Theodore's World: Muslim Lawsuit, Response Rile Ohio Pork Industry ~If you can’t do the Ham, Stay out of the Slam!

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October 06, 2011

Muslim Lawsuit, Response Rile Ohio Pork Industry ~If you can’t do the Ham, Stay out of the Slam!

Muslim Lawsuit, Response Rile Ohio Pork Industry

Ohio's response to Muslim lawsuit over prison meal preparation riles state pork industry

Ohio The Morning Call

A decision by Ohio officials to remove all pork products from prison menus in response to a lawsuit by Muslim inmates is not sitting well with the state’s pork producers and processors.

Both promise action of their own, including a possible counter lawsuit, to address what they consider an unfair and illogical decision.

“We really think it’s not in the best interest, frankly, of the whole prison system,” said Dick Isler, executive director of the Ohio Pork Producers Council. “It seems like we’re letting a small group make the rules when it really isn’t in the best interest of the rest of prisoners.”

Pork is inexpensive and nutritious and compares well to other lean meats, he said.

Ironically, the inmates’ lawsuit doesn’t involve pork at all; it demands that non-pork meats like beef come from animals slaughtered according to Islamic law. But the prisons system responded by simply removing pork as an option altogether.

If Ohio would provide Muslim inmates with pre-packaged meals similar to those given to Jewish inmates, as the lawsuit requests, it wouldn’t be necessary to remove pork from menus, said David Singleton, executive director of the Ohio Justice and Policy Center, which is suing on behalf of the two inmates.

In a federal lawsuit, death row inmate Abdul Awkal complains that the state is restraining his religious freedoms by not providing meals prepared according to Islamic law, known as halal, while at the same time supplying Jewish prisoners with kosher meals.

Awkal, joined by a second inmate not on death row, says the vegetarian and non-pork options aren’t good enough. The inmates say food must be prepared in specific fashion, such as ensuring that an animal is butchered by slitting its throat and draining its blood, to conform to Islamic beliefs.

Prison guidelines for Muslim inmates already provided that meals will be “free of all pork and products containing or derived from pork.”

A judge has given lawyers and inmates for the state until next month to finish filing documents bolstering their arguments, ahead of an expected January trial.

Ohio says requiring halal meals could mean new dietary plans for as many as 2,000 inmates, while Awkal’s lawyers believe the figure is lower because not all Muslims eat halal meals.

Awkal, 52, is scheduled to die in June for killing his estranged wife, Latife Awkal, and brother-in-law Mahmoud Abdul-Aziz in 1992, in a room in Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations Court. Joining Awkal in the lawsuit is Cornelius Causey, 35, serving 15 years to life for murder and aggravated robbery convictions out of Hamilton County.

In court documents, Ohio has argued that it provides both non-pork and vegetarian meals to Muslims and says the courts have sided with this practice. The state also says that providing halal meals could hurt Ohio financially, given the current budget situation.

California provides packaged kosher meals to Jewish inmates and halal meals prepared at prisons for Muslim prisoners.

Texas, which does serve pork to prisoners, offers Muslim inmates regular, meat-free or pork-free meals but not halal meals.

Wild Thing's comment.......

The only group that bugs me demanding certain foods are the Muslims. They are the ones wanting to kill everyone with their Islam beliefs. I do not mind if they have special meals for Jewish people. Jews are not the ones causing death around the world and demanding laws be changed like the Muslims are with their Islam.

Posted by Wild Thing at October 6, 2011 01:45 AM


Yeah, let's compare the number of Jews and number of Muslims in jail, shall we? :-) Then compare the number of Jewish scientists who received Nobel prices and number of Muslim scientists who received the same. Oh wait, there are no Muslim scientists!

Posted by: Eddy at October 6, 2011 06:33 AM

They should prove their piety by refusing to eat. That will get them to heaven much sooner.

Posted by: Odin at October 6, 2011 09:15 AM

Freaking prisoners demanding how their meals are prepared and what type they should be given. This is nuts! What's sad is the State of Ohio not only caving in but bending over backwards not to offend any Muslim criminals in jail.

Posted by: BobF at October 6, 2011 09:35 AM

...the bigger issue here is "creeping" Sharia, which is becoming galloping Sharia. Awkal is such a fine example of the "Religion of Peace". I am sure he thought that he was behaving in accordance with the Quoran when he murdered his wife and brother-in-law and now he considers himself a martyr. His heinous crime was witnessed by many, yet it will take at least 20 years to end his stinking life.Now he is involved with this political lunacy. Soon they will try to impose Halal requirements on school lunches. If they ever get around to "injecting" this animal the ACLU or CAIR will try to postpone the execution,demanding that the lethal chemicals be "Halal". No one has the balls to stand up to these radicals anymore...

Posted by: Willy at October 6, 2011 10:05 AM

Halal would be a good method for executing muslim convicts.

Posted by: TomR, armed in Texas at October 6, 2011 11:31 AM

moHAMmad = muSLIME!

- Religion of Peace, 9-11-01 / 9-11-11

Posted by: darthcrUSAderworldtour07 at October 6, 2011 10:02 PM

Thank you so much for all of your input.

Darth, exactly!

Posted by: Wild Thing at October 7, 2011 03:50 AM