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  • Obama criticized for remarks on ISIS, Christianity

    Obama criticized for remarks on ISIS, Christianity - The Times of India


    WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama may have thought he was giving a straightforward history lesson at the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday when he compared the atrocities of the Islamic State to the bloodshed committed in the name of Christianity in centuries past.But that is not how many of his longtime critics saw it.

    "The president's comments this morning at the prayer breakfast are the most offensive I've ever heard a president make in my lifetime," said Jim Gilmore, the former Republican governor of Virginia. "He has offended every believing Christian in the United States."

    Rush Limbaugh devoted a segment of his show to what he said were the president's insults to the "whole gamut of Christians" and Twitter's right wing piled on. Guests on Megyn Kelly's Fox News show spent 15 minutes airing objections to the president's comments.


    "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," Obama said. "In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ."

    Still, the president went on to focus on the terrorism carried out under the guise of Islam, saying that the last few months have shown the degree to which faith can be "twisted and misused in the name of evil."

    "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," he said, describing the Islamic State as "a brutal, vicious death cult that, in the name of religion, carries out unspeakable acts of barbarism."

    Bill Donohue, the president of the Catholic League, said in a statement that Obama was trying to "deflect guilt from Muslim madmen." He said the president's comparisons were "insulting" and "pernicious."Gilmore said the comments go "further to the point that Obama does not believe in America or the values we all share."

    White House officials had no comment on Thursday night about the criticism.

    In his speech, Obama said the use of religion to justify violence and killings "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," he said.

    The talk of terrorism was the sharpest note in a speech that was otherwise a reflection on religion and humility, and it was Obama's latest effort to avoid branding recent violence by the Islamic State or those professing common cause with it as "Islamic" extremism.

    His team has said that doing so would play into the hands of terrorist organizations, legitimizing their message.

  • #2
    Well what Obama said was true. During the dark ages and the Inquisition, people were killed and burned at the stake in the name of religion and many atrocities committed in the name of Christ.

    In fact, it is those people that criticized Obama that are offensive for suggesting that we turn a blind eye to the past history of atrocities committed by Christians They are effectively saying that we should forget about the Holocaust as well since that Holocaust falls under what Obama was referencing.

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    • #3
      As a Catholic, I'm not particularly offended by the President's remarks. What offends me are the zealots who claim to represent my beliefs in such a short-sighted, holier-than-thou manner that any remotely negative reference to the Vatican's millenia-long existence (see Crusades, Spanish Inquisition, Protestant wars etc. etc.) is seen as "anti-Christian." We should instead acknowledge and atone for our past sins, and use them as an example to others of what can happen when mortal agendas corrupt the message of a higher calling--lest history repeat itself once more.
      "Draft beer, not people."

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      • #4
        Obama gets criticized for buying a cup of coffee, especially by the likes of drug addict Rush Limbaugh & apologist for the Catholic Church Bill Donohue (what sort of person attacks child abuse victims?). The statements were historically accurate. A non-story.
        sigpic

        Win nervously lose tragically - Reds C C

        Comment


        • #5
          ISIS executes a hostage by burning him alive.

          Obama says Christianity has done the same thing 700 years ago.

          1. Does that mean ISIS represents Islam in his mind?
          2. If he thinks we are no better than ISIS, does that mean we can arbitrarily torture to death any and all ISIS members we catch?
          3. Does one wrong justify another?
          "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

          Comment


          • #6
            geezus (bad pun intended), read his whole remarks.

            his whole point is that Christians did some terrible things in the name of Christ in the past, but that doesn't mean that those actions were what Christianity was about, or represented the whole of Christianity.

            similarly, Muslims have done terrible things in the name of Allah and the Prophet, but that doesn't mean that they represent Islam.
            There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

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            • #7
              Originally posted by gunnut View Post
              ISIS executes a hostage by burning him alive.

              Obama says Christianity has done the same thing 700 years ago.

