Tuesday, August 25, 2009

religion: why Sharia law is a bad idea

From the New Yorker piece about Pakistan strife, discussing the human rights lawyer Asma Jahingar:
A woman named Samia Sarwar, from Peshawar, who wanted a divorce from her abusive husband, was hiding from her family in the H.R.C.’s shelter. Under Jahangir’s guidance, Sarwar agreed to discuss the situation with her mother. But the mother showed up at Jahangir’s office with a hired assassin posing as her driver. As the two entered the office, the assassin shot Sarwar in the head. The assassin was killed by a policeman as he attempted to flee the building. Yet Sarwar’s mother was never charged with being an accomplice to murder. Following the strictures of Sharia, the heirs of the victim—in this case the abandoned husband and the two children—exercised their right to forgive the murderer. It was a graphic illustration of the way that Sharia can be twisted to legalize the murder of women deemed to have “shamed” their families.
From the BBC:
An Afghan bill allowing a husband to starve his wife if she refuses to have sex becomes law.
I can hear the apologists now: Islam is a religion of peace, it's being twisted by extremists, lots of bad things happen in "the West", yadda yadda, blah blah. Whatever. I read about the outcomes in Muslim countries, and they're sickening.



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