One of the far right’s favorite personalities, Glenn Beck, recently had a discussion on his show about the future of Christian “persecution” in the United States. His guest for that segment, an evangelical leader named Samuel Rodriguez, said he thinks Christians will soon be sent off to jail just for practicing their faith.
You don’t have to look far to find examples of attacks on mosques in the United States.
I spent just a few minutes on Google recently and came across headlines like “Crimes Against Muslim Americans and Mosques Rise Sharply,” “Anti-Muslim attacks occurring in record numbers across U.S.” and “Hate Attacks on Muslims in U.S. Spike After Recent Acts of Terrorism.”
Religion-based discrimination takes many forms in modern America. Often it looks like a county clerk who won’t give a marriage license to a same-sex couple. Other times, it looks like three Muslims and one Sikh getting booted from a flight because they allegedly made passengers and crew “uneasy.”
The Family Research Council’s (FRC) annual Values Voter Summit (VVS) will be held this weekend in Washington, D.C., and it seems FRC President Tony Perkins is getting a head start on that gathering’s indulgence in Islamophobia.
Dr. Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who is currently seeking the Republican nomination for president, apparently believes Americans should not elect a Muslim to the presidency because, he says, Islam is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.
“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation,” Carson said during a “Meet the Press” interview on Sunday. “I absolutely would not agree with that.”
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled June 1 that a Muslim woman who was denied a job at retailer Abercrombie & Fitch because she wears a headscarf has the right to sue the company.
The high court reinstated a lawsuit claiming that Abercrombie violated the Civil Rights Act of 1964 when it declined to hire Samantha Elauf, a practicing Muslim who wears a headscarf for religious reasons. The company’s decision was based on its “look policy,” which prohibits employees from wearing hats and other head coverings.
A Muslim cleric scheduled to deliver a prayer before the North Dakota House of Representatives had his invitation rescinded after some lawmakers expressed objections to a non-Christian giving a prayer on Ash Wednesday.
The invocation was to be given Feb. 18 by Dr. Nadim Koleilat, a urology transplant surgeon and president of the Bismarck Muslim Community Center. He was allowed to address the North Dakota Senate that day instead.
The Grand Forks Herald reported that Koleilat’s message to the Senate was broadly non-sectarian and did not employ terms specific to Islam.
When it comes to the Religious Right, the hypocrisy never ceases to amaze me.
Yesterday, on the eve of the Muslim observance of Ramadan, The New York Times published a story detailing the leaders and groups behind the recent push for anti-Shariah laws in state legislatures, and – shocker! – one is former Christian Coalition Field Director Guy Rodgers.
We have some good news out of Oklahoma today. A federal judge has put a temporary stop to the so-called “Save Our State Amendment” – Oklahoma’s anti-Shariah amendment.
The measure, which passed with 70 percent of the vote on Nov. 2, revises the state constitution so that “courts shall not look to the legal precepts of other nations or cultures. Specifically, the courts shall not consider international law or Sharia Law.”
In just six days, Oklahoma voters will decide whether they want to write religious intolerance into their state’s constitution.
That’s what they will be doing if they vote “yes” for a constitutional amendment that would prohibit courts from considering “sharia” – Islamic law – when deciding cases. Since our Constitution already separates religion and government, this proposal has no legitimate purpose.
Supporters are simply fanning the flames of religious discrimination and intolerance. I hope Oklahomans see that.