Archbishop of Canterbury Hedges On Sharia Law View

Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, slightly hedged his recent comments in which he urged the British nation to accept sharia law. He claimed earlier in the week that some aspects of sharia law in Great Britain were “unavoidable” and Muslims should not have to choose between “cultural loyalty or state loyalty.” He now believes there can not be two “parallel jurisdictions” in the United Kingdom but all he wanted to do was extend the choices available to Muslims. Williams admitted that many women, both Muslim and not, were furious at the intent of his statements since they regard sharia law as controlled by bearded elderly men who regard women as second class citizens.

There are occasions when those advocating “respect” for diverse beliefs assume that anyone who belongs to a group — British Muslims– shares the views of others in the group. All contemporary cultural and religious groups contain a wide spectrum of beliefs and there is no such animal as a “British Muslim.” His failue to grasp the extent of diverse views within the Muslim community is shocking to say the least.

  • Kevin C

    Maybe this is the line we should be taking:

    Straight and to the point!!!!!!! Quoting the Australian Treasurer

    Good Old Australia

    Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday to get out of Australia, as the government targeted radicals
    in a bid to head off potential terror attacks.
    A day after a group of mainstream Muslim leaders pledged loyalty to Australia and her Queen at a special meeting with Prime Minister John Howard, he and his Ministers made it clear that extremists would face a crackdown. Treasurer Peter Costello, seen as heir apparent to Howard, hinted that some radical clerics could be asked to leave the country if
    they did not accept that Australia was a secular state, and its laws were made by parliament. “If those are not your values, if you want a country which has Sharia law or a theocratic state, then Australia is not for you”, he said on National Television. “I’d be saying to clerics who are teaching that there are two laws governing people in Australia: one the Australian law and another Islamic law that is false. If you can’t agree with parliamentary law, independent courts, democracy, and would prefer Sharia law and have the opportunity to go to another country, which practices it, perhaps, then, that’s a better option”, Costello said. Asked whether he meant radical clerics would be forced to leave, he said those with dual citizenship could possibly be asked to move to the other country. Education Minister Brendan Nelson later told reporters that Muslims who did not want to accept local values should “clear off. Basically people who don’t want to be Australians, and who don’t want, to live by Australian values and understand them, well then, they can basically clear off”, he said. Separately, Howard angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying he supported spy agencies monitoring the nation’s mosques.

    I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians.”
    “However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled when the ‘politically correct’ crowd began complaining about the possibility
    that our patriotism was offending others. I am not against immigration, nor do I hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by
    coming to Australia.” “However, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some born here, need
    to understand.” “This idea of Australia being a multi-cultural community has served
    only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. And as Australians, we have our own culture, our own society, our own language
    and our own lifestyle.”
    “This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought
    freedom” “We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese,
    Japanese, Russian, or any other language, therefore, if you wish to become part of our society. Learn the language!”
    “Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on
    Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.”
    “We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us.”
    “If the Southern Cross offends you, or you don’t like “A Fair Go”, then you should seriously consider a move to another part of this
    planet. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change, and we really don’t care how you did things where you came from. By all
    means, keep your culture, but do not force it on others.
    “This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take
    advantage of one other great Australian freedom, ‘THE RIGHT TO LEAVE’.” “If you aren’t happy here then LEAVE. We didn’t
    force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted.

    “Maybe if we circulate this amongst ourselves, Canadian, American and
    British citizens will find the backbone to start speaking and voicing
    the same truths!

  • Fred Stopsky

    Perhaps, a central issue is whether most Muslims living in Australia or England or Canada really want to live under Sharia law. There is no question at least 40% of Turkish Muslims do not seek to live under sharia law.
    The United States Constitution makes no mention of God nor does it speak of the “Christian nation.” I find your use of such language to be offensive not just to Muslims, but to people of all non-Christian religions or to those who do not believe in any religion.