks as dead bodies were strewn along corridors.

Around 160 children, aged 13 and 14, are being held hostage, with four gunmen still inside. A police inspector said they had trapped the terrorists in the principal’s office. Many of the soldiers involved in the rescue operation are trying to save their own children.

During the last hour there were seven blasts. Two of them are said to be suicide blasts, a police superintendent said, the rest were grenade blasts.

‘We selected the army’s school for the attack because the government is targeting our families and females,’ said Taliban spokesman Muhammad Umar Khorasani. ‘We want them to feel the pain.’

Pakistan school attack: more than 130 dead in Taliban attack, most of them children – TALIBAN

Taliban School Attack Peshawar Pakistan School Attack 126 killed Take Hostages

World leaders condemn Pakistan school attack

Nobel prize winner Malala ‘heartbroken’ by Pakistan school attack

145+ children, killed in Pakistani Punjabi ISI proxies,Taliban high school attack

Peshawar school attack: Pakistani Taliban kills at least 135 people, most of them young children

Taliban School Attack Peshawar (VIDEO) Pakistan Children Shot Dead in Army School

Raw: Militants Attack Pakistan School

Pakistani officials say siege at school over

By RIAZ KHAN and REBECCA SANTANA

In the deadliest slaughter of innocents in Pakistan in years, Taliban gunmen attacked a military-run school Tuesday and killed 141 people — almost all of them students — before government troops ended the siege.

The massacre of innocent children horrified a country already weary of unending terrorist attacks. Pakistan’s teenage Nobel Peace laureate Malala Yousafzai — herself a survivor of a Taliban shooting — said she was “heartbroken” by the bloodshed.

Even Taliban militants in neighboring Afghanistan decried the killing spree, calling it “un-Islamic.”

If the Pakistani Taliban extremists had hoped the attack would cause the government to ease off its military offensive that began in June in the country’s tribal region, it appeared to have the opposite effect. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pledged to step up the campaign that — along with U.S. drone strikes — has targeted the militants.

“The fight will continue. No one should have any doubt about it,” Sharif said. “We will take account of each and every drop of our children’s blood.”

Taliban fighters have struggled to maintain their potency in the face of the military operation. They vowed a wave of violence in response to the operation, but until Tuesday, there has only been one major attack by a splinter group near the Pakistan-India border in November. Analysts said the school siege showed that even diminished, the militant group still could inflict horrific carnage.

The rampage at the Army Public School and College began in the morning when seven militants scaled a back wall using a ladder, said Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa, a military spokesman. When they reached an auditorium where students had gathered for an event, they opened fire.

A 14-year-old, Mehran Khan, said about 400 students were in the hall when the gunmen broke through the doors and started shooting. They shot one of the teachers in the head and then set her on fire and shouted “God is great!” as she screamed, added Khan, who survived by playing dead.

From there, they went to classrooms and other parts of the school.

“Their sole purpose, it seems, was to kill those innocent kids. That’s what they did,” Bajwa said. Of the 141 people slain before government troops ended the assault eight hours later, 132 were children and nine were staff members. Another 121 students and three staff members were wounded.

The seven attackers, wearing vests of explosives, all died in the eight-hour assault. It was not immediately clear if they were all killed by the soldiers or whether they blew themselves up, he said.

The wounded — some still wearing their green school blazers — flooded into hospitals as terrified parents searched for their children. By evening, funeral services were already being held for many of the victims as clerics announced the deaths over mosque loudspeakers.

The government declared three days of mourning for what appeared to be Pakistan’s deadliest since a 2007 suicide bombing in the port city of Karachi killed 150 people.

“My son was in uniform in the morning. He is in a casket now,” wailed one parent, Tahir Ali, as he came to the hospital to collect the body of his 14-year-old son, Abdullah. “My son was my dream. My dream has been killed.”

One of the wounded students, Abdullah Jamal, said he was with a group of eighth, ninth and 10th graders who were getting first-aid instructions and training with a team of army medics when the violence became real. Panic broke out when the shooting began.

“I saw children falling down who were crying and screaming. I also fell down. I learned later that I have got a bullet,” he said, speaking from his hospital bed.

Another student, Amir Mateen, said they locked the door from the inside when they heard the shooting, but gunmen blasted through anyway and opened fire.

Responding to the attack, armored personnel carriers were deployed around the school, and a military helicopter circled overhead.

A little more than 1,000 students and staff were registered at the school, which is part of a network run by the military, although the surrounding area is not heavily fortified. The student body is made up of both children of military personnel as well as civilians.

Most of the students appeared to be civilians rather than children of army staff, said Javed Khan, a government official. Analysts said the militants likely targeted the school because of its military connections.

“It’s a kind of a message that ‘we can also kill your children,'” said Pakistani analyst Zahid Hussain.

In a statement to reporters, Taliban spokesman Mohammed Khurasani claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was retribution for the military’s operation in nearby North Waziristan, the northwestern tribal region where the group’s fighters largely have been based.

“We targeted their kids so that they could know how it feels when they hit our kids,” Khurasani said. He said the attackers were advised not to target “underage” children but did not elaborate on what that meant.

In its offensive, the military said it would go after all militant groups operating in the region. Security officials and civilians feared retribution by militants, but Pakistan has been relatively calm.

The attack raised the issue of whether this was the last gasp of a militant group crippled by a government offensive or whether the militants could regroup.

Hussain, the Pakistani analyst, called the attack an “act of desperation.”

The violence will throw public support behind the campaign in North Waziristan, he said. It also shows that the Pakistani Taliban still maintains a strong intelligence network and remains a threat.

