About Carolyn Elkins
Florida PolitiChick Carolyn Elkins was born and raised in Canada. Actively seeking citizenship, she loves everything about America, especially the military. She has blogged about politics, religious and… More
In 1801, Congress passed naval legislation that, among other things, provided for six frigates that ‘shall be officered and manned as the President of the United States may direct.’ In the case the Berber Muslims, the Barbary powers of Tripoli and Algiers declared war on the United States these ships were to “protect our commerce & chastise their insolence by sinking, burning or destroying their ships & Vessels wherever you shall find them.’”
It is widely known that Thomas Jefferson owned a copy of the Koran. An avid reader, always learning, it’s no surprise that he would have had a copy of religious books other than the Bible. The Barbary pirates had been taking ships and tribute for years before Jefferson became President, however he knew about Islam from reading the Koran and from his days as ambassador to France, when he met in London with then Ambassador to Britain, John Adams and Sidi Haji Abdul Rahman Adja, the British Ambassador from Algiers.
In 1805, the US refused to pay “tribute” to Barbary Coast pirates to keep them from raiding American merchant ships. Jefferson said of the idea of continuing to pay, “Too long, for the honor of nations, have those Barbarians been [permitted] to trample on the sacred faith of treaties, on the rights and laws of human nature!” As President, negotiations for a treaty failed, so Jefferson called on the Marines.
In the Libya, the US Marines attacked the Tripolitan city of Derna and rescued the kidnapped crew of the USS Philadelphia. The Marines’ victory helped Prince Hamet Bey reclaim his rightful throne as ruler of Tripoli. In gratitude, he presented his Mameluke sword to Lt Presley O’Bannon who had led the Marines. The sword became part of the officer uniform in 1825, and is still in use by the Corps today. It’s from this battle that the words of the Marine Corps Hymn are still sung.
The US Bill of Rights was written by James Madison in response from several states for greater constitutional protection for individual liberties. Federalists argued that the Constitution did not need a bill of rights, because the people and the states kept any powers not given to the federal government. Anti-Federalists believed that a bill of rights was necessary to keep individual liberties safe. Madison’s changes were given as a list of amendments which made up our Bill of Rights.
Our Bill of Rights includes rights which are inherent and unalienable, meaning you cannot surrender, sell or transfer these rights, as they are a gift from our Creator. All individuals have unalienable rights. These include those enshrined in our Declaration of Independence, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The rights of free speech, of religious freedom are also inherent.
Christians know that all people are given a free will, meaning we all have the freedom to choose whether to believe in Christ or some other religious belief or none at all. Our right to freedom of religion under the 1st Amendment reflects the Christian belief, which is why America has always been a place of refuge for people of any or no religious belief. The United States being a nation with Constitutional Laws in which our freedom of religion means that our nation’s Law recognizes a person’s inherent God given right to free will, the freedom to believe whatever one desires when it comes to religious beliefs, and a freedom to speak freely about one’s beliefs.
It was reported recently that a 31-year-old Tennessee native, Muslim convert and Tea Party activist is trying to spread the message that “Islam is compatible with an anti-big government or libertarian philosophy.”
Will Coley in 2011 persuaded the Tea Party organizations in East Tennessee to take a stand against so called Islamophobia. Talking about his Tea Party outreach and activities, he said, “I was watching the neocon takeover happen… Literally overnight I saw groups devoted to economics and constitutional limits turn into something else… This crazy anti-Islam message was taking over.”
His message is gaining popularity among many libertarians. Many of whom see the US wars as unnecessary. Libertarian leaders such as Ron Paul have declared that “U.S. intervention in the Middle East is a main motivation behind terrorist hostilities toward America, and that Islam is not a threat to the nation.” Paul remarked about his belief that terrorists attacked on September 11, 2001 because of US involvement in Iraq and spoke of his belief that terrorists react to the United States’ actions in the world also said, “If we ignore that, we ignore that at our risk.”
With words like that, and Paul has made many speeches just like it, is it any wonder why Muslims find in him an ally, one whom they believe to be “Their kind of Republican”?
Might I remind Dr. Paul and other libertarians that Islam has been at war with the world ever since it’s foundation, that Islam has been at war ever since, including with America and other Western nations when they were raiding and attacking merchant ships? Dr. Paul and others, are fully within their rights to disagree on US war policies, but it’s incomprehensible to me that they would choose to believe more in the words of Muslim terrorists from the Middle East.
Muslims desiring a more limited government is what many others who are attracted to groups such as the Tea Party desire, however, Sharia is totally incompatible with US Law which is our Constitution. Immigrants who desire to change the host country’s laws to suit them never works. We have seen this happen all across Europe as nations such as Sweden, France, the Netherlands and England have had Muslim dominated, “Sharia Zones” for the past few years which have led to violent clashes between Muslims and non-Muslims who happen to stray into Muslim only areas. We are seeing more of these areas in the US as well.
Sharia means “path” in Arabic, and it governs every part of Muslim life, including daily routines, personal, familial and religious obligations, financial and in some Muslim countries, government and national law. It comes mainly from the Quran and the Sunna, the sayings, practices, and teachings of Mohammed. It is applied by Muslim scholars who address and advise on new issues.
In sharia, there are categories of offenses: some which receive specific punishment in the Quran, known as hadd punishments, those that fall under a judge’s discretion, and those resolved through an “eye for an eye” type system. There are five hadd crimes: unlawful sex outside of marriage and adultery, false accusation of unlawful sexual intercourse, wine and alcohol drinking, and theft. Punishments for hadd offenses include public caning, flogging, stoning, amputation, exile, or execution, depending on which nation they occur in and the nature of the offense. These punishments remain on the books in most Muslim countries, but lesser penalties are also considered.
Honor killings, murders committed in retaliation for bringing dishonor on one’s family happen worldwide, and have been documented in Canada and the US. The UN estimates thousands of women are murdered annually in the name of “family honor”. Other sharia practices, such as female genital mutilation, adolescent marriages, polygamy, and gender-biased inheritance rules happen in most Muslim dominant nations, especially in African nations.
In Muslim countries where Islam is the official religion listed in the constitution, sharia is declared as the source of the laws. These include Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Yemen, and the UAE. In Pakistan, Iran, and Iraq, among others, it is also illegal or considered blaspheme to practice or convert to any other religion. Persecution of Christian and other minority religions in all of these countries are at an all-time high. Even many countries in which Muslims makes up less than 50% of the population, there are cases of persecution, much of it directed against women and children, as in some countries, notably Egypt, have seen Christian girls being kidnapped and forced to convert to Islam. In Iran, Saeed Abedini, an American pastor who is imprisoned in Iran’s Evian Prison for planting house churches in the country over a decade ago has finally received medical treatment after being denied care for many months. Other Iranian pastors have also been arrested for so called national security issues and propaganda against the state.
One of the champions of the idea of a Bill of Rights was Thomas Jefferson who wrote, “I will now tell you what I do not like. First, the omission of a bill of rights, providing clearly and without the aid of sophism for freedom of religion, freedom of the press… Let me add that a bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular; and what no just government should refuse or rest on inference.”
The stark realities and differences between the freedoms which America under the Constitution has held since the Founding Fathers is this; these freedoms are not afforded to anyone other than Muslims in Islamic states. America must hold on to its Constitution, to its Laws. Sharia may be fine for Muslims, but it is not for non-Muslim America. If Muslims desire to live under their own laws, perhaps they should consider moving to an Islamic Nation.