Did Pres. Obama draw moral equivalence between Christianity and ISIS?

Today at the National Prayer Breakfast, in the context of talking about horrible things that ISIS does, Pres. Obama, pseudo-sophisticate in chief, said:

“Unless 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.”


Did he just draw a moral equivalence between Christianity and radical Islamo-Fascism? HERE

I note that the Inquisitions (there were more than one and they are not well understood) were a long time ago, and the Crusades were a lot longer ago. ISIS burned a guy a few days ago.

Also, he won’t say that what ISIS did came out of Islam, qua Islam, but he won’t hesitate to suggest that the ills that Christians perpetrated came from Christianity, qua Christianity.


The latest Ramirez offering HERE

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  1. Sconnius says:

    even among history instructors like myself the Crusades and Inquisitions are terribly understood. Why should we expect anybody in the White House to know any better?

    But you are correct, it’s a logical fallacy to compare barbaric terrorists of the 21st century to Sovereign Nations of the 11th-14th centuries. Of course, maybe he’s ignoring the uniqueness of other times, and is fascinated by what the leaders of those eras had: uncontested temporal authority and power…

  2. Patti Day says:

    Somebody should give him a copy of Steve Wiedenkof’s book The Glory of the Crusades so he wouldn’t sound so abysmally ignorant.

  3. brushmore says:

    Let’s see, the Crusades were a defensive war against Islam. As for the Inquisitions, according to Wikipedia, it’s estimated that about 3,000 people were executed over several centuries. Never mind that ISIS has already killed way more than that. Where’s the equivalency again?

  4. acardnal says:

    It’s not surprising that Obama has a biased view of Christianity. After all, he was a member of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s church in Chicago for about 20 years and was undoubtedly influenced by his preaching! Wright married Obama and Michelle and baptized his two daughters. He’s donated tens of thousands of dollars to his church. He cannot deny the relationship …although he tried to diminish it.

    There is an infamous video of his pastor delivering a sermon on America and God on the web if you want to see it.

  5. Traductora says:

    Well stated. The big difference is that violence and coercion are inherent in Islam, and not at all supported in Christianity. This is why they are always corrected. The Spanish Inquisition was very politically motivated, and in fact, so was the violence and cruelty of Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, Cromwell, Calvin, the Huguenots, etc. The Crusades were a defensive action meant to rescue Christians and formerly Christian places from the Muslims who had overrun them and were holding thousands of Christians captive.

    But violence, cruelty, slavery and oppression are part and parcel of Islam. And our hateful president, who about two weeks ago described the U.S. as a Muslim country, and in fact, one of the “largest Muslim countries,” is simply doing what you’d expect from somebody who thinks he’s the new caliph of the new caliphate.

  6. Boniface says:

    Ugh, what nonsense. The Crusades (legitimate ones – those recognized as actual Crusades at the time by the Church – were noble and glorious. Inquisitions? Obama has no idea what he is talking about. None. He is spouting anti-Catholic, Enlightenment-era cliches about two millimeters deep (as usual). This is just clownish. He also believes (as he made obvious a few years ago) that medievals thought the earth was flat. “Oh, hello – no, this isn’t a 19th-century Victorian ‘history’ textbook- please call back later?”
    Black Legend, anyone?

  7. The Cobbler says:

    Jim Crow laws were enacted or enforced in the name of Christ?

  8. Matthias1 says:

    Typical shallow modern nonsense about the crusades. Some brief thoughts.

    1. The Crusades were a direct response to Muslim aggression. As Thomas Madden notes, traditional Islam thought sees the world as divided into two sphere: the House of Islam and the House of War. Everything not under the House of Islam is under the House of War and is to be conquered by jihad and brought under the control of Islam. Christianity has nothing comparable. This is not the view of apologists, but mainstream crusade historians like Madden.

    2. Muhammad himself is considered to have waged Jihad to spread Islam at its beginning since he entered Mecca with an army of 10,000 and spread Islam throughout the Arabian Peninsula by conquest. When his followers set out to wage a Jihad that conquered 2/3 of the Christian world, they were following in his footsteps. Again, Christianity has nothing comparable.

    3. There is no “Inquisition,” there are a series of very different inquisitions across centuries and under different authorities. The Spanish Inquisition (which nobody expects, but makes a smashing good film) was largely controlled by the Spanish government.

    4. Maybe Obama should get off his high horse and learn something about the past before he decides to talk about.

  9. Diane says:

    I really don’t think that Obama cares if he is historically correct or not. He just assumes that all those who voted him in TWICE will believe whatever he says. We’re in for a tough ride. Batten down the hatches.

  10. Bosco says:

    I saw what the U.S. prince of this world had to say about Jesus and the Crusades.

    I think he is, based on his life experiences and publicly expressed sentiments, a closet Muslim.

    Everyone seems to tiptoe around this conclusion, looking here and there for some rationale explaining why he fails to act or condemn the ever increasing savagery perpetrated by Islamic terrorists. He cannot and will not condemn them (in my estimation) because in his heart he sympathizes with them and approves of the ends if not the means.