The attack drew swift condemnation from around the world. U.S. President Barack Obama said the “terrorists have once again showed their depravity.”

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry added: “The images are absolutely gut-wrenching: young children carried away in ambulances, a teacher burned alive in front of the students, a house of learning turned into a house of unspeakable horror.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, Pakistan’s longtime regional rival, called it “a senseless act of unspeakable brutality.”

“My heart goes out to everyone who lost their loved ones today. We share their pain & offer our deepest condolences,” Modi said in a series of tweeted statements.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said it was a “an act of horror and rank cowardice to attack defenseless children while they learn.”

The violence recalled the attack on Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman outside her school in the Swat Valley for daring to speak up about girls’ rights. She survived to become a global advocate for girls’ education and received her Nobel Peace Prize last week, but has not returned to Pakistan in the two years since the shooting out of security concerns.

“Innocent children in their school have no place in horror such as this,” the 17-year-old said. “I condemn these atrocious and cowardly acts.”

http://news.yahoo.com/pakistan-taliban-attack-military-school-kill-2-072153239.html

Death ‘All Around Me’: Victims Relive Pakistan School Massacre

BY MUSHTAQ YUSUFZAI, WAJAHAT S. KHAN, F. BRINLEY BRUTON AND ALASTAIR JAMIESON

SHAWAR, Pakistan — Pakistan was plunged into mourning Tuesday after Taliban militants in suicide vests laid siege to a school, massacring more than 130 children during eight hours of sheer terror. In total, 145 people were killed, officials said.

Those who survived emerged with stories of horror — of gunmen shooting indiscriminately into crowds or killing youngsters one by one.

“One of my teachers was crying, she was shot in the hand and she was crying in pain,” Shahrukh Khan, 15, who was shot in both legs but survived, told Reuters. “One terrorist then walked up to her and started shooting her until she stopped making any sound.

“All around me my friends were lying injured and dead.”

A military source told NBC News that the attackers were wearing police uniforms and suicide vests.

“They burnt a teacher in front of the students in a classroom,” he said. “They literally set the teacher on fire with gasoline and made the kids watch.”

The government of Pakistan declared three days of mourning for the lives lost.

Peshawar Father: ‘They Can’t Find my Son, Dead or Alive’

Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa, a military spokesman, told NBC News that at least 132 children were killed in the attack, along with 10 staff from the school — including the principal. Seven militants were killed and seven special forces soldiers were injured.

“They didn’t take any hostages initially and started firing in the hall,” Bajwa also told a press conference. He told NBC News that they had enough ammunition and rations to have kept up the siege for days.

At a hospital near the school, blood stained the floors. Crying relatives roamed the wards and searched operating rooms, desperately searching for their sons and daughters.

One room at at the Central Military hospital was filled with teenagers who had bullet wounds, shrapnel embedded in their flesh and burns.

A doctor, Brig. Muhammad Waqar, said his son attends the school and he watched with dread as victim after victim was brought in

“I was waiting for him to turn up dead in an ambulance,” he said. “I wanted to grab a gun and go to the school.”

The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attack, which Pakistani officials said appeared to be aimed at the children of senior military personnel.

Uniformed militants struck shortly before 11 a.m. local time (1 a.m. ET) when about 1,000 students — in grades one through 10 — and teachers were believed to be inside.

“We were standing outside the school and firing suddenly started and there was chaos everywhere and the screams of children and teachers,” said Jamshed Khan, a school bus driver.

“The gunmen entered class by class and shot some kids one by one,” one student who was in the Army Public School in Peshawar at the time told local media.

As the siege continued and Pakistani security forces battled to stop the assault, five “heavy” explosions were heard from the school at around 5 a.m. ET. Bombs planted by the attackers slowed rescue efforts, a military official said, and the massacre was not declared over until after 9 a.m. ET.

Dozens of Children Killed as Taliban Gunmen Storm Peshawar School

Wounded student Abdullah Jamal told The Associated Press he was getting first-aid instructions and training with a team of Pakistani army medics when the violence began for real. When the shooting started, Jamal said nobody knew what was going on in the first few seconds.

“Then I saw children falling down who were crying and screaming. I also fell down. I learned later that I have got a bullet,” he said, speaking from his hospital bed. He had been shot in the leg.

Hours after all the children had been removed from the school, soldiers angrily roamed the campus.

“It’s interesting that they came through this graveyard,” said one officer, pointing to a cemetery adjacent to the school. “It’s sad. They stepped over the graves of the dead to create more death.”

President Barack Obama slammed the attack and said America stands with the people of Pakistan and its government’s efforts to fight terrorism.

“By targeting students and teachers in this heinous attack, terrorists have once again shown their depravity,” he said in a statement.

As the carnage played out in Peshawar, Pakistan’s military carried out 10 airstrikes in the Khyber region, between Peshawar and the Afghanistan border, based on “actionable intelligence” according to a spokesman.

The Pakistani Taliban has vowed to attack government targets as it fights off a huge army operation in the country’s tribal region.

Taliban spokesman Muhammad Umar Khorasani told Reuters his group was responsible for the attack. “Our suicide bombers have entered the school, they have instructions not to harm the children, but to target the army personnel,” he said.

