A letter from I Stewart, convener of Atheist Scotland, appears in the Scotsman (second letter on the page).
“Like the Kirk,” the letter writer says, referring to a previous letter from someone else, “we support the introduction of sharia courts in Scotland for members of the Muslim community.” Stewart continues:
In cases of domestic violence or abuse of women, we feel that sharia courts would give Muslim women the opportunity to resolve their disputes without recourse to the criminal law.
By using sharia courts, Muslim women and their partners would not have to appear in open court and risk the public humiliation of a criminal conviction for domestic violence.
A guilty finding in a sharia court for domestic violence would not result in a criminal conviction and therefore would not appear in a Disclosure Scotland police criminal records search, thus avoiding the potentially devastating effects on the job opportunities of the male partner, particularly in sensitive areas.
Why should a male partner be spared public humiliation if he’s a Muslim but not a non-Muslim male partner who would have to appear before magistrates or in the Crown or Sheriff Court? How does it make it a good thing for women if a sharia court is going to rule, as it most likely will, in favour of the man, because women are treated as second- or third-class citizens by traditional Islam?
Here’s a good reason why sharia courts are a bad idea, in a blog item we carried a while back.