Loyalty oaths in America have their roots in the Civil War era, but in the 50s, they were an ugly product of the "Red Scare." Some people, including university professors, were asked to sign them as testimony to their not being a communist, or a communist sympathizer.
Now comes a proposal for a different type of loyalty oath, which may help answer the question: how do we tell the difference between a peaceful Muslim and a non-peaceful Muslim who wants to kill us? Granting that the majority of Muslims are not terrorists, is there a method by which we can do a better job of exposing those who are?
This week, the "Proposed Charter of Muslim Understanding" is being presented to the European Parliament. According to Gerard Batten, a member of the European Parliament from London, who contributed the foreword, and the charter's author, Sam Solomon, a Sharia law expert, the charter will "enable Muslims from all strands of belief to make it plain that they reject those extremist interpretations of their religious texts that promote or excuse violence and bring Islam into conflict with the modern world."
The Charter calls upon Muslims to:
- Respect non-Muslim religions and issue a fatwa (an Islamic religious decree) prohibiting the use of force, violence or threats to their followers.
- Respect all civilizations, cultures and traditions and promote understanding of the precedence of national laws over Sharia law.
- Respect Western freedoms, especially of belief and expression and prohibit violent reaction against people who make use of these freedoms.
- Prohibit the issuing of any fatwa that would result in violence or threat against individuals or institutions.
- Request Islamic institutions to revise and issue new interpretations of Qur'anic verses calling for Jihad and violence against non-Muslims.
Solomon says, "We call on organizations representing the Islamic faith Š to endorse and sign this Charter as an example to all European Muslims." By doing so, they will make it clear that "Islam is a religion of peace Š and that acts of terrorism committed in its name are the acts of misguided individuals who have misunderstood and misinterpreted its teaching."
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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