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/pakistan-school-massacre/death-all-around-me-victims-relive-pakistan-school-massacre-n269011

 

 

Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

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Breaking News — Two Hostages and Refugee Iranian Muslim Terrorist, Man Haron Monis, Killed in Sydney, Australia, 4 Injured, After 16 Hour Siege — Videos

Posted on December 16, 2014. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crime, Crisis, Documentary, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Friends, government spending, history, Homicide, Illegal, Immigration, Islam, Islam, Language, Law, Legal, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Regulations, Religion, Security, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Video, War, Welfare, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 1: Breaking News — Two Hostages and Refugee Iranian Muslim Terrorist, Man Haron Monis, Killed in Sydney, Australia, 4 Injured, After 16 Hour Siege — Videos

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Australia: Sydney cafe gunman “infatuated with extremism” says Abbott

Prime Minister Tony Abbott spoke from Canberra on Tuesday, following the Sydney hostage siege which ended after 17 hours at a Lindt chocolate cafe at Martin Place. Abbott stated the “lone gunman” was dead after a standoff with police, and that “tragically” two hostages were killed. A New South Wales police officer was also wounded by a gunshot to the face.

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It is a common fantasy that gun bans make society safer. In 2002 — five years after enacting its gun ban — the Australian Bureau of Criminology acknowledged there is no correlation between gun control and the use of firearms in violent crime. In fact, the percent of murders committed with a firearm was the highest it had ever been in 2006 (16.3 percent).

Even Australia’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research acknowledges that the gun ban had no significant impact on the amount of gun-involved crime:

In 2006, assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
Moreover, Australia and the United States — where no gun-ban exists — both experienced similar decreases in murder rates:

Between 1995 and 2007, Australia saw a 31.9 percent decrease; without a gun ban, America’s rate dropped 31.7 percent.
During the same time period, all other violent crime indices increased in Australia: assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
At the same time, U.S. violent crime decreased 31.8 percent: rape dropped 19.2 percent; robbery decreased 33.2 percent; aggravated assault dropped 32.2 percent.
Australian women are now raped over three times as often as American women.

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Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

5 Deadliest Mass Shootings in the USA

THREE DEAD IN BLOODY END TO SIEGE: Two hostages dead and Muslim gunman killed as police storm Sydney cafe with assault rifles and stun grenades moments after hostages fled

  • Police stormed the cafe in central Sydney where a gunman held hostages for more than 16 hours
  • Police moved in firing automatic weapons and throwing grenades as hostages were seen fleeing in terror from cafe
  • Live TV footage showed hostages running frantically from the cafe at shortly after 2 am in small groups 
  • It came hours after Man Haron Monis was named as the gunman holding people hostage in a Sydney café
  • Iranian refugee, 50, was charged with accessory in the murder of his ex-wife
  • He was also facing multiple charges of sexual assault while claiming to be a ‘spiritual healer’ 
  • Monis received 300 community service hours for sending hate mail to the families of Australian dead soldiers
  • The siege follows an unsuccessful attempt to have these charges overturned in the High Court on Friday 
  • He forced hostages to hold up a black flag with white writing in Arabic, an emblem linked to terror groups 

By Emily Crane and Daniel Piotrowski and Sarah Dean and Louise Cheer and Candace Sutton for Daily Mail Australia and Leesa Smith and Heather Mcnab

An Iranian-born gunman was killed, two of his hostages are dead and four injured after a dramatic and chaotic firefight brought an end to a terrorist siege at a Sydney cafe.

Teams of heavily armed police swooped on the Lindt Chocolat cafe in a hail of gunfire, ending a tense stand-off where Man Haron Monis had been holding around 17 people captive.

Police issued a statement describing the event as a confrontation with a 50-year man, who they said died after shots were fired. The man was pronounced dead after being taken to hospital, police said.

A man, aged 34, and a woman, aged 38, also died, the police said in their statement.

Of the injured, two women have non life-threatening injuries and a police officer was injured by gunshot pellets, the police said. Another woman has a gunshot wound to the shoulder.

Live television coverage earlier showed at least two people being taken away from the scene on stretchers, while one hostage was seen being carried out of the building. She appeared to be in pain and blood flowed down her legs.

Nine News reported that eleven hostages had been accounted for after the police raid, which occurred shortly after 2am.

An injured hostage is carried away on a stretcher by paramedics after police stormed the Lindt Chocolat cafe in central Sydney where around 20 people were being held by a gunman during a 17-hour siege. One hostage and the gunman were reportedly killed in the firefight

A hostage feared dead is carried out of the cafe after they were reportedly shot by the hostage-taker, prompting police to storm the building

A hostage feared dead is carried out of the cafe after they were reportedly shot by the hostage-taker, prompting police to storm the building

A female hostage is carried out and away from the cafe - clearly in distress with blood pouring down the legs

Man Haron Monis bound in chains in protest of his charges of using the postal service for menace

Man Haron Monis bound in chains in protest of his charges of using the postal service for menace

With terror etched on their faces, two female hostages run into the arms of armed police at the back of the building

With terror etched on their faces, two female hostages run into the arms of armed police at the back of the building

Siege over: Police raided the cafe in central Sydney early Tuesday, bringing a dramatic end to a 17-hour siefe. The raid came moments after some hostages fled the Lindt cafe after more than 16

Siege over: Police raided the cafe in central Sydney early Tuesday, bringing a dramatic end to a 17-hour siefe. The raid came moments after some hostages fled the Lindt cafe after more than 16

Petrified: Two heavily armed police officers assist a hostage away from Lindt Cafe in Martin Place in central Sydney

Petrified: Two heavily armed police officers assist a hostage away from Lindt Cafe in Martin Place in central Sydney

Police officers wearing armoured suits walk with a robot towards Lindt Cafe in Martin Place to check for booby traps after the siege ended

Police officers wearing armoured suits walk with a robot towards Lindt Cafe in Martin Place to check for booby traps after the siege ended

Seven Network reporter Chris Reason, who was watching the siege unfold from his newsroom across the road, said some of the hostages broke free after Monis attempted to usher the hostages from one side of the café to the other.

