In 1776 the United States colonies declared their independence from Britain with the signing of the Declaration of Independence. In part the Declaration reads, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This document is one of the foundations of our nation. Our adversaries also frequently twist it in their attempts to destroy, not enhance, the crucial underpinnings of our democracy as embodied in the Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Take the following example where Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) attempts to wrap the subjugating, medieval shariah law with the liberating political writings embodied in our founding documents.
In May, after signing legislation barring the use of foreign laws in court decisions, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback met with harsh criticism from Muslim groups. Nedhira Al-Khalili, the CAIR legal council said, “This clearly unconstitutional legislation, like all the others targeting Muslims’ religious rights nationwide, invites a legal challenge. The unmistakable and un-American bigotry espoused by the sponsors of these bills should be repudiated by Americans of all faiths.” Naeem Baig, Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) VP of Public Affairs said, “This goes against the noble principles of freedom of religion in America. Most people don’t realize that outlawing the use of Shariah would be akin to outlawing the Ten Commandments, Talmudic law, or the Gospels of Jesus. American Muslims observing Shariah are being discriminated against.”
As you can see Muslim groups use the idea of religious discrimination (though Islam is certainly among the most discriminatory of the world’s faiths) as a basis to counter this type of legislation. However, we must question what happens when Islamic religious practices take away Americans’ right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in direct opposition to both the meaning and purpose of our founding documents.
An example of a portion of shariah law that is in direct conflict with U.S. Federal law is female genital mutilation (FGM). FGM refers to the practice of partially or totally removing the external female genitalia, frequently without anesthesia. In yet another example of politically correct terminology and multiculturalism, the procedure is also referred in a U.S. government flyer as female circumcision and female genital cutting (FGC). The flyer explains, “Some people fear that parents may resent the implication that they are ’mutilating’ their daughters by participating in this largely cultural event and so reject the term FGM in favor of FGC. Some people point out that the word ‘cutting’ is less judgmental and relates better to terms used in many local languages.”
Regardless, the practice often causes serious physical and psychological effects. The World Health Organization says the practice has no health benefits and can cause a range of health problems including “severe bleeding and problem urinating, and later cysts, infections, infertility as well as complications in childbirth.” Federal law in the United States prohibited FGM in 1996, but the Center for Disease Control or CDC estimated in 2010 between 150,000 to 200,000 girls in the U.S. are in danger of being taken overseas to undergo the procedure.
The flyer produced by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services further says, “Although many people believe that FGC is associated with Islam, it is not. FGC is not supported by any religion and is condemned by many religious leaders.”
Although it is certainly true FGM predates Islam and is still practiced by people from different religious backgrounds, there are Islamic shariah scholars who support and encourage FGM. The “Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law” specifically addresses female circumcision. The International Institute of Islamic Thought, the Fiqh Council of North America and the prestigious Islamic Al Azhar University have endorsed this manual.
This shariah law text states, “Circumcision is obligatory (O: for both men and women. For men it consists of removing the prepuce from the penis, and for women, removing the prepuce (Ar. Bazr) of the clitoris (n: not the clitoris itself, as some mistakenly assert). (A: Hanbalis hold that circumcision of women is not obligatory but sunna [meaning, the normal custom, or a practice decided by Mohammad], while Hanafis consider it a mere courtesy to the husband.)
Dr. Hatem al-Haj, PhD, MD, senior committee member of the Association of Muslims Jurists of America (AMJA) said in his paper entitled, “Circumcision of Girls: Jurisprudence and Medicine,” female genital mutilation is “at the very least it can be said that for women it is an honor.” After his paper, written in Arabic, was translated in April of 2012 and posted in part by Jihad Watch, Dr. al-Haj was fired by the Mayo Clinic for his position. He has since stated he only supported a “ritual nick” which is still prohibited by federal law.
Even more revealing, especially with U.S. support of the newly elected Muslim Brotherhood president in Egypt is the legal ruling by Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood who said, “The [Islamic] hadith indicates that circumcision is better for a woman’s health and it enhances her conjugal relation with her husband.”
PRAYER FOR THE FAMILY:
- Pray that all Americans regardless of cultural or religious background will continue to possess and cherish the unalienable rights our forefathers considered self-evident – life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
- Pray that Islamist advocacy groups will not be able to twist American freedoms to push a system that is the opposite of the founding documents of our nation.
- Pray that Americans will demand that our government refuse to bow to multicultural and politically correct influences.
- Pray for young women in our nation and around the world that may become victims of FGM.