Channel: Jonathan Brown
© No part of this transcript may be copied or referenced or transmitted in any way whatsoever. Transcripts are auto-generated and thus will be be inaccurate. We are working on a system to allow volunteers to edit transcripts in a controlled system.
Out of the energy Miss America, man or him.
So, violence in the Sharia. And the reason I want to speak about this is because it's always important topic, but it's brought up over and over again in the news. And it's something from which Muslims suffer. And it's something from which Muslims are not in a sense that I want to focus on the problems that Muslims have. But it's a it's a way in which Muslims are victimized, and which Muslims are victimized by others, and in turn, in which Muslims are unable to fulfill their duty to their larger community in which they live in the United States, in Western Europe, or anywhere. And I think, hopefully, by the end of my lecture, Chawla you'll understand why I introduced it as such,
What time should I shut up? By by the way?
Is that clock right?
Someone said eight o'clock, it is eight o'clock, we're going to go back in time and shut off.
My best. Okay, the
I want at first I want to, to
I also I think I've done a scan of the audience. And I think that there's no one so young, who can't hear the things I'm going to say. And the things I'm going to say are not I don't think that they're they're inappropriate, but you know, they are serious issues. So I didn't want to have, you know, 50 kindergarten kids in the front row or something. But I
know, Muslims are serious people, by the way. Those are serious people. The scholars are serious people. There's nothing that they're not willing to talk about. There's no problem they're not willing to consider. And I think that we should be a bit more open. And the things we discussed as a community might allow us to resolve our own problems more efficiently. But I want to talk about is
It's controversial issue. But I'm going to make a contention. I'm going to say not only is honor killing an Islamic, I'm going to say that contrary to what you hear on the news. It's not caused by Islam. It's not a problem. It's particularly common to Muslims. And actually, that I believe that Islam as a religion and the Sharia, as a system of values and rules, offers the answer to this. It's not a cause of the problem is the answer for the to the problem. I feel very strongly, I'm convinced of that. Maybe you'll be convinced as well. Or you already are, and I'm just preaching to the choir. The
I was very shocked. I found something as a fascinating case, in a legal case in 1947. In northern Nigeria, amongst the Muslims of northern Nigeria, there was a vocal Cortes even though it was a British colony, the local courts were Sharia courts in the north, precisely the place where Boko Haram is active today we hear about in the news every day.
At the Sharia court came out with a verdict. It's sentenced a man to death.
And the British court was staffed by British judges, the appeals court that looked at any serious sentence. They
the British court overturned this sentence it considered it to be too harsh a sentence. And we hear this a lot. The Sharia law is very harsh. You know, that's cruel. We hear this in the news, the British judge overturned this.
Now, what's interesting is that the man had killed his wife's lover.
The Sharia court had sentenced him to death, death for murder.
The job British judges said no, this was a crime of passion was a crime of passion and he cannot be punished seriously.
This is the opposite of what you would expect to happen if you watch the news and thought about Muslims and Islam what the media wants you to think and what they often how they portray the religion. But this is actually much more representative of the Islamic tradition then what you come across in the media.
The in UN reports UN Human Rights or Rights Reports last one was in 2012.
They suggested there's about about 5000 honor killings a year, about 5000 hours killings a year. Roughly 1000 are in Pakistan but roughly 1000 are in India.
An honor killing is when
My husband or a mother or father, somebody kills a wife or a daughter because of a perceived
infringement on what's considered honorable conduct.
that is a statistics you might come across and with the amount of things you see in the news, it's not surprising we hear constantly about the problems of honor killings. However, this is just one type of violence against women.
It's only one type of violence against women, and the UN prefers to speak not about honor killings, but about something called femicide. femicide is killing a woman because she's a woman, for some reason. And what you see is in different parts of the world,
there are different ways in which this is phrased. So for example, in Southeast Asia, and in southern Africa, every year, according to the UN, hundreds of women are killed a year, because they're accused of being sorceresses.
of using black magic
in place in
the part of the world where there's the highest percentage of violence against women and the largest number of violence against women, femicide.
