A muslim-convert judge, Judge Martin, dismissed an attack by a muslim man, Talag Elbayomy on a non-muslim, Ernest Perce. Apparently Perce wore a Zombie Muhammad costume at a Halloween parade. Elbayomy attacked Percy and tried to take Percy's sign away. Elbayomy admitted to the police what he did and he did it because he wanted to set an example for his kids that Islam must be defended. Hear an audio on youtube and you can hear Martin's lame excuses for dismissal. It happened in Pennsylvania.
That's wild. So the Muslim's whinings won out over the atheist. When unqualified judges are allowed free reign, it's kinda like expecting the ACLU to do the right thing.
If it was Europe, I would have no problem with the decision (Europe is known for no freedom of speech). In the US we have a constitution that gives us free speech the Atheist was just practising his rights.
were going to get the same crap here in Canada. the muslims are already calling for shari law for themselves and knowing how the government is and the way they will do anything to get votes, i can't see it taking too long before it is allowed.
I am fairly sure a Christian judge would have done the same thing if the zombie costume were that of Jesus.
Just another of those reasons that I hate religions. They make people biased against others.
I personally think that if you are gonna make fun of someones religion like that, you should prepare to get your butt kicked.
The fact is if it were a dude mocking Jesus the Christian person would be in jail for doing the same thing. However true Christians would be turning the other cheek.
This is not surprising. You will see more of this. One world religion; one world government. It is not Christians everyone should be worried about. Not in this century.
I've been following this case, and it may surprise you to hear me say that I think the judge was completely out of line with what he said to the accuser.
Yes, the Zombie-Mohammed guy was a jackhole, but being a jackhole doesn't give other people the right to grab you and harass you (no matter what you're being a jackhole about).
I've also seen the video of the attack, which you can see here,if you like. For what it's worth, if I ever get assaulted, I hope it's by that wimpy muslim guy. (Pro tip: if you can say the words "He's attacking me" and not sound like someone's attacking you, he's probably not actually attacking you.) You can't really tell from the video who is 'attacking.' I heard a voice saying "I gonna call the cops for you. That's ridiculous." But the only thing that might lead anyone to believe that an 'assault' is going on is the ZombieMohammed troll shouting "He's attacking me!"
The ruling was officially based on the poor quality of the video and the lack of eyewitness testimony (many people saw the event, but the prosecution did not call any of them to testify), so the ruling may have been legal.
BUT! The judge's lecture to the complainant prior to the ruling may* indicate that he was not impartial in the case, and sounds a lot like grounds for a mistrial. In fact, if the transcript is accurate (and the judge did in fact say "I'm a muslim, I find it offensive") he probably should be kicked off the bench for not recusing himself.
*The reason I say "may" is that in this vid, it sounds as though the judge actually said "I'm not a Muslim, I find it offensive." Listen yourself. It sounds to me as if the word 'not' was either 'swallowed' by the speaker (in the same way many people say "I am going to" as "Ahmunna," as in "Ahmunna get a burger, yawanna come?"). Or, it may have been selectively edited out. I haven't been able to find an official transcript. This is further supported by the fact that the judge consistently used the word "they" to refer to Muslims throughout the speech, and never used the word "we."
I think the judge is probably correct that there's reasonable doubt as to what exactly happened based on the evidence presented (this would have been cleared up if the prosecution had subpoenaed a couple of the many, many witnesses who were at the parade, so bad on the prosecutor).
But his remarks before the ruling were, IMO, out of line, and as mentioned, seem to me to leave the door open for a mistrial. Not because of some kind of imagined "creeping sharia," but because the judge seemed to devalue freedom of speech (however obnoxious the speech may be), and seemed to think that obnoxious speech ought not to be protected.
So, in short, ZombieMuhammed dude? Jackhole. Judge? Showed astonishing lack of (wait for it!) judgement. Ruling? Probably legal, but I'd move for a mistrial if I were the prosecutor. Prosecutor? Pretty lazy--seriously, he couldn't find a single witness to testify? Out of a group of people watching a parade? Defendant? Reasonable doubt, unless the prosecutor can produce a witness that can ID the defendant and swear that he saw the defendant assaulting the complainant.
To sum up: yeah, there's something screwy here, but it's not the something screwy that most people probably think it is.
Excellent post Jeff. Refreshing to see someone chase up the facts and offer a balanced opinion rather than voicing a hysterical opinion based on hearsay.
How does free speech enter into this case at all? The First Amendment states that the government cannot ban obnoxious speech, and Supreme Court cases have set a pretty high bar for government-enforced prior restraint on speech. The First Amendment does not say that the government has to get your back in a fistfight when your free speech has offended somebody.
Mr. Perce knew exactly what he was doing when he chose a costume designed to provoke a negative reaction, and should not expect the courts to settle the dispute for him. If nobody was physically harmed, the judge had every reason to throw it out and not waste the court's time with a case like this.
"How does free speech enter into this case at all?"
It shouldn't, but the judge talked about it for while before pronouncing his ruling.
" If nobody was physically harmed, the judge had every reason to throw it out... "
Well, I'd agree, but legally, "physical harm" is not the benchmark for whether someone has been assaulted or battered. Threatening someone counts as assault. Touching someone (not hurting, you understand, but touching them) without their consent counts as battery. (Lawyers and other legal experts, can you confirm or debunk?)
Jeff, I'm not an expert or anything, however, I would agree with what you've stated here. The invasion of personal space by someone touching someone else can be construed at assault or battery, depending usually on intent.
An accidental bump wouldn't be considered assault or battery of any manner because the intent wasn't purposeful.
This case had nothing to do with Religion. It's a simple assault case. The muslim guy doesn't know the laws of the land, but he did nothing wrong. He may or may not have touched the guy, but certainly didn't hurt him. The atheist made a fool out himself when he said Mohammed came back from the dead. Thats Jesus. It didn't matter anyway because there was no evidence of an assault.
First of all, how does this case have anything to do with shari'a? This is not a dispute between Muslims over religious law, it's a case between two individuals under secular law.
Secondly, what's wrong with shari'a law? If two Muslims want to settle a dispute or write a contract based on mutually-agreed-upon religious principles, why shouldn't it be legal? This is no different than corporate arbitration. Nothing in the agreement can contradict secular law, so it doesn't affect anyone else.
There is no "creeping shari'a." The anti-shari'a bills being introduced are just a blatant attempt by conservative state lawmakers to rally their teabag constituents with anti-Muslim bigotry, in hopes that they will ignore the economic chaos their austerity policies have created.
You are right this has nothing to do with shari'a law. But your statement "what's wrong with shari'a law" is a problem because everything is wrong with shari'a law. EVERYTHING.
Explain what you think is wrong with it. I'm curious.
Well let's start with a case like this one. What would have happen in this case if America had Shari'a law? We all need a separation of church and state. Look what the Christians did to Europe. Look at Iran.
If we had shari'a law in this country, both the accuser and accused would have to have agreed prior to the case to proceed according to the interpretations of an Imam. I don't think the atheist would have agreed to that. So it simply doesn't apply.
If you're taking about secular state, federal, and local laws having been made by religious parties, that's an entirely different issue. We already have that kind of Christian-based religious law - blue laws, creationism laws, abortion restrictions, stem cell restrictions, etc. That I certainly do object to.
Shari'a "law" is not that. It isn't law at all - just religious guidelines. The root of the word, sha-ra-3a means "street" or "way," an entirely different meaning than "law."
Well let me just say I am glad I'm in North America and not Iran. Stoning one to death for adultery is a little harsh. There is currently a Canadian on Death row in Iran because software he created was used in a pornographic site.
True. Iranian laws are pretty harsh. They also have nothing to do with shari'a as it would be applied in the West. Though I'm sure some Christians would love to pass such a law, it is currently illegal to stone anyone to death for adultery in any jurisdiction in the United States and Canada. Allowing Muslims to adjudicated based on shari'a would not suddenly make the practice legal for them - they would still have to obey all secular laws. If you aren't Muslim, shari'a guidelines do not apply to you, so you have nothing to worry about.
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