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View Diary: Canterbury Archbishop Wants Sharia for UK Muslims (146 comments)

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  •  It would just be civil. (0+ / 0-)

    Sharia courts would act like any other arbitration panel.

    "[G]lobalization is...increasing the efficiency of resource allocation through stronger capital markets" - Barack Obama

    by burrow owl on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:32:23 AM PST

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    •  Hrmm (7+ / 0-)

      I have to disagree, there shouldn't be any use of any religious body for any type of legal action.  What if this arbitration panel casts a judgment that abides to Islamic law but obviously contradicts with UK law?

      •  I'm assuming that the process (0+ / 0-)

        would track US arbitration.  You and I can agree to any zany set of procedures.  If it's about something illegal, the law just won't recognize it (eg, a panel adjudicating, say, drug dealer territories).  But if set up a legit arbitration that comes to a result the opposite of which would be reached in a civil court, we can totally do that.  Because we're adults, and adults can generally contract with one another.

        "[G]lobalization is...increasing the efficiency of resource allocation through stronger capital markets" - Barack Obama

        by burrow owl on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:36:32 AM PST

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      •  You were right about crim: (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        homogenius, marina, DocGonzo, dolphin777

        Williams also talks about abortion as a subject that takes into account xianity, suggesting that the law should do the same for Moslem sensibilities.  And that's pretty effed up, alright.  Good call.

        "[G]lobalization is...increasing the efficiency of resource allocation through stronger capital markets" - Barack Obama

        by burrow owl on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:42:02 AM PST

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    •  Not Just an Arbitratrion Panel (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      burrow owl, DvCM, dolphin777

      "Arbitration" is not civil law. It's private, for resolving disputes under contracts, not under law.

      The archbishop is not asking for just voluntary, consensual arbitrations under sharia. He's asking for the actual law to be changed to accommodate sharia when people want it.

      If he just wanted sharia arbitration options, he wouldn't have to ask for anything. There's nothing stopping Muslims right now from choosing sharia arbitration in purely private disputes under contracts. Or choosing, say, the reading of kangaroo entrails as the final word (if the kangaroo was butchered legally).

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:44:16 AM PST

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      •  It looks like a mixed bag: (0+ / 0-)

        This is clearly just arbitration stuff:

        For example, Muslims could choose to have marital disputes or financial matters dealt with in a Sharia court.

        OTOH, he suggests elsewhere that he'd like something like a shift in UK substantive law.

        "[G]lobalization is...increasing the efficiency of resource allocation through stronger capital markets" - Barack Obama

        by burrow owl on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:49:45 AM PST

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        •  Marital disputes? (6+ / 0-)

          So a woman could "voluntarily" choose to have her dispute heard in a setting where she has no rights whatsoever? I say "voluntarily" in the sense of agreeing to it under coercion from the male members of her family (and some of the women) and threat of ostracism, violence, or death.

          Do you really want to defend that? What part of "equality before the law" don't you get?

          Under sharia the deck is stacked against women in all aspects. There is no room in a western democracy for surrendering protections for the most vulnerable in order to satisfy religious beliefs. None.

          Fuck me once, shame on you. Fuck me twice, shame on me. (Amended in response to Obama accepting support from Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell on top of McClurkin.)

          by homogenius on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:55:44 AM PST

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        •  Not My Bag, Baby (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          burrow owl

          I don't care whether Anglicans write private contracts or choose private arbitration with the Easter Bunny if they want. It's encroachment on law, especially any precedent that laws don't apply to everyone equally, that I fight.

          The arbitration stuff, and even Williams' using Muslim sharia as his beard, are just smokescreen. Williams is trying to harness jihadists and sharia advocates' superior energy to his wasting Anglican Church to his more prominent traditional position in British life (and access to Parliament) to get more power back for himself that he was excluded from by more recent generations of more enlightened Britons. But that doesn't mean the whole crowd is wrong, and deserves to be stopped.

          And it doesn't mean that they can't get their superstitious arbitration when they want it, as no one is opposing that.

          "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

          by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 11:57:31 AM PST

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    •  Only partially (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      burrow owl, dolphin777

      insofar as financial matters between people in established contractual relationships go, this is certainly possible under existing law except in very extreme circumstances.

      Family law is stickier.  Pre-nuptial agreements have long allowed people to personalize the law for their own circumstances, but pre-nuptial agreements have historically been court regulated to a great degree.

      Provisions disallowing grounds for divorce or governing child custody matters prospectively have typically not been honored.

      Provisions governing property settlements, inheritance rights or alimony arrangements prospectively have generally been honored, but only if the highest standards of disclosure and consent have been met, and only if the result is not substantively unconscionable at the time of enforcement.

      In U.S. law there is a mixed record regarding enforcement of Rabbinic marriage arbitration.  Also, many religions rather than relying upon government sanction merely distinguish between civil and religious marriage and only purport to regulate the latter -- not acknowledging for their own purposes civil divorces that do not meet their standards.

      "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

      by ohwilleke on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 10:51:07 AM PST

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      •  Williams's approach is wrong (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Themistoclea

        Luckily, the (unwritten, but still understood) British constitution would never make room for such foolishness.

        •  I very much doubt it. (0+ / 0-)

          While I wouldn't be surprised if the government allowed a "free vote" on the matter, rather than making it a government bill for which labor party members are expected to vote the party line.

          The British are masters of compromise and exception, and have often tolerated differing laws for different, sometimes ideosyncratic locations, and even for different individuals.  The magna carta, for example, expressly recognizes the notion that aristocrats and commoners can justly be treated differently under the law (a "jury of your peers").

          A bill that emerged from parliament would likely be a compromise.  

          For example, it might strengthen the deferrence given to marriages valid where entered into, even if not valid in the U.K. by muting the public policy exception to that rule to recognize marriages such as plural marriages entered into when all participants were domiciled outside the U.K. (with Shariah to govern the rights of the parties thereto) and marriages of children entered into abroad when the parties to the marriages were adults upon entering the U.K.

          A mandatory non-binding arbitration provision in a pre-nuptial by religious officials, which would provide an out with resort to the civil courts for people willing to risk shunning by their community in the bargain, might also pass muster.

          "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

          by ohwilleke on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 11:17:39 AM PST

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          •  Compromise With Extremism = Extremism (0+ / 0-)

            You just described precisely how the Overton Window lets extremism force "compromise" steadily towards their extreme.

            "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

            by DocGonzo on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 11:47:13 AM PST

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            •  Compromise picks off moderates. (0+ / 0-)

              British Muslims, in general, are far more moderate than their peers in places like Saudi Arabia, Iran and Pakistan.

              And, extremism is made possible by throngs of far less extreme people who are willing to look the other way because the status quo pisses them off too, but no so much that they will take positive action to do something about it.

              If a compromise means the difference between grudging tolerance of the disfavored status quo, and positive support of the status quo, for 80%-90% of British Muslims and their leaders, then the extremist cause is undermined.

              A perception that your way of life is threatened is the surest way to strengthen the power of religion in people's lives, because religion is fundamentally an institution for preserving culture.  The Anglican church is dying, in contrast, primarily because it reinforces a secure set of British cultural ideals.

              "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

              by ohwilleke on Thu Feb 07, 2008 at 12:15:19 PM PST

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