Petition – STOP Sharia Law in the UK – Sign
Comment at end
22nd October, 2008
Help stop Sharia Law in the UK
October 21, 2008 by therationalunderstanding
In matters of justice the statement ‘There but for the grace of God I go’ should never have to apply, we should demand the same result from any legal ruling to uphold the same standard. Our laws are designed to be fair, just and most importantly to apply to everyone on equal terms, this is important because the statue of justice outside of the Old Bailey Central Criminal Courts in London wears a blindfold to represent something. Not only is justice inescapable it also means that it should never depend upon who is seeking justice and who has committed the crime, it should be blind to these things and only consider the facts of the case. Sharia Law in the UK is already being used through the Arbitration Act 1996, involving both civil and criminal matters. To a certain extent rather than both UK law and Sharia Law working together, the normal form of justice is being removed all together. No one should have a problem with any community seeking justice still everyone should have a problem when they use laws to make unfair judgements legal which are only justifiable to those who follow certain religious beliefs. Most importantly it’s not about taking power away from just courts, Sharia courts have every right to apply British law as long as it remains just, fair and the right thing to do.
The safe guard within Sharia courts is claimed to be that both sides have to agree to enter the judgement before it can be passed, in a community which does not completely remove pressure or social stigma it is questionable whether certain people are at threat of being pushed into these courts. It is also clear that women generally suffer more than men under Sharia law, under general conditions for finance men are awarded twice as much as women although under British law they are awarded equal amounts. The main issue here is that women are not seen as deserving the same rights as men. This should not be the notion of law we should allow anyone in this country to be under because it’s neither fair nor right. If you agree that law should be blind and justifiable to everyone then please sign the petition below. It should not be signed through fear or ignorance but the desire that everyone deserves the right to blind justice in a system that is open to checks and balances. Sign because you want to make sure every person regardless of religion, gender or anything else deserves to be considered equal in the eyes of the law and that the law should always remain blind. You have to be British to sign the petition. Thank you.
by Julian Mann
It is a sad state of affairs that the Archbishop of Canterbury appears to got have away with his remarks earlier this year about the inevitability of Sharia Law being introduced in the United Kingdom.
The fact that Britain’s most senior judge recently came out in support of Rowan Williams’ suggestion that aspects of Sharia should be adopted in Britain seems to have got him off the hook.
In a speech at the East London Muslim Centre, Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, the Lord Chief Justice, said it was “not very radical” for Dr Williams to argue that Sharia can be used to help govern issues like family disputes and the sale of financial products.
Lord Phillips said: “It is possible in this country for those who are entering into a contractual agreement to agree that the agreement shall be governed by law other than English law.”
There may or may not be legal wisdom in Lord Phillips’ comments. To paraphrase Barack Obama, it is above my pay-grade to comment on the legal niceties. And to be fair to Lord Phillips he did say that the UK law should always prevail in criminal cases.
But I can comment on what should have been the ecclesiastical response to an Anglican minister at whatever level who seemed to come out in favour of a non-Christian religious legal system such as Sharia.
Penitential silence instead of a rock star’s ovation should have greeted him at the Church of England’s General Synod following his comments. And all the more so given his role within the Anglican Communion in which many faithful Anglicans suffer at the hands of Islamic persecution.
What should have happened at the General Synod is the following scenario: proceedings should have begun with the Archbishop of York stepping forward to introduce an emergency debate called for by the requisite number of Synod representatives. Dr Sentamu should have pointed out that Dr Williams’ remarks were contrary to the biblical theology of the Church of England and were therefore uncanonical.
The 39 Articles of Religion, enshrined in the Canon Law of the Church of England (Canon A5), are crystal clear as to our responsibility as licensed clergy towards other faith groups. Article 18 – Of Obtaining eternal Salvation only by the name of Christ – states: ‘They also are to be had accursed that presume to say, That every man shall be saved by the Law or Sect which he professeth, so that he be diligent to frame his life according to that Law, and the light of Nature. For Holy Scripture doth set out unto us only the Name of Jesus Christ, whereby men must be saved.’
Our canonical duty as clergy is to urge the adherents of other faiths (including secular humanism and atheism) to put their trust in the only Name given under heaven among mankind by which we must be saved. In commending a non-Christian religious law such as Sharia, even for the resolving of disputes and the regulating of transactions, Dr Williams abrogated his canonical duty to uphold the theology of the Church of England.
Dr Sentamu should also have pointed out that the introduction of Sharia Law would make it much harder for our security services to track down Islamic terrorists. The Church of England is supposed to be the church of the nation, concerned for the safety and well-being of all Her Majesty’s subjects and supportive of Her Government in its God-given responsibility. The state, according to the Apostle Paul in his epistle to the Romans, is ‘the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil’ (Romans 13v4 – King James Version).
When was the last time prayers of thanksgiving were offered at the General Synod for the courageous work of our internationally-respected intelligence services in combating the evil of Islamic terrorism?
—Julian Mann is vicar of the Parish Church of the Ascension, Oughtibridge in the diocese of Sheffield