This year, prisoner James Rivers filed a lawsuit arguing that pork should not be outright banned. He reasoned that, should Muslims not want to eat pork, they had the right to, but that it was discriminatory to ban pork for everyone. Additionally, the prison did offer meals without pork products in them before the ban.
To reinforce Rivers's lawsuit, prison authorities argued that the change to all-halal food could potentially "bankrupt the system." Despite all of this, a federal judge has thrown out Rivers's case, refusing to even hear it in court.
The judge stated that forcing non-Muslims to adhere to a Muslim diet is not the establishment of a religion because everyone eats the same food. He did not comment on the fact that, before the lawsuit by Awkal, all prisoners ate the same food in the first place.
|The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction: Now Serving only Halal food|
"This is another example of the Islamicization [sic] of America. It's establishing Islam as the state religion of the prison system," Klingenschmitt contends. "The judge's reasoning is this: He said as long as all of the prisoners are forced to eat the same food, then there's no discrimination taking place. In other words, if he enforces Muslim law equally, then there's no establishment of religion. I think that's wrong, and I pray this is overturned on the appeal."There is no word as to whether another lawsuit will be launched.
Update: Pundit Press has learned that the federal judge's name is James S. Gwin.
Update Two: You can see the entire court ruling here.