WALLACE: But couldn’t any community then say they don’t want a mosque in our community?
CAIN: They could say that. Chris, lets go back to the fundamental issue that the people are basically saying they’re objecting to. They’re objecting to the fact Islam is both a religion and a set of laws, Sharia law. That’s the difference between any one of our other traditional religions where it’s just about religious purposes. The people in the community know best, and I happen to side with the people in Murfreesboro.
WALLACE: You’re saying any community, if they want to ban a mosque?
CAIN: Yes. They have a right to do that. That’s not discriminating based upon religion
He is making a false distinction in trying to say that Islam is a religion and a set of laws. Islam is the same as every other "traditional" religion. Its a moral code that says it is the word of a higher being that people are supposed to live by. And just like Christians and Jews, Muslims want at least parts of that code to be a part or all of civil law. To say that other traditional religions are just about religion is ridiculous. Cain's entire party wants Christianity to be more about practicing your religion in private. They want it completely part of public life and law.
The reason this Sharia fearmongering is ridiculous is because, as Cain points out, we have a separation of church and state in the US. The First Amendment basically guarantees that people can practice whatever religion they choose or don't choose as long as it doesn't conflict with certain laws, such as murder.
Sharia law, whatever that really entails, is not a threat because whatever crazy things it says can't conflict with our laws. Just because a Muslim is really, really orthodox and believes all non-converters to Islam should be killed doesn't mean that person would be protected under the First Amendment to go around killing people. By the same token, the federal gov't couldn't ban everyone in the country from working on the sabbath because the 10 commandments say so. We don't stone adulterers and we allow people to eat shellfish. This is how a secular nations work. And Muslims wanting to build a mosque where they live is not a threat to that. (This is the underlying problem. Cain and the GOP don't think we are a secular nation. They think we are Christian nation and anything that differs from Christianity is a threat.)
The only thing Islam, Muslims, and mosques are a threat to in the US are bigoted conservatives like Cain who can't accept lifestyles other than their own. That is so unAmerican its laughable. Well, it would be laughable if this guy wasn't running for president and if big chunks of the Republican party didn't completely agree with him. I don't often defend religion. But I will when the right for people to think and act freely is under attack as it is when Cain spouts moronic shit like this.