FL appeals court upholds decision against face veil on license for woman who wrote "wearing a niqab is form of Jihad in an oppressive land"
September 9, 2005
MIM: Sultana Freeman's attempt to change Florida law by using religious freedom as an excuse to impose shar'ia failed when a Florida Appeals Court ruled against allowing her to be photographed in niqab on her driver's license photo. Freeman, a convert to Islam who runs the radical Islamist website muttaqun.org ,wrote that "wearing a niqab is a form a Jihad in a foreign land.
Freeman, who is based in Winterpark, Florida runs one of the only American websites which posts messages for Al Muhajiroun, Hizb ut Tahrir and Osama Bin Laden.
For more on the Freeman case and her website see:
Veiled license photo litigant Sultana Freeman aka Sandra Keller "wearing a niqab is a form of Jihad in an oppressive land"
From Sultana Freeman's website:
ACTION ITEMS FOR THE MUTTAQUN
"So, let's start learning how we can do the things that support the brothers on the front line in jihad, if this type of jihad beyond hajj is something, thru dua to Allah, swt, we believe we should be doing, and Allah the Majestic, the Most Great knows the conditions of all persons."
"Nobody said the path would be easy; wearing niqab alone can become jihad in an oppressive land."'
"Those who have the time and inclination, please join Muttaqun Foundation for opportunities of jihad, and this starts with spreading the daw'ah to the straying Muslims first, to build up the Muslim communities so we can best be prepared to bring in the new Muslims as they are coming in, and they surely are coming in, masha'Allah
Fla. appeals court upholds ban of veil in driver's license photo
The Fifth District Court of Appeal upheld a 2003 ruling by an Orlando judge that Sultaana Freeman's right to free exercise of religion would not be burdened by the photo requirement.
"We recognized the tension created as a result of choosing between following the dictates of one's religion and the mandates of secular law," Appellate Judge Emerson R. Thompson Jr. wrote in Friday's opinion. "However, as long as the laws are neutral and generally applicable to the citizenry, they must be obeyed."
Freeman's attorney, Howard Marks, said Wednesday he was considering an appeal. He said the decision didn't respect the state constitution's guarantee of religious freedom.
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles issued Freeman, 38, a license in 2001 showing her veiled with only her eyes visible, but later suspended it.
Freeman sued, claiming the suspension infringed upon her First Amendment rights.
In 2003, Circuit Judge Janet C. Thorpe agreed with authorities that letting people show only their eyes would undermine efforts to stop terrorists. That same year, Gov. Jeb Bush signed legislation requiring a picture of a driver's full face on a license.
The appeals court found enforcement of the law "did not compel Freeman to engage in conduct that her religion forbids - her religion does not forbid all photographs."