Princeton Prof: Europe unfriendly to Muslims, Tariq Ramadan 'dangerous man'

Princeton Prof: Europe unfriendly to Muslims, Tariq Ramadan 'dangerous man'

Many Muslims today struggle to integrate into Western society, but those in the U.S. are better off than those in Europe, said Islamic scholar Ralph Ghadban during a lecture Monday at Ohio State.

"Many of the millions of Muslims that have moved to the West wish not to integrate into society," Ghadban said.

As a member of the Institute for Advanced Studies of Princeton University, Ghadban spoke in a small conference room in Hagerty Hall, with only 15 people in attendance. The lecture, "Islamic Law of Muslim Minorities in the West" was sponsored by the Middle East Studies Center and the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures.

"[Ghadban] is not a traditional scholar," said Arabic professor Georges Tamer. "He has practical experience that combines Islamic studies with political science and philosophy."

Ghadban said that during their integration to the West, Muslims are confronted with new norms and customs, as well as a new structure of society.

Most importantly, they must abide by a secular law system, which they have never or barely been confronted with in their home countries, he said.

A third of the 1.2 to 1.4 billion Muslims in the world are minorities in 149 non-Islamic countries, and 25 to 30 million of them live in Western Europe and North America, he said.

With the exception of black converts, the majority of Muslims living in the West came to the Western world during the modern migration period of the second half of the 20th century.

He said that Muslim immigrants follow Sharia law, which is a form of Islamic justice often criticized for its brutal physical punishments, including flogging and execution by stoning. Sharia punishment is often enforced against women found guilty of offenses such as premarital sex and adultery.

Ghadban did not say if he condones these forms of punishment or not. Instead, he focused much of his lecture on the European acceptance of Islam.

Ghadban said that European law discriminates against Islam. Ghadban, who has lived in Germany for most of his life, said his country does not legally recognize Islam like it does Christianity and Judaism.

"Germany is a non-immigration country," he said. "Only a small group of people, after 50 years, can get their citizenship."

He said this creates Muslim isolationism in the Western world.

"In all European countries, Muslims receive the least education, yet they are highest population in terms of labor," he said.

Ghadban focused much of his lecture on Tariq Ramadan, a professor of Islamic studies at the University of Oxford in England. Through his writings and lectures, Ramadan has contributed substantially to the debate about the issues Muslims face in the West. He is active both at the academic and grassroots levels, lecturing extensively throughout the world on social justice and dialogue between civilizations.

"He is a dangerous man," Ghadban said. "He is focusing on disintegration rather than integration and he has no influence on people."


Source: The Lantern (English)

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