Rallies against Islamic law draw counter-protests across US

Monday, 12 Jun, 2017

In a display of the nation's current political strife, three groups gathered at the intersection of Roseville Parkway and Galleria Boulevard Saturday to protest for and against the "March Against Sharia".

Demonstrators gathered to protest against Islamic law take part in a rally on Sat., June 10, 2017, in NY.

Many standing from the organization Act for America, a group that opposes Sharia Law. However, Seattle police used tear gas to disperse rowdy demonstrators and made several arrests following an anti-Shariah rally and a much larger counter-protest.

The event was part of a nationwide protest campaign against Sharia law, that took place in front of the Valencia State College's East Campus with each group chanting and shouting across the entrance of the campus at each other. Organizers say they're taking a stand against Sharia, which they say is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.

Harsh words from anti-Sharia demonstrators led to pushing and shoving, the newspaper reports, and one counter-protester kicked an anti-Sharia demonstrator, which led to further fighting.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy program and it says its mission is to enhance a better understanding of Islam.

The atmosphere was tense but the protest went off with no violence and only one arrest, police said.

But while there is little likelihood that Shariah would ever supplant US law, some states have already moved to insulate themselves against the possibility.

"We believe that Muslims just like any religious background are a part of our community and we want to stand in togetherness and solidarity with them", said Korn.

"There may be people that bring hate to the table but we are here to counter that with peace", said Ahmad.

"All across this country today, people came out and shut the racists down", said John Beacham of Answer Chicago.

Hundreds of counterprotesters marched through Seattle on Saturday to confront a few dozen people claiming Shariah is incompatible with Western freedoms.

In Austin, the group gathered at the Capitol where they were met by counter protestors. Around 100 people got together inside the Capitol rotunda to hear to speeches about how Islamic law is a threat to democracy.

The SPLC says Oath Keepers is "one of the largest radical antigovernment groups in the United States", organised around a "set of baseless conspiracy theories".

"There's an anti-Trump, a pro-Trump, anti-extremists, so there are a variety of messages here", San Bernardino police spokeswoman Eileen Hards said.

"They claim to be anti this small portion of the Muslim population supposedly but they are a anti Muslim group", said Marie.