Oklahoma voters may ban the use of Shariah Law on November ballot
Oklahoma voters in November will have the opportunity to approve what would be the first statewide ban on the use of Islamic law within their state court system.
The proposal was advanced in the just-closed Oklahoma legislative session by Rep. Rex Duncan, who volunteered for active duty following 9/11 and served 16 months as a Special Forces officer on duty assignments in the Middle East and Africa.
He said the proposal would amend the state constitution to define the law and precedents that can be used in the state's court system, including federal law and the U.S. Constitution, state law and the state constitution.
But not international law. And not Islamic religious Shariah.
He said the incentive for the move came from several U.S. Supreme Court justices and other federal judges who either have cited from international precedent or suggested those citations in recent work.
"It's pre-emptive," he told WND. "It allows the people the opportunity to amend our state constitution."
House Joint Resolution 1056 would set requirements for the state court system so that they would "uphold and adhere to the law" in the national and state constitutions, federal regulations and state law.
Duncan told local reporters that the point of the Revolutionary War was to free Americans from the tyranny of foreign rule.
However, he said, "some judges in other states and on the federal bench have begun to cite international law as if it had any bearing on our judicial system."
He expects voters in his state will support the idea. Duncan noted Oklahoma was the only state in 2008 in which not a single county voted for Barack Obama. In the legislature, both houses voted overwhelmingly for the plan to ban Shariah.
Duncan told WND a number of states are adopting various resolutions regarding the Tenth Amendment or Second Amendment, emphasizing a statement of states' rights.
While the Oklahoma vote also makes a statement, Duncan said it does far more than that.
"They don't largely have the effect of statute," he said of the resolutions. "This is stronger than that."
In fact, within a state, it is the strongest statement possible, he said.
The move is not fear-mongering, either, he insisted, because of judges who already have cited international law or court precedent in making their decisions. He also pointed to demands by Muslims in some countries to adopt and establish their own laws.
In many places in the United Kingdom, procedures to handle complaints by or about Muslims under Shariah already are in place, he said.
"They have now allowed Shariah courts for the purposes of resolving [disputes]," he said.
Reports say nearly half a dozen Shariah courts already have been set up in the U.K.
Duncan, a self-employed attorney, also serves as commander of the 189th Regiment, Regional Training Institute in Oklahoma City.
Shariah already is moving into some elements of American society, with a lawsuit pending over U.S. government involvement in a financial institution that accommodates Shariah requirements in its business operations.