One man emerged from the cafe with his hands up and lay down on the ground in front of police. Seconds later, a group of at least five hostages escaped from the cafe.

It is believed that Monis then fired his shotgun, reportedly killing one of his captives. This appeared to be the trigger for tactical police to move in.

Within seconds, they had blasted through the cafe door and opened fire with automatic weapons, also hurling what appeared to be stun grenades. The sounds of explosions echoed through the city, and the flashes of rifle fire and the grenades lit up the area.

The gunfight lasted less than two minutes, and more hostages emerged after the police raid.

As the scene calmed down, a bomb disposal robot was seen entering the cafe.

Self-proclaimed Islamic cleric Man Haron Monis, a 49-year-old man living in southwest Sydney, came to Australia from Iran as a refugee in 1996.

He first came to the attention of authorities when he started sending hate mail to the families of Australian dead soldiers between 2007 and 2009, according to The Daily Telegraph.

The siege in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday reportedly followed an unsuccessful effort to have a conviction related to penning those letters overturned in the High Court on Friday, according to The Age.

Monis received 300 community service hours and a two-year good behaviour bond for the correspondence, which he claims were his version of sympathy cards and sent with the help from his girlfriend Amirah Droudis.

Man Haron Monis - also known as Sheik Haron - has been named as the gunman holding up to 15 people hostage in a Sydney café

Man Haron Monis – also known as Sheik Haron – has been named as the gunman holding up to 15 people hostage in a Sydney café

Heavily armed police remained posted around the cafe as night fell and the hostage drama continued into the night

Heavily armed police remained posted around the cafe as night fell and the hostage drama continued into the night. Inside, the remaining hostages were brought food and were observed by witnesses as looking ‘pained’

The hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife – who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013. The man’s current partner was charged with murder but they both received bail as the case was deemed too weak.

He was arrested in April this year for the sexual assault of a 27-year-old woman in 2002 after luring her to his clinic following claims he was as an expert in astrology, meditation and black magic, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Monis was slapped with an additional 40 charges in October after more victims came forward alleging incidents took place in his spiritual healing clinic in Station Street in Wentworthville, western Sydney.

High-profile Sydney Muslim leader Jamal Rifi told Daily Mail Australia he knew of the gunman but not on a personal level.

‘What he expressed did not reflect the Muslim community which is why he is not part of the larger Muslim community and that’s why he does not belong to a mainstream mosque,’ he said.

‘He wanted his name known and may want some gratification from the reaction to this’

The hostages were seized by the gunman on Monday morning after he stormed the Sydney cafe. Several captives made an early courageous break for freedom but it was thought that about 15 hostages remained in the cafe through the night.

During the stand-off with police, three videos were released on YouTube, believed to be of three female hostages putting the gunman’s demands to police. Those demands included the police bringing an ISIS flag to the cafe and insisting on a conversation with Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Daily Mail Australia decided not to air the disturbing footage which was taken down during the night. The gunman’s name was released soon after midnight, after senior police gave their approval to various media outlets.

The seige in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday follows an unsuccessful attempt to have the charges overturned linked to the hate mail he sent to the families of dead Australian soldiersin the High Court on Friday

The seige in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday follows an unsuccessful attempt to have the charges overturned linked to the hate mail he sent to the families of dead Australian soldiersin the High Court on Friday

The drama began unfolding Monday morning when the gunman entered the cafe, located in one of busiest plazas in Sydney’s central business district, and pulled a shotgun from a blue carry bag and disabled the doors.

Soon afterwards, hostages were seen with their hands pressed against the windows holding up the Islamic Shahada flag. It is an emblem of extremist group Jabhat al-Nusra, which is fighting the Assad government in Syria. The man was described as wearing a headband with Arabic writing on it.

Scores of police rushed to the scene, evacuating surrounding buildings and closing off part of the city. The scene sent shockwaves across Australia, where terror attacks have rarely touched home soil.

Paramilitary police armed with automatic rifles spent Monday surrounding the cafe, with senior commanders saying they were prepared to take a patient approach to the siege, hoping to end it through negotiation with the gunman.

A total of five hostages, including barista Elly Chen, managed to escape the cafe by scrambling out a side door about seven hours into the drama. Fear etched on their faces, they ran into the arms of waiting police.

It is understood the hostages escaped from the cafe, rather than being released by their captor. One former male hostage was taken to nearby St Vincent’s Hospital, in Sydney’s inner suburbs, and is being treated for a pre-existing condition.

The gunman flew into a rage when he realised some of his captives had escaped.

‘The gunman could be seen from here getting extremely agitated, shouting at remaining hostages,’ tweeted journalist Chris Reason.

The light inside the building went off through the night but police would not reveal whether it was a law enforcement or hostage-taker tactic. Mr Reason said he could see the gunman rotating the hostages through positions in the store’s window.

‘From inside Martin Place we can see the faces of hostages – pained, strained, eyes red and raw,’ he recounted. Food and water was also being delivered to the prisoners from the cafe’s back kitchens.

Scroll down for video

Arriving as a refugee in Australia in 1996, the hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife - who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013

Arriving as a refugee in Australia in 1996, the hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife – who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013

A young female employee came running out of the Lindt cafe shortly before 5pm and was sheltered by waiting police

Another distraught female worker, cafe barista Elly Chen, bolted from the shop before taking cover with police

A total of five hostages have now escaped Lindt cafe – it’s believed they escaped and were not released

One of the young female employees was visibly upset as she grabbed hold of armed police

One of the young female employees was visibly upset as she grabbed hold of armed police

'Omg Elly!! So glad you're OK': Ms Chen, pictured, was the fifth hostage, scrambling from the cafe with her hands in the air

‘Omg Elly!! So glad you’re OK’: Ms Chen, pictured, was the fifth hostage, scrambling from the cafe with her hands in the air

Freedom: Ms Chen was helped to a cover immediately after she burst from the Lindt Cafe store

Freedom: Ms Chen was helped to a cover immediately after she burst from the Lindt Cafe store

Daily Mail Australia understands a 25-year-old female fashion industry worker and two female baristas aged in their 30s were among that number.

Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione said overnight that police would do whatever it takes for the situation to be peacefully resolved.

Sydney was eerily quiet on Monday night. Office buildings went into lockdown earlier this morning, Martin Place train station – a central thoroughfare for workers – was shuttered. Events at the Opera House, such as a performance of the Nutcracker, were cancelled as the city icon was evacuated.

Hundreds of heavily armed police, operating under unprecedented Task Force Pioneer counter-terrorism protocols, were scouring the city, completely isolating the darkened cafe.

Two terrified men were spotted fleeing the Lindt cafe in Martin Place shortly before 3.45pm

Two terrified men were spotted fleeing the Lindt cafe in Martin Place shortly before 3.45pm

Two men, believed to be customers, ran around a corner and hid behind heavily armed police after six hours inside the cafe

Two men, believed to be customers, ran around a corner and hid behind heavily armed police after six hours inside the cafe

A male employee wearing an apron frantically ran out of a side fire exit and hid behind police

A male employee wearing an apron frantically ran out of a side fire exit and hid behind police

BThe three men are believed to have escaped from the cafe after six hours

Many remain: Around 10 hostages are thought to remain inside the Lindt chocolate cafe 

Many remain: Around 10 hostages are thought to remain inside the Lindt chocolate cafe

On Monday morning, columnist Chris Kenny, who was in the shop about 20 minutes before the siege began, said he understood the automatic glass sliding doors had been disabled after the gunman stormed the store.

‘I did speak to a couple of people who saw a bit more of this unfold than I did,’ he said. ‘One woman said she tried to go into the shop just after I came out with my takeaway coffee but the doors wouldn’t open.

‘So obviously whoever is doing this has disabled the automatic glass sliding doors to stop anyone else going in and she said immediately she could see there was a weapon.

‘The woman was quite frantic but very clear what she was telling (the police).

‘I know the faces of the people who are sitting there enjoying a morning coffee.’

2GB radio host Ray Hadley said he had three tense telephone conversations with one of the hostages inside the cafe and he could hear the gunman giving demands.

The hostage asked to be put to air live following the instructions of the gunman. However, Hadley refused saying he didn’t have the expertise to deal with the situation.

‘There are some people who are not well. They’ve been in there for five hours, they’re distraught,’ he said.

‘I’m not in a position to comply with requests that have been made, I can’t.

‘The media can’t play a role in negotiating with people purporting to be from Islamic State holding hostages in a cafe in Sydney. This is the job of authorities to solve htis problem.

‘They want us to say things that we simply can’t say.’

Witnesses described the chaotic scenes in the legal, business and media centre as it was shut down and scores of heavily armed police surrounded the Lindt building.

All of the chocolate chain’s stores around Sydney were closed following the incident, in an act of camaraderie.

Dozens of people are being held hostage by a terrorist who stormed into a central Sydney cafe with a gun and forced crying women to hold a black Islamic flag up to the window

Dozens of people are being held hostage by a terrorist who stormed into a central Sydney cafe with a gun and forced crying women to hold a black Islamic flag up to the window

A man believed to be one of the hostage-takers was filmed wearing a black headband covered in Arabic inside the cafe

A man believed to be one of the hostage-takers was filmed wearing a black headband covered in Arabic inside the cafe

Terrified customers and employees were among those standing with their hands against the window at the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Terrified customers and employees were among those standing with their hands against the window at the Lindt cafe in Sydney

A hostage could be seen pressing their hands up against the window of the cafe

A hostage could be seen pressing their hands up against the window of the cafe

One blonde-haired hostage was pictured inside the cafe through the glass doors standing in the middle of the shop

One blonde-haired hostage was pictured inside the cafe through the glass doors standing in the middle of the shop

SYDNEY SIEGE TIMELINE

9.45am – A number of hostages held inside a cafe in Sydney’s Martin Place with an Islamic flag pressed up against a window.

10.14am – Police establish a 150m exclusion zone around the cafe with specialist police outside the shop.

10.55am – The flag being displayed appears to be the Shahada flag which has been adopted by extremist groups such as the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front.

11.40am – Channel Seven air footage of alleged armed offender. He is middle aged with a salt and pepper beard, wearing a headband with Islamic writing.

11.51am – NSW Police try to make contact with the people inside the cafe. They advise workers who are trapped in buildings inside the police cordon to stay away from windows.

1.30pm – NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione says they had moved to a ‘footing’ similar to dealing with a terrorist attack.

1.55pm – NSW Premier Mike Baird says Sydney is being tested today, but ‘we will remain a democratic society’

2.45pm – Lindt Chocolat Cafe Australia thank the public for their support via Facebook, saying they are ‘deeply concerned over this serious incident’

3.37pm – Three male hostages run out of the cafe.

3.50pm – NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn confirms negotiators have spoken with a gunman.

5.00pm – Two female Lindt workers leave the cafe.

