« The week that is | Main | National Grammar Day is tomorrow »

It's not just Charlie Sheen that's nuts

A moron in Tennessee has introduced a bill in the state Senate that would make observance of Sharia law a felony.

Sen. Bill Ketron’s measure exempts peaceful practices of the Islamic legal code but does say that adherence to it is treasonous and requires the state attorney general to investigate groups that comply with Sharia.

So presumably Muslims who pray or wash before praying or observe the Islamic dietary code, though not necessarily jailed, would be subject to investigation by the state, along with their mosques and clergy.

A moron in Missouri has introduced a bill banning observance of Sharia law in that state.

Rep. Paul Curtman says, “This legislation will help make it clear the constitution and laws of our country are the only laws that should be considered when governing our citizens in our country.”

It is not easy to tell from the available evidence whether these gentlemen are sincere about these idiotic proposals or whether they are cynically advancing them for political gain in confidence that the courts will eventually strike down their unconstitutional and fatuous statutes.

But while they are at it, if Mr. Ketron and Mr. Curtman are concerned about alien Semitic law codes infiltrating the United States, perhaps they should consider banning observance of the Mosaic code as well and demanding raids on the synagogues.

The Constitution prohibits any religious test for public office. But perhaps we should consider imposing a saliva test.



Posted by John McIntyre at 10:07 AM | | Comments (17)


Not just the Mosaic Code, but Canon Law, I hope.

Um ... maybe they are concerned about the use of Sharia law to try and actually execute other citizens outside of the (governmental) legal channels?

As happens today in the UK, France and other countries that are technically supposed to have a democratic rule of law without exceptions for Sharia?

I don't think this is targeted to dietary practices or washing, haha. If Canon Law mandated execution for a crime, or if Mosaic Law (which does) was to actively being used by Jews for this purpose, then maybe some lawmakers would try to prevent that also.

Only that state (if even the state) should execute people ... never the leaders of a religious community when we already have a rule of law.

I suspect execution by a religious court may just possibly be illegal in the United States already.

Maybe it's just me, but I have always imagined that killing people constituted homicide, which must be against the law even in Tennessee and Missouri.

The problem with trying to ban Sharia is that it is so broad in scope. For instance, elementary schools in California and Minnesota have banned all pork products (including, e.g., Jell-o) due to direct pressure from Muslim citizens. This may seem fairly innocuous to the non-Muslim, but it's a huge victory for Muslims intent on implementing Sharia -- even one bit at a time. But how on Earth do these Senators propose to punish something like the pork ban, which may be based on Sharia or may just be based on improving student health?

Also, "Sharia law" is redundant, since Sharia is law. And a sincere question: shouldn't the title of this post be "It's not just Charlie Sheen WHO's nuts"?

My husband often comments that politics is entertainment: We live in Minnesota, land of Michele Bachman and Tim Pawlenty, where the official state motto is "L'Etoile du Nord," and some of our legislators have proposed making English the state's official language.

Andrew, in re who and that:

Sorry, I am the Anonymous in the previous comment, which got away from me.

Interesting comments here. If California has banned pork in schools, why is the only mention I can find of that on the internet this comment?

I also couldn't find any internet references to sharia executions being carried out in the UK. I didn't check for France, as my French is not good enough.

I've long wondered why people get worked up about Muslim practices, who seem unconcerned by similar Jewish ones. My father tried to tell me how horrific halal killing was, so I asked him to explain how it was different to kosher killing, which had never seemed to bother him.

Sharon Parker, don't forget Jesse Ventura!

I remember an editorial cartoon some decades back when a different Jesse (Helms) was promoting prayer in school. In the cartoon he had prevailed and smiled as the teacher called on one little boy to say a prayer. In the next frame the smile had crumbled as the boy began "Oh, Honorable Buddha ..."

To Tennessee and Missouri you can add the moron in Georgia, who recently proposed a law to apply criminal charges to women who had miscarried and who did not prove that there was no human agency involved in the miscarriage, which would lead to a miscarriage of justice, since no one seems to have informed this legislator that under the U.S. Constitution, we are presumed innocent until proven guilty, not the other way around.

Sorry, I live in California and have never heard of schools banning pork, let alone Jell-O. Got a source for that one?

Yum! Yum!........ pork Jell-O. Sounds absolutely scrumptious.

But seriously folks, I get it. The magic ingredient, gelatin, used in the manufacture of the popular Jell-O products is derived from the boiled bones, innards, connective tissue, and organs of various large domesticated animals, namely bovines (cattle), horses, and pigs. So I gather that an orthodox, observant Moslem who obeys the strict food guidelines of the Koran, technically would be restricted in eating Jell-O, if pork products went into its manufacture.

So does that mean strict Moslems are prohibited from checking out those cool Bill Cosby Jell-O instant pudding commercials? HA! Frankly, i haven't seen those ad spots for years.

Hmm..... i wonder if they market a kosher version of Jell-O? I think Jell-Oy would be a perfect brand name. (Groan!)


Presumably these guys are also prepared to stop insisting on the Ten Commandments and other Biblical codes not found in the Constitution?


I would remind you that American law is based on Judaeo-Christian tradition, not, happily, upon sharia, Hindu, Buddhist or Latitudinarian. It has served the greater majority of Americans for over two centuries: most American citizens, regardless of religious choice, would prefer not to tinker with that.

And perhaps I should remind that apprehension that Sharia is going to replace American civil law is one of the odder crackpot fantasies of the day.

Ask the Michigan Muslims about that. Meanwhile, I'd like to point out that Mr Sheen, the spawn of the neckless Martin Sheen, is a drugged, obnoxious narcissist who is getting more attention at present than Libya. Well, he's easier to cover and he does give interviews, where Khaddafi does not. Thank heavens. They are both useless, but Sheen is at least not dangerous. Neither can he act nearly as well as Mr K.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

Verification (needed to reduce spam):

About John McIntyre
John McIntyre, mild-mannered editor for a great metropolitan newspaper, has fussed over writers’ work, to sporadic expressions of gratitude, for thirty years. He is The Sun’s night content production manager and former head of its copy desk. He also teaches editing at Loyola University Maryland. A former president of the American Copy Editors Society, a native of Kentucky, a graduate of Michigan State and Syracuse, and a moderate prescriptivist, he writes about language, journalism, and arbitrarily chosen topics. If you are inspired by a spirit of contradiction, comment on the posts or write to him at
Baltimore Sun Facebook page

Most Recent Comments
Sign up for FREE local news alerts
Get free Sun alerts sent to your mobile phone.*
Get free Baltimore Sun mobile alerts
Sign up for local news text alerts

Returning user? Update preferences.
Sign up for more Sun text alerts
*Standard message and data rates apply. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.
Stay connected