Crimm on Globalization and Domestic Islamic-Socio-Political Activism

Nina J. Crimm’s (St. John’s U.) newest article, What Could Globalization Mean for Domestic Islamic-Socio-Political Activism?, has been published  in the most recent issue of the Fordham International Law Journal. The Article’s Introduction is reprinted below.

In this post-modern era, religion has been experiencing a worldwide transformation. Some see a resurgence of traditional religion, including Islam, evidenced by an increase in renewed religious rituals and practices in countries of varying levels of economic development, political structures, and religious traditions including those of North America, the Middle East, Asia, and Africa. Others do not agree entirely. An emphasis on conservative religious beliefs and practices has declined in many industrialized, rich countries, with the United States as one prominent exception. Yet, most analysts appear to agree that developing countries in the Southern regions of the world are increasingly populated by individuals holding conservative religious beliefs. Moreover, “there are more people alive today with traditional religious beliefs than ever before in history, and they’re a larger percentage of the world’s population than they were 20 years ago.” Many think that morality-based values, if not religious precepts (Islamic, Catholic, Protestant), in all parts of the world have become more relevant to, if not a significant influence on, ideological, social, economic, and political issues.

These alterations are tied directly to globalization by which the world is experiencing a “‘historically unique increase of scale to a global interdependency among people and nations’ . . .  Continue reading

O’Halloran on The Profits of Charity

In August of this year, Oxford University Press will publish The Profits of Charity by Kerry O’Halloran (Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies at the Queensland U. of Tech.).  The book will appeal to those with an interest in faith-based organizations. The publisher’s description follows.

The Profits of Charity examines the contemporary law governing the involvement of charity in commerce and explores the reasons why this involvement is dramatically changing. From a perspective familiar to charity lawyers, NGO managers, and scholars, Kerry O’Halloran identifies the concepts and the law underpinning charities and their profits by tracing legal developments in the field and identifying the resulting opportunities and challenges for the future. At a time when many leading nations are confronting economic recession, the threat of terrorism, and the retreat of the ‘welfare state,’ this book explores why governments are turning to charities in their quest to cultivate social capital, consolidate civil society, and promote civic engagement.

In The Profits of Charity, Professor O’Halloran undertakes a comparative analysis of the balance struck among government, charity, and commerce in five leading common law nations, including the United States, Canada, England and Wales, New Zealand, and Australia. He uses analysis of legislation, outcomes of charity law reviews, and recent case law to illustrate jurisdictional differences, and concludes with an assessment of the extent and significance of the recalibrated relationship and considers the overarching issues that arise between charity law and social policy.

Aziz on Selective Enforcement of Material Support Laws Against Muslim Charities

Sahar F. Aziz (Tex. Wesleyan U. School of Law) has posted Countering Religion or Terrorism? Selective Enforcement of Material Support Laws Against Muslim Charities. The abstract follows.

The laws that prohibit providing material support to terrorism are the linchpin of the preventive counterterrorism paradigm. These laws are often the fall-back criminal provisions employed when the government cannot prove terrorism charges. But they are so broad and vaguely worded that they effectively criminalize a myriad of activities that would otherwise be constitutionally protected. Moreover, as the government is not statutorily required to prove that the defendant had a specific intent to support terrorism, it has carte blanche to prosecute a broad range of legitimate activities, such as charitable giving, peace building, and human rights advocacy. The Department of Justice, with the Supreme Court’s blessing, has consequently criminalized training and advocacy in support of nonviolence on the justification that such activities legitimize a designated group or individual. The government’s standards for what it deems as “legitimizing” are so broad that then- Solicitor General Elena Kagan went so far as to call for prosecuting lawyers for filing an amicus brief on behalf of a terrorist organization. Continue reading

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