President Barack Obama inserted a jarring note in his speech to the annual Prayer Breakfast by insulting Christians with an inappropriate reference to the Crusades and charging that people “committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.”
He ignited a firestorm by comparing the ISIS outrages to medieval history of a thousand years ago. By drawing such simplistic analogies, it sounded like he was trying to excuse or whitewash the recent acts of Islamic terrorism, including the beheading and incinerating of hostages.
Obama didn’t acknowledge that it was Muslim aggression that prompted the first Crusade. There would not have been any motivation for the Crusades if Muslims had not been attacking Christian pilgrims who were traveling to the Holy Land for peaceful prayer and worship.
Obama’s insults to Christians weren’t any slip of the tongue. His aides confirmed that his words were deliberately chosen.
Deputy press secretary Eric Schultz said that Americans “need to be honest with ourselves.” The problem with Obama is that he needs to be honest with the fact that Islam is at war with us, and he just won’t admit it.
“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.”
The Crusades were 800 to 900 years ago; the Inquisition was 500 to 600 years ago; and slavery in the United States ended 150 years ago. Even Jim Crow, which means not letting blacks and whites eat at the same lunch counter, ended 50 years ago.
Former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore called Obama’s remarks “the most offensive I’ve ever heard a president make.” Gilmore charged that Obama “has offended every believing Christian in the United States.”
In the first week of February, the Islamic State released a video showing a Jordanian pilot being burned alive in a steel cage. The next day, the United Nations issued a report describing horrific details of the Islamic State’s “mass executions of boys, as well as reports of beheadings, crucifixions of children and burying children alive.”
And the next day after that, President Obama publicly and deliberately criticized the “terrible deeds” committed “in the name of Christ.” Quite a week, wasn’t it?
Obama presumed to lecture us how to react to Islamic atrocities. He urged us to get off “our high horse” and “remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ” and “justified” slavery and Jim Crow “in the name of Christ.”
It makes no sense to try to downplay the horrific act of burning someone alive in a steel cage by analogizing it to other conduct that Americans rejected long ago. But that’s how he is trying to excuse, or at least minimize, ISIS atrocities.
According to Bernard Lewis, a reliable historian of Islam, the Crusades were an attempt to recover territories that had been taken from the Christians by the Muslims. The crusaders risked their lives to save Christian people and regain Christian lands that the Muslims had stolen.
The Spanish Inquisition killed a couple of thousand people in the aftermath of a war to drive out Muslim invaders 500 years ago. That’s fewer than the number put to death by Muslim killers today in only a few months.
Speaking on the Fox News Channel last week, the African-American Bishop E. W. Jackson called out the president: “Sir, you just gave them a gigantic propaganda tool. They called us Crusaders, and you’ve just confirmed it. ... He’s basically justified exactly what Osama bin Laden was saying.”
Continuing, Bishop Jackson said: “Mr. President, we’re not on our ‘high horse.’ What we are on is high alert, and the American people would like for once to know that you’re willing to defend Christianity and defend America instead of defending Islam.”
Bishop Jackson, who served in the Marine Corps and earned a law degree from Harvard Law School before entering the ministry, concluded that “this president does everything he possibly can to defend Islam and does almost nothing to defend the honor of this country. And yes, once again he’s giving them exactly what they want. And they’re laughing at us, because they see it as a sign of weakness.”
Christianity is not the problem today, and Jim Crow’s not around anymore. Islamic Jihad, and its political manifestation in Sharia law, is the present-day threat to individual and civil liberties all over the world.