Within hours of Thursday's terror attack in France by Islamic State-inspired terrorist Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, the former speaker of the U.S. Congress, Newt Gingrich, called for weeding out all Muslim Americans who support Islamic Shariah. Appearing on Fox News, Gingrich said: "We should frankly test every person here who is of a Muslim background and if they believe in Shariah, they should be deported."
The reaction to Gingrich's outrageous and unworkable proposal was swift. "Wrong, wrong, wrong," tweeted Bob Rae, former interim leader of Canada's Liberal Party.
I agree with Rae. But when I asked him, in a tweet, "pray tell me who will stop a jihadi truck in Canada? Who will protect my family and me?" there was no response.
Gingrich's ridiculous suggestion was a godsend to Islamism apologists. They used the occasion to defend Islamic Shariah and portray it as a benign concept that posed no danger to America or the West.
Gingrich's ridiculous suggestion was a godsend to Islamism's liberal apologists.
Jeffery Goldberg, pontificating in the Atlantic, wrote: "Shariah, as Muslims understand the term, is not merely about punishment ... Islamic law concerns itself with all aspects of human existence: from marriage and divorce to economics and commercial law to personal behavior and hygiene."
In the New York Times, Noah Feldman repeated the common refrain that: "Shariah doesn't simply or exactly mean Islamic law."
And as if that were not bending over enough, given the horrors that Shariah has inflicted on human societies, Carol Kuruvilla at the Huffington Post had this to say about Shariah, despite its medieval monstrosities: "Sharia is an Arabic word that means a path to be followed, commonly a path that leads to water. This image of a road leading to the sustenance needed for life is a powerful one."
I can only imagine jihadis and Islamists howling in laughter at the gullibility of Islamism's liberal apologists in the West.
For the inexhaustible supply of Western liberals, described by Lenin as "useful Idiots," allow me to share a sample of just two Shariah laws, from among the tens of thousands that have sustained ruthless, unelected caliphates for centuries.
"If the husband's body is covered with pus and blood, and if the wife licks and drinks it, her obligations to her husband will still not be fulfilled."
"Wives enter into their husband's slavery after marriage."
Even if one should consider those two examples an internal matter for Muslims, here are two more illustrations of Shariah law as expounded by the founder of 20th century Islamism, the Indian-born Syed Mawdudi, in his book Call to Jihad.
1. "Islamic 'Jihad' does not recognize their (non-Muslims') right to administer State affairs according to a system, which in the view of Islam, is evil."
We Muslims who call Western civilization our home must fight man-made Shariah laws.
2, "If the Muslim Party commands adequate resources it will eliminate un-Islamic governments and establish the power of Islamic governments in their stead."
It is not Gingrich who needs to weed out man-made Shariah laws from the mindset of many Western Muslims. That responsibility is ours, we Muslims who call Western civilization our home.
My question to Rae still stands: Who will stop the next jihadi truck? Or will we wake up only when a boat explodes on our waterfront?
Tarek Fatah, a founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress and columnist at the Toronto Sun, is a Robert J. and Abby B. Levine Fellow at the Middle East Forum.