North Carolina GOP will ban Sharia law by enacting it

At the 11th hour, a group of Republican state senators from North Carolina tacked an ambitious set of anti-abortion restrictions onto a bill designed to ban Sharia Law in the state.

Planned Parenthood and other pro-choice advocates said they had no idea that the surprise anti-abortion measure was coming.  But of course, the religious right groups were informed that the Sharia bill would really be an anti-abortion bill.

The local media is calling the anti-abortion proposal “sweeping.”

Guess who else believes in sweeping anti-abortion measures?

Sharia law:

“I believe that the value of life is the same whether this embryo is the result of fornication with relatives or non-relatives or valid marriage. In Sharia, life has the same value in all cases.” — Sheikh M. A. Al-Salami, Third Symposium on Medical Jurisprudence


Islam via Shutterstock

The North Carolina legislature recently passed a measure requiring 7th and 8th grade teachers to incorporate into their lessons unsubstantiated pseudo-science claiming that abortion increases the risk of miscarriage later in life.  And now, the new North Carolina restrictions would make it nearly impossible to perform abortions in the state.

WRAL has a rundown of the provisions (emphasis added):

CONSCIENCE PROTECTION: The bill would allow any health care provider, not just doctors and nurses, to opt out of providing abortion-related services.

ABORTION FUNDING LIMITS: The bill would prohibit health plans offered on the federal health care exchanges from offering abortion coverage. It would also prohibit state funds from being used for abortions, except to save the life of the mother in case of rape or incest. It would also prohibits city and county health plans from offering abortion coverage more extensive than the coverage offered to state employees. The state health plan does not cover abortions except in cases of rape or incest or to save the life of the mother.

SEX SELECTIVE ABORTIONS: The measure prohibits doctors from performing an abortion if they know the woman seeking it is doing so because of the gender of the baby.

“This is something we see happening across the country,” Schaffer said.

But [Melissa] Reed said that was not the case. Doctors cannot determine the sex of a baby until five months of pregnancy without expensive tests she said. While sex-selection abortions are practiced in other parts of the world, they are not common in the U.S., Reed said. The effect the bill, she insisted, would be to create an adversarial relationship between doctors, would could be sued under the measure, and patients. Reed said it could also prompt some doctors to engage in racial profiling against women who are from parts of the world where sex selection abortions are practiced.

DOCTORS: Doctors will be required to remain in the room for the entire abortion procedure, whether surgical or medical / chemical.

“The information that I’ve seen is that they (medical abortions) are even more dangerous than surgical procedures,” said Sen. Warren Daniel, R-Burke, a primary sponsor of the Senate version of the bill.

Roughly half the abortions performed in the state are medical abortions.

“That’s not true, they’re extremely safe,” Reed said.

The practical effect of this rule will be to limit the number of abortions any one doctor could provide.

A medical abortion is performed by a woman taking one pill, waiting two days, an then taking a second pill that contracts the uterus. It’s unclear for how much of that process the physician would have to be present.

TRANSFER AGREEMENTS: The measure would require abortion clinics to have “transfer agreements” with local hospitals. Reed said the practical effect of that measure would be to limit how many clinics could operate, since some hospitals would refuse to engage in such agreements. The measure is meant to be similar, but not exactly the same, as provisions in other states that require doctors at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. Hospitals, Reed said, would have little incentive to sign such agreements. 

LICENSING: The measure would require abortions clinics to go through a licensing process similar outpatient surgical clinics.

Daniel insisted this provision merely “ensured we don’t have two different state standards” for outpatient clinics.

“These are really safety procedures,” Daniel said.

However, Reed said other procedures with higher risk than abortion, such as oral surgery or colonoscopies, don’t fall under such provisions.

“They’re really putting a barrier in the way to access,” Reed said. It will make clinics more expensive to operate. Currently, according to legislative staff, there is only one abortion clinic in the state that meets the outpatient surgical standards. Reed said she didn’t know where that clinic was. She said Planned Parenthood’s four North Carolina clinics did not meet the standard.”

When asked about the timing of the amendment and rushed preliminary vote (with only 41 out of 60 senators even present for the vote itself), Senate Judiciary Chairman Buck Newton (R-Wilson) offered this shoulder-shrug explanation:

It just took a while for there to be a consensus of support for it within our caucus… Sometimes these things come together at the last minute.

You heard him, folks.

The same North Carolina GOP that has advocated poll-taxing student voters, establishing a state religion, drug testing welfare recipients, banning the electric car and expanding fracking in this term alone – the same North Carolina GOP that rejected the Medicaid expansion, gerrymandered the Wake County schoolboard back to segregation, and led the charge for their state to become the first ever to eliminate unemployment benefits – somehow just got their sh*t together when it came to effectively eliminating abortion access in the Tar Hell state.

