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ramirez-crusades“Don’t know much about history,” the classic Sam Cooke song begins. It is has long been established that President Barack Obama knows virtually nothing about history. He is, after all, the man who visited all 57 states. Prior to the gaffes (google “obama gaffes”–you’re in for a very long reading experience) that are the topic of this article, his most recent was on February 2, 2015, when he claimed that George Washington, like him, made “booze in the White House.” John Adams, the second president, was the first to live in the White House. Construction on the White House wasn’t complete during Washington’s time in office. In Obama’s most current case, the lyrics of Cooke’s hit should read thus:

Don’t know much about history,

Know even less ‘bout theology…

At the National Prayer Breakfast, Mr. Obama, once again, demonstrated his complete lack of knowledge of history and theology, and as always, his fecklessness and complete lack of class. A complete transcript of his remarks may be found here, for those who just can’t rip their gaze away from a particularly bloody car wreck.

The background for his address was the barbaric–there really aren’t sufficient adjectives, are there? Inhuman? Subhuman?–murder by immolation of a Jordanian pilot by ISIS. Actually, the Islamic scum that murdered him probably did it many weeks before they made public the video of his murder. The spectacle of Barack Obama preaching on faith, purporting to speak of what God desires, is particularly bizarre (go here for an article on that topic, and here as well, which reports on yet another Obama Prayer Breakfast harangue), even blasphemous, as bizarre in its own way as Barack Obama purporting to speak for America and American interests. It remains highly unlikely that Barack Obama recognizes any being greater than himself.

He began his remarks with words that have probably never before passed his lips:

Thank you.  Well, good morning.  Giving all praise and honor to God.

There are some people, usually devout evangelical Christians, that speak that way. Barack Obama has never been among them.

He came close to actually identifying the enemies of mankind, but of course, could not bring himself to actually identify their motivating beliefs:

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.

It is most unfortunate that Islamist murderers are not, in fact, “betraying” Islam, but directly following its scriptures. This is, in large part, why so-called “moderate” Muslims have no actual basis for opposing Islamists.  Islam is not a religion of peace, but a political system with religious overtones that has always been dedicated to conquest and domination. There are unquestionably Muslims that do not follow this path and that live in peace with their neighbors, but it is jihadists, not they, that are following the letter and intent of their shared faith. In “claiming the mantle of religious authority” for their actions, all they need do is point to the many, very specific portions of the Koran and hadiths that mandate them.

While Mr. Obama can easily criticize Christianity–though he must flash back centuries to do it–criticizing contemporary Islamist brutes is another matter.  Barack Obama can barely utter two sentences without defending Islam, and this speech was no different. Remember that these were not off the cuff remarks, but a speech carefully crafted for a specific, sacred occasion.

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.

And to what “high horse” does Mr. Obama refer? Has not America led the world in defending liberty and religious tolerance, in protecting the meek and destroying oppression? Not under Barack Obama. Under him, America must climb down from this high horse and observe the doctrine of religious and cultural relativity. America must be humbled, and Barack Hussein Obama is just the man to do it.

Again, the lack of any grasp of history by the smartest man ever to occupy the Oval Office is stunning. The story of the Crusades is one of Christian Europe having to fight, tooth and nail against Islamic invasion. Some were surely inspired by Christ in that battle, but for Christian Europe, it was a matter of fight or die, and in that fight, many centuries ago, and in the Inquisition, no Christian could point to any New Testament scripture to justify their actions. Then and now, Muslims can point to a great many specific scriptures of their faith that not only justify their actions, but mandate them.

There is likewise no portion of the New Testament that mandates or supports slavery or Jim Crow or any other false argument Barack Obama may erect to justify his inaction in the face of barbarism not seen in centuries. That is precisely what he is doing: excusing his own weakness and support for those same barbarians and their cruel beliefs.

Even if the equivalency Mr. Obama so wrongly draws between ancient Christianity and Islam ever existed, what does that have to do with the existential battle in which we are embroiled? How could that possibly justify doing nothing to save western civilization now?  Does he truly have no idea that Islam is fundamentally incompatible with individual liberty and democracy?

