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Calif. Muslims see religious liberty burden in butchering rule
cna ^ | July 10, 2014 | Kevin J. Jones

Posted on 07/10/2014 10:05:27 AM PDT by NYer

Muslims advocates gathered at the California state capitol. Photo courtesy of the Council on American-Islamic Relations CA.
Muslims advocates gathered at the California state capitol. Photo courtesy of the Council on American-Islamic Relations CA.

Sacramento, Calif., Jul 10, 2014 / 04:07 am (CNA).- Proposed California food safety rules for butchering animals have raised concerns among the state’s Muslims, who say the rules would prevent them from practicing their religious beliefs.

“Religious freedom is an important issue for all Americans. It is at the core of the freedoms our country was founded on and a value we pride ourselves on,” Zahra Billoo, executive director of the Council of Islamic Relations’ San Francisco Bay Area Office, told CNA July 8.

The celebration of Eid al Adha, a Muslim holiday which includes a ritual sacrifice of an animal, the meat of which is shared among family, friends, and the poor. Food safety proposals in California may threaten the ability of local Muslims to carry out the sacrifice in accord with their beliefs.

Billoo explained that Muslims sacrifice an animal during Eid al Adha “as a means of paying respect for and honoring the story of Prophet Abraham and his sacrifice.”

Unlike Jews and Christians, who believe Abraham was told by God to sacrifice his son Isaac but then substituted a ram after proving his faith, Muslims hold that Abraham was commanded to sacrifice his other son, Ishmael.

California Muslims’ commemoration of the event could be endangered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s proposed regulation on custom slaughterhouses.

The rule would require the slaughterhouses to stun animals before a non-employee can come in and cut the animal’s throat, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

Muslims sometimes use special slaughterhouses to make their sacrifice for Eid al Adha. To mark the occasion, a conscious animal is slaughtered by making a single cut across its neck with a long, sharp blade while saying a short prayer.  

“The proposed rule would undermine the ability of Muslims to engage in the slaughter, specifically by requiring that the animal be stunned in advance,” Billoo said.

Stunning an animal would undermine the halal requirements that many Muslims follow, she noted.

Billoo said that some Muslims have a “sincerely held religious belief that they must personally slaughter their meat.”

“The proposed rules would inhibit the ability to engage in these practices.”

Billoo said regulators are now reviewing submitted comments on the proposed new rule. The agency could disregard the new rules, adopt them as proposed, or make a new proposal and again seek public comment.

Brice Hamack, an attorney with the Council on American-Islamic Relations, California, said in a June 30 letter to the California Department of Food and Agriculture that the regulation, as written, would “prohibit many American Muslims residing in California from practicing their religious beliefs,” adding that the regulation is inconsistent with current California legal codes regarding the religious slaughter of animals.

Eric Rassbach, deputy general counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, encouraged non-Muslims to “stand up for the right of Muslims to engage in this.”

“That’s something that everyone should stand up for, even if they don’t personally stand to benefit,” he remarked to CNA.

Rassbach’s organization has been defending Catholic and other Christian organizations, on the basis of religious liberty, against federal requirements to provide employees with health insurance coverage for sterilization and contraception.

He said that respecting religious freedom is “part of everyone being able to live together.”

While a religious practice may not make sense to somebody else, he said, “we can at least agree that in order for our fellow citizens to be able to follow their religion, we should try to accommodate that and make space for that.”

“That’s what California should do,” he added.

Rassbach said there have been efforts in some European countries to ban halal or kosher slaughter. He attributed the rarity of these efforts in the U.S. to the fact that the practices are recognized as humane under U.S. law.

He suggested that California regulators may not have considered the religious issue and could adjust the law. In his view, the regulators have a duty under the California and U.S. constitutions to respond to religious concerns and advance a government interest “without impinging on this religious activity.” He said this duty is especially clear given that California statutes already recognize this kind of slaughter.

“Religious freedom is not going to be something that’s only going to be provided to a certain group,” Rassbach said. “In our system, we treat different religious groups equally.”

“It would be very unfortunate that if somebody doesn’t agree with a particular religious practice it could be banned. Almost everybody who is religious has some practice that other people don’t agree with.”

TOPICS: Islam; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: ca; halal
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1 posted on 07/10/2014 10:05:27 AM PDT by NYer
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To: Tax-chick; GregB; Berlin_Freeper; SumProVita; narses; bboop; SevenofNine; Ronaldus Magnus; tiki; ...

Islam is not a religion, nor is it a cult. In its fullest form, it is a complete, total, 100% system of life.

Islam has religious, legal, political, economic, social, and military components. The religious component is a beard for all of the other components.

Islamization begins when there are sufficient Muslims in a country to agitate for their religious privileges.

When politically correct, tolerant, and culturally diverse societies agree to Muslim demands for their religious privileges, some of the other components tend to creep in as well.

Here’s how it works.

