Is this a freakish one-off, or a portent of things to come? The Star Tribune reports:
A man trying to impose what he calls “the civil part of the sharia law” in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood of Minneapolis has sparked anger among local residents and Muslim leaders.
Abdullah Rashid, 22, a Georgia native who moved to Cedar-Riverside last year, has been making the rounds in the Somali-dominated neighborhood, telling people not to drink, use drugs or interact with the opposite sex. If he sees Muslim women he believes are dressed inappropriately, he approaches them and suggests they should wear a jilbab, a long, flowing garment. And he says he’s recruiting others to join the effort.
Local Muslim “leaders” are trying to get the Minneapolis police to crack down on Mr. Rashid.
Minneapolis police received reports in February from concerned residents who saw Rashid in a dark green uniform that said “Muslim Defense Force” and “Religious Police” and had two flags associated with ISIS and other terrorist groups.
In a recent interview, Rashid said he aims to turn Cedar-Riverside into a “sharia-controlled zone” where Muslims are learning about the proper practices of Islam and that “non-Muslims are asked to respect” it.
“People who don’t know me would say I’m a terrorist,” he said. “I’m someone who’s dedicated to Islam and trying to help the community all ways I can.”
A case can be made that Rashid, a convert to Islam, is merely a nut. But, to paraphrase John Lennon, he’s not the only one. Will he turn out to be an aberration, or a harbinger of the future? We will find out the answer to that question over the next 25 to 50 years.