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.

The unquenchable urge of the totalitarian is always present in Barack Obama. “Hate groups” have twitter accounts, and there is bigotry in cyberspace? And what would Mr. Obama do? Stamp them out, deny them freedom of speech, while ignoring those that are committing mass murder every day? Keep in mind that while suggesting such people must be suppressed, he gave lip service to freedom of speech. Mr. Obama also warns us to be humble, to believe we aren’t alone in possessing the truth. So what do we do?

And so, as people of faith, we are summoned to push back against those who try to distort our religion — any religion — for their own nihilistic ends.  And here at home and around the world, we will constantly reaffirm that fundamental freedom — freedom of religion — the right to practice our faith how we choose, to change our faith if we choose, to practice no faith at all if we choose, and to do so free of persecution and fear and discrimination.

We must “push back” against those that distort any religion. And where, precisely, are Christians doing this? How? Today, only one faith can lie, rape, torture, enslave and murder at will and be entirely in accord with its scriptures: Islam. And how do we ensure freedom of religion? Don’t look to Barack Obama. He’s not going to actually use force, except the occasional bomb or drone-launched missile. Think I’m wrong? Consider this:

But part of humility is also recognizing in modern, complicated, diverse societies, the functioning of these rights, the concern for the protection of these rights calls for each of us to exercise civility and restraint and judgment.  And if, in fact, we defend the legal right of a person to insult another’s religion, we’re equally obligated to use our free speech to condemn such insults and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with religious communities, particularly religious minorities who are the targets of such attacks.  Just because you have the right to say something doesn’t mean the rest of us shouldn’t question those who would insult others in the name of free speech.  Because we know that our nations are stronger when people of all faiths feel that they are welcome, that they, too, are full and equal members of our countries.

That’s right. The United States of America stands strongly for cultural and religious diversity and moral equivalence. We’ll strongly “exercise civility and restraint and judgment.” But most of all, we’ll use the awesomely powerful force of telling those who insult other religions that they’re poopy-faces. After all, the future shouldn’t belong to those that insult the prophet of Islam. Mr. Obama even provided a stirring example of how America, under his inspired leadership–notice how many times he refers to himself in a single paragraph–defends religious freedom:

Last year, we prayed together for Pastor Saeed Abedini, detained in Iran since 2012.  And I was recently in Boise, Idaho, and had the opportunity to meet with Pastor Abedini’s beautiful wife and wonderful children and to convey to them that our country has not forgotten brother Saeed and that we’re doing everything we can to bring him home.  And then, I received an extraordinary letter from Pastor Abedini.  And in it, he describes his captivity, and expressed his gratitude for my visit with his family, and thanked us all for standing in solidarity with him during his captivity.

Look at all Barack Obama did for Pastor Abedini! Can anyone doubt his courage and leadership in defending faith? Can anyone doubt his debilitating narcissism? An American minister is being held and tortured by the Iranians, and all Mr. Obama can do is talk about how it affects him and how the pastor and his family so appreciate the efforts of the Dear Leader.

We’re going to keep up this work — for Pastor Abedini and all those around the world who are unjustly held or persecuted because of their faith.

Really. And what “work” would this be? Doing everything possible to ensure Iran obtains nuclear weapons so they can really make some religious statements?  Does this “work” consist of getting letters from imprisoned ministers praising Barack Obama? What, exactly, is Barack Obama doing to save the lives of Christians around the world, people being murdered by the tens and hundreds of thousands? Calls for respect of religions that mandate and sanction genocide are hardly encouraging to those facing the muzzles of Islamist’s guns.

It is particularly disgusting to hear Barack Obama preach, particularly when he is unable to understand that there are very real differences in beliefs, and some religions are indeed inferior to others, not only in text, but in practice.

Humility; a suspicion of government getting between us and our faiths, or trying to dictate our faiths, or elevate one faith over another.  And, finally, let’s remember that if there is one law that we can all be most certain of that seems to bind people of all faiths, and people who are still finding their way towards faith but have a sense of ethics and morality in them — that one law, that Golden Rule that we should treat one another as we wish to be treated.  The Torah says ‘Love thy neighbor as yourself.’  In Islam, there is a Hadith that states: ‘None of you truly believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.’  The Holy Bible tells us to ‘put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.’  Put on love.