              1. Does that mean ISIS represents Islam in his mind?
              2. If he thinks we are no better than ISIS, does that mean we can arbitrarily torture to death any and all ISIS members we catch?
              3. Does one wrong justify another?
              I would read as religion at some points of time is used to excuse the worst of crimes. He is right.
              "Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?" ~ Epicurus

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by astralis View Post
                geezus (bad pun intended), read his whole remarks.

                his whole point is that Christians did some terrible things in the name of Christ in the past, but that doesn't mean that those actions were what Christianity was about, or represented the whole of Christianity.

                similarly, Muslims have done terrible things in the name of Allah and the Prophet, but that doesn't mean that they represent Islam.
                Which part of my entire post was wrong?
                "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

                Comment


                • #9
                  what's wrong is that Obama wasn't insinuating 1, 2, or 3.
                  There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by astralis View Post
                    what's wrong is that Obama wasn't insinuating 1, 2, or 3.
                    Therefore I asked the questions.

                    You don't allow questions any more?
                    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      if you know he wasn't insinuating those questions, why are you asking them?

                      for instance, why would you ask if "ISIS represents Islam in his mind"? why would you think that Obama believes "we are no better than ISIS"?

                      you're not really asking questions here, are you.
                      There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The problem with Obama's speech is that he is pandering, and is a child of the Modern West. The Modern West does not understand anything but debt and hedonism, and as a result all social "values" exist to signal status, not to advance society. The US is the most "religious" country. Oh yay, goody, more "Catholics" that use birth control and don't believe in Evolution, both the opposite of the Church's position.
                        Why?
                        Well because it makes me feel good.
                        Okay, you don't have Social Values, you have feel good fashion statements. Good for you! Don't lecture ISIS on what religion is, though.
                        "The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood"-Otto Von Bismarck

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by astralis View Post
                          if you know he wasn't insinuating those questions, why are you asking them?

                          for instance, why would you ask if "ISIS represents Islam in his mind"? why would you think that Obama believes "we are no better than ISIS"?

                          you're not really asking questions here, are you.
                          Are you sure he wasn't insinuating those questions? Why bring up Christianity from 700 years ago? Why not bring up Imperial Japan from 70 years ago? Why not bring up Nazi Germany from 70 years ago? Why not bring up Abu Ghraib from 10 years ago. We know not all Germans were Nazis. We know not all Japanese were war criminals. We know not all GIs abused prisoners. Why specifically bring up Christianity from a long time ago when there are more recent examples for us to learn from?
                          "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Because the Crusades were carried out specifically in the name of Christianity.

                            Okay, but playing off that. The Crusades were carried out by Western Christendom, specifically. Modern Westerners are descended from a group of barbarians that conquered Roman Rump states. We coalesced into kingdoms, but the Church was ABOVE the state, and above ALL states. This worked out pretty well for 900 years, and has a much better track record than the Enlightenment, which gave us Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Chattel Slavery, the Thirty Years War, the Napoleonic Wars, the Crimean War, World War I, almost World War III....

                            Most thinkers throughout history, and I am going back to the Phoenicians, would think separation of Church and State very dumb and think our track record proves it.

                            Here, let me ask a question:
                            Thirty Years War is commonly recognized as the last major war over religion in the Western World.

                            Anyone here think that solved French-German relations?
                            Last edited by GVChamp; 07 Feb 15,, 02:59.
                            "The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood"-Otto Von Bismarck

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Anyone who believes the Crusades were predominately motivated by religion needs to seriously re-examine their knowledge of history. The Crusades were not predominately motivated by religious belief. Starting with the 1st Crusade and going downhill from there the motivations were largely driven by geopolitical and economic forces dominating Europe at the time - primarily a request by the Byzantine Emperor to the West for men at arms to push back Muslim invaders following the defeat at Manzikert, a desire by the relevant Pope to impress and in debt the Orthodox Church and a surplus of landless peasants and Norman knights due in part to population growth and the gradual adoption of Patrilineal primogeniture as the standard inheritance system in Western Europe.

                              As for the comment that "This worked out pretty well for 900 years." again a review of European history would show that Europe was riven by systemic and almost continual warfare during the period in question. This is not to say that the primacy of the Church was the cause of these events but rather that in the end the Church itself could do little to moderate the situation for various reasons including it's own involvement in secular politics.
                              Last edited by Monash; 07 Feb 15,, 09:30.
                              If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

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