There is no such thing as a little sharia

‘MODERATE’ INDONESIA? A little sharia here, a little sharia there, no big deal, other religions will not be affected, or so say the sharia proponents and their supporters on the Left. But all of a sudden in a few years or a few decades, you wake up and suddenly, sharia is the law of the land. FOR EVERYONE. And either you submit or you better get out of Dodge.

TURN TO ISLAM  A bylaw that forces Muslim women in the Indonesian city of Tasikmalaya to take on hijab is inviting a storm of criticism, with opponents denouncing the drive as a violation of human rights. A bylaw is being drafted by the local council of Tasikmalaya, in West Java, to obligate all Muslim women, including visitors, to wear hijab.

“Opinions on clothing are relative,” Ismail Hasani, a researcher at Setara Institute, an NGO that focuses on human rights issues, told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday, June 5.


“Even among people of the Islamic faith, there are radically different interpretations on how a Muslim should dress. As such, the way people dress is in the domains of morality.
“It is not something the law should enforce.”

It proscribes 15 offenses, including corruption, prostitution, adultery, homosexuality, drug use and trafficking, alcohol consumption, pornography and thuggery. “This bylaw is intended mainly to educate people to live in accordance with Islamic teachings,” Setiadi said.


He noted that a special team would be set up like Aceh’s Shari`ah police to enforce the bylaw. “People intending to report violations of the bylaw will face difficulties if we don’t have an apparatus to enforce it,” he said.

Islam sees hijab as an obligatory code of dress, not a religious symbol displaying one’s affiliations. But opponents denounce the bylaw as an “unconstitutional discrimination” against women.