Mr. Obama would be better advised to put on rationality. Here’s a quick quiz:

Q: Of the three faiths Mr. Obama claims are all about love, which actually tells its followers to kill the practitioners of the others and to conquer and enslave the world?

A: Islam

Q: Of the three faiths Mr. Obama claimed are identical, which is murdering people of all faiths around the world in the name of its religion?

A: Islam

Q: Of the three faiths for which Mr. Obama claims moral equivalency, which one is actually murdering Christians and Jews?

A: Islam

Q: Of the three faiths about which Mr. Obama claims we must have humility, which one actually has scriptures mandating the deaths of Jews and anyone not of its faith?

A: Islam

There appears to be a pattern developing.

But we must give Mr. Obama credit where credit is due. He does profess to stand for some things:

As children of God, let’s work to end injustice — injustice of poverty and hunger.  No one should ever suffer from such want amidst such plenty.  As children of God, let’s work to eliminate the scourge of homelessness, because, as Sister Mary says, ‘None of us are home until all of us are home.’  None of us are home until all of us are home.

As children of God, let’s stand up for the dignity and value of every woman, and man, and child, because we are all equal in His eyes, and work to send the scourge and the sin of modern-day slavery and human trafficking, and ‘set the oppressed free.

Muslim terrorists, and entire Muslim nations–Mr. Obama couldn’t rouse himself to point a righteous finger at Iran, a nation run by evil tyrants responsible for much of the evil in the world–are murdering hundreds of thousands and working feverishly to develop the weapons necessary to murder millions, millions they specifically and repeatedly identify and promise to kill, and the President of the United States is resolute in his rhetoric about standing up for human dignity, ending poverty and hunger, and homelessness, and slavery and human trafficking, and he wants to “set the oppressed free.” Right. Perhaps he could start with Pastor Abedini.

By all means, take the link and read the entire speech. It is as empty as Barack Obama’s soul. It is self-referential in the extreme, and full of meaningless progressive platitudes and calls to think about thinking about vaguely expressed principles. It does nothing to give comfort to those that are truly being oppressed and murdered by Islamist terrorists and terror states such as Iran, but it goes a very long way indeed to convince them that under Barack Obama, America will do little or nothing to bother them.

After all, Barack Obama stands ready to say harsh words about those that insult the religions of others, particularly Islam. Doesn’t that strike fear into the hearts of Islamist murderers? Doesn’t that encourage and give hope to our allies in the war for the future of civilization?

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UPDATE, 02-10-15, 1845: And What Better Place To Provoke Outrage Than The National Prayer Breakfast? And what better place to insult every Christian in the world? 

But [former Obama Political guru David] Axelrod told Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly that he believes the president meant to spark some uproar.

‘I think he knew what he was saying and he knew it was provocative,’ Axelrod said. ‘His point is we have a quarter of the world’s population Islamic and the vast majority of them have nothing to do with extremism and his point is let us not define that entire quarter of the planet by the actions of extremists, let’s isolate the extremists.’

White House spokesman Eric Schultz said last week Obama was trying to talk about moments ‘over the course of human history there are times where extremists pervert their own religion to justify violence.’

Obama also believes it is important for the U.S. ‘to be honest with ourselves and look inward, and hold ourselves accountable’ when it falls short of its values and standards, Schultz said.

Of course; “isolate the extremists.” And that will stop the jihadist crucifixions, beheadings, rape, torture, mayhem and murder how, exactly? I often wonder how adults like Eric Schultz can stand before the press and spout such lies. Have they no consciences? When Islamist beasts are causing havoc and mass murder, and expanding daily, reminders of the misbehavior of others centuries ago do nothing to staunch the blood flow.

As to holding ourselves accountable, are we immolating prisoners of war? Raping, crucifying and beheading children? Threatening to obliterate entire peoples, and building up the arms and strength to do it? If not, inward looking navel gazing is of no use whatsoever, and tragically, neither is Barack Obama.