Oklahoma Bans Shari’ah Law

By: Haroon Moghul

It’s called Measure 755. For Oklahoma, it forbids the use of international and Shari’ah law in state courts. As of the time of writing, it has passed, winning nearly 70% of the vote. As an American Muslim, and a citizen of New York, I am amused, concerned, fascinated and, oddly, given hope. Let me go in that order.

What most Americans don’t realize is that we already have interpretations of Shari’ah law in our country; or, at least, interpretations of the personal, moral, and ethical components of the law, operating off of individual choice and will. When Muslims pray, they are following interpretations of Shari’ah. Fasting in Ramadan. Giving in charity. Even a smile, the Prophet Muhammad said, is charity.

I am amused that Oklahomans would consider this threat enough to pass a law, to head off (and I can’t believe this is the case) the looming Islamization of the West. Apparently, it will begin in the center of the country. About all this guarantees is that the booming Halal food market may be a no-go area, and the rapid growth of Islamic finance as a global industry will just have to pass Oklahoma by.

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