Anyone want to guess where this is? The part of the world with the most violence against women per year?
How did you know that? El Salvador is someone's read someone actually read the newspaper?
What's your name? Now?
Aziz, you're an educated person, what can I say?
I'll just leave and you can give the lecture. So El Salvador, actually, Latin America is the part of the world with the most violence against women.
And they're non Muslims that are By the way, very few Muslims. So this is you find it in
South America, Central America, places like Italy. places and this is not my term is a term used by scholars with a lot of machismo in the culture, a lot of machismo in the culture.
Where is one of the most concentrated areas of violence against women? Does you this audience might know about it. I did not know about it, until I went to this place in 2012. And heard about it for the first time. I am a I'm an educated young, okay, I have a PhD. I'm no dummy. I've been around the block. Right. I read from time to time, and I had never heard of this.
Anyone here from India?
Have you heard of dowry killings? Yeah, I had never heard of dowry killings until 2012. And I was reading this 2012 UN report. And it said that in 2009, there had been 8383 Gallery killings in 2009. In India alone.
That's more than all the honor killings in the rest of the world.
Oh, yeah. slightly off topic. But
actually, at that rate is two people, two women a day are killed in Delhi just in Delhi.
honor killing, as I learned is
an instance in which the family of a husband usually oftentimes the women folk in the family, kill the or participate in killing premeditated murder of the wife, because either her family has failed to deliver the promise dowry payments, or it can be as simple as her not being a good enough wife. And oftentimes the woman is burned. And the police don't investigate it because it is attributed to a kitchen accident.
You know, God forbid such a kitchen accident ever actually happen in my in my house. Right? I mean, a lot of people getting burned completed death 1000s a year.
So no one in the United States knows about this issue.
Because they're so focused on writing about Muslim violence against women.
No one talks about violence against women in South America and no one talks about violence against women in India. No one talks about violence against women in the United States.
I want to get back to that at the end of the talk. But first, let's talk about Islam.
Taha Z's here, I think she's so smart to her as he says, Professor Brown.
You can't pull the wool over my eyes. Because in my extensive reading, I've read the law codes of Jordan and Algeria and Morocco, Egypt, Lebanon, UAE, Yemen, and Kuwait. And they have these laws in some form or the other that say, for example, in Algeria, that if you a man finds his wife in her just say, compromised situation, that if he hurts her or kills her, he receives a mitigated sentence. In places like the UAE, UAE, Yemen, Kuwait, and Oman, any female in his family that he finds in a compromised situation, he if he harms or kills, or he receives a highly mitigated or reduced sentence. In places like Egypt, you have similar laws in Lebanon, Jordan, although Jordan
recently amended it, so now it's gender neutral. So if a wife finds her husband in a compromised, it's right, at least they're trying to be fair, right? The same thing and as I said, in also in Iraq,
all these countries have variations of this law. so
tall hair here, Mr. smarty pants.
Likes is gonna say, well, you're telling me this is, you know, clearly Muslims are part of this problem. Look at all these laws. Now, I'm gonna ask a question. And if Tara knows the answer, he can't answer, okay.
Muslim countries oftentimes have at least part of their laws taken from Sharia law.
So they got this obviously from Sharia law, because we know that Islam doesn't like women and Islam is violence against women, right? So I got this from Sharia law, correct.
They got it from French law or British law. Maybe this audience is too smart for my lecture. Are you Is this the magical Muslim audience is too smart for my lectures? Hopefully not.
If you look at
and actually first learned this from one of my students, because he was doing research on he was in my class, and he was actually a French history major. And he, he came up to me and I was talking about these issues. So this is just like the French law of 1810. Criminal Law of 1810. It says that if someone finds a man finds one of his ancestors or descendants, in a compromise, having doing something that's disgraceful, right, and he kills that person or harms that person, that he receives a mitigated sentence or reduced sentence.
