Letter: Defining Shari’a

Katie Marts of GW’s Amnesty International is wrong in her wording (“Responsible activism,” Oct. 10, p. 4) – it is not Shari’a law that is condemning Amina Lawal to her death, but the patriarchy that is deeply embedded in her society.

I wonder if Marts or other well-meaning activists like her even know the meaning of the word “Shari’a.” Amongst Muslims, the word “Shari’a” directly implies “the law which God has enacted.” Anyone versed with Islamic history knows that a regime which stones a nine-year-old girl because she was raped, or a mother of an infant child such as Amina Lawal is not at all in accordance with Shari’a law. Islam came as a religion of order and mercy. It actually stopped blood shed in war-torn Arabia. If people have misconstrued its message and used it for their own purposes, Shari’a is not at all to blame. After all, were not the witch-hunts of Salem, Mass. done in the name of religion and God?

-Tasneem Abuali
sophomore

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