Muslim man via Shutterstock

Muslim man via Shutterstock

Setting aside for a moment that there are probably more Linux users in North Carolina than people who are actively seeking to implement Sharia Law, tacking fundamentalist religious extremism onto a bill purporting to ban religious fundamentalism does come with a twinge of sad irony.

In a legislative session defined by crazy, superfluous and downright mean-spirited policy, North Carolina Republicans are now fast-tracking a bill that would demonize a religious group with an ethnic-sounding legal framework on the one hand, while wholeheartedly adopting its teachings on the other.

So the problem Republicans have with Sharia law isn’t the law itself, it’s the funny hats.

Someone call Wendy Davis.

Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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60 Responses to “North Carolina GOP will ban Sharia law by enacting it”

  1. Mysticz Worleyz says:

    I drink moonshine and use linux. Although not at the same time. I don’t want to crash my computer.

  2. Jakrabt says:

    Perhaps CA is a bit too far removed to understand that there are a great number of Progressives living in MS and we are all the same breed. Look at WI- at least our governor is not as big a Kochsucker as their governor. Stop acting like a Republican.

  3. Jakrabt says:

    Now you can understand how us Progressive people living in MS feel. NC is also a Southern State. We are both at the mercy of our unscrupulous leaders elected by a misguided populace. Cheers.

  4. Jakrabt says:

    It just *might* apply to the people who voted for them in the first place.

  5. Jakrabt says:

    And don’t forget the gay marriages causing horrible undocumented damage to “traditional” marriages. Amendment One, NC GOP? What could you have been thinking?

  6. Jakrabt says:

    Maybe because of it’s close proximity to Falwell’s “God, Inc.” a.k.a. Liberty University which has nothing to do with Liberty and barely resembles a university at all.

  7. Donald A. Syvanen says:

    Sharia Law is very real. Muslims live it in Saudi Arabia, where women are seen as not intelligent to drive automobiles! Look it up on Google, read some of it; it’s scary.

  8. Jon Green says:

    an accident, indeed. thanks for the clarification!

  9. “The same North Carolina GOP that has advocated poll-taxing student voters, establishing a state religion, drug testing welfare recipients, banning the electric car…”

    Hold on there Americablog. In your zeal to call out North Carolina Republicans, you accidentally (at least I hope it was an accident) misrepresented the Republicans saying that there trying to ban the electric car. It would not effectively ban electric cars but rather just the ones made by Tesla motors. There are several other electric cars (i.e. Ford Focus Electric & Nissan LEAF) that would remain unaffected by the “Tesla motors law” if it had been passed.

  10. SkippyFlipjack says:

    There are “more Linux users in North Carolina than people who are actively seeking to implement Sharia Law”? That almost goes without saying — of course there are lots of Linux users in NC. Do you think they’re all front-porch-hangin’ moonshiners?

  11. ComradeRutherford says:

    Far-right extremists don’t want competition for their religious dictatorship.

  12. Sweetie says:

    The conversion business is still seen by some as lucrative.

  13. JustAnOldLady says:

    I don’t recognize NC after the damage done in the past 6 months. A governor who will not stand up to the ‘tea party’ legislature hell-bent on turning this progressive southern state into MS at warp speed……

  14. karmanot says:

    Just tell them that a huge number of gay fetuses can hardly wait to be born.

  15. JustAnOldLady says:

    No way…….their twisted thinking here is: revere the fetus, revile the child….

  16. peterpun says:

    Now that abortion is illegal in North Carolina, the state is going to have to pay for a lot of unwanted babies. Can you really see this happening? There will be a flood of unwanted babies up for grabs. Get in line, folks..

  17. peterpun says:

    There certainly was a river of dead and damaged women before Roe v Wade.

  18. peterpun says:

    Just what people, exactly, is all this nonsense supposed to save? A fetus really isn’t a “People” quite yet. By enacting Christian fundamentalism into the Law of the North Carolina landscape, say good bye to all your tourist dollars, watch as your industry moves away to find qualified workers elsewhere, as you have now created a hostile environment, and alienated most of them.

  19. Naja pallida says:

    Passing laws against things that don’t exist seems to be an ongoing theme for the Republican party these days… Sharia law, voter ID, union busting, and of course this.

  20. rodnchance says:

    Would it be wrong to hope and pray that the first females affected negatively by this asinine group of men are in their own families, to bad, that’s what I hope happens.

  21. KingCranky says:

    Don’t know how this misogynistic legislation was written legally, but tying it with a bill sure to be smacked down by the courts for violating Muslims freedom of religion may yield a double whammy for its backers.

    If the legislation is shut down on one count, perhaps it does the same for the other as well.

