I liked Chuck Norris. I really did. I can still remember the scene from Invasion USA where Chuck heroically saves a school bus of innocent children from a dastardly terrorist bomb plot. Oh, how we look up to our childhood heroes! How we admire their selfless bravery! But alas, the truth is stranger than fiction.
I once thought Mr. Norris was pretty level headed when I heard him challenge Steve Emerson on Fox News, saying:
Don’t you believe that only 2% of the Muslim world are extremists? That 98% of the Muslims want, believe that the Koran teaches a tolerance for other religions?
That’s my hero! So understandably I was quite surprised and disappointed when I saw Mr. Norris’recent article published on the notorious conspiracy mongering website, World Net Daily, a.k.a. the “biggest, dumbest wingnut site on the Web.” For those of you unaware of the site’s “journalistic standards,” WND editor and CEO Joseph Farah admits the site knowingly peddles misinformation if it supports their political goals. And this is the absurd context in which Chuck Norris has chosen to warn Americans about the alleged pernicious influence of American Muslims.
Chuck begins by paying homage to the uncontestable dogma of the anti-Muslim conspiracy movement:
There’s no mystery that radical Islamists intend to use the freedoms in our Constitution to expand the influence of Shariah law.
And what is Chuck’s smoking-gun-proof for sounding the alarm? None other than the completely paranoid and discredited book, Muslim Mafia, authored with the help of David Gaubutz, an anti-Muslim crazy who claimed in all seriousness that he found Saddam’s WMD, that President Obama is a “crack head,” and who belongs to an organization claiming White Christians deserve special distinction for creating America. Gaubatz is the former employee of the rabidly racist hate group, Society of Americans for National Existence (SANE), who promoted blatant anti-Muslim bigotry on their website:
Whereas, adherence to Islam as a Muslim is prima facie evidence of an act in support of the overthrow of the US. [sic] Government through the abrogation, destruction, or violation of the US Constitution and the imposition of Shari’a on the American People…It shall be a felony punishable by 20 years in prison to knowingly act in furtherance of, or to support the, adherence to Islam.
So this is the inSANE man whose work Chuck recommends for reliable information on Sharia law. Not exactly befitting a Texas Ranger, I must say. But then Chuck has the brassiness to claim he welcomes Muslims:
First, let me categorically state that I’m not an Islamaphobe. I welcome the plurality of religions in America and am a firm believer in the First Amendment.
Chuck, you say you are not an Islamophobe, so why are you citing one? Why do you get your information from a racist Islamophobe? Why are you arguing that Americans should fear normal law-abiding Muslims? Honestly, I think (I hope!) Chuck means well in his heart of hearts, but it should be clear here that he has been thoroughly duped by WND’s orchestrated misinformation campaign, only a modest part of which are Islamophobic conspiracy theories.
Anyhow, after admitting that there is a plurality of interpretations of Sharia Law, from ultra-conservative to ultra-liberal, he then proceeds to contradict himself by essentializing (generalizing) about Sharia in the most negative way, saying:
The main point here is this: Where Muslim religion and culture has spread, Shariah law has shortly followed.
Of course, many Americans watch on video a Middle Eastern woman allegedly caught in adultery, buried in the ground up to her head and being stoned to death, and think, “That could never happen in America.” But they fail to see how Shariah law has already been enabled and subtly invoked in our country, and that any such induction like it is brought about by understated lukewarm changes, like a frog boiled in a kettle by a slow simmer.
Thus, Chuck thinks that we should be afraid of “Muslim religion and culture” because “Sharia law” will surely follow. According to him, the essence of Sharia law is stoning women, yet he seems not to realize that stoning laws are not found in the Quran (the primary source of Sharia law) but, ironically enough, stonings are explicitly and repeatedly endorsed in his own holy scriptures:
Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.
(See also Leviticus 20:2, 20:27, 24:16, 24:23; Deuteronomy 13:10, 17:5, 21:21, 22:23-24; Numbers 15:36; Joshua 7:25; and 1 King 21:10)
That’s somewhat like the pot calling the kettle black, no?
Before you know it, the Moozlims will start stoning American girls left and right, up and down, all around the town! Back in reality, however, the truth is that if stonings ever take place in America, they are much more likely to be carried out by our own homegrown Christian dominionists.
So if America is on the brink of destruction due to Sharia law, what is the proof? Chuck cites three bogus examples, all of which are actually proofs against his argument. As Tim Murphy of Mother Jones explained:
Of course, each of these points has its self-refuting flaws. Judges turn cases over to pre-selected religious arbitrators all the time, for instance, and not just for Muslims. None of the state legislators in question have produced a single example of Sharia being forced upon their states. And as for the argument that Sharia has been “oversimplified,” I would just point you to the fact that a quasi-mulleted martial arts actor from the mid 1990s feels qualified to explain to a national audience what Sharia is.
It only makes sense if you give weight to the fanatic conspiracy theories at WND. Apparently, for an aging action star, kooky internet goons are better sources of information than peer-reviewed scholars who spend years actually studying these things under other peer-reviewed scholars. Regardless, Mr. Norris intends to publish more articles on this topic, most likely including the same misunderstanding of basic facts and logic. We’ll be looking forward to see what he comes up with.
What happened, Chuck? You were such an American hero. You were MY hero.
Why did you decide to jump kick it on the Loon Band Wagon?