As long as the Muslim population remains around or under 2% in any given country, they will be for the most part be regarded as a peace-loving minority, and not as a threat to other citizens. This is the case in:

United States — Muslim 0.6%
Australia — Muslim 1.5%
Canada — Muslim 1.9%
China — Muslim 1.8%
Italy — Muslim 1.5%
Norway — Muslim 1.8%

At 2% to 5%, they begin to proselytize from other ethnic minorities and disaffected groups, often with major recruiting from the jails and among street gangs. This is happening in:

Denmark — Muslim 2%
Germany — Muslim 3.7%
United Kingdom — Muslim 2.7%
Spain — Muslim 4%
Thailand — Muslim 4.6%

From 5% on, they exercise an inordinate influence in proportion to their percentage of the population. For example, they will push for the introduction of halal (clean by Islamic standards) food, thereby securing food preparation jobs for Muslims. They will increase pressure on supermarket chains to feature halal on their shelves — along with threats for failure to comply. This is occurring in:

France — Muslim 8%
Philippines — Muslim 5%
Sweden — Muslim 5%
Switzerland — Muslim 4.3%
The Netherlands — Muslim 5.5%
Trinidad & Tobago — Muslim 5.8%

At this point, they will work to get the ruling government to allow them to rule themselves (within their ghettos) under Sharia, the Islamic Law. The ultimate goal of Islamists is to establish Sharia law over the entire world.

When Muslims approach 10% of the population, they tend to increase lawlessness as a means of complaint about their conditions. In Paris , we are already seeing car-burnings. Any non-Muslim action offends Islam, and results in uprisings and threats, such as in Amsterdam , with opposition to Mohammed cartoons and films about Islam. Such tensions are seen daily, particularly in Muslim sections, in:

Guyana — Muslim 10%
India — Muslim 13.4%
Israel — Muslim 16%
Kenya — Muslim 10%
Russia — Muslim 15%

After reaching 20%, nations can expect hair-trigger rioting, jihad militia formations, sporadic killings, and the burnings of Christian churches and Jewish synagogues, such as in:

Ethiopia — Muslim 32.8%

At 40%, nations experience widespread massacres, chronic terror attacks, and ongoing militia warfare, such as in:

Bosnia — Muslim 40%
Chad — Muslim 53.1%
Lebanon — Muslim 59.7%

From 60%, nations experience unfettered persecution of non-believers of all other religions (including non-conforming Muslims), sporadic ethnic cleansing (genocide), use of Sharia Law as a weapon, and Jizya, the tax placed on infidels, such as in:

Albania — Muslim 70%
Malaysia — Muslim 60.4%
Qatar — Muslim 77.5%
Sudan — Muslim 70%

After 80%, expect daily intimidation and violent jihad, some State-run ethnic cleansing, and even some genocide, as these nations drive out the infidels, and move toward 100% Muslim, such as has been experienced and in some ways is on-going in:

Bangladesh — Muslim 83%
Egypt — Muslim 90%
Gaza — Muslim 98.7%
Indonesia — Muslim 86.1%
Iran — Muslim 98%
Iraq — Muslim 97%
Jordan — Muslim 92%
Morocco — Muslim 98.7%
Pakistan — Muslim 97%
Palestine — Muslim 99%
Syria — Muslim 90%
Tajikistan — Muslim 90%
Turkey — Muslim 99.8%
United Arab Emirates — Muslim 96%

100% will usher in the peace of ‘Dar-es-Salaam’ — the Islamic House of Peace. Here there’s supposed to be peace, because everybody is a Muslim, the Madrasses are the only schools, and the Koran is the only word, such as in:

Afghanistan — Muslim 100%
Saudi Arabia — Muslim 100%
Somalia — Muslim 100%
Yemen — Muslim 100%

Unfortunately, peace is never achieved, as in these 100% states the most radical Muslims intimidate and spew hatred, and satisfy their blood lust by killing less radical Muslims, for a variety of reasons.

‘Before I was nine I had learned the basic canon of Arab life. It was me against my brother; me and my brother against our father; my family against my cousins and the clan; the clan against the tribe; the tribe against the world, and all of us against the infidel. — Leon Uris, ‘The Haj’

It is important to understand that in some countries, with well under 100% Muslim populations, such as France, the minority Muslim populations live in ghettos, within which they are 100% Muslim, and within which they live by Sharia Law. The national police do not even enter these ghettos. There are no national courts, nor schools, nor non-Muslim religious facilities. In such situations, Muslims do not integrate into the community at large. The children attend madrasses. They learn only the Koran. To even associate with an infidel is a crime punishable with death. Therefore, in some areas of certain nations, Muslim Imams and extremists exercise more power than the national average would indicate.

Today’s 1.5 billion Muslims make up 22% of the world’s population. But their birth rates dwarf the birth rates of Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, and all other believers. Muslims will exceed 50% of the world’s population by the end of this century.

