Now wait a minute: the mainstream media has told us, whenever an honor killing has taken place in North America or Europe, that honor killing is a cultural practice that has nothing to do with Islam — despite the fact that Muslims commit 91 percent of honor killings worldwide. What’s more, a manual of Islamic law certified as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy by Al-Azhar University, the most respected authority in Sunni Islam, says that “retaliation is obligatory against anyone who kills a human being purely intentionally and without right.” However, “not subject to retaliation” is “a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring’s offspring.” (‘Umdat al-Salik o1.1-2).
In other words, someone who kills his child incurs no legal penalty under Islamic law. Nonetheless, the media drumbeat is constant: honor killings have nothing to do with Islam. And so if honor killings have nothing to do with Islam, why should the Canadian Council of Muslim Women think that a law against honor killing have anything to do with them?
“Muslim women’s group opposes addition of honour killings to Criminal Code,” by Juliet O’Neill for Postmedia News, August 5 (thanks to Twostellas):
OTTAWA — The Canadian Council of Muslim Women opposes the addition of “honour killings” to the Criminal Code on the grounds “murder is murder” and a special category could stigmatize new immigrants and some ethnic or religious groups….
“We as an organization don’t want the term honour killing used in Canada because it’s making it exotic, something alien, and foreign, and people are using that as a rationale to understand the murders,” said Alia Hogben, a social worker and executive director of the Canadian Council of Muslim Women, a national non-profit voluntary organization.
“Let’s not go that route. A murder is a murder. Let’s not separate us as new immigrants or ethnic groups from the rest of Canadian women. It doesn’t matter which culture, which religion or which ethnic origin we come from, the same laws should apply to us.”
Law professors Isabel Grant of the University of British Columbia, Debra Parkes of the University of Manitoba and Elizabeth Sheehy of the University of Ottawa all said the Criminal Code already contains tools to deal with “honour killings” and said it would be difficult to define it in law….
Sheehy said creation of a separate crime would embed in the law the erroneous notion that murders of wives and daughters only happens in minority groups.
“It would be racializing the crime to consider honour killing as a different form of murder,” she said.
In response to public outrage, Grant said governments have a record of adding to the kinds of murders — related to stalking, terrorism, and organized crime for example — that must be considered first-degree murder.
But in this case she wondered how it would be defined.
“How would you draft one that wasn’t discriminatory against certain ethnic communities?” she asked. “I think that would be really tricky.”…
Why? What does this have to do with ethnicity at all? Islam is not a race, and in any case, an honor killing law doesn’t have to make any mention of Islam at all. But I have an idea for how Canada can formulate an honor killing that doesn’t “discriminate” against “certain ethnic communities.” Syria recently scrapped a law limiting the length of sentences for honor killings, but “the new law says a man can still benefit from extenuating circumstances in crimes of passion or honour ‘provided he serves a prison term of no less than two years in the case of killing.'” And in 2003 the Jordanian Parliament voted down on Islamic grounds a provision designed to stiffen penalties for honor killings. Al-Jazeera reported that “Islamists and conservatives said the laws violated religious traditions and would destroy families and values.”
So Canadian lawmakers can simply study the Syrian and Jordanian laws that mandate relaxed penalties for honor killings as compared to other murders, and formulate their own honor killing law based on the definitions made in those legal codes as to what constitutes an honor killing.
And as a lagniappe, since the new Canadian law would be modeled after the Syrian and Jordanian codes, no one could legitimately charge Canada with “discriminating” against any particular “ethnic community” by legislating against honor killing.