Friday, February 08, 2008

One Law for All or a Choice of Two?

It's hard to avoid the controversy caused by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, in the papers and on the radio and the television today.

The Archbishop believes that the introduction of Sharia law in this country is "inevitable" and why not, says BBC Radio Kent, "That's fine by me", says John Warnett the presenter but not "Stoning to death", "because that transcends" British law.

Sharia is the body of Islamic law implemented in some Muslim countries, including Saudi Arabia, Libya, Iran and Sudan. In some, it is associated with draconian punishments for crimes such as theft, adultery or blasphemy, such as amputation of limbs, death by stoning or use of the lash.

Women's rights are curtailed in many countries. Some interpretations of the law mean women have to cover themselves from head to toe in burkhas when they go out.

Religious groups and secularists attacked the Archbishop, saying that his comments were "baffling and bewildering" and would undermine social cohesion but Dr Williams said the argument that "there's one law for everybody" was "a bit of a danger" and called for "a constructive accommodation" with aspects of Muslim law.

So what's your view. Do you agree with Dr Williams? Is the introduction of Sharia law an inevitability and perhaps in the areas of Britain referred to by the Archbishop of Rochester recently? The Government certainly thinks not.


Anonymous said...

Will no one rid us of this meddlesome priest? Honestly what planet is this half wit on? If Muslims find English law so offensive they have two choices. Live with it or sod off. You don't have to live here.

Dr. Williams reminds me of Neville Chamberlain. Appeasement doesn't work. At least Chamberlains actions could be understood having seen the horrors of WW1 first hand. What is Dr. Williams excuse?

Anonymous said...

Isn't he not just stating the obvious
its the way this country is going we seem to bend over backwards to please everyone but the Brits .After all white English is now an ethnic minority?

Anonymous said...

Absolutely not ! If we adopted sharia law then half the MP's would be walking around with one hand missing !
If sharia law is adopted here, can we then expect British law if we go to an Islamic country.
This man should stick to what he does best, he, like Prince Charles, dabbles with politics at his peril. AND, don't kid yourself that sharia law is fair, women have no status in the Islamic world and do not get a fair hearing. How many female Imams have you ever met ? Judged and ruled by men, the Muslim women are downtrodden enough. I speak as an active Muslim woman.

tony flaig bignews said...

its the thin end of the wedge which ends who knows where

Anonymous said...

Some comments on Shiachat:

All the comments I have seen on this board so far (okay only 4) appear knee jerked. Has anyone read a transcript of what Dr. Williams has said before commenting? Law continually evolves and our current system has its roots in common law and Roman Law.
Here are a few comments from the above forum:

1. So what kind of Sharia are we talking about in the UK?
The key issues are family law, finance and business. In practice many Muslims do turn to Sharia guidance for many of these day-to-day matters, particularly family disputes. And how does this work in practice? Muslims are increasingly looking to the example of Jewish communities which have long-established religious community courts. These "courts" are legally recognised in English law as a means for warring parties to agree to arbitration. The law sees this as a practical way of helping people to resolve their differences in their own way, without clogging up the local courts.

2. The media is making British society increasing Islamophobic...

3. However their will never be Sharia in the UK because we are a minority and the UK would have to be a legitimate Islamic government for that to happen i.e. a kaafir cannot implement sharia law without believing in it similarly a muslim cannot implement kuffr law without beleiving in it thats why we should strive for ISlam in the muslim lands not here in the west.

anon again! said...

anon again!
Sharia Law, in England! Superb. We need the Police to with it though, or who will control it.
Archie Bishop usually stroll's round Canters on Friday's, strange, yesterday he wasn't there....

Anonymous said...

Anon 10.19

I had to smile at your mention of "Our current system".

There are some with ambitions to spread Code Napoleon. Others with ambitions for Sharia Law.

Our system cannot change unless we cease to be a monarchy. All the time we are a constitutional monarchy then there shall be but one law. That of the realm ?

I wonder how Williams would conduct Charlie boy's Coronation ?

"Now to the bit about you wedding the people and becoming sole fount of justice in mercy Charlie. How about we leave it out, make you defender of faiths and hope the people don't notice"

Charlie replies "Well whatever you think Taff. My record on honouring oaths taken in yer gaff here has not been too impressive anyway"

Anonymous said...

And your condescending bit that the Media is making British society Islamophobic.

We are not Institutionally Racist (that was a myth whipped into a mass hyteria by Jack Straw and Co ... and is an insult to the British people)

we are not Islamophobic.

we are not influenced by the media.

Because since time immemorial we have developede culturally to not giving a f-ck.

We don't trouble trouble unless trouble troubles us.

When trouble does enter our consciences then traditionally we start off with a disaster (Dunkirk sort of thing) ... then we learn quick and beat the crap out of the opposition.

Then we go back to moaning, p-ssing it up and digging our allotments (Rights to allotments started off with a bit of row but things have been quiet for three hundred years on that score.)

Or as Victoria Wood would say "That Archbishop might cause hell of a stir round my way. Smeone might even say "tut""

Anonymous said...

I wonder if a little anecdote about Britishness would aid understanding.

During the war german Intelligence spent a lot of effort trying to determine why certain bomber operations from Englasnd had curtailed.

Were the squadrons being held for a sudden strategically important strike.

A German agent in England was asked to investigate.

What had happened was that a lady member of the aristocracy had been bad blood (A Britishism for mad from birth). IN addition to this when menopause struck she became silly as a bushell of bollocks. But she had a lot of clout. And she did not want night bombers disturbing some rare swans on her land during their mating season.

Her influence was such that the RAF stood down operations.

When Hitler saw this report he concluded that MI5 had turned his agent and was feeding back disinformation.

As a result Germans were moving flak installations (to the wrong place) and military units for ever trying to guess what the RAF were up to.

Now you couldn't make a story like this up could you ?

Anonymous said...

Having read the above you should now ask Dr Moores what issue causes pasions to rise currently in the parishes of Thanet.

Is it the Archbishop's comments ?

Or is it a fence erected around allotments ?

I rest my case.

And I do not intend to continue my erudite contributions to the early hours Simon not even to provide your ISP counter with fodder !

I am the Irritating Bloke.

James Maskell said...

Getting over all the inevitable knee jerk anger at the idea of beheadings in Britain, Rowan Williams has a point. He wasnt talking about beheadings or lopping off a thief's hand. He was talking about things such as family law and business for example. We already have aspects of this with other faiths, for example meat can be dealt with according to Jewish and Islamic practices already.

I think those who reacted immediately probably havent read the speech. As ever on issues involving religion, if its in any way controversial theres huge leeway for over-exaggeration of the argument by those who havent read it.