Islam and the US Constitution

Three foundations of Islam are the Qur’an, the Hadith (sayings of and teachings about Mohammad), and Sharia Law (of which there are several traditions). Institutionalizing/implementing all aspects of these Islamic foundations in the US would be in conflict in many ways with the Constitution. However, the authors of this article say that many (most?) American Muslims have no desire to institutionalize/implement all aspects of Islam in the US or anywhere else.

Judao-Christian law and teachings, if institutionalized/implemented in the US, would also be in conflict in many ways with the Constitution. Long ago, most Jews and Christians “made peace” with the Constitution by giving up any notions they may have had about institutionalizing/implementing their full belief-and-practice systems in the US. It seems that many/most American Muslims are following suit.

There are already two Islamic Members of the House of Representatives, and I know of nothing they have done to violate their oaths of office in which they affirmed their support for the US Constitution. Maybe one of them will run for president some day. If that happens (and if I am still around), I will examine his positions and, if he seems to be a Burkean conservative with libertarian inclinations, then I will vote for him. :)

One thing: I have reservations about the authors of the article. I do not find Aslan completely reliable in the works he has so far published, and Zafar is a representative of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, and unorthodox sect of Islam. However, this article seems to me to be generally accurate.

Re: the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. The sect arose in India in 1889. That movement split into two sub-sects in (I think) 1914. Over the years since then, Ahmadiyya communities have arisen in many other parts of the world. Ahmadiyya Muslims hold that Jesus survived the crucifixion and traveled to India to minister to the Lost Tribes of Israel. They also claim that Jesus died in India and that his tomb – AND his body – have been recently found in India. They say that these beliefs are supported by the Qur’an, by the Hadith, and by the Bible. Sunni and Shia Muslims see the Ahmadiyyas as heretics or even as non-Muslims.

Of course, virtually all of the other religions of the world would also be found incompatible with the Constitution were they proposed to be legally-officially institutionalized/implemented (established) in the US. But the First Amendment won’t allow that, nor would various other parts of the Constitution. Almost all religions are free to run around and act up in the US, but no one or more can be legally established. That is, not by Congress….

Various states had established religions in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, but they all gradually gave them up. However, it was not until some time in the late 1940s that a Supreme Court decision held that the 1st Amendment Establishment Clause applies to the states. But the issue is still not completely settled and will continue to be argued about. Stay tuned…. :)

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