Police kept their guns raised on the fire exit after an employee unexpectedly ran from the cafe

Police kept their guns raised on the fire exit after an employee unexpectedly ran from the cafe

Police are stationed behind a ballistic shield with weapons drawn outside the fire door where a hostage escaped from

Police are stationed behind a ballistic shield with weapons drawn outside the fire door where a hostage escaped from

Police officers were spotted climbing through the first floor window above the Lindt cafe to help evacuate those inside

Police officers were spotted climbing through the first floor window above the Lindt cafe to help evacuate those inside

Scores of police have surrounded the cafe in Martin Place amid claims the terrorists are also armed with a machete and may have explosives

Scores of police have surrounded the cafe in Martin Place amid claims the terrorists are also armed with a machete and may have explosives

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Police heavily armed with weapons have covering all corners of Martin Place 

Police heavily armed with weapons have covering all corners of Martin Place

Thousands of workers have been evacuated from the buildings in Martin Place and have been directed to another area

Thousands of workers have been evacuated from the buildings in Martin Place and have been directed to another area

People in the area encompassing Hunter, George, Elizabeth and Macquarie streets bordering Martin Place have been directed to remain indoors and away from open windows

People in the area encompassing Hunter, George, Elizabeth and Macquarie streets bordering Martin Place have been directed to remain indoors and away from open windows

Emergency services have shut down the area surrounding Martin Place as they continue the operation 

Emergency services have shut down the area surrounding Martin Place as they continue the operation

A Lindt cafe employee, who was due to start her shift just an hour after the Sydney hostage drama unfolded, said she was ‘shaking with fear’ when the gunman arrived.

Kathryn Chee, a chocolatier at the cafe said she meant to turn up early for her 11am shift because the business had been so busy in the lead up to Christmas.

‘It shakes me to the bone,’ Ms Chee told the ABC. She said her colleagues who are now hostages are ‘people who I hold like another family’.

‘It’s good I’m not there but I wish I could be there for them. That could be me standing there.’

Ms Chee said the young woman seen in footage holding an Islamic flag pressed against the window had ‘a look of sheer horror on her face’.

She says the woman is a thoughtful colleague who bakes treats for people’s birthdays.

Ms Chee said the male hostage seen in the TV footage is a funny guy who jokes with the customers.

Police have handcuffed a man 200m from the cafe with reports an officer has hit foot on what appears to be a small black handgun

Police have handcuffed a man 200m from the cafe with reports an officer has hit foot on what appears to be a small black handgun

Hostages: People could be seen with their hands pressed against the window of the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Hostages: People could be seen with their hands pressed against the window of the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Police have shut down Martin Place train station and office buildings in the area have been evacuated

Police have shut down Martin Place train station and office buildings in the area have been evacuated

Prime Minister Tony Abbott described the incident as ‘deeply concerning’ but said police were well equipped to respond

Officials have also evacuated the Opera House after reports of a suspicious device

Other areas of Sydney are feeling a heavy police presence as the siege at Martin Place continues

Other areas of Sydney are feeling a heavy police presence as the siege at Martin Place continues

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

The Seven Network newsroom, which is in a building opposite the cafe, was among the first to be evacuated, immediately followed by the nearby Westpac building and the Reserve Bank of Australia. Surrounding buildings soon followed or went into lockdown.

Even the city’s courts, including the venerable Downing Centre building, were sealed for the day, with police quickly vacating the areas.

Rosemary Healion, who works at Frederick Jordan Chambers, told Daily Mail Australia on Monday morning that ‘a couple hundred’ of her colleagues were inside at the time of the attack.

‘My colleagues are still in there. They’re trying to get them out now,’ Ms Healion told Daily Mail Australia.

Ms Healion said her office was on the ground floor, the same one as Lindt and they had been pushed behind the office’s reception area.

‘I’m so so worried as you would be. I was about to walk into the cafe. I get coffee there all the time.’

Window cleaner, David Wilson, managed to get a birds-eye-view of police swarming into Martin Place as he and a colleague cleaned the windows of a building across from Lindt.

‘We were looking around and there were cops running around and guns drawn. Some people came out, they looked like just coffee drinkers and that was about all we saw,’ Mr Wilson said, adding that his colleague’s first response was to get out his phone and start filming.

Rodrigo Neryt was arriving at Channel Seven for his first day of work experience when he heard screaming out the front of the cafe.

‘I was at the corner when everything started. I saw people yelling and screaming and two police cars arriving at the scene. I saw what looked like a black ISIS flag and they were holding it up’.

Armed police evacuated office staff next to the Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon

Armed police evacuated office staff next to the Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon

Police helped direct employees who were in lockdown in a building near the cafe under siege

Police helped direct employees who were in lockdown in a building near the cafe under siege

Police in white jumpsuits were helping people climb from the offices on the level above the Lindt cafe

Women help an elderly lady as they are evacuated by NSW Police from Martin Place

Women help an elderly lady as they are evacuated by NSW Police from Martin Place

Three women were pictured rushing through Philip Street past armed police as they fled Martin Place

Three women were pictured rushing through Philip Street past armed police as they fled Martin Place

It is unclear how many people are involved in the siege in a Lindt cafe in Martin Place but people could be seen with their hands pressed against the windows (second window)

It is unclear how many people are involved in the siege in a Lindt cafe in Martin Place but people could be seen with their hands pressed against the windows (second window)

At least two gunmen are involved in the siege but dozens of armed police have sealed off the streets surrounding the site

At least two gunmen are involved in the siege but dozens of armed police have sealed off the streets surrounding the site

WHAT IS THE SHAHADA FLAG?

Held up to a window by terrified hostages, a black flag covered in white Arabic was the first sign that the Martin Place siege could be linked to extremist Islam.

Witnesses initially believed that it was the standard of ISIS. However, close examination revealed it was in fact the Shahada flag, bearing the words ‘There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah’

It is used by the extremist group, Jabhat al Nusra, which is fighting the Assad government in Syria.

