British Female Muslim Blasts Archbishop Of Canterbury

The recent statements by the Archbishop of Canterbury urging Great Britain to allow use of sharia law has aroused a fury of anger among many British Muslims. Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, writing in the Independent, told him in clear terms why his proposal was an attack not merely on women, but on society. “What Rowan Williams wishes upon us is an abomination and I write here as a modern Muslim woman. He lectures the nation on the benefits of sharia law–made by bearded men for men– and wants the alternative legal system to be accomodated within our democracy in the spirit of inclusion and cohesion. Pray tell me sir, how do separate and impenetrablel courts and schools and extreme female segregation promote commonalities and deep bonds between citizens of these small isles?”

She criticizes Williams for telling the nation that Muslims want exceptionalism rather than equality and asks a simple question– would the Archbishop wish his daughters to be governed by such laws? Ms. Brown points out that throughout the world where sharia rules such as in Saudi Arabia women are second-class citizens. She recalls a Saudi female friend whose husband divorced her, and kept the children. Ten years ago, few Muslim women in Europe wore the headscarf, but now it is common. “Many women, gay men, and dissidents,” notes Ms. Brown, “come to Britain to escape Islamic tyrants and their laws.”

One can only wonder exactly which benefits did the Archbishop of Canterbury believe would ensue to Muslim women if a group of elderly bearded Muslim men decided divorce cases? Ms. Brown quotes a colleague, Taj Hargey, an historian and Islamic theologian: “Sharia is nothing but a human concoction of medieval religious opinion, largely archaic and outmoded and irrelevant to life today. Most sharia contradicts the letter and spirit of the Koran and distorts the transcendentl text.”