Thursday, February 07, 2008

Archbishop: Who Will Rid Us of This ID-iotic Blogger?

Don't think Iain Dale is wilfully misunderstanding or misrepresenting the Archbishop of Canterbury as are some of his readers, and other commentators. But Iain is completely and utterly wrong.

The status of "Sharia Law" in this context is about the same as going to a Parish Priest or a Rabbi or a secular mediating body like Relate to sort out your relationship.

Binding if both parties agree before, during and afterward.

Meaningless and utterly trumped by the law of the land if they do not.

Less binding than Judge Judy. Such interpretation and guidance is already in widespread practice . . .

In mosques, in churches, in synagogues and in counselling and mediation offices.


Quiet_Man said...

And when Sharia law impinges on criminal law? What then? That after all is what the Arch Bishop is proposing.

In this case it's you that has it wrong, so long as Sharia courts remain in civil law fine, no problem after all the Bet Din does just that. However should a Sharia court be given control over criminal aspects of Islamic behaviour (by their standards) which is what Dr Williams loose phrasing suggests then you have a recipe for disaster.

Anonymous said...

there would be rioting in the streets if Islamists got their way on this.
The Arch idiot is a disgrace.
All on the left should stand up to these religious zealots.

Ted Foan said...

I think you're right in yur interpretation of how Sharia Law could be used - ie purely in civil matters where a dispute between parties can be settled in any number of ways. However, it cannot apply in the case of divorce which has to be sanctioned by UK law.

And it cannot be any part of the criminal law of this country.

Stan Bull said...

The Archbishop is an utter fool.
Anyone who knows a bit about radical Islam knows that their goal is to have a Global Caliphate and thus succeed in having Sharia Law become the law of the world. Christianity, etc. does not come with a political ideology attached as does Islam.
The Muslim Council of Britain, the supposed "moderate" wing of mainstream Islam, still claim that death is too good for Salman Rushdie and they regularly rail against gays.
Oh, and for the record, 40pc of British Muslims want Sharia to be instituted in Britain...

Chris Paul said...

All the Arch-bish is suggesting I think is a parallel use with informed consent of both parties in civil disputes involving Muslims. Only Muslims.

Absolutely no suggestion of use in criminal matters whatsoever.

As Shami Chakrabarti (a barrister by trade) said on QT the word "law" is the problem here. Cricket has laws, Newton has laws, churches have laws, states have laws. The latter trump all the others.

Possible extention to allow a British Civil Court having determined carefully that all parties to a divorce, property dispute, custody battle were truly content with a sharia, beth din, priestly or other form of mediated settlement to rubber stamp it instead of having a week in court at great expense is actually pretty sensible.

The Caliphate scaremongery is foolish.

Anonymous said...

The essence of what you say accords with what I think the Archbiship was emphasising - but I disagree with you as to the binding nature of any arbitral or mediated agreement.

Chris Paul said...

Well, OK. As this is potentially work taken away fro m the legal profession, in which we have a household interest here too, you would say that!

But suppose a couple come to British Law with an agreement to divorce that can be squared with available grounds in our Law, an equitable division of assets ditto, and maintenance and access arrangements too why should not the court say "aye" following a short hearing to check it is, ahem kosher, or let's say halal, or even in absentia?

There was an example given on R5Live Drive yesterday afternoon which appeared to calm all Peter's fears ... of a woman getting a just settlement to a maintenance dispute via her imam ... possibly better than she might have hoped for elsewhere.

What's to be against in that?

Anonymous said...

What I was getting at in relaition to the binding nature of the agreement was that if the parties agreed for the dispute to be arbitrated by an Imam, then subject to Arbitration law (1996 Act, for example), that agreement would be binding on them without more.

Divorce aint my area - but I can see circumstances where the parties reach an agreement with the Imam that would not comply with English law on ancillary relief - and the court could not consent to the agreement reached and would not enforce the agreement.

Stan Bull said...

I genuinely fear that giving sharia any kind of offical sanction - even as a voluntary code - will increase the pressure on people living in what are effectively Muslim ghettoes to accede to something they may not really want. Peer and societal pressure can be hard to resist.

Anonymous said...

Chris, you are a bit obsessed with Iain Dale - nearly 500 blogposts mentioning him. Chill. ;)

janestheone said...

Chris you are right - although don't underestimate the force of longing for a caliphate, in which case we are all doomed - but my point is that the Archbish said (I watched him live) "one law for everyone - that's a bit of a danger". So no. In the Church of England an archbishop is a political figure, and in a sense a government employee. He should go.

Phil said...

"40% of Muslims want Sharia instituted".

And, need I point out 60% do not?

It's all very well ranting about sharia law, I've read dozens and dozens of posts going on about it. but what about the continued influence of the church? I'm not talking about falling congregations, I'm interested in the potential power it has within the structures of the state. Politics might not do religion, to paraphrase Alastair Campbell, but not one told the British constitution. I'd take the whingeing of self-described secularists over sharia law more seriously if they were saying more about the beam in our eye.

Phil said...

PS On Chris's obsession with Iain Dale, I don't see anything wrong with it. Dale has a mass audience far above what most of our little blogs can hope for. It's right and proper there's someone to reply to his outpourings, so keep it up Chris.