"We cannot have Muslims in our military because we cannot trust them."
Speakers at a conference of conservative activists that focused on the threat of Islamic extremism in America on Friday praised Tennessee for being at the forefront of legislative efforts to fight it.
Christopher Holton of the Center for Security Policy said Tennessee was the first state in the nation to pass "American laws for American courts" legislation. This bars states from enforcing foreign laws, in settings such as family court, if their imposition would violate a person’s constitutional rights.
Holton also spoke of legislative efforts in the pipeline. They include a ban on female genital mutilation.
About 500 people attended the "Constitution or Sharia?" conference at Cornerstone Church in Nashville. The one-day conference had been planned for the Hutton Hotel until that business cancelled the contract out of concerns about the program content.
David Yerushalmi, an attorney who spoke to the group in a pre-recorded video, suggested that the lawyers in the group should follow the example of the American Civil Liberties Union in using the courts to change the law, policies and behaviors and to grab the public’s attention.
Yerushalmi, who is general counsel for the Washington-based nonprofit Center for Security Policy, spoke of suing the Council on American-Islamic Relations in order to make the group consider whether any action it takes will result in a time-consuming and costly lawsuit.
"We want to make them modify their behavior, the same way that we, the good guys, have to do," he said.
"Lawfare is one of the most effective tools we have."
Rick Scarborough, founder of Vision America, which seeks to mobilize pastors in the service of promoting Judeo-Christian values, had another suggestion for the group.
"The greatest grassroots opportunity of all is to get your pastor involved," he said.
While several of the speakers differentiated between Islamic extremists and other Muslims, not all did. State Rep. Rick Womick, R-Murfreesboro, a former U.S. Air Force pilot, drew a standing ovation when he said, "We cannot have Muslims in our military because we cannot trust them."
...and in Australia...
In a decision published last week, judge Michael Kent, in the Brisbane branch of the Family Court, said the boy should stay in Australia, where he has been since June 10.
This would mean his custody would be decided not by an Islamic court imposing sharia law, but by an Australian court, which was more likely to respect the role of his father in his life.
Announcing his ruling, Justice Kent said there was "a presumption in the UAE that a child of (the boy's) age should automatically be placed in the care of his mother".
He said this was a "wholly different approach" to that taken by Australian courts, and therefore "unlikely to be in (the boy's) best interests".
Under Australian law, courts are required to consider a "shared care" arrangement for the children of divorce, who ideally should spend "equal or substantial time" with each parent.
The case, known as Randle and Randle, came before the Family Court in Brisbane last week. The court heard that Mr Randle, 58, an Australian citizen, and Mrs Randle, 46, a British citizen, were married in Australia in June 2000, and moved to the UAE to start a business in the same year.
Their only child together, a son, S, was born in the UAE in 2003. He has both Australian and British citizenship.
The court heard the couple's marriage ended in December last year, and the mother became the boy's primary carer. The boy saw his father every second weekend, and on Tuesdays after school.
On June 10, the father sent the boy out of the UAE to Australia, without the mother's permission. The mother found out by text message.
She petitioned the Family Court in Australia for the boy's immediate return.
Boston Herald , WSJ