In Defense of David Yerushalmi


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The New York Times recently ran a hit piece on lawyer David Yerushalmi, who has led the charge to stop the rise of shariah law in the United States.  With typical anti-religious flair, the newspaper pointed out that Yerushalmi is “a little-known lawyer … a 56-year-old Hasidic Jew with a history of controversial statements about race, immigration, and Islam.”

The Times focuses in on Yerushalmi, as though his Judaic background and love for Israel delegitimize his opposition to shariah.  The paper then brings  in Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy, whom they criticize for taking “polarizing positions” and being “well connected in neoconservative [read: conservative Jewish] circles.”  Finally, they wield their club against the Tea Party, which they somehow link to this whole effort: “With the advent of the Tea Party, Mr. Yerushalmi saw an opening.”  They never make clear what the Tea Party has to do with anything; this is just another New York Times attempt to use a putative Tea Party connection as a club on people it disapproves of. .

But leave aside the ad hominem attacks on Yerushalmi and conservatives and focus instead on the Times’ odd contention that shariah law is not a threat.  They say that shariah law is just like Jewish law; it’s applied in domestic and civil disputes, and then courts simply enforce it.  Of course, this is nonsense.  Take, for example, the famed New Jersey case last year in which a Muslim woman tried to get a restraining order against her husband in the aftermath of an assault and rape; the court ruled against her, applying shariah law principles and stating that the husband thought that his wife had to comply with his sexual appetites.  There’s nothing remotely like that in Jewish law.  Jewish law has its flaws, but Jews routinely repair to the secular courts when such flaws create problems (see for example the complex and troublesome divorce issue in Judaism).  And the problems with Jewish civil law don’t begin to approach those of the Islamic community.

Why should the courts uphold the evils intrinsic in shariah?  Courts have long held that, for example, upholding racially restrictive covenants violates federal law (Shelley v. Kraemer).  Why would courts uphold a foreign and primitive law that allows men to rape their wives?    When it comes to conflict between religious freedom and civilized values, civilized values should win out; otherwise, the law, as Dickens once said, “is an ass.”  Freedom of religion was never meant to allow barbarity.  Under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, Congress stated that federal, state and local laws needed to show a compelling state interest and be minimally restrictive of religious exercise in order to be Constitutional; the Supreme Court struck down the law as too restrictive.  Instead, the Supreme Court standard is that a “general law of neutral applicability” is Constitutional – which is why states can stop polygamy.

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  • Paul

    Nothing is more repulsive than the leftist adopting the most contradictory moral issues to save themselves from personal responsibility for their degenerate needs.

  • al Kidya

    Who can believe anything the NY Nazi Times publishes.

    Prior to WWII they were pro-Nazi.
    Prior to WWIII they are pro-Islamic.

    Some things just never change.

    • Angel

      [They do not believe that Islam in any form is a true threat, even if it means endorsing shariah applied through US courts. And to make that point, they’ll sacrifice wives and daughters, and then blame a Hasidic Jew.]

      This is standard MO for the Left. In a very different topic, Obama and the Left are very busy destroying the Economy while blaming anybody that the smear will stick to. In this case the TEA Party which terrifies them and I believe with good reason. The eradication of this infestation called the Left must be our top priority.

      • al Kidya

        "Obama and the Left are very busy destroying the Economy while blaming anybody that the smear will stick to. In this case the TEA Party"

        How right you are, Angel. I just stumbled onto a Liberal site by accident and could not believe what they were referring to the Tea Party as…"violent, racist "teabaggers" " of course, "Terrorists", and they were blaming the S&P listing on the Tea Party as well. When asked where the terrorism? The used Timothy McVeigh and a dude who flew an airplane into a building along with abortion clinic attacks – with no specifics.
        It's pretty obvious MSNBC still has a fair following.
        I couldn't believe the hatred coming from these people.

  • effemall

    They ran that piece as a news article while, in fact, it was a very slanted editorial. I called them on it. They continue to sink in many ways.

  • StephenD

    The not so sad part of this is the advocates for Shariah will be among it's first victims. There is no room for "Leftists" once the dust settles under Shariah. Either you adhere to Islamic Law or you pay the price. There ends your Freedom of Speech. There ends all of your personal liberties.

  • http://jewishdefense.org AJ Weberman

    The left is digging its own grave but they don't care as long as they can get back at America for the fall of Soviet Communism

  • mcrobbins

    I believe David Yerushalmi has defended Pamela Geller in court cases when the Left and Islamist groups have attacked her. The New York TImes has been attacking everyone who educates the public about the dangers of radical Islam.

    • nina

      How true. The writer also says that: suddenly the NY Times, etc. Suddenly? They have been doing such defamations of non leftists for a long time.

    • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

      What about the dangers of Radical Judaism?

  • Bernie

    Since when it is a hit job to label someone neo-conservative, Hasidic, or a member of the Tea Party? We conservatives, especially those who understand the real threat from those who don't share our Judeo-Christian values, should embrace those labels, instead of criticizing the Times for using them. Unless you are embarrased to associate with folks like Yerushalmi or Gaffney, you should welcome the Times piece as a terrific promotion of our campaign against radical Islam

    • winoceros

      Agree, except with a characaterization of "neo-conservative," which I find to usually be code for something else, depending on the "slammer." Usually it's anti-Jew at its roots, or at least "capitalist war machine greasers."

      • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

        They are what they are and they had their turn at the helm. They abused it and were rightfully tagged, bagged and repudiated.

  • Raymond in DC

    One overriding distinction between Jews and Muslims is that Jews have, for some 2,500 years, accepted the principle that "the law of the land is the law" – 'dina de'malkhuta dina' in Aramaic. A consequence of the first exile to Babylonia, it reflects our long experience as a minority people. Thus Jewish law and praxis has to be cognizant of and respect those prevailing laws.

    In contrast, most Muslims historically only know of life under Muslim-majority rule – i.e. by fellow "believers". Life as a minority under secular or infidel-rule is simply "unnatural", even in a theological sense, as it is "Allah's will" that they ultimately prevail. It should therefore not surprise that everywhere they don't rule themselves, they aspire to do so. It's thus no surprise they seek to have sharia principles legitimized in the public square. Those of us who would oppose that are not, as Christie would have it, "crazy".

  • tanstaafl

    David Yerushami is one of of bravest warriors against the growing tide of stealth jihad.

    • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

      I have never seen a tide grow by stealth before. They have tidal calendars, you know. Maybe you meant the Tides Foundation.

  • Mrs. Jilby

    @ Bernie: The last part of your comment reminded me of a quote I read by Ken Hoffman ("Armed and Safe" blog) : "I believe that being despised by the despicable is as good as being admired by the admirable." !

  • LindaRivera

    In Britain, there is one law for Muslims and another law for non-Muslims. Sharia Law.

    In Britain, Muslims and Islam are elevated above All other People and religions and given special rights and privileges not given to others.

    Polygamy is against the law in Britain and punished by up to seven years in jail. Muslims are allowed to break this law. If Muslims marry multiple wives overseas, Muslims are rewarded and given welfare benefits for their multiple wives and large number of children. Some Muslim men maintain two separate homes, driving between each home. Britain is Islamic paradise for Muslim males.

    • Rocky

      the muslims and their religion has taken over Britain and much of Europe…it only take a few more years before their societies crumbles and before they knew it…it will be too late..

  • LindaRivera

    Why is it that Western nations leaders are EAGER to IGNORE our own superior laws in favor of Islamic laws? It is a wicked betrayal of our superior Western civilization

    The UK and other European governments have set up many supremacist Islamic sharia law courts revealing Western leaders' utter contempt for the Western justice system of equal rights for all under the law. Under Islamic law, women are inferior and defenseless non-Muslims have no human rights.

    Unless a drastic change occurs, due to extremely high Muslim immigration and very high birth-rate, Muslims will become the majority and cruel sharia law will replace Britain and Europe's justice system. Britain and Europe's future will be a nightmare.

  • frank

    LindaRivera, the answer is simple. F E A R. Whoever said violence or threat of violence does not work is wrong. All that has to happen is for some heads to be cut off, some buildings to burn and some cars to blow up and our gutless leaders cave in to islam like Republicans caved to Bill Clinton.

    • jasonz

      i agree which is why we must fight islam as they fight us. nothing is off the table as far as i am concerned and any time muslims suffer it is a good day for the rest of the world. Im all for freedom of religion and the constitution etc,. but it is not a suicide pact and i feel that after so long (not just 10 yrs) of trying to peacfully coexist with muslim monsters killing us at every turn, that new tactics are needed. i would rather eliminate islam from the face of the earth than to keep up this circle jerk we have. I understand all muslims are not like this, but their time to speak up and out against their so called radical elements has long since past. they chose to critisize the people who critisized being blown up in the name of allah, rather than fight with us and destroy their radical muslim brothers. their loss but it makes it that much easier to target and destroy the enemy. simply put, if it is muslim, it must be destroyed. every man, woman and child!

  • WilliamJamesWard

    The New York Times has lost all credibility a long time ago and that they attack
    a respected man of Jewish faith who is alerting us all to dangers that lurk in
    the advancement of Sharia encroachment should not surprise anyone. I would
    marvel if they did not. David Yerushalmi is what is known as a concerned
    citizen and a credit to our society, his faith and all that is good that we embrace.
    David is a man to be admired, the Times is a disgrace, fit only for the bottom of
    the bird cage or wrapping the trash to throw out…………………………William

  • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

    David Yerushalmi is a Jewish Cleric. Kahanism is no better than White Supremacy or Radical Islam. Even SPLC has them listed and SPLC seldom lists Jewish racist groups.

    • ObamaYoMoma

      That’s because the SPLC is itself a racist hate group. Indeed, how does supporting Israel constitute racism? Only a gullible useful idiot could be mentally deranged enough to say something so stupid.

      • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

        SPLC is a communist Jewish hate group with a huge Cayman Islands bank account. That doesn’t mean Yerushalmi isn’t a Zionist Farrahkan.