That's a French law of 1810. This was directly translated into the Ottoman Criminal Code of 1858. And then, through the Ottoman Empire, influenced the Egyptian law, Lebanese law, Jordan law, Syrian Iraqi law, Kuwaiti law, Algerian law.
In fact, if you look at Lebanon, and Jordan and Lebanon and Syria, and Morocco, they're really almost word for word translations from the Ottoman and then from the French, you can really see it looks like you're looking at just a translation into Arabic, from French.
What about, you know what, you know, we hear about honor killings in Jordan, but where do we also hear about them in in Pakistan?
And the French didn't rule boxtop the British Robach correct, but the British would never give us a law like this. Actually, they also gave us this law in the 1860s British criminal code, it was implemented in India, British India at the time, you have a section it says that if a if a man commits a crime, because of sudden and grievious provocation,
that that person in his crime of passion would receive a mitigated sentence or a reduced sentence.
To this actually is directly carried into this is the law that India and Pakistan inherit and Bangladesh also inherit.
In 1990, Pakistan passed what's called the DIA will kasasa la di Taka sauce
in an attempt to bring
the laws in those countries the criminal laws closer into accordance with the Sharia into agreement with the Sharia. And one of the things they changed was
That British law that says that if you have a man suffers a sudden and grievous provocation, the crime he commits will have a reduced sentence. They change that because as Pakistani jurists noted, this has no basis in the Sharia. So there's no basis in the Sharia. Now, there are still honor crimes in Pakistan. And there are still people who commit these crimes who receive reduced sentences. But that's because the judges don't follow that law. Unfortunately, they still make the excuse from time to time using the exact same words that the British have given them, that these husbands had suffered sudden and grievous provocations, using still the exact same words they
received from the British.
Well, I talked about the Sharia. And I said that the Sharia doesn't have such a law in it. So what is the what is the what is the Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet lays off that I'm say about this issue.
There's actually two
there's two Hadees to deal with this. There in the Sahara Muslim and in some in Abu Dhabi.
And one of them.
It's narrated by Abu huraira. He talks about the companion from the cousin Raj, I was sad when dad's Allah subhanaw taala say that
he asked the Prophet
or at the woodshed to mammootty Roger lon. Own Hill who had said to the Ottawa Shahada.
What would you say if I found somebody a man with my wife? Should I
leave them be until I can bring four witnesses?
I'm not going to draw this picture out for you. Everybody understands what I'm talking about.
And the Prophet says yes, that's what you should do.
Because otherwise, if you were to go in and carry out justice yourself, you would be guilty of murder.
You would be guilty of murder. Because the accusation that would or the crime that would in fact, mean that these people were committing Zina. You have to have either their confession, or you have to have four witnesses, four male upstanding witnesses of upstanding character. In this room, there's at most,
the front, I'm just joking, everybody, everybody, all the men in this room, I'm sure upstanding have a presenting character, very hard, standard to meet have evidence and another head aid
at the Second
Amendment amending or Weymouth
containing their Wayman, not Obama and Joan is also coming to speak on this list, my friend Obama, who you should same name away, most of you should definitely listen to his lectures because he's a very smart person. I learned a lot from him. He's a companion or a murderer as a prophet, oh,
if I find something with my wife, should I kill him?
And then I also am killed because now it's been established, that if you kill him that this is murder, and you're going to be you're going to suffer the consequences of that that person's family can either add, have you executed, or they can request that you pay the blood price to do this of this man or this woman?
And the Prophet?
The answer that is given by the prophet is the verse of Leon, the Quranic verses.
alladhina Yamuna is Roger home with me. When lemon law who Shahada in line for the home, Fisher, how did they How did him autograph shahadat in the end, the home the lybian? home? The NLM, Minnesota clean, right? Those people who accuse their spouses, their spouses of Xena
implied and they all have no witnesses except for themselves. There's no other witnesses.