Adapted from Dr. Peter Hammond’s book: Slavery, Terrorism and Islam: The Historical Roots and Contemporary Threat

2 posted on 07/10/2014 10:07:28 AM PDT by NYer ("You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears." James 4:14)
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To: NYer

Yes the sane butchering practices in any civilized country would preclude the ridiculous barbarism required by Islam.

3 posted on 07/10/2014 10:09:01 AM PDT by thorvaldr
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To: NYer

I am of the opinion that no christian should eat halal meat as it has been sacrificed to other God’s.

4 posted on 07/10/2014 10:09:40 AM PDT by taxcontrol
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To: NYer

In time ... the Hobby Lobby decision is going to backfire BIG TIME.

5 posted on 07/10/2014 10:12:14 AM PDT by RIghtwardHo
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To: taxcontrol


6 posted on 07/10/2014 10:13:59 AM PDT by Cold Heart
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To: thorvaldr

From what I understand about when these types of slaughtering rules are proposed in Europe they also would ban kosher slaughtering. I believe both kosher and halal meat must be from a conscious animal slaughtered by cutting its throat.

7 posted on 07/10/2014 10:15:59 AM PDT by C19fan
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To: NYer
“Religious freedom is not going to be something that’s only going to be provided to a certain group,” Rassbach said. “In our system, we treat different religious groups equally.”

This is a beginning.
Somewhere down the line the multiple wives allowed in Islam will be floated.-Tom

8 posted on 07/10/2014 10:16:42 AM PDT by Capt. Tom (Don't confuse U.S. citizens and Americans. They are not necessarily the same. -tom)
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To: NYer

Slavery, Terrorism and Islam: The Historical Roots and Contemporary Threat

What an excellent title. I do want to read the book to get more of the detail, but from what I already know, the title pretty much sums up the situation in regards to the Religion Of I’ll Cut Off Your Head If You Call Me Violent.

9 posted on 07/10/2014 10:18:05 AM PDT by samtheman
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To: NYer; xzins

Actually I agree with the Muslims on this.

Unless California can show a compelling governmental interest in prohibiting the practice, I.e., that the meat from slaughtering these animals in the traditional religious method poses a health risk to the general public, then this requirement would be an unconstitutional burden on the Free Exercise of Religion.

10 posted on 07/10/2014 10:20:16 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds)
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To: taxcontrol

Indeed. I stopped going to the nicest Indian Restaurant in Deerfield Beach when i saw the Halal truck pull up with the meat.

11 posted on 07/10/2014 10:22:08 AM PDT by left that other site (You shall know the Truth, and The Truth Shall Set You Free.)
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To: NYer

Under their religion, they are allowed to butcher us. It is not worthy of respect under our laws, any more than the religion of Communism was during the cold war.

12 posted on 07/10/2014 10:22:27 AM PDT by Defiant (Obama is not the anti-Christ. He is Satan's John the Baptist, preparing the way.)
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To: NYer

Kick them the hell out.

13 posted on 07/10/2014 10:22:47 AM PDT by I want the USA back (Media: completely irresponsible. Complicit in the destruction of this country.)
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To: NYer

Give them that and they’ll be asking to be exempt from laws on murder when they stone women and chop Jews’ heads off.

14 posted on 07/10/2014 10:24:04 AM PDT by I want the USA back (Media: completely irresponsible. Complicit in the destruction of this country.)
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To: P-Marlowe

I agree. The state needs to be far less heavy handed in how it deals with situations like this. I want my religion respected, I extend that courtesy to others as long as they don’t abuse that... Their needs in slaughtering the animals needs to be respected and worked with... but don’t force everyone to eat that meat.

If the government really thinks the animal needs to be stunned, have the “visitor” do it.

15 posted on 07/10/2014 10:25:07 AM PDT by csivils
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To: I want the USA back

The time to say no is when an unreasonable request is made. If you want to big-state nanny govt them, then you enable others to do it to us.

16 posted on 07/10/2014 10:26:55 AM PDT by csivils
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To: NYer

Hmm, animal rights vs Islamic special interests.

What to do, what to do; how is a good liberal state to choose between these two darlings?

Who’s got the popcorn?!

17 posted on 07/10/2014 10:32:12 AM PDT by FourtySeven (47)
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To: All

I can’t agree with a government describing exactly how to slaughter an animal. Muslims or no muslims, government needs to back off from micro-managing how we conduct our lives.

18 posted on 07/10/2014 10:49:59 AM PDT by Gunpowder green
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To: Gunpowder green

The Government is not going to back off. If anything, they will get more intrusive. The point of having to get their Government’s permission to go to the bathroom is not far off.

19 posted on 07/10/2014 10:54:02 AM PDT by sport
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To: NYer

Sorry, but State Safety Regulations prevent the practicing of Islam. Try Michigan !!!

20 posted on 07/10/2014 11:03:11 AM PDT by Salgak
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