UPDATE: 7 May 2014
One Law for All opposes new Sharia Watch campaign
As you all know, Co-Spokesperson Anne Marie Waters resigned in November 2013. What you don’t know is that her resignation followed more recent political disagreements on some key issues, including One Law for All’s refusal to collaborate with the members of racist and far-Right groups and our insistence on the need to distinguish between Muslims/immigrants and Islamists. “Walking a Tightrope: Between a Pro-Islamist Left and the far-Right” was written in response to the disagreements in question.
Given the context of Anne Marie’s resignation, her initiation of “Sharia Watch” and her leaving the Labour Party and joining UKIP as a candidate should be seen as an attempt at organising a “respectable” rightwing response to the issue of Sharia law and the furtherance of a politics that is diametrically at odds with One Law for All’s. As I mentioned in “Walking a Tightrope”, whilst frustration and a sense of betrayal at the Pro-Islamist Left is understandable, finding solace in and partnership with the racist Right and far-Right is not.
Since its establishment last month, Sharia Watch has publicised links like “Muslim Rape Culture” from the ghastly Frontpage Magazine, given updates on the far-Right Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller and the English Defence League, publicised videos like “Sacrificing our Daughters: On the Psychology of Islamic Rape Gangs”, and written a piece on how halal meat funds terrorism!
We want to make very clear that we have no links with Sharia Watch, UKIP or Anne Marie Waters and will oppose their brand of racist hate politics every step of the way.
One Law for All is proud of the broad-based coalition of secular Muslim, ex-Muslim, non-Muslim, atheist… groups and individuals it has helped shape over nearly 6 years of organising and activism. As is very clear from our work, our fight is not just a fight against Sharia; it is first and foremost a fight against Islamism and the religious-Right as well as countering racism and for equality, universal and citizenship rights, international solidarity, and secularism.
20 November 2013
Anne Marie Waters in leaving her post of Spokesperson for One Law for All. The organisation is sad to see her leave, grateful for her hard work and wishes her the very best.
Her letter can be seen below:
Thank you, as always, for your support of One Law for All. It is an incredibly important organisation which is doing amazing work. It is therefore with some sadness that I have decided to leave the organisation in Maryam’s capable hands.
I have had four wonderful years with One Law for All, and have learned a great deal. The fight against sharia and Islamism is one of the most important and urgent causes we face in the 21st Century. We should oppose this in solidarity and friendship with others, and unapologetically defend the civil and political rights of all people against tyranny. One Law for All is a very important part of this fight.
I will be moving on to new pastures and focusing my efforts on completing my book, promoting secularism and freedom with the National Secular Society, and working with other people and groups to speak out for democracy, liberty, and the right to freedom of speech and association.
I wish everyone at One Law for All the very best and I look forward to seeing Maryam and the brilliant volunteers at events of common cause down the line.
Thank you once again for supporting this incredible cause.
Anne Marie Waters