What do they do? They have to swear four times that they are telling the truth. And then they swear a fifth time, that may the the curse of God be upon them. If they're lying, then the party they've accused their husband or their wife swears four times that they're telling the truth in their denial. And this is where the fifth time the curse of God be upon them. If they're telling a lie. What happens then
they would come to the mosque and they would do this. They would be divorced automatically. Both parties would leave the mosque, no longer husband and wife.
No one is punished.
This is very important. Even if the husband or the wife catches their spouse with their eyes, they see
Exactly they know what they see, there's no doubt there's no rumor, there's no so and so told me there's no I have a suspicion, there's no I saw a text message. No, you walk in and you see, it's something you see with the eyes of the clean, what is happening?
You swear or five times, if they deny it five times, you're divorced, and no one suffers any punishments, that is the procedure
that you follow if you if you accuse your spouse of infidelity or of dishonor, right.
So this is the, the Sharia ruling on this. If a husband, father kills his child, or a husband kills his wife, they have to face the Sharia consequences of this, either they are required to pay the DIA or their
if the murder the person is killed, if their family decides to forgive the person that can be forgiven, or if the family chooses, the person is executed.
such was the insistence on this ruling, that in 1529, you have a Sharia court record and 1529 in a town in Greece, which was at that time under Ottoman rule, there was a Christian noble Christian family and the husband killed his wife. And the wife's family brought this case to the Muslim called the to the Muslim judge. And
the husband was required, they wanted the husband to pay the DIA the blood price of the of his murdered wife. So this was not only carried apply to Muslims without sometimes apply to non Muslims.
Why is it important that Muslims notice about their religion? Because it's very important that Muslims not use imported laws, imported traditions to justify violence against their own community. Okay?
And it doesn't matter how sure you are, doesn't matter how much you know that so and so's disgracing themselves, or how certain you are because you saw with your own eyes and the Sharia. You don't act by what you don't judgment isn't passed by what you know, it's not even passed by what the judge knows it's passed by the procedures that Allah sponsor Allah put in place through His revelation.
Even today, and this is fascinating when you look at Muslim scholars discussing things like DNA evidence, let's say you have DNA evidence that someone says child, a woman's child is not from her husband's a different father.
Can that one be accused of Zina? Can she be convicted of Zina? Can she be convicted?
If she don't have four witnesses, if she doesn't confess, if you do the the and procedure, even if you know that the child has not from the husband,
the if, if she has done the Leon procedure, and swore in front of time that she's innocent, she goes free. There couples divorce, but she goes free. These are the procedures put in place by laws, to protect Muslims to protect them from each other's anger each other's accusation.
mores, we were talking earlier about civil procedure.
I'm learning about this in the legal American legal system too. Of course, having gotten a criminal procedure class, I'm looking forward to that. This is very important to keep in mind. Muslims need to know this about their traditions so that they can they know what rules are put on them. They know what restrictions are put on them in their accusations. Why is this important for Muslims doing their duty to their wider communities? I'll tell you why. And this is something that I spoke to about my class this week. And I feel very strongly about it. Because it's not just about violence against women. It's also about things like terrorism and, and beheading and ISIS, and how many times
have you been asked in the last two weeks about ISIS and why so and so's beheading so and so person? when people put blame on Islam and Muslims, what they're really doing is they're taking the blame off other shoulders. When people only talk about Muslims as being violent against women.
What are they not talking about? They're not talking about violence against women elsewhere. They're giving themselves a free pass, not to look at the way women are mistreated in their own societies. And I was just in UK about two weeks ago, when I was on the tube, the subway, and I'm sitting there and the guy next to me has this huge full page front page of the paper it says Muslim convert beheads granny 82 in garden. Turns out it wasn't a Muslim convert. But the point is, that was the this headline here I am a Muslim convert a
little bit nervous. And then a couple of days later, I saw a fascinating article and
One of the newspapers, I think it's called The Statesman. In the UK, it was a woman, a British woman writing about how in her in London last year, during the last year, three women had been beheaded.