But it has meaning for all Muslims, in that the Shahada is the Islamic Creed, one of the Five Pillars of Islam, which is recited by Muslims when they pray.

The flag displayed at the Lindt cafe

The flag displayed at the Lindt cafe

John Edwards works across the road from the cafe on the ninth floor of 53 Martin Place.

He said every floor of the building had been cleared about 11.15am.

‘We were evacuated out of the building from the basement,’ Mr Edwards told Daily Mail Australia.

‘All we were told by security was to get out.’

Lindt Australia issued a statement about the siege on its Facebook page.

‘We are deeply concerned over this serious incident and our thoughts and prayers are with the staff and customers involved and all their friends and families,’ they said.

Earlier this year, it was reported that Martin Place was the planned location of a terror plot. It was alleged in September that Omarjan Azari, the 22-year-old Sydney man arrested on terrorism charges, was planning a public beheading there.

The alleged terror plot, mentioned in a conversation between now deceased Australian terrorism recruiter in Syria, Mohammad Ali Barylei and Azari, involved selecting a member of the public at random, beheading them and then covering their body in a flag.

The whole incident was going to be filmed, and then used as propaganda for the Islamic State cause. Federal prosecutors said the alleged terror plot was ‘clearly designed to shock, horror and terrify the community’

Police Prosecutor Michael Allnutt said that Azari had made a threat which involved a ‘random selection of persons to execute’ during a telephone conversation with Baryalei.

Azari was arrested on September 18 and charged with preparing for an act of terrorism.

He is due in court this week for a bail application.

Thousands of office workers have relocated from Martin Place to Sydney's Hyde Park

Thousands of office workers have relocated from Martin Place to Sydney’s Hyde Park

Patients from the nearby Sydney Hospital patients were also evacuated alongside office workers

Patients from the nearby Sydney Hospital patients were also evacuated alongside office workers

Police are guarding the area in Hyde Park where people are congregating after evacuating 

Police are guarding the area in Hyde Park where people are congregating after evacuating

People evacuated from offices in Martin Place have been told to congregate in Hyde Park

People evacuated from offices in Martin Place have been told to congregate in Hyde Park

Martin Place is one of Sydney's busiest streets and is at the centre of the CBD

Martin Place is one of Sydney’s busiest streets and is at the centre of the CBD

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2873855/Gunman-takes-hostages-cafe-Sydney.html

Lindt Chocolat Cafe hostage drama in Martin Place, Sydney

December 16, 2014 – 3:01AM

Daniel Fallon

Siege hostages ‘our number one priority’

“We are doing all we can to set you free” is the message from the Premier and Police Commissioner to those held hostage.

1:24am: The man who is holding more than a dozen people hostage and placed Sydney’s CBD into lockdown is no stranger to the NSW police or the judiciary.

Self-described cleric, Man Haron Monis, 50, first came to attention of police when he penned poisonous letters to the family of dead Australian soldiers.

You can read the full story on Man Haron Monis here.

SIege gunman: Man Haron Monis.SIege gunman: Man Haron Monis. Photo: Nick Ralston

1:21am: As we enter day two of the hostage drama at Martin Place, we have kicked off a new live article for our readers. We’ll be switching off this live blog, and our reporters will be keeping you informed in our new blog.

You can keep up to date with all our coverage throughout Tuesday here. 

12:37am: The hostage siege at Lindt Cafe in Martin Place has been given prominence on the front pages of newspapers in the United States where there is great sensitivity to any terrorist-related attacks. The siege in Sydney follows ‘the lone-wolf’ attack on Canada’s war memorial and parliament in Ottawa by an Islamic State sympathiser.

12:12am: Police continue to keep watch and maintain their positions outside the Lindt Chocolate Cafe.

A NSW Tactical Operations Group police officer maintains his position at the scene in Martin Place, Sydney.A NSW Tactical Operations Group police officer maintains his position at the scene in Martin Place, Sydney. Photo: Andrew Meares

11:54pm yesterday:

Muslim leaders brace for backlash

A coalition of Muslim groups has issued a statement expressing their “utter shock and horror” over the siege at Martin Place and “urging everyone to stay calm”.

“We reject any attempt to take the innocent life of any human being, or to instil fear and terror into their hearts,” the statement says.

Read the full story by Anne Davies and Tim Elliott here: Muslim leaders brace for backlash

11:48pm yesterday:

Overreaction from fear is a measure of a terrorist’s success

Peter Hartcher comments on the siege that has captured media attention around the world:

“Why do political activists turn to terrorism? Australia gave the world a lesson today.

They turn to terrorism to win attention, to cause fear, and to use that fear to produce an overreaction. That overreaction is the measure of their success.”

Read the full story here: Overreaction from fear is a measure of a terrorist’s success

11:28pm yesterday: Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended the public for its patience during the ongoing operation.

“You, the community, made our job much easier than it could have been,” Deputy Commissioner Burn said.

“We only hope that co-operation and understanding continues tomorrow as we work to bring about a peaceful resolution to this situation.”

Bus services will run according to regular schedules, although some routes will be diverted around the affected area.

Train services will operate normally although Martin Place station remains closed.

People intending to travel to the Sydney CBD, away from the cordoned off area, are advised to go ahead with their plans.

Those affected by the operation are advised to contact their employers, monitor media reports and seek advice via the NSW Police website and social media platforms.

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended members of the public for the cooperation they have shown police during the siege in Martin Place.NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended members of the public for the cooperation they have shown police during the siege in Martin Place. Photo: Les Smith

11:16pm yesterday Daniel Fallon:

Public urged to go about its business as usual: police

Police are urging the public to go about their business as usual tomorrow.