    The only consolation I have is that the Bishop of Rome will confront the prince of this world when Francis addresses both Houses of Congress, the U.N., and the White House during Francis’ U.S. tour de force commencing September 24 of this year.

    Perhaps an ecumenical prayer from an Imam in the Rose Garden can be arranged on short notice. ¡Vaya lío!

    Sadly however, I read:

    “Francis, meanwhile, has decried conditions at the US-Mexico border and said that he would have liked to enter the US through the Mexico border as a ‘sign of brotherhood and of help to the immigrants’, but his schedule does not have enough space for such a trip.”


    This U.S. gig immediately precedes the October Synod. Great stuff!

  11. Nicholas says:

    The thing that upsets me is that he says that we should not have absolute faith in God. He is directly promoting moral and religious relativism. He is not a proper Christian, he just thinks that Jesus was a cool hippy.

  12. I’ve dealt with debating liberals like Obama before. They reach way back into the ancient past and use it as a cudgel to attempt to win arguments and influence opinions. They cannot win on the merits of their own twisted ideology so they resort to kneejerking to their amateur limited knowledge, and with eyes shut tight and straight arm and finger screaming: but, but, “the Inquisition!” . . . . “the Crusades!” It’s like debating a 2 year old.

  13. Jason Keener says:

    Even if Christians killed millions upon millions of people during the Crusades and Inquisition, that really has nothing to do with what is going on centuries later in 2015. We have a very radicalized element of Islam bent on carrying out terrorist attacks and violently imposing Sharia Law on large swaths of people. The fundamental problem of Islam as a whole is that it has never really reconciled the idea of religious faith with reason, which can easily lead to irrational fanaticism and other ideas that prevent the building of a just and flourishing society. We must understand that a good Muslim sees their Prophet’s questionable moral life as something to be emulated. Emulation of the Prophet in the minds of Muslims justifies, for example, the practice of having child brides, polygamy, and spreading religious ideas through violence and war. It will be very difficult, I’m afraid, to dialogue peacefully with people who tenaciously view their religious beliefs as beyond all reproach, discussion, and logical examination. President Obama better start dealing in reality and make it clear this kind of radical Islam will not be tolerated by civilized people. We can only hope that Obama will show half the courage and resolve the King of Jordan has shown these past few days. Unfortunately, Obama is much more likely to fiddle as Rome burns.

  14. The Cobbler says:

    In Spain’s defense, the Spanish Inquisition at the time it was established was about as “political” in principle as legal measures against Communism in the US during the Cold War. Spain had been taken back from Muslims who originally were foreign invaders (and I mean invade as in warfare) motivated by Islam — that’s just a fact no matter what anyone thinks of Islam as a religion or over its whole history. It just doesn’t make any sense to fight off an invader in war but just assume that people motivated by the same system of thought who aren’t actively killing people in your country couldn’t possibly try to take it over more subtly. It’s neither an example of Christianity being both militant and aggressive, nor is it an example of a State getting out of control and justifying it with religious trappings; it’s just common sense when you really do have enemies. (That’s not necessarily to say we need to be treating Muslims in general the same as terrorists now — it’s just to say that treating two such things as related isn’t always an atrocity or something.)

    (Also, if you want some idea of how rationally or irrationally the Spanish Inquisition was run, try comparing how they handled charges of witchcraft back when Salem and its European counterparts were in full damned-if-you-float-drowned-if-you-don’t swing.)

  15. Sonshine135 says:

    Between comments like this from the President of the United States, a person who is supposed to defend the liberty and justice of all, and the homofascists in the court systems; I am beginning to feel a lot like the Jews probably did in Germany in the early 1930’s.

  16. Supertradmum says:

    Yes, he did. And, the pres only knows one kind of religion–self-idolatry.

  17. LeGrandDerangement says:

    Nothing shocking coming from the Baby-Killer-In-Chief.

  18. KateD says:

    “What Every American Needs to Know About the Qur’an: A History of Islam & The United States” by William J. Federer looks at the Quar’an and history of the interactions between Islam and Christianity. I just picked it up at a conference a couple of weeks ago and have listened to the first CD. It’s interesting.

  19. SKAY says:

    Barack Obama is only interested in his own political objectives. Truth-much less historical truth- is not important to him as we have seen time and time again during his Presidency. Using the Christian faith -particularly the Catholic Church- at the prayer breakfast to manipulate and promote his own twisted agenda was no problem for him. The Christian church that Obama attended for 20 years in Chicago was led by Rev.Jeremiah Wright who preached Black Liberation Theology containing a political ideology.

    I agree Bosco–and as you say-sadly. Pelosi seems very happy about where she thinks this will be going. Climate change and immigration–two very political issues I am sorry to say.

  20. Pingback: Did Pres. Obama draw moral equivalence between Christianity and ISIS? | therasberrypalace

  21. Obama is a secular humanist.Of course he did. We have 2 more years of our phoney “President”

  22. Rob in Maine says:

    I notcied that where as ISIS et alia are consistantly defined by the administration as a slect few who have “hijacked the true meaning of Islam”, the President paints Christianity with a broad stoke.

