"If any of you has a dispute with another, do you dare to take it before the ungodly for judgment?" That sounds like the kind of logic that creates Sharia Courts that this Newsmax piece is afraid of.
An Islamic Tribunal of four attorneys is operating in Dallas where it issues voluntary rulings on civil disputes, Breitbart Texas reported Tuesday.
Taher El-badawi, one of the lawyers who call themselves "judges," told the conservative website that the tribunal applies Shariah law to litigants who voluntarily accept their rulings on disputes involving family and business issues.
Actually, my opening quote wasn't from the Koran, but from 1 Corinthians 6:1. Christians, generally of a more evangelical bent, will sent up comparable arbitration settings to avoid taking things to court. Newsmax would likely not be worried about those.
However, if we want to ban the kind of Islamic arbitration above, we're going to wind up banning any Christian or Jewish or secular arbitration service as well if the First Amendment is honored. Free exercise of religion should cover both our Dallas Islamic tribunal as well as any Christian analogs in the Metroplex as well.
In this context, "sharia law" is the Muslim analog of "biblical principles". Catholic "canon law" might be a good analog as well. Sharia evokes the vision of ISIS or the Taliban running a whole region by their harsh take on Islam, especially in conservative American discourse, but it also has a more mundane application in this case.