In “Taxi” I wrote about the Muslim taxi drivers at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport who refuse to transport passengers visibly carrying liquor. Daniel Pipes devoted a column to the subject and followed it with notes updating his column. Star Tribune columnist Katherine Kersten explored the concerns that led to the rejection of the tentative “two-light” solution formulated by the Metropolitan Airports Commission.
When Katherine Kersten wrote her column on the proposed two-light solution, I noted that this story required additional investigation. The USA Today story on the airport taxi controversy reported the involvement of the Minnesota chapter of the Muslim American Society:
One driving force behind the move to accommodate the drivers’ beliefs is the Minnesota Chapter of the Muslim American Society.
MAS was founded by U.S. members of the Muslim Brotherhood, which promotes the spread of Islamic influence through political parties and militant groups in the Middle East. MAS members say they do not promote violence.
Hassan Mohamud, vice president of MAS of Minnesota says the Airports Commission decision will not help customers or taxi drivers.
“More than half the taxi drivers are Muslim and ignoring the sensibilities of that community at the airport I think is not fair,” he says.
The Muslim Brotherhood is the radical Islamist organization that originated in Egypt and has put down roots in Europe and elsewhere. See Lorenz Vidino’s excellent Middle East Quaterly essay on the MAS’s efforts to Islamize Europe and Pipes’s discussion of the MAS’s American efforts. Pipes also comments on the Muslim American Society’s goals here and points out Daveed Gartenstein-Ross’s important Standard column that looks at the Minnesota MAS chapter’s stated goals. Gartenstein-Ross further explored the MAS’s deep ties to radical Islam in a column for the Dallas Morning News.
In his post-column notes on the airport taxi controversy, Daniel Pipes suggested that there might be something fabricated about the issue raised by the Muslim taxi drivers:
*Neither I nor anyone I queried has ever heard of cabbies in a Muslim-majority city raising an objection to carrying a passenger with liquor. Even Ibrahim Hooper of the Council on American Islamic Relations acknowledged that the cab drivers at Minneapolis-St. Paul International are the first he’s heard objecting to carrying alcohol.
*There are reasons to doubt that the drivers’ understanding of the Koranic prohibition on alcohol makes sense. The ban on alcohol concerns its consumption, not its transportation. Mohammad Al-Hanooti, a specialist on Islamic law, states that “some Islamic scholars disagree altogether with the Minneapolis Muslim cabbies’ interpretation of Islamic law.” Al-Hanooti himself explicitly finds that “it is lawful for a Muslim driver to carry a passenger who has alcohol.” He dismissed the cabbies’ concerns: “They think it is unlawful because they carry this feeling from home, because they come from Muslim countries.”
Pipes’s notes raised a question in my mind concerning the true role of the Muslim American Society in this story at the airport. It seemed to me that the role of the Muslim American Society in the story emphasized the importance of resistance to absurd demands made in the name of tolerance. Insofar as taxis are in the common carrier business, I thought it important that someone explain that the ability to serve all comers is a bona fide occupational qualification.
In her Star Tribune column this morning, as John notes below, Kersten discovers why the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport alone in the world has Muslim taxi drivers that refuse to transport passengers carrying alcohol:
When I asked Patrick Hogan, Metropolitan Airports Commission spokesman, for his explanation, he forwarded a fatwa, or religious edict, that the MAC had received. The fatwa proclaims that “Islamic jurisprudence” prohibits taxi drivers from carrying passengers with alcohol, “because it involves cooperating in sin according to the Islam.”
The fatwa, dated June 6, 2006, was issued by the “fatwa department” of the Muslim American Society, Minnesota chapter, and signed by society officials.
Thanks to a little digging raising obvious questions that were implicit in the story, Kersten hits the mother lode. Despite its factitious nature, the airport taxi controversy exposes one template for the Islamist imperial project forcing the acceptance of Sharia law by the infidels.