And no one had talked about it.
No one had talked about it because it wasn't a Muslim who did it, quote, unquote, it wasn't a Muslim. And she said something that I found profound. She said, When Muslims do violence, people care about it, because it's terrorism. But violence against women, otherwise, is just the background hum of our daily lives, the background, home of our daily lives. And I thought that was a very profound sentence. Because when you only care about things that Muslims do, because they're the ones who are evil, they're the ones who have all these problems. And you don't even pay attention to those very same phenomenon in your own society down in right next door or down the street, you are
getting a free pass, not to solve your own problems, not to look to your own faults. And similarly, I can, whenever I get asked about ISIS, I don't know what to say. I say, listen, are you asking me why?
In a country that was
first subjected to 13 years of
economic sanctions that led to the deaths of over 1 million children, then it was pointlessly invaded in 2003, by the United States in Great Britain, some other countries on premises that nobody considers valid in a war that nobody thinks was a good idea, except apparently, Tony Blair still thinks it's a good idea. Nobody thinks that war is a good idea. The institutions of that country were completely destroyed, law and order completely removed.
Right? The United States and Great Britain then completely failed to solve any of the underlying problems in that country. They leave that country in a state of chaos.
lowest count, lowest Count 170,000 civilians die as a result of the American led invasion, highest reliable count by the Lancet in 2013. Around 760,000 Iraqi civilians had died a result as a result of the invasion.
Imagine, Iraq's a country it's only about 30 million people, I think population very small population. Imagine that. What how many people that would be in the United States, if that percentage of people but imagine what we would think it happened to our country, it would be unbelievable, we would be the most. And how many Americans have asked why 760,000 Iraqi civilians have died? How many people have shed tears over those people's deaths? How many people have asked about what's wrong with our politics that we do these kinds of things, and then don't accept accountability.
Instead, when three Westerners are beheaded, and I condemn their beheading, I agree for their families. I think it's terrible. Okay. When three Westerners repented, suddenly,
people start asking what's wrong with Islam?
That's where is the logic there as the most illogical chain of thought I've ever heard in my life.
In addition, these hostages were been had been held some of them for two years, and nothing and out they hadn't been executed. So this is really about Islam and Muslims. Why is it that somehow oddly, they're only executed after the American start bombing Iraq in Iraq?
That sounds more like a political cause than a religious cars. In addition, if you watch the videos,
that the during the people put out these groups put out there citing political reasons.
They saying President Obama, you're now bombing Iraq. Here's, you know, our response. They're not saying that I as a Muslim, it's my sacred duty to kill random Western people. No, think about how it's our if we if I as a Muslim scholar and a professor, if I sit there and engage in a long apology about how Islam is a religion of peace, and, you know, Muslims are good people.
And if I go on fox news and do that, I'm actually further I'm kind of facilitating a sickness in this country, which is that people don't think about the consequences of their actions overseas. They don't think about the consequences that they have on the millions of people who lose their lives on the millions of families that are destroyed.
They don't think about them because they're not American because they're not white. Okay, and that's that's ridiculous. I can't
Imagine anybody actually getting up and mounting a reasonable defense of that view of the world.
And they don't think about the consequences it has for the hatred that this shows against Americans abroad. I'm not a courageous person. I'm a selfish person, I'll be honest, I don't want to be attacked, I don't want my family to be heard. I don't want my city to be attacked. I would rather have the smallest number of possible people abroad who wants to do me harm. And I do not understand why some people think it is in the best interest of American citizens
to increase tenfold hundredfold
the number of people who want to do harm to Americans,
always remember this great onion headline if anyone ever reads the onion, new bomb, able to create 1000 new terrorists with single blast.
So educating people about Islam and stance towards Violence Against Women Against the Sharia as real teaching, and then telling them about reminding them the violence against women is a global problem. That is a problem that's caused by men. Okay, and men are everywhere. And until men take account of that, as men, it's not going to be solved. You're just going to have distraction by focusing on Muslims. And Matt, allowing people to continue imagining that it's only Muslims who hate women or oppress them.