        • ObamaYoMoma

          You are obsessed with hating Jews bigot.

          • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

            Everyone is entitled to his opinion. Yours is that impartial criticism is necessarily racist toward Jews. I don’t hate anybody. I also don’t believe that Jews are made of glass. Their most aggressive loudmouths should be able to withstand criticism like any other racial group or franchise.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    The New York Times recently ran a hit piece on lawyer David Yerushalmi, who has led the charge to stop the rise of shariah law in the United States.

    I appreciate Yerushalmi’s courage in fighting Sharia, but the truth is you can’t import Muslims into your country without also importing Sharia and Jihad, as Sharia and Jihad are intrinsic to Islam, as Sharia is the will of Allah and Jihad is the sixth and most important pillar of Islam. Hence, it doesn’t matter how many laws are passed in America to attempt to stop Sharia and Jihad, it can’t be stopped unless you ban and reverse all Muslim immigration.

    The Times focuses in on Yerushalmi, as though his Judaic background and love for Israel delegitimize his opposition to shariah.

    To the left including self-hating Jews everything coming from pro-Israel Jews automatically constitutes Hasbara, i.e. propaganda. Hence, according to the New York Slimes, because David Yerushalmi is pro-Israel, everything he says is propaganda.

    They say that shariah law is just like Jewish law; it’s applied in domestic and civil disputes, and then courts simply enforce it.

    What about the corollary institution to the institution to Jihad, Dhimmitude, that isn’t a product of Sharia? Without exception all Christians and other non-Muslims living in all Islamic countries in the world as dhimmis are violently oppressed and systematically persecuted when not outright slaughtered altogether. Is that happening by osmosis?

    In the Islamic world because of Sharia people suffer all kinds of draconian punishments such as beheadings, hangings, amputations, stonings, and lashings. Hell, people are even thrown off of high buildings. Females suffer FGM, are sold into child sexual slavery, and are victims of honor killing. Furthermore, all Muslims who question the obligatory duty for every Muslim to fight jihad in the cause of Allah, whether by violent jihad or by non-violent jihad, are executed and all Muslims that apostatize from Islam are also executed. Yet, if you were dumb enough to read only the New York Slimes alone, you would be totally oblivious of any of this.

    Indeed, according to the New York Slimes Sharia is applied only in domestic and civil disputes. Okay, a female’s testimony is worth only half that of a male’s, a female’s inheritance is only worth half that of a male’s, a female is forbidden from marrying a non-Muslim male, while a male can marry a non-Muslim female, a male can marry up to four wives, marital rape is legal, wife beating is legal, and rape is impossible to prove because it requires the testimony of four male witnesses, yet none of these manifestations of Sharia are an issue according to the New York Slimes.

    Hell, the question everyone should ask is why is the New York Slimes vilifying and demonizing courageous people like David Yerushalmi and Robert Spencer instead of exposing the horrors of Sharia and Islam?

    Britain is already enforcing Islamic law ine 85 shariah courts.

    The deal with Sharia courts in the UK according to the Brits is there isn’t anything to worry about because the parties involved have to first agree for their cases to be heard in the Sharia courts and then if either one of the parties isn’t happy with the verdict rendered, the verdict can then be appealed to the British court system. Sounds reasonable enough until you learn the fact that Muslims don’t have any other choice but to choose the Sharia courts and if they make the mistake of appealing the verdict rendered by a Sharia court to the British court system it would constitute blasphemy, which is a capital offense under Islam.

    But beyond that is the fact that there are literally thousand of unofficial Sharia courts operating in the hundreds of Muslim no-go zones sprinkled throughout Europe. Hence, it doesn’t matter if they are legally sanctioned or what, Sharia courts are still going to flourish regardless because again Sharia is intrinsic to Islam.

    They do not believe that Islam in any form is a true threat, even if it means endorsing shariah applied through US courts.

    The issue that GWB, the New York Slimes, and the lapdog media all intentionally avoided like the plague post 9/11, is the fact that without the presence of millions of stealth jihadists with their thousands of mosques and madrassas already living in American as a fifth column, the 9/11 jihadist attacks would have been completely impossible.

    Hence, it doesn’t matter how many times GWB doubles the size of the federal government like a Dhimmicrat on steroids to create a false sense of security, or even if they force all of us Americans to endure strip and body cavity searches whenever we travel or enter a federal building, as long as we have that fifth column of stealth jihadists present in America we will always be extremely vulnerable to jihadists attacks.

    What I really want to know is when have the American people ever been forced to make so many sacrifices just to accommodate one particular immigrant group?

    • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

      I think we tolerate a lot of racism from angry Jews. That puts a big strain on the hospitality.

      • ObamaYoMoma

        Get lost bigot!

        • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

          Not a fan of the First Amendment, I see.

  • Indioviejo

    Ben, you say "There should be no problem with Muslims solving their problems their own way." Not so. There should be a big problem when an immigrant tries to by pass our law with his law or customs. When in Rome, do as the Romans do.

  • GKC

    This is a serious discussion. Try peddling your wares elsewhere.