In December 2010, Will Coley, director of Muslims for Liberty — a group that decries American exceptionalism, accuses the United States of war crimes, and espouses ostensibly anti-Israel ideology — joined the Knoxville Tea Party. Coley had been involved with the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Muslim Student Association at the University of Central Florida in Valencia, where he converted to Islam. His stated goal in joining the Tea Party was to educate people about Islam and sharia doctrine and counter “misinformation” and “Islamophobia.” But his disingenuous statements and faulty interpretations of Islamic doctrine appeared to suggest otherwise.
In Tennessee, Coley expressed concern about proposed legislation to prohibit sharia in the state. According to a Tennessee Tea Party activist, Coley stated that he was working with a local Islamic school to eliminate sharia prohibitions from the Tennessee statute. He characterized the legislation as a freedom-of-religion issue and claimed that it was indicative of the hatred conservatives feel toward Muslims.
He gave local talks promoting the idea that sharia doctrine is compatible with the U.S. Constitution and went so far as to falsely proclaim that Islamic legal theory influenced American law. Coley obfuscated the truth about sharia, a comprehensive Islamic doctrine that controls every aspect of life and must be imposed on Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Sharia mandates gender apartheid, religious apartheid, cruel punishments, the denial of free speech and due process, and many other such incompatibilities with American constitutional law.
Aaron Klein reported on this a few weeks ago, ‘Tea party’ group fights for Islamic causes:
The radical left Center for American Progress, or CAP, actually promotes Muslims4Liberty as a small organization of supposed tea-party activists “fighting against the right wing’s Islamophobia,” according to a CAP description.
Think Progress, the CAP’s official blog, noted how Illume Magazine documented the efforts of Will Coley, a self-proclaimed Tea Party member and Islam convert who co-founded Muslims4Liberty to confront “anti-Islam activists head on.”
Illume quotes Coley describing how he started going to tea-party events in Florida in 2009 but was concerned about the emergence of “Islamophobia” in the movement.
“I was watching the neocon takeover happen,” said Coley. “Literally overnight I saw groups devoted to economics and constitutional limits turn into something else. Suddenly there were invites to see anti-Islam speakers. This crazy anti-Islam message was taking over.”
After moving to Tennessee, Coley said he began outreach to local tea-party groups to explain how Islam and Shariah Islamic law is compatible with tea-party principles.
Illume reports that after speaking with 14 tea-party chapters about Shariah, 12 agreed to reject so-called anti-Muslim appeals.
The chapters even supported a petition opposing a proposed “Shariah ban” in Tennessee.
Tea Party aligned with Shariah?
Coley gave lectures to tea-party chapters purporting to explain how Shariah promotes liberty.
Stated Coley: “We use principles within Shariah like maqasid (primary goals) to show their connection with John Locke’s principles of life, liberty and property.”
Shariah law, however, has often been decried as incompatible with the values of liberty or democracy.
The doctrine, for example, does not allow Muslims to be ruled by non-Muslims and calls for a special “protection” tax against all non-Muslims.
Furthermore, it dictates non-Muslims living in an Islamic state cannot build new churches or synagogues. Muslims who kill non-Muslims do not get the death penalty.
Multiple other aspects of Shariah, including its view of non-Muslims as unequal or its treatment of women and minorities, are arguably incompatible with constitutional principals as well.