Oklahoma Outlaws Sharia Law
When I heard that there was a ballot initiative in Oklahoma to make Sharia Law illegal, it struck me as profoundly silly. For one thing, there’s no evidence that anyone in the Oklahoma legislature was attempting to impose Islamic law in the Sooner State. For another, Muslims make up a tiny percentage of the population there (according to the 2000 census there were 6,000 Muslims in the whole state). Despite it’s profound silliness, though, I can’t say I’m surprised that the initiative passed with an overwhelming margin of victory:
Oklahoma on Tuesday approved a ballot measure blocking judges from considering Islamic or international law when making a ruling.
Nearly 70 percent of voters in the state cast ballots approving the measure.
The proposition’s sponsor, Republican Rex Duncan, told reporters Tuesday that the proposition is a “preemptive strike” against judges who he worries could be “legislating from the bench or using international law or Sharia law.”
Opponents of the measure pointed out that the First Amendment bars Congress from make any law respecting the establishment of religion.
The proposition also faced criticism from Muslim leaders who have said they intend to challenge it in court.
Presumably, the challenge would be on First Amendment grounds and it strikes me that such a challenge would have a fairly decent chance of succeeding.