  22. pappyvet says:

    Taliban mentality ,its not just for Muslims anymore

  23. pappyvet says:

    Not yet,but they are working on it

  24. BeccaM says:

    Yeah, too true.

  25. Monoceros Forth says:

    It makes sense in a way: a punitive measure intended to combat a nonexistent threat stuffed at the last minute into a punitive bill intended to combat a nonexistent threat.

  26. karmanot says:

    In the South and places mid west, life begins at impure thoughts words and deeds.

  27. Monoceros Forth says:

    Ask and ye shall receive!

    I’ve seen this. To be fair, I am not for a moment suggesting that anything in this documentary is equivalent to true religious craziness. Stunning lack of originality and talent, maybe, and a level of devotion hard to imagine considering the titanic mediocrity of the starting material, but not craziness. (Some home schooling, though.)

  28. BeccaM says:

    Yeah… What a load of horseshit they’re peddling.

    There is no epidemic of women dying from botched abortions. But if that pack of misogynists have their way, there soon will be.

  29. Naja pallida says:

    Some equate contraception in general with abortion. Life begins at erection!

  30. Suzannempsyd says:

    It does not include paying for abortion. Although some continue to equate Plan B contraception with abortion

  31. Naja pallida says:

    Linking to a site that is owned by a group whose explicit mission is to “shut down abortion clinics and put abortionists out of business”, and then try to claim it’s about protecting women… apparently pretty stupid. But I would expect nothing better from them.

  32. nicho says:

    Which is where it belongs.

  33. nicho says:

    Apparently, they think we’re stupider than they are — not realizing that that is impossible.

  34. BeccaM says:

    How stupid do you think we are here?

  35. karmanot says:

    “WILL result in unnecessary, preventable deaths.” Exactly so….

  36. karmanot says:

    ppppffftt. If it weren’t for you O’swampy_B I couldn’t practice my raspberries more often. Thank you for the inspiration.

  37. karmanot says:

    “Would you want to have one by a person who didn’t know what they were doing?” Oh yes, the conservative old coat hanger solution.

  38. NC just trying to save ppl says:

    This law is just trying to save ppl. What is so bad that a doctor be in the room during a SURGICAL procedure…or be licensed to do it?? Would you want to have one by a person who didn’t know what they were doing? Check out this site that shows a woman that wished her doctor took care of her ….Then a whole list of women who wished their doctors took care of them the correct way!

  39. cole3244 says:

    look in the mirror cons, the enemy is you.

  40. ala345678 says:

    This is anything but ‘pro-life.’

    True story.

  41. emjayay says:

    I thought that insurance offered in an ACA exchange HAD to include paying for abortion services. Isn’t that what the whole Catholic objection is about? And doesn’t the insurance that all those lawmakers have probably include it?

  42. fearlesskris says:

    Sadly, we’ll have to count the number of lives this sort of law ruins in the time it takes to either get it reversed or vote new leaders in. I’m nearly ready to say we leave our homes and jobs and create an overwhelming wave of women going from backward state to backward state and just washing over these idiots. We won’t even look back to see what’s left in our wake.

  43. BeccaM says:

    Thanks so much, Mr. Concern Troll

  44. Sweetie says:

    One of the worst aspects of all of this is the way Sharia gets whitewashed because its critics go in for ridiculous arguments and positions.

    I’ve taken Greenwald to task a number of times about this. I said it’s easy to attack the low-hanging fruit, the absurdly xenophobic/racist statements and positions some have dubbed “New Atheism”. It’s easy to attack various people who misrepresent atheism, to obscure the critical point that atheism, unlike Islam, isn’t (intensely) heterosexist. As a gay man, I would think Greenwald would make a better effort to justly hold Islam accountable for that. But, in an article pitting “New Atheism” (according to some easy-to-discredit arguments presented by specific people) versus Islam, he engaged in a brief false equivalency exercise to try to sidestep the issue. He said Christianity has been abused, or whatever. Big deal. That’s not the same. There are Christian nations that allow gay people to, for instance, hold hands in public, adopt children, and marry each other. There may not be many of them, but find me even one significant Islamic city where that is the case. There aren’t any. Moreover, as bad as Israeli pinkwashing can be, there is a thing called Reform Judaism. I have yet to see any significant cultural manifestation of a reform Islam that repudiates heterosexism. Extremely peripheral groups in places like the USA or Europe don’t count.

    Gays for Putin, Jewish Nazis, Uncle Toms, LGBT for Sharia… all of these things are highly problematic.

    For the record, I agree with Greenwald most of the time. However, sometimes he has significant blind spots. One example is the way he bought into the concept of “war” to support a judge’s false dichotomy between pathetic terrorist and noble soldier freedom fighter. Another is his refusal to truly deal with the “fire in a crowded theater” issue in terms of his free speech absolutism. Even just one exception violates the notion of there being actual free speech. All speech becomes condoned.