Officers will continue to maintain a perimeter around a cafe at the corner of Martin Place and Elizabeth streets overnight where a man is holding a number of hostages.

Traffic and Highway Patrol police have cordoned-off parts of Hunter, Macquarie, King and Elizabeth streets.

  • Elizabeth Street between Hunter and King Streets – closed to all traffic
  • Elizabeth Street – northbound between Market and King Street – closed to all traffic
  • Phillip Street – between King and Hunter Streets – closed to all traffic
  • King Street – between Elizabeth and Phillip Streets – closed to all traffic
  • Macquarie Street – between St James Road and Hunter Street – closed to all traffic

10:50pm yesterday: Elly Chen, one of the employees who fled the Lindt Cafe at about 5pm on Monday, was a talented student and athlete, according to her social media accounts.

Friends and relatives flooded her Facebook page with messages of relief that she had made it from the building.

A waitress, believed to be Elly Chen, flees Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon.A waitress, believed to be Elly Chen, flees Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon. Photo: Jason Reed/Reuters

10:21pm yesterday: The hostages inside the cafe have now been there for more than 12 hours.

Here is a timeline of events from earlier in the day.

9.44am: Man seen entering Lindt Cafe, carrying blue sports bag with gun inside.

9.45am: Police called to scene.

9:50am: Police clear area and cordon off Martin Place.

10am: Cafe staff and customers pressed against windows with hands raised.

10:02am: Hostages forced to hold up flag with Islamic script.

10:45am: Sydney Opera House evacuated.

11:20am: Prime Minister Tony Abbott announces national security committee of cabinet convened for briefings.

About 1pm: Talkback host Ray Hadley claims to have spoken to a hostage who spoke under instruction of a gunman.

1:53pm: Premier Mike Baird says “we are being tested in Sydney today”.

1:58pm: NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione says “at least one” armed offender is holding an undisclosed number of hostages.

3:35pm: Three people – one staff member and two others – seen running from cafe.

4:04pm: NSW Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn says the number of hostages is fewer than 30

4:59pm: Two female employees of Lindt run from cafe.

8:20pm: Premier Baird and Police Commissioner Scipione foreshadow extension of hostage crisis into Tuesday. Scipione says the Lindt Cafe is the only building in the city police are now interested in.

Martin Place Siege exclusion zoneMartin Place Siege exclusion zone Photo: NSW government

10:11pm yesterday: This is a map of the exclusion zone around Martin Place in Sydney’s central business district, distributed by the NSW Government.

Premier Mike Baird has requested those who work inside the zone stay at home tomorrow.

10:06pm yesterday: Here is the Herald’s editorial on today’s siege, running online and in tomorrow’s newspaper.

The next test is to ensure we see this sad event for what it is – and what it is not. While there were a number of instances on Monday when Sydneysiders and the media jumped to conclusions about the link between this event and  other incidents around the city, in most cases people were rightfully reluctant to jump to conclusions about the motivations of the gunman or the extent of his plans.

Nonetheless, a temptation lingers in the community to catastrophise about such criminal behaviour; to believe that because we have endured one siege from at least one deranged individual, we are at risk of many more. Rationally, that is highly unlikely.

9:58pm yesterday:

A recap on the siege in Martin Place

  • Hours after five hostages escaped from the Lindt cafe, one of the remaining women switched off the lights inside.
  • Premier Mike Baird has asked Sydneysiders to go about their day as usual on Tuesday
  • There is an exclusion zone near the cafe, bordered by Pitt, Elizabeth, Hunter and King Streets.
  • NSW Police have activated Task Force Pioneer, which they use in terrorism related incidents.
  • A coalition of Muslim groups has expressed their shock and horror at the siege. They have urged calm.
  • Sydneysiders have united under the hashtag #illridewithyou offering company to Muslims wearing religious garments as they travel in the city.

Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

  • Map: Where Is ‘Open Carry’ Legal?

    • By RANIMOLLA

    As people on both sides of the debate regarding open carry—the practice of carrying firearms in plain view—have been turning up the heat, more companies are being forced to take a side.

    Gun-rights advocates see the practice as a way to normalize gun ownership and deter crime, while gun-control activists believe carrying guns in stores and restaurants is disruptive to the public and encourages violence.

    Recently, TargetStarbucks and Chipotle have asked their patrons not to bring their guns. After petitions by gun-control groups such as Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Kroger said it would uphold local and state laws in the 34 states it operates.

    Carrying a firearm in a concealed manner is legal in all states, but open carry has more restrictions, especially for handguns. Though federal law doesn’t restrict the open carrying of handguns in public, several states—including California, Florida, Illinois, New York, South Carolina and Texas—ban the practice, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Thirteen states require a special permit or license to open carry. The remaining 31 states don’t require one. The laws are different for long guns, which are commonly associated with hunting.

    In a Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012 photo, Rick Ector carries his Smith and Wesson 9mm as he prepares to pump gas in Detroit. Ector is pushing to make Detroit an “open carry” city and organizes public dinners and picnics where each legally licensed attendee wears a handgun. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

    Why is open carry causing so much of a stir when concealed carry is so widespread?
    “Concealed carry—you don’t know who’s doing it and it doesn’t cause as much concern as open carry,” said Laura Cutilletta, senior staff attorney at the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “One is a danger you know, and one is a danger you don’t know.”
    According to Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action,”The National Rifle Association strongly supports conceal carry and open carry, and we will continue to lead the charge to protect and expand the right to self defense for law abiding Americans throughout the country.”

  • http://blogs.wsj.com/numbers/map-where-is-open-carry-legal-1715/

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