There were 25 of us, with an exception of three; all were Republicans on the right, including Ambassador Bolton, Congressman Peter King, congressman ...... and a few more big guns.
Hannity pulled congressman Peter King, Pamela Geller and me to the stage. Where Pamela and I jumped and dueled on Sharia. I expressed my support for Sharia expressing that in Muslim nations, the only system of law they know is Sharia, and they know nothing about other laws, and obviously they will opt for the only thing they know. Sharia has of course flaws that need to be rectified and updated, on which Hannity jumped about the 4 witnesses when they can get the DNA to work. If you want to understand Sharia, please go to: www.ShariaLaws.com
I respect Sean Hannity for not attacking Muslims but the radicals among us, as a principle and as respect to his guest who is Muslim. I was glad to hear that distinction, I am not sure if it went on the Air. Furthermore, I appreciate that conversation as every one present there including Congressman Peter king watched us.
|More pictures http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikeghouse/sets/72157633066920606/show/|
Indeed, who is not against radicals whether they are Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus or anyone. Two men and a woman and walked up to me later and said, that they were glad I took that stand. He said no matter what the topic, Pamela Geller would drives the conversation towards Sharia. He was right, Sean had planned to talk about Obama's Israel trip, and I wrote a piece about it, and then we got derailed into Sharia.
I'll be on a New York Radio on Tuesday night to complete the debate about Sharia with Pamela Geller. I get asked by a few MUSLIMS about my credentials, my response is, if you call yourselves a Muslim, you had better know. The prophet expects us to know. There will be bad guys as well as good guys; let freedom prevail, bad guys can do their job, but we need to have enough good people to strengthen the good and weaken the bad.
I made a feeble attempt to clear ISNA from the co-conspirator list on Hannity show in response to Pamela Geller's accusations. Dr. Syyed Syeed had shared the documentation with me, and next time I get the chance, I will do my best to clear ISNA from such charges.
I am sending a proposal to ISNA about presenting a program on this topic of being a part of the society at their annual convention. I hope our organizations become a catalyst in making Muslims, genuinely a part of the society. Please let me know if you wish to be a part of this presentation.
My screaming would not change, what would change is for us to be collectively strive to be a part of the society, meaning connecting with humanity on a social level, like attending birthdays, funerals, graduations.... We should not run from any one because they drink alcohol or eat pork, I'm with them and quietly stay away from what is not kosher. I don't see the need to flaunt that I'm a Muslim.
My book is complete and revisions are underway. Sean Hannity read the abstracts of my book in the middle of all this, and I was completely taken back for the amount of time he spent on reading it despite his schedule for the evening. He said, he will talk about this book, and it will have a message to build cohesive societies. It’s about standing up for others.
CAMERA - the battery died on me after a few pics... the studio pics came out of my cell.
MY OP-ED ABOUT OBAMA'S TRIP TO ISRAEL
FACEBOOK - DISCUSSION
Between Khalid Ahmed, Mashood Elahi Thomas Haidon and me, it's lenghty but makes a few points.
HERE WAS MY LAST RESPONSE
Khalid, Thomas and Mashood, thanks.
Khalid – Sharia is human understanding of what God meant; to create just societies. Its intention was justice, but it has flaws that need be rectified because it human. The word of God (Quraan) is indeed divine, and other words may be divinely inspired but not divine.
In case of Rape, the bottom line was proof, nothing can be more factual than DNA, and there is no need for four male witnesses any more. It will have to change, because it is human.
In case of Divorce, the woman is thrown on the street at the whim of the guy, when he text messages Talaq three times to his wife, she is on the street. Allah's mercy is challenged and Prophet Muhammad becomes unmerciful to that woman. We cannot call Sharia a divine law.
in the other half of Muslim world comprising Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Indonesia, they guy can just shout Talaq three times and divorce takes place, what is divine about it? It squarely contradicts Quran which says allowing three periods – amounting to 90-120 days of wait time, a common sense, which is part of the American law as well.
Khalid you and I may argue that it is not Islamic, but what is practiced by Muslims, becomes Islamic. Have Muslims stopped the above practices? Have the Ulema’s condemned it? What does the general Muslim public believe? Don't we have the right to speak out?
There is no punishment of Apostasy in Quran, and then we have Pastor Nadir Khani in Iran, Asia Bibi in Pakistan and a number of cases out there. Is that Divine Law?
If we have the space and room, we can put forth umpteen examples, but given the space a few examples are suffice.
Sharia is not divine law, it is a human understanding of what God meant, and its practice and understanding is flawed, not completely but a significant part of it.
When Prophet talks about going to China to seek knowledge, he did not restrict mode of transportation to camel exclusively, he meant using the available transportation. God injects the wise can see his hikma/ wisdom in these examples. When Prophet said the knowledgeable among you can lead the prayers, he did not restrict women from leading the prayers; it is the misogynistic attitudes among men that make us shout that woman cannot lead the prayers. Of course, it is my personal view.
I respect your conservatism, and you don’t need to pray behind a woman, if it were my mother, or any woman who is more knowledgeable than a given group, I will pray behind her. It is common sense, and you don’t need to become a takfiri and shove it in my face that I cannot. After all, there is no compulsion in Islam and no one but the individual is responsible for his or her actions.
Khalid you made attempts to be critical of me personally; I would rather stay with the subject. But I do admit, and appreciate your contribution in keeping me and us on the toes. It is good to have friends who fires at your take on the issue, it prevents me from falling in the pit.
I make mistakes regularly, but thank God, it gives me the opportunity to put a dent in what Geller or Horowitz says.
Mashood, my understanding is similar to yours, “Sharia is based on Divine will but as a body of law has been expounded by humans like you and me and therefore, open for debate and constant change as our knowledge of Quran and the universe grows.”
Thomas, thanks for the meaningful points, and I respect your opinions.
I could do much better, and I have done well most of the times, but poorly a few times including being trashed. Last time, I did that to Pamela Geller, this time she was respectful.
The feed back I get from the calls and emails has one common underlying theme, thank you for prompting us to do the research, your challenge that the other side is wrong, causes us to look up instead of taking it all from the right wing media.
As a moderate Muslim, I don't reject everything said by Hannity, Pamela, Spencer, Horowitz or others, they do make a few points that we as Muslims need to address. As Muslims (not Islam) we have our problems. Most Ulema agree that there is no punishment for apostasy, but don't have the courage to put their name to it, I have gone through that. Same goes with Blasphemy, the one who speaks get thrown out of their country - like Ghamidi in Pakistan. The Indian Muslim law board is working on fixing the talaq issue.
There is hope, the last decade is perhaps is a decade in our history, that can be labeled as a decade of Muslim awakening. For the first time, criticism of Sharia, apostasy, blasphemy, treatment of rape victims, Hadiths (there are some, which Prophet could not have said it at all) are all questioned in public Square. This is perhaps what Allah means by Iqra, and this is what Prophet said - I am leaving this book behind for you to understand.