Shari’ah is Coming to America According to Conservative ‘Team B’

There is a new report out that says America is in danger of having shari’ah imposed on it. It is published by a group calling itself Team B. The name “Team B” comes from the policy world where there are two teams approaching the same issue from different perspectives to create a more robust policy. Looking at the make-up of this Team B, I’m not sure they even qualify as third-string JV in the world of professional policy work.

Sheila Musaji does an extensive breakdown of the members of Team B. There are some highlights from a team that did not include any scholars in the field of Islamic Studies (I don’t see a problem with no Muslims being included, like Matt Duss does). There is the David Yureshalmi, who has problems with Muslims, women, and people of color. Lt. Gen. William Boykin (ret.), whose deep understanding of theology allows him to say things like “my God is bigger than his God,” when referring to Muslims. And of course, Frank Gaffney is the head of the organization. As I said over a year ago, he seems to be more interested in job security than national security.

This second-rate report reeks of the paranoia that Lisa Miller writes about in Newsweek:

In its cartoonish bad-guy foreignness, “stealth jihad” attempts to make the terrorist threat broader and thus more nefarious than it already is. The only thing scarier than an invisible, homicidal, suicidal enemy with a taste for world domination is one who’s sneaking up on you. In the words of former speaker of the House Newt Gingrich at a July speech at the American Enterprise Institute, “stealth jihad” is an effort “to replace Western civilization with a radical imposition of Sharia.”

As someone points out on Talking Points Memo, we fortunately have a federal law against the imposition of religious law in the country. It’s call the First Amendment.

The Revealer, in an almost prescient move, has been running a series on the meaning of shari’ah that stands as a good counter to this report by Team B. But we shouldn’t need to do it. I don’t think we should trust “experts” unconditionally, but I do think you need some expertise in a field to be taken seriously. No one should come to me for a mole on their shoulder. I’m not that kind of doctor. In the same way, you shouldn’t go to Arkham to find someone to tell you about national security.

hrashid@mac.com'

Hussein Rashid is a native New Yorker and Proud Muslim. Currently an instructor at the Center for Spiritual Inquiry at Park Avenue Christian Church and based at Hofstra University, he is deeply committed to interfaith work and is passionate about teaching. He believes we need to start talking more intelligently about Islam specifically, and religion generally.