Some Islamic groups feel a recently passed Alabama constitutional amendment that banned “foreign laws” was an indirect attack on Muslim’s sharia law. Attorney Eric Johnston denies this is the case but also argues that Islam’s sharia law “violates women’s rights.”
In a related report by the Inquisitr, some Muslim groups were demanding that welfare be free of pork products in order to meet the demands of the Islamic Halal diet. There’s also a rumor going around that polygamous Muslims in the United States are allowed to have up to four wives on welfare at at time.
During the recent 2014 elections, Alabama passed “The American and Alabama Laws for Alabama Courts Amendment,” which was described by Lt. Governor Kay Ivey in a press release.
“Amendment 1 relates to the application of foreign law during the legal process involving an Alabama citizen. Foreign law refers to the laws of other countries or cultures. Currently, judges or other legal authorities discern whether foreign law is applied. Amendment 1 would create constitutional protection that foreign law is not applied if it violates the guaranteed rights of Alabama citizens.”
Prior to the passing of the law, Ashfaq Taufique, president of the Birmingham Islamic Society, claimed the amendment was written to prevent Muslims’ sharia law from being implemented in the United States.
“It is aimed at Islam, that’s what its origination was from. There is no evidence of Muslims ever asking for Sharia Law to be implemented in American courts. We practice within the law of our country. That’s just fear-mongering.”
Other critics complained that the new law may interfere with foreign marriages and adoptions. Eric Johnston told AL.com this was not the case.
“Your constitutional rights are not affected by it,” Johnston said. “We’ve got a religious freedom amendment in Alabama. All it says is pay attention to the religious freedom amendment. Women’s rights are compromised by Sharia rights if a lawyer in a custody case says, ‘Islam requires you to do this.’ It’s a help to judges. It doesn’t create any new laws… If you get married outside the country, that marriage is going to be recognized. If you go to Russia and adopt a child, that adoption is going to be recognized. That was a red herring to scare people away.”
Although Johnston does not like Muslim sharia law, he believes his approach will “protect people’s rights and liberties” and says the constitutional amendment was intended merely as a “reminder to the judges that we need to stick to Alabama’s laws and public policy.”