    Just because there are stupid racist/xenophobic right-wingers who use Muslims like bogeymen does not mean there aren’t extremely serious problems with Islam.

  45. Swami_Binkinanda says:

    Three crazy religions out of a couple of very similar books and one small neighborhood of the world. When can we have crazy Harry Potter religion plz?

  46. Ninong says:

    Coastal Carolina is subject to hurricanes that could get more frequent and more intense over the next few decades. The exact same thing is true of coastal Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. Insurance rates — assuming you can even get insurance — for houses that are in what were once considered prime waterfront locations have surged (no pun intended).

    Oh, I almost forgot to include coastal New Jersey and coastal New York City, which is very vulnerable to flooding. Especially when you factor in the fact that on top of global climate change contributing to rising sea levels it’s also a fact that the east coast of North America, from the Carolinas to Massachusetts is gradually sinking!

    A typical, relatively inexpensive home in a coastal zone, that may have cost $1,000/yr to insure 15 years ago now costs anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000/yr depending on elevation. I’m talking about a home worth only $250,000 — not some mansion worth more than $1 million.

    What the coastal real estate developers are fighting is the fact that if sea level is predicted to rise that much, it will affect their zone classification, meaning their insurance rates will sky-rocket. That’s assuming they are even allowed to build in the first place. In other words, it could make their land next to worthless.

  47. Swami_Binkinanda says:

    As if there weren’t a bounty of young, attractive female Republicans who are right there with them? tsk tsk agism racism sexism.

  48. BeccaM says:

    While the liberty and freedom of choice, as well as not enslaving women to their own bodies are important issues for me — very important, really — the thing that bothers me the most right now about all these new anti-abortion laws and regulating clinics out of existence is that it will (not ‘might’ but WILL) result in unnecessary, preventable deaths.

    Deaths from women trying and failing to perform abortions on themselves. Deaths from ‘back-alley’ butchers. Deaths from preventable natal problems. Deaths from failed pregnancies. Deaths from pregnancies dangerous to a woman’s or girl’s health.

    And yes — deaths of babies that were wanted and planned, but which didn’t survive because the pregnant mother was denied adequate medical care.

    This is anything but ‘pro-life.’

  49. Dave of the Jungle says:

    Well, I suppose that “Sharia” here is a metaphor for religiously motivated political stupidity of any stripe.

  50. karmanot says:

    Or a law requiring all Republican condos in the rise/flood plane be redefined as houseboats and subject to a mooring tax.

  51. Indigo says:

    The problem in the United States has nothing to do with Sharia. The problem in the United States has to do with the Bible Belt and the oppressive, judgmental social tactics associated with it.

  52. karmanot says:

    This may be one of the issues that will get the American sheeple off their asses for a change. ‘Don’t treat women like farm animals.’ There has got to be a huge national uprising over these restrictive laws or this nation is truly and completely over.

  53. karmanot says:

    ‘Ignert’ just about says it all.

  54. karmanot says:

    Sorry for you sane ones in NC….unbelievably regressive, but take heart, nothing is as low as MS or AL except Texas. There is still hope.

  55. BeccaM says:

    “when old, ignorant, male Republican legislators”

    There, fixed it for ya.

  56. NC guy says:

    So sad… nearly overnight we went from being possibly the most progressive state in the south to being on par with MS or AL. I am hoping there will be a severe backlash when fellow tarheels realize that fixing the economy might not even be on the GOP agenda, which is presumably why they gained control pf the whole government.

  57. Monoceros Forth says:

    I just love it when Republican legislators write laws based on their understanding of science and medicine, don’t you?

  58. BeccaM says:

    Welcome to the ongoing GOP ‘War on Women.’

  59. Ninong says:

    If North Carolina passes a law banning abortions, there will be no more abortions! Simple, right?

    This is the same Republican-controlled legislature that passed a law last year banning sea level rise along the North Carolina coast for the next several years. What? Well, what happened was that a lot of those college-educated know-it-alls were predicting that the ocean would rise along the North Carolina coast at a much faster rate this century compared to last century because of global climate change (warming of the oceans) and because the east coast of the continent is experiencing subsidence (sinking).

    So why was it necessary to pass such a stupid law banning sea level rise? Ask all those coastal real estate developers who funded the passage of this new law with their political contributions. If the sea level is predicted to rise that much it would make their land worthless and not eligible for development.

    Those college boys were predicting a sea level rise of between 1.0-1.6 meters by the year 2100. Well, instead of letting them base their predictions on actual science, let’s pass a law that requires them to simply base it on the average rise over the previous x-number of years? That way the ocean will rise less than a foot over the next century instead of 3-5 feet.

  60. Dave of the Jungle says:

    This pretty much sums up the right wing in a nutshell.

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