Message Board

RANDTS will last a thousand years.

- Albert

Islamic (syariah) courts cannot and should have jurisdiction over non-Muslims. This is against the democratic principle of the rule of law i.e, laws cannot cause injustice and unfairness. Religious values e.g, Islamic values cannot be applied to non-Muslims as this is contrary to justice and fairness. In Malaysia the Federal Constitution guarantees that only Muslims are under the Syariah Courts.

Recently we had many cases that highlighted the ongoing "tug-o-war" between the the civil courts and Syariah court. These include the cases of Shamala, Lina Joy, Nyonya Tahir, M. Moorthy, Rayappan Anthony, Subashini, P. Marimuthu, and perhaps the latest, Magendran Sababathy. One can argue that these cases are causing ethno-religious harmony to be slowly eroded. Dr Wan Azhar Wan Hamad of the Centre for Syariah, Law and Political Science, Institute of Islamic Understanding Malaysia (IKIM) today has come into the fray with a suggestion that syariah courts have some jurisdiction over non-Muslims in order calm the "tug-o-war" in this article.

Forget about Wan's justification of doing this for if what he suggests comes to pass we are all finished. It will a start of a slippery slope of religious intolerance descending into outright religious persecution. First Syariah courts will start giving biased decisions which are unfair to non-Muslims. Then they will police your morals e.g., moral police will roam the streets checking for "immodest" attire like in UiTM's INTEC; touching your lover will get you slapped with a fine; spending time alone with the member of the opposite sex will land you in jail. Finally everyone may be forced to convert to Islam. Making Islamic values and rules apply to non-Muslim is outright bigotry. Religious values are of a personal nature, if I'm not a Muslim I won't have Islamic values, as simple as that. The state has no right to interfere at all unless we live in a dark place ruled by a Saudi like government.

Azhar is definitely irrational at best and a religious bigot at worst because what he suggests is outright injustice, a certain kind of religious jingoism. We all must denounce his suggestion as it will imperil our very human rights. We must have freedom of religion and expression, the state must not interfere. We live in secular democracy not a dark dictatorial theocracy e.g., Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Another bone of contention is that only Muslims are allowed to discuss the "tug-o-war" without fear as implied by the article and recent events. Remember that the Article 11 group discussion was canceled due to the threat of violence and police apathy (and perhaps some Islamic bigot(s) in the upper echelons of power). Just this week the international Muslim-Christian dialogue – the Building Bridges seminar – organized by the London office of the Archbishop of Canterbury has been canceled according British sources and postponed according to local sources. A question keeps ringing in my head, why can't we have a say about something that affects us?

Let's us hope that one day we embrace all the values of democracy, tolerance, competitiveness and equality otherwise we may go to the dogs like Zimbabwe and Nigeria.

~multum in parvo~

0 mad rant(s):

Got something to say? Please leave a comment! Your feedback and opinions are extremely valuable to us here at RANDTS. You also might want to take a look at the comments that other readers have left.

If you leave a comment, please check back to this post often, as we will get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for dropping by!


Copyright 2006 | Blogger Templates by GeckoandFly.
Modified and converted to Blogger Beta by Blogcrowds | Edited by Maverick.
No part of the content or the blog may be reproduced without prior written permission.