  23. transparent2one says:

    Bosco, I don’t understand what is sad about the pope believing the conditions at the US México boarder is deplorable. Are you saying it is not?

    Nothing the president says surprises me nor any political figure. America will need a scapegoat and as always it will be the Church.

  24. Bosco says:


    You said : “Bosco, I don’t understand what is sad about the pope believing the conditions at the US México boarder is deplorable. Are you saying it is not?”

    Francis has publicly stated more.

    He declared he would have liked to ‘enter the US through the Mexico border’ as a ‘sign of brotherhood’.

    It is one thing to show solidarity with cross-border illegal immigrants (who I suspect are treated much better by the United States than illegal immigrants into other nations) but it is entirely another to laud past and encourage future illegal crossings by declaring the Bishop of Rome would break U.S. law as well.

    Finally, you remarked: “Nothing the president says surprises me…”.

    To my mind he is literally the God of Surprises.

  25. Kerry says:

    He was the only person in that room who voted, four times to deny medical care to a newborn who survived and abortion. And “No religion preaches that”…with the exception of his religion (of liberalism).

  26. Kerry says:

    Sic., “an abortion…”

  27. ocalatrad says:

    Father, you nailed this one right on the head.

    My mouth was agape when I heard about the Dear Leader’s comments on the radio. Muslims cannot possibly be held accountable for the horrors we’ve been witnessing; it is simply a radical cabal that has hijacked the faith. But, Christians are absolutely to blame precisely on account of Christianity (which the Dear Leader claims to profess)!

    The president’s comments are so childish, so ignorant that it reminds me of the drivel that mindless college students would spew at us Catholics and pro-lifers on campus. Absolutely puerile.

    I am encouraged that a couple of callers into Rush Limbaugh’s show yesterday set the record absolutely straight with regards to the Crusades being defensive wars in the wake of attacks on European cities and on pilgrims to Jerusalem.

    Obama loves to apologize for America all over the world and it seems like now he wants to be the voice of true Christianity. What a sad, sad figure. Well, he’s not apologizing for my beloved Faith!

  28. Bruce says:

    The political left(BDS) used to go on about how stupid they thought G.W. Bush was?
    Compared to Obama he seems …

  29. zama202 says:

    I expected nothing less from this meathead in the White House.
    He never disappoints when it comes to saying something derogatory about Christians, the hard working middle class or the United States – guess that’s why the media loves him. They share the same values.

  30. Facta Non Verba says:

    As was once said about Jimmy Carter: More mush from the wimp.

  31. CrimsonCatholic says:

    The President fails to see how his comments actually apply to his former preacher and his friend, Jeremiah Wright and Al Sharpton. Both use the name of Christ to spew their hate and create division for their own profit.

  32. KAS says:

    I spend a lot of time these days recommending books to people who spout off thinking they actually know something about history. I just ordered what looks to be a delightful book THE CRUSADES, CHRISTIANITY AND ISLAM by Johnathan Riley-Smith. I suspect that I shall be recommending it a bunch in the near future.

    I also particularly like Henry Kamen’s book THE SPANISH INQUISITION. Excellent book.

    Christianity set the stage for most everything really wonderful in Western culture. I see nothing but misery, injustice, oppression, and death in countries shaped by Islam. Even their “golden age” came only right after they took over the Byzantine Empire and claimed everything good in that culture for themselves EXCEPT the religion that built it.

  33. LarryW2LJ says:

    To make sense of this, you have to remember the premise that for Liberals, History started yesterday. And before yesterday, History is what Liberals say it was, facts be damned.

  34. frjim4321 says:

    Even I, who supported Barack in both elections and still consider him to have been the preferred candidate, would admit that yesterday’s NPB speech was a low point, if not the lowest, of this presidency.

    The presidents don’t have a very good track record when it comes to speeches given at the NPB as Larry O’Donnell illustrated last night. O’Donnell characterized yesterday’s speech as the worst of this administration, and I would tend to agree. It was embarrassing. It served to reminded me that in choosing presidents we are not choosing perfect men or women. Often we are choosing the least of evils. I never thought that President Obama’s administration would reach a Clintonesque degree of greatness, but I was surprised to see such a weak showing yesterday. It also brings up the question as to why there is an NPB anyway. It’s always entirely political no matter who is in charge. It’s a grand example of humanity creating a god in its own likeness. It’s an exercise in arrogance and self-delusion and we’d be better off without it.

  35. Cantor says:

    KAS –

    As a historian myself, I suggest you review the religious timeline. I agree with some of what you say — let’s forget the Crusades, the Inquisition, and such.

    But what world-shaping event occurred in the seventeenth century of the Christian faith? The Thirty Years War. This internecine struggle was one of the most bloody European wars of all time, and was based, in large part, on battles among Christian sects. Of course it extended across borders and kingdoms and principalities and was bloody beyond belief.

    The religion of Islam is now in its fifteenth century. It could well be history repeating itself, accelