Getting to Know Me
Getting to Know Me
I wonder if other candidates get these types of “policy” questions….
Q: I have written extensively about Islam (six books and numerous articles and brochures) and think it important that non-Muslims gain a better understanding of Islam.
I have contacted a number of other Muslim candidates with these same questions, and I will be writing an article about the results of this survey. I will be noting those candidates who have expressed support for the U.S. Constitution and our man-made laws. Is it OK if I mention you by name as being among them?
[questions with my answers]
Me: I have no idea who you are, but I will answer your questions.
You’re welcome to use my name with my answers, assuming you don’t mischaracterize or misquote me… of which I really have no control over.
Q: If you are elected to public office you will take an oath of office that includes swearing, or affirming, to support the United States Constitution.
Me: Attorneys are required to swear an oath to the US and state Constitutions in order to receive their Bar license. So, I’ve been there, done that, and plan to do it again in the future.
Q: With that in mind, I am interested in your response, as a candidate who follows the religion of Islam, to the following questions:
No. 1: Will you go on record now and state that our 1st Amendment right to freedom of speech gives the right to anyone in the United States to criticize or disagree with your prophet Muhammad, and will you also go on record now and state that you support and defend anyone’s right to criticize or disagree with your prophet Muhammad, and that you condemn anyone who threatens death or physical harm to another person who is exercising that right?
Me: My stance on Freedom of Speech is well established, particularly as a 15-year civil rights advocate and attorney. I was even quoted in the Phoenix New Times during the time of the Mohammed cartoons in Europe saying it’s not an issue… and my quote was alongside a Mohammed cartoon in the Phoenix New Times. There wasn’t even a ripple in Arizona about it.
Q: No. 2: Our 1st Amendment guarantees freedom of religion in the United States. As part of that freedom, anyone in the United States has the right to join or leave any religion or have no religion at all. Will you go on record now and state that you support and defend the idea that in the United States a Muslim has not only the freedom to leave Islam, but to do so without fear of physical harm, and will you also go on record now and state that you condemn anyone who threatens physical harm to a Muslim who is exercising that freedom?
Me: Part of my platform for the last election as well as this one is separation of religion and state. As a convert myself, I have a particular connection to people being able to choose whether to follow a religion or to follow none at all. My record on this topic is well and publicly established.
Q: No. 3: According to the words of Allah found in Koran 5:38 and the teachings of your prophet Muhammad, amputation of a hand is an acceptable punishment for theft. But our U.S. Constitution, which consists of man-made laws, has the 8th Amendment that prohibits cruel and unusual punishment such as this. Do you agree with Allah and your prophet Muhammad that amputation of a hand is an acceptable punishment for theft in the United States, or do you believe that our man-made laws prohibiting such punishments are true laws and are to be followed instead of this 7th Century command of Allah and teaching of Muhammad?
Me: While I’d like to see more science-based laws, particularly in relation to women’s bodily functions and autonomy, no religion should be the foundation of US law, only the US and state Constitutions as well as legislatively passed laws and court precedent.
There are 54 majority Muslims countries in the world and maybe three have codified the texts you quote, there are only two instances of the punishment being delivered in the last decade, and even those instances were controversial among Muslims and scholars all over the world… the concept is not a majority thought among the 1.8 billion modern-day Muslims worldwide.
To put this in perspective, several US states also have codified laws on sodomy, fornication, and even birth control punishments still on the books that have never been repealed.
Q: No. 4: According to the words of Allah found in Koran 4:3, Muslim men are allowed, but not required, to be married to up to four wives. Being married to more than one wife in the United States is illegal according to our man-made bigamy laws. Do you agree with Allah that it is legal for a Muslim man in the United States to be married to more than one woman, or do you believe that our man-made laws prohibiting bigamy are true laws and are to be followed instead of this 7th Century command of Allah?
Me: Muslims having more than one wife is rare in the world and illegal in the US. Muslims are required to follow the laws of the land in which they live.