When pollsters ask Americans what the most important issues facing the country are, “creeping Sharia law” barely competes with the margin of error (and only does so by generously grouping it with “other”). But this hasn’t prevented Republicans from tripping over themselves to make combating Sharia law a central focus of their legislative agenda.
In November, Oklahoma became the first state to ban the cipher threat of Sharia law. (Native American law may have been inadvertently affected as well.) Next month, Republicans will again target Muslims when Rep. Peter King (R-NY), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, holds hearings on the threat posed by radical Islam. King, who has said that Muslims aren’t “American” when it comes to war, is already compiling a radical right witness list for the hearings, including Dutch critic Islam Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who believes that “Islam is a cult,” that “there is no moderate Islam,” and that “we are at war with Islam.”
This week, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) joined the growing chorus of Republicans clamoring for hearings to look into the threat of “creeping Sharia law.” Appearing on Frank Gaffney’s radio show (Gaffney is of course the chief architect of the “creeping Sharia” threat), Gohmert told the host he hoped they would “have some hearings” and that he would “be pushing for them”:
GOHMERT: The biggest shock out of all of this is that the women’s liberation groups have not just gone berserk over this creep into our society that diminishes women as it does.
GAFFNEY: This creep of Sharia law you’re talking about, Congressman Louie Gohmert. You’re absolutely right, they’re nowhere to be seen as this is such an affront to everything that they supposedly hold dear. It’s really extraordinary and it’s why we’re so delighted that you are in place in the United States Congress and that you will be holding forth I know as the Judiciary Committee begins its deliberations this session to look at the creep of Sharia law.
GOHMERT: I’m hoping we’re going to have some hearings because I’m going to be pushing for them. To discuss this issue because it does diminish the Constitution when you bring any law in that doesn’t allow women to be full equal citizens of the United States.
This is not idle banter. As chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, Gohmert has the power to hold such hearings. Rep. Allen West (R-FL), who serves on the House Armed Services Committee, has also said that the 112th Congress should prioritize the threat of “infiltration of the Sharia practice” in the United States. Between King, Gohmert, and West, three separate House committees could decide to spend valuable congressional time combating a phantom threat. Unfortunately, this Muslim scapegoating will do nothing to make America a more free, secure, or just society.