November 21st, 2010 10:07 EST
Anti-Islam Amendment Hearing Set For Monday
On Monday, November 22, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations` Oklahoma chapter (CAIR-OK) will hold a news conference in Oklahoma City following a hearing to determine whether a preliminary injunction will be granted to block certification of an anti-Islam state ballot measure (State Question 755).
That measure, which passed in the November 2 election, would amend Oklahoma`s constitution to forbid judges from considering Islamic principles (Shariah) or international law when making a ruling.
WHAT: New Conference to Follow Hearing on Anti-Islam Amendment
WHEN: Monday, November 22 -- Hearing begins at 10 a.m. local time. The news conference will be held in front of the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma courthouse immediately following the hearing.
WHERE: 200 NW 4th Street, Oklahoma City, OK
CONTACT: CAIR-OK Executive Director Muneer Awad, 405-248-5853, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
On November 4, CAIR-OK Executive Director Muneer Awad filed a lawsuit as an individual challenging the constitutionality of the ballot measure.
SEE: Oklahoma Surprise: Islam as an Election Issue (NYT)
Awad`s lawsuit, based on his own Shariah-compliant will, said SQ 755 violates the First Amendment`s Establishment Clause that bars government bodies from making laws "respecting the establishment of religion."
SEE: Full Text of Awad`s Lawsuit
On November 8, U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange of the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma granted a temporary restraining order blocking certification of the amendment by the Oklahoma State Board of Elections. Judge Miles-LaGrange also scheduled a hearing on November 22 for arguments as to whether she should grant a preliminary injunction that would extend the restraining order until a final determination is made in the case.
Hate messages have been received by Muslim institutions in Oklahoma following the passage of State Question 755.
Video: CAIR Rep Discusses Okla. Shariah Ban with Rachel Maddow
CAIR says the ballot measure would infringe on the constitutional rights of ordinary Oklahomans -- including the right to wear religious head scarves in driver`s license photographs, choose Islamic marriage contracts, implement Islamic wills, or to be buried according to one`s religious beliefs.
CAIR Q&A on Oklahoma Anti-Islam Ballot Measure
CAIR Video: SQ 755 Sponsor Explains Purpose of Amendment on MSNBC
CAIR is America`s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.