Sorry Steve King, You’re Wrong About Forcing Muslim Immigrants to Reject Sharia

Rep. Steve King told Fox Business News’ Charles Payne that the U.S. should require Muslim immigrants to reject Sharia Law.

Donald Trump is right in the second iteration of his position. Not just simply lock Muslims out, but to stop bringing in people from the countries producing terrorists until we can get a handle on this. If we are bringing in big numbers of people who don’t have a record or history of assimilating into any other culture or civilization and they adhere to Sharia law. In a naturalization ceremony we require that they reject any foreign prince or potentate, I would like to see them reject Sharia law, as well, because it’s incompatible with our constitution.

Rejecting a foreign prince or potentate is a matter of severing political authority of a foreign nation, and rightly should be required of naturalized citizens who immigrated from elsewhere. Forcing them to reject a religious creed or text is a clear violation of the First Amendment. So it would be okay to require Iranian immigrants to renounce the Ayatollah Khamenei, or Saudis to renounce the authority of King Salman, but not okay to require them to renounce the Quran (from whence Sharia emanates).

I agree that Sharia, as implemented in Islamic societies, is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution. Islam is a political/religious/economic system that touches on every aspect of how society should be run. It’s impossible to implement Sharia overlaid with American law (or even most Western countries’ law). The best Europe can offer is some zones where Sharia is practiced for civil matters alongside national law. It’s a mistake to do that, and a mistake for America to allow it.

As a legal construct, Sharia law should be banned from American justice or jurisprudence. I’d be in favor of a law that unequivocally states that–for all Americans. Then if a Muslim immigrant wanted to become a naturalized citizen, he or she would have to accept the fact that Sharia is not practiced in the American legal system–but they can believe whatever they want.

In America, religious and philosophical views inform political decisions. I have no problem with an American Muslim running for any office for which they qualify. I also have no problem with limiting, or even for a time eliminating, immigration from countries where Islamic (Sharia) law is the law of the land, until we can work out a proper method for dealing with radicalization.

The revolving door of immigration, return to the homeland, return to the U.S. (especially among second generation children of immigrants, who are natural-born citizens), and radicalization must end. It’s what caused the San Bernardino and Orlando massacres.

Forcing Muslims to renounce Sharia, however, is a terrible precedent. Who would be next? Jews having to renounce Israel as the Jewish homeland (as the Torah proclaims)? Christians having to renounce the Bible–or the parts of it that condemn homosexuality? Hindus having to renounce reincarnation or their belief in castes?

I’m sorry, Rep. King, but you’re simply wrong here.

About the author

Steve Berman

The old Steve cared about money, prestige, and power. Then Christ found me. All at once things changed. But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

I spent 30 years in business. Now I write and edit. But mostly I love. I have a wife and 2 kids and a dog and we live in a little house in central Georgia.

View all posts