Islamic group accuses Republicans of fostering anti-Muslim sentiment

A Florida Islamic group is accusing some Republican Party lawmakers and local party organizations of fostering anti-Muslim sentiment.

 

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, sent letters to almost every Republican Club or party extension in the state, asking the groups to stop bringing speakers who espouse anti-Islamic views. The letter said it represented the interests of more than 150,000 registered Florida Muslim voters.

 

Hassan Shibly, executive director for CAIR, based in Tampa, said such speakers not only inflame anti-Islam tensions but have also led to discriminatory legislation: namely Senate Bill 386, which would ban foreign laws from being enacted in Florida; and House Bill 921, which allows school districts to select textbooks instead of adhering to the statewide curriculum.

Sen. Nancy Detert, who represents Sarasota County and part of Charlotte County, refused to comment on the two bills and the letter sent out by CAIR.

“Why should I care about a letter sent out by someone I know nothing about? Is that really worth a story?” Detert said.

SENATE BILL 386 & HOUSE BILL 903

 

Referred to as the “Anti-Foreign Law Bill” and the “Anti-Sharia Law Bill,” this legislation would keep Florida judges from applying foreign laws. The only exception would be if the foreign law guarantees the same constitutional protections found in the Florida and U.S. constitutions.

 

The bill is sponsored by Sen. Alan Hays, R-Umatilla, in the Senate and Rep. Neil Combee, R-Polk City, in the House.

 

Gov. Rick Scott has voiced his approval for the measure, but critics say the law is unnecessary and there are virtually no examples of foreign law previously intervening with state laws.

Shibly said the bill is thinly veiled anti-Islam legislation, citing a booklet Hays handed out to other Senators.

 

According to the Miami Herald, the booklet was called: “Shari’ah Law: Radical Islam’s threat to the U.S. Constitution.”

Shibly of the Council on American-Islam Relations said the bill would create a patchwork of curricula that would make it more difficult for the state to set standards for achievement. He also worried some districts might use the measure to push their ideas onto students.

Update: Dutch MPs to Oppose Ban on Ritual Slaughter

14 December 2011

 

A debate in the Netherlands over a proposed ban on ritual slaughter continues with a majority of senators in the upper house of parliament now opposing the ban. A large majority of MPs in the lower house voted in favour of a ban in June, though Jewish and Muslim groups oppose the proposition. The change comes as members of the Labour and Liberal VVD parties decided to oppose the ban; members of the country’s Christian Democrats had opposed from the outset. The senate vote, now a foregone conclusion, will take place next Tuesday.

 

Last Eid for Halal Sacrifice in the Netherlands?

7 November 2011

Given the proposed ban on ritual sacrifice in the Netherlands, which has passed the lower house of parliament and is awaiting a vote by the senate on 13 December, this may be the last year it is possible for Muslims to buy sheep or lamb which has been ritually slaughtered in the country. The ban has received increased attention this week with celebration of Eid al-Adha, in which a sheep or lamb is ritually slaughtered. It is not yet clear whether the bill, sponsored by the Animal Rights Party, will pass. Muslim and Jewish organizations oppose the ban, arguing that it would put thousands of people out of work, make it more expensive to obtain halal and kosher meat, and potentially create an ‘underground’ practice of ritual slaughter.

Dutch Ban on Ritual Slaughter in Doubt

October 19 2011

The future of a proposed ban on ritual slaughter in the Netherlands is in doubt, as the ruling VVD party appears unlikely to support the legislation in the senate. VVD Senator Sybe Schaap commented that the ban, which has drawn criticism from Muslim and Jewish religious organizations, ‘has a poor legal framework’. He would not say definitively if the VVD would vote against the legislation.

Angle: Muslim law taking hold in parts of US

U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle, who in a dead-heat race against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, told a crowd of supporters that the country needs to address a “militant terrorist situation” that has allowed Islamic religious law to take hold in some American cities.

Her comments came at a rally of tea party supporters in the Nevada resort town of Mesquite last week after the candidate was asked about Muslims angling to take over the country, and marked the latest of several controversial remarks by the Nevada Republican.

French Business Man Offers to Pay Full-Face Covering Fines

A French property tycoon enraged at his government’s plans to ban women from wearing the full veil in public has promised a fund of 1 million Euros to help any Muslim who is fined for wearing the niqab in the street. Rachid Nekkaz, a businessman of Algerian origin who launched a short-lived campaign in the 2007 presidential elections, has already put €200,000 into a bank account aimed at bailing out women who find themselves on the wrong side of the new law.

He insists that the ban, which was approved by the lower house of parliament on Tuesday and is set to be ratified by the senate in September, is “anti-constitutional” and a move that could put France on a slippery slope towards greater intolerance.

Nekkaz, who says his fund received €36,000 in donations in the 24 hours following its announcement and hopes it will reach €1m by September, is selling properties in the Parisian suburbs to keep the money coming in.

US government refused to share Fort Hood evidence with senate

The Obama Administration has refused to share the evidence related to the last year’s Ft Hood shooting with the Senate. Defense Secretary, Robert Gates argues that sharing the evidence with the Senate could compromise the prosecution process. Two U.S. Senators have threatened the Administration to subpoena.

Fewer than expected immigrants make it to electoral lists

Fewer than expected immigrants have made it onto the electoral lists for political parties in the Italian parliament and senate; there are a total of three foreign-born candidates for the parliament and senate. Among them include Souad Sbai, the head of Italy’s Association of Moroccan women, who has been recruited by former prime minister Berlusconi’s center-right People of Freedom Party, and Khalil Ali running as a senator for the northern Piedmont region from the left wing Rainbow alliance. Several candidates of foreign origin are up for election in Rome’s municipal elections during the same weekend of April 13-14th. The best known of these include Egyptian born Fouad Bishay, on the Democratic Party’s list. About 400,000 foreigners who are residents in Rome are eligible to vote in the municipal elections.

Berlin Moves Forward: Fighting Agaist Extremism by Creating Cofidence and Social Projects

The Berlin senate launched “1,000 Migrants”, a new project to help young immigrants with scant knowledge of German and a poor educational background. Up to 1,200 young immigrants will be offered sixth-month courses to prepare them for general integration and the job market. The European Union contributes 828 thousand euros to this two-million euro project; the rest is financed by the city of Berlin.