Dr. Shahid Shafi and Muslim Republicans are far from winning
Even though the victory is a landslide with 74% of the vote in his favor, Dr. Shahid Shafi and the Muslim Republicans are nowhere near winning the battle.
The attempt to remove Dr. Shafi from the vice chairmanship of the Republican Party in Tarrant County failed by a 139-49 vote held in Fort Worth, Texas. The only reason they wanted to remove him was a Muslim.
Darl Easton, chairman of the of party declared the victory, “This vote reaffirms the commitment by a majority of Tarrant County Republicans to our core values and moral compass, a demonstration of our allegiance to the Texas Republican Party Platform and the Constitutions of the United States and Texas, which strictly prohibit religious and racial discrimination of any kind.”
Dorrie O’Brien, a precinct chair of the area Republican Party, led the movement to oust Dr. Shafi. She assumed that the Muslim Doctor prefers Sharia law over the U.S. Constitution.
Winning the votes is not the real win, it is winning the hearts and minds to build enduring relationships that matter. The real victory for Muslims will come when fellow Americans accept Muslims with no ifs and buts. Together as Americans, we have a responsibility to learn about each other to restore trust, so we can go on living our lives and continue contributing towards building a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. It is a two-way street.
The battlefront is Sharia.
First of all, Muslims shy away from making comments about Sharia, as they don’t want to meddle with religious sensitivities of the people, and that is a problem.
Justice is the one word that wraps God, balance, harmony, order, and cohesion together, and that is the foundation of all societies. Without justice, things go awry, and if not checked, it will make life difficult for everyone.
Each society, civil or religious, has its code of conduct that it operates from, and Islam is no different. Sharia in its purest form is a how-to-serve-justice manual based on the Quran and the hadith (Prophet Muhammad’s sayings and life examples). Indeed, it is a human effort to understand the concept of justice enshrined in the Quran for the day-to-day living. Sharia, like all other human laws, including the laws of the United States, has its shortcomings when it comes to just applications of the law.
Sharia laws desperately need amendments. Our constitution has been amended twenty-seven times in 240 plus years to be in tune with the times, as they are designed to be timeless. Whereas Sharia laws have been frozen in the last 1300 years (an invention nearly a hundred years after the death of the prophet) with no amendments, not even the DNA test is admissible in case of rape, Sharia law ridiculously demands four witnesses. Of course, the intent was to prevent false accusations.
The Chapter Sharia and Fixing Sharia Laws are explained in detail in the upcoming Book, “American Muslim Agenda.” I hope it paves the way to find solutions to the conflict between Muslims Americans and fellow Americans. To find an American solution, Sharia is bifurcated into Personal and Public Sharia, it is a seminal article in Islamic history.
Personal sharia deals with how you pray, fast, pay tithe, perform the religious rituals, take care of the vulnerable, fulfill the obligations due to neighbors, earn an honest living, marry, raise the children and bury the dead. It is a personal relationship between an individual and the Creator.
Whereas, the Public Sharia involves a third party to administer the relationship between two or more individuals like divorce, violation of business contracts, adultery, theft, and other issues. Over the last few centuries, the apostasy and blasphemy laws have crept into Islam, yet, they have no basis in Islam. Indeed, such rules are the tools of oppression for the dictators and monarchs.
Over the years, the Muslim establishments have resisted holding a conference on Sharia to clarify the issue to Muslims and allay the fears of fellow Americans. One head of a Muslim organization told me, “As long as I am president of the organization, you will not do a program on sharia, let alone talk about it.” No discussion was allowed, shutting the other board members from even talking about it, and this is what goes on among Muslims.
Sean Hannity had relentlessly pursued anti-sharia rhetoric on Fox News. All he wanted was an assurance from the Muslim community that they have no interest in sharia as practiced in Saudi Arabia or Iran. In reality, the American Muslims have detested such laws and would not want any of that here in America, but they have failed to express it. I have explained the reclassification of sharia into personal and public applications, which Hannity understood and has refocused his charges on Public sharia.
As a Muslim, I support the personal version of sharia that is between the individual and the creator but stand firmly against the public Sharia. We are Americans, and the law of the land is our law, and there is no substitute for it.
Islam is about free will, and that was uploaded into Adam and Eve, the value was asserted in the Quran and practiced by the Prophet.
I hope this clarification brings the rest of the 49 Republicans on board with the 139. For our communities to be successful, all of us should take the time to understand each other and respect the otherness of the other.
American Muslims have placed their trust in the American justice system and will continue to oppose the kind of sharia “that is prevalent in a handful of Muslim majority nations across the globe.” No Muslim organization in America has asked for it—none. I will be one of the first ones, if not the first one, to stand up against Sharia for the public.
The following two videos explain Sharia:
The genesis of Sharia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBcUVQmi6dU&t=4s
Christian Sharia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8xf9aTD3Ds
Republican Congressman Pete Sessions had agreed to sponsor the event on Capitol Hill, unfortunately, after nearly 20 years, he lost the election. I need to find a Republican Congressman to sponsor and a Democrat to co-sponsor once the shut down is done with and we resume a normal life.
Dr. Mike Ghouse is committed to building a cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. His new book, the “American Muslim Agenda” guides Muslims and non-Muslims alike to mitigate conflicts and nurture goodwill. The book will be available at the end of January 2019 in all the bookstores. Mike is a public speaker, author, interfaith wedding officiant, and the executive director of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC. More about him at https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikeghouse/