by David J. Rusin
Consider the phenomenon of exempting Muslims from the standard practice of rising before judges. In January, seven radicals on trial for shouting insults at British soldiers during a 2009 homecoming parade refused to stand when the judge entered — because, in the words of one of their lawyers, "it is a grave and cardinal sin to show respect in this way to anyone other than God himself." The response from Judge Carolyn Mellanby? Appeasement and more appeasement:
Eventually, a compromise was reached where they would enter the court after her during the trial, which is expected to last six days. The maximum penalty each of the men can receive is a £1,000 fine.
The defendants were given an extra 20 minutes on top of their lunch break to go to pray at a mosque a few minutes' walk away.
A separate "quiet" room has been set aside for their regular prayer intervals for the rest of the week.
Mellanby "said she did not wish to 'set a precedent' by charging them with contempt of court." Instead, it was the defendants themselves who apparently "set a precedent" here. Also of note: Five were convicted in the harassment case but went unpunished. Ordered to reimburse court costs only, the men gleefully declared that, as they are on welfare, taxpayers will foot the bill.
Other events demonstrate the growing deference to Islam in Europe's courtrooms: A woman made history last summer by becoming the first in
How drenching one's feet with toilet water advances cleanliness is unclear. Equally difficult to grasp is how
David J. Rusin
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