Thank you very much, Zack, more hate. If I said anything wrong. Please forgive me. I'm happy to
answer any questions or comments if there's any time left.
I'm going to take a few questions, about 10 minutes of questions. So I have papers and if anybody wants to write a question down then resume? If not, we'll take questions from the floor. Angela. If you allow me Dr. Brown, I'll just Of course.
You can maybe give some comparables.
Bear with us long example.
Can you give some, because we get asked a lot.
But it should
give some comparisons? possible? Yeah. Well,
so in the Sharia tradition, you don't have juries? Right. juries interesting institution, I think in general, has general opinion of scholars that the jury is actually originally comes from from the Vikings from Denmark.
And the dame, the Vikings ruled a large part of England called the danelaw.
From the 1800s onward for a few centuries. And that's where the jury system comes from. It, it also appears
elsewhere, actually similar to the Islamic Sharia tradition of what's called cross Kasama. So if, if let's say somebody finds, there's like a in my neighborhood, somebody finds someone who's killed,
like in my yard. So this would be you know, circumstantial evidence that killed them, let's say, if I and 50 other people and 50 other people in my neighborhood, or my relatives and friends swear, I know that I'm innocent, then I'm innocent, depending on the there's in the Hanafi school and other schools, they are they invert the procedure. But basically, you have kind of like character witnesses, it's a jury of your peers, literally of your community that is willing to swear to your innocence. So there's, they have the same tradition in Germany in the the Middle Ages, and from the nine hundreds to the 1200s. And that also is probably linked to the jury system.
Obviously, not all trials in the American system in the British system are jury trials, oftentimes it's the judge, but when it comes to criminal trials, you'd have a jury and the jury is the judge who passes who's who is convinced or not convinced, by the, by the evidence and by the witnesses.
another thing that's important to keep in mind is
In general, the few exceptions, murder is handled as wrong against another person. So it's the family of the person. And if they don't have any family, it's the the judge or the government that acts as the Wali of the person. They bring the case to the court and they say, Oh, we need to be compensated for the wrongful death of our kinsmen or this person. So it's, and they can either take the compensation, they can forgive the person or they can have the person the murderer executed. So it's, it's not handled to prison. It's handled through either payment of money. Or
Yes, they could, you know, if if, yeah, if, I mean, if the person
if you have reliable witnesses who testify that the pert, they saw the person killing the person, the victim, and if there's no evidence against them, or there's no evidence to exculpate them, then they may be innocent, and they may still be
found guilty, in general. And it's hard to say, because Islamic civilization is a big area over a long period of time, but the tendency was that you don't have executions, you have just payments of blood money. payments of the DA is usually how it's handled. Because you don't why does anyone want to have more death?
prison is usually not used as a punishment historically, in Islamic civilization. Sometimes, for example, the Ottomans used prison, but oftentimes it was it was lashing or having your feet bitten beaten by like a weed. Very painful. That would have been the lesser levels of punishment.
Have justified state violence against?
And does that actually affect
that, like, tradition is that something that has been affecting the way people are acting now, for example, so outside of the state, and there is one of the Hadoop crimes is called Head Head, ABA, or banditry? Or, you know,
like lawlessness, you know, violent, violent lawlessness.
And in theory, the rule, the ruler, or the judge is allowed to use violence against that, to fight those people to take them to try them and to punish them.
that if you have a group of people in society, who have a grievance,
and they rebel against the state, they are usually term buka. It's called
an integrity keytab. Bogart that is the subject of rebels. Rebels have to have, they have to have a grievance like bandits, people who just murder people and take their money. They don't have some grievance, they're just greedy. But if people say for example,
we had a elected president, and he was in power. And he was prevented from governing effectively, because the security establishment of the old regime was refusing to follow orders, was actively undermining his rule was, you know, etc, etc. And now the army has stepped in and is, has removed this person from power, and is killing
civilians, that group has a legitimate grievance,
they would be considered blocked. In the even by, let's say, the, I think responsible scholars, Muslim scholars looking at them.
And with bullets, as the Quran tells us, if two parties from the Muslims fight, you have to try and reconcile them. You don't have an excuse. You don't have a license to wipe out one of the parties, man, women and children, you have to try and reconcile them. And if they return to the command of God, or you can reconcile them, or you can solve their grievance or find some kind of compromise, they can't be punished. They're not they receive, essentially. And so that's the proper Islamic procedure. Not to say that these people are coded
for rebelling against a legitimate ruler, which of course the government the army also just did and which 1000s of these black blocks
protesters have been doing for months and nothing happened to them to call them and say that they can be killed in public because they're filthy disgusting people. As some scholars, some of my teachers
said, that is not responsible. I have no problem saying that I don't have any qualms about that. I'm gonna I'm going to get some of these written questions in some people are too shy to ask verbally. Dr. Brown opened up Pandora's box, and all these questions are coming in about the dude and stuff. So these are related ones
are interesting. I love this question.
I don't know if the audience is gonna.
Okay, one in this day, in this day and age of technology, if one has a camera and records, this isn't what happens. This is interesting. I discussed it to my students.
We delayed Asia just a few minutes. So don't worry, we're not gonna go into the show. We're delaying it in the budget. So when we say we're done, we're done. And then it will be time for some love. So don't worry.
There's an important command that the in this day and time of technology if one has a camera and record Xena, what happens? Very interesting question. So this is related to what I said about DNA evidence.
The command that Muslim judges have when it comes to the what's called Kakuka law, the rights of God,
which are the highest crimes the Prophet has told us. Or the rule for Judah and movement in Bishop ahat. When rejected lahoma collusion for Halloween has to do with venom hydromat hackmann Youth they are in our form in a nuclear efficient
ward off the Hadoop crimes from the believers as much as you can ward off the Hadoop punishments from the believers as much as you can, if you find a way out for somebody, let him go or let her go. For it is better for the judge to air and mercy and for the judge to err in severity. This is a this is a command from the prophet of God, they sought salon, this is a command.
This is not be merciful. This is a command that Muslim judges had to follow. And they took seriously and if you read my new book, misquoting Mohammed, which I recommend,
is a bit thicker than this one. I have great examples in that book of this happening historically, in Islamic civilization, the
is not sufficient to
prove somebody is guilty of Zener. Because DNA evidence can be wrong. It can be tampered with, there can be mistakes in a lab, it can people can be mis identified. And I think it was just two years ago, I remember on the radio, there was an F, there was a crime lab in the DC area, an FBI crime lab, where one technician had been, I think it was intentionally falsifying DNA results. And so like you have people getting off of crimes for DNA, because of DNA evidence, these people who had been convicted due to evidence that have passed through this clerk's hands, were this technicians and they also had to be released. You know, some of them had been, I think, maybe one of them. I don't
think any of them had been executed, but they were released. So because there's a possibility of error. That's what's called shubha. That is an ambiguity.
And there's one of the cases I use with my students classes. In 1960s, there was a Saudi student in Spain on vacation, and he was in a bar in Spain, in France, and he came across a group of hippie Yun hippies
in the urine, okay. And they get in a fight. And the police come on the guys. Apparently he admits to the police in Spain that he had been drinking beer.
So he was drunk. He gets shipped back to Saudi Arabia and he gets brought before the car, the agenda, the judge in Jeddah. He then says I wasn't drinking alcohol, I was drinking beer.
What does he mean? Maybe he means he was drinking Oh, duels or you know, whatever, this non alcoholic beer right?
That that statement becomes sufficient
shoba that he's not going to have the 80 lashes applied that you would have for drinking alcohol and intoxication. He's punished in other ways. You know, and he's fined or he can't be the exact punishments.
But he added a hit a lesser punishment. So this is what happens. You have a lesser punishment applied Not that I did not the head punishment in the case of videotape
I have to use it. I'm sorry if this is too much. But there's a certain industry that is based on videotaping activities, and then selling these videotapes, everybody knows this industry.
Okay, if you don't understand it, then you're either too protected, which is great. You don't have to worry about it. Or you're not as smart as tall here here. Okay. So there's a
you see these videotapes, and it's pretty clear what's happening. And everybody knows what the requirements for a witness of this act are. Those requirements are met. Okay, there's requirements are met and a half. So
well, you always see the act in there. So why aren't these? Why can't we go and arrest these actors? For that crime? Because
a videotape can be doctored, a videotape can be altered a videotape can be, you know, famed, or that's a Sherpa. But and this is my own contribution to this discourse.
These are films, there's people on the set
who are witnessing this, there's, let's say, four men on the set, who can be brought and asked. And if they tell the truth, would this not be a case of Xena?
No, this is my theory. Because they have to be agile, they have to be showerhead agile, they have to be an upstanding witness. And by definition, if that's your job, you are not.
And I know you're thinking, you know, Professor Brown is really pushing it here. He's really trying to find excuses. That's exactly what Muslim judges always did. They always looked for excuses. You can punish people to lots of ways you can yell at them. You can embarrass them, you can parade them to the streets and people insult them. You can lash them, you can imprison them, you can find them.
But you don't have to kill them.
And God tells us ward off to do and punishments, by any means you can have any ambiguity you can. So that's my answer to those questions.
I mean, yeah, 100 lashes, if you can survive that then more power to last question.
So in the last couple of years, we're seeing around the world,
and abuse of police forces, and institutional racism, being you know, a police force as being a vehicle for
a culture of policing.
So the question is the last few years, you've seen a pattern of abuse of police power and institutional racism in the police and expressed through the violence of police power application?
You know, that's a tough question because
it you know, nobody in theory, nobody thinks that racism is good. Okay. In theory, nobody thinks that abuse of police power is good, the dispute is whether or not racism is happening, whether or not police power is being abused.
A lot this this, this phenomenon is a function as a product of the law of a modern the modern states. Okay? modern states have the capacity, the technological capacity to observe too severe to surveil, to prosecute
a population over a vast area.
Pre modern states do not have this power.
Okay, if you have Muslim ruler, or British rulers, and when someone in the 1700s they do not have the whether you're in Europe or the Middle East, you do not have the manpower or the infrastructure, to
know what everybody's doing all the time to handle every complaint that comes in every case of theft every that's why for most Muslims throughout history, like most British people throughout history, problems were handled in your community,
even without even going to a coffee or a judge just handled by local elders, would adjudicate disputes, problems between couples, accusations of theft accusations of fraud.
You don't have police power views is a product of powerful police forces. And that's a modern phenomenon, a very modern film.
And I think that
the answer to that question, is the same answer to questions like whether or not the state has the right to listen in on our phone calls, to record all our communications to surveil us with drones or satellites or whatever and
I believe the answer to that is no, they don't have that. Right. And that means that you have to be willing to say, you know, I know that sometimes you're not going to be able to find a bad guy. But it's more important than my rights, the privacy, our rights, some movement to freedom of association or right to freedom of speech. That's more important than the fact that sometimes Yeah, I'm going to be in danger. Sometimes you're not going to be able to find a bad guy. And as I, as I hope you will have understood the what I've said Islamic legal tradition is when it comes to certainly the rights of God always prefers to have the innocent of the guilty go free accidentally than have the innocent
prosecuted or punished accidentally. I think that's a good wait way to wait the equation. And I think that if you fall into this idea that just keep me safe. I'm so scared now. It's the horse on group who wants to attack us now it's this group that wants to attack us now. It's that group. Please government just keep me safe take away all my right. It's alright. That's a very bad way to live. And that's exactly the excuse that
states need to increase their power unchecked
by beautiful thought.