Obama says “Islam” and “Terror” in same sentence!!
President Barack Obama has taken a good deal of heat for his “high horse,” and “people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ” comments at the National Prayer Breakfast yesterday (2/6/15). Reportage of the remarks generally take issue with Obama apparently insulting Christianity while he refuses to say anything negative about Islam. The Obama mantra is that Islam and Jihadist savagery have absolutely nothing to do with each other.
Your humble blogger reviewed the full text of Obama’s speech to see the context of those remarks. Mind you, I am no Obama fan and wanted to see just how deep he had gone with his “Christophobia.” 😉 Imagine my surprise when I saw that the President actually uttered “Islam” and Terror” in the same sentence earlier in his remarks! Can it be that the President’s position on the relationship between Islam and Islamic terrorism is evolving? The sentence I refer to is in bold, the widely reported “Christophobic” remarks are underlined:
But we also see faith being twisted and distorted, used as a wedge — or, worse, sometimes used as a weapon. From a school in Pakistan to the streets of Paris, we have seen violence and terror perpetrated by those who profess to stand up for faith, their faith, professed to stand up for Islam, but, in fact, are betraying it. We see ISIL, a brutal, vicious death cult that, in the name of religion, carries out unspeakable acts of barbarism — terrorizing religious minorities like the Yezidis, subjecting women to rape as a weapon of war, and claiming the mantle of religious authority for such actions.
We see sectarian war in Syria, the murder of Muslims and Christians in Nigeria, religious war in the Central African Republic, a rising tide of anti-Semitism and hate crimes in Europe, so often perpetrated in the name of religion.
So how do we, as people of faith, reconcile these realities — the profound good, the strength, the tenacity, the compassion and love that can flow from all of our faiths, operating alongside those who seek to hijack religion for their own murderous ends?
Humanity has been grappling with these questions throughout human history. And lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ. Michelle and I returned from India — an incredible, beautiful country, full of magnificent diversity — but a place where, in past years, religious faiths of all types have, on occasion, been targeted by other peoples of faith, simply due to their heritage and their beliefs — acts of intolerance that would have shocked Gandhiji, the person who helped to liberate that nation.
So this is not unique to one group or one religion. There is a tendency in us, a sinful tendency that can pervert and distort our faith. In today’s world, when hate groups have their own Twitter accounts and bigotry can fester in hidden places in cyberspace, it can be even harder to counteract such intolerance. But God compels us to try. And in this mission, I believe there are a few principles that can guide us, particularly those of us who profess to believe.
Now, lest we get too excited about Obama finally linking terror to Islam, it may very well be that he went off the teleprompter for a brief moment and “misspoke.” Let us hope that is not the case. – Grizzly Joe