After Oklahoma voters approved a referendum that bars judges from using Islamic religious or international law, a Muslim resident of Oklahoma, Muneer Awad, filed a lawsuit asking that the judge stop certification of “State Question 755.” “Mr. Awad testified in court that the amendment was impossible to enforce, since the concept of Shariah law varies from person to person,” writes James McKinley Jr. in The New York Times, and “he asserted the law might make it impossible for the courts to enforce his own last will and testament, since it requests he be buried according to Islamic principles.” Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange recently issued a permanent injunction, writing that the referendum may be unconstitutional, as “throughout the course of our country’s history, the will of the ‘majority’ has on occasion conflicted with the constitutional rights of individuals.”
Now, Judge Miles-LaGrange has become the next target of Oklahoma’s Religious Right groups and the “Save our State” campaign. Tom Vineyard, pastor of the Windsor Hills Baptist Church, became so livid that he changed his church’s sign to read: “Judge LaGrange’s ruling endorses Islamic crimes against humanity. Call for her impeachment.” Using standard right-wing attack lines, Vineyard said “the judge is legislating from the bench in prohibiting the citizens of Oklahoma from instituting the law that we voted on.”
Former state Rep. Rex Duncan, the Republican author of the referendum, also blasted Judge Miles-LaGrange, saying “she was well known to be a liberal, activist state senator, and I don’t know that her ruling is far from what one would have expected.” “CAIR and other groups,” Duncan went on to say, “have been working deliberately to get Sharia statutes, Sharia-compliant banking, and to expand those toe-holds further into a greater presence in American courts.”
The incoming Republican Governor Mary Fallin and Attorney General Scott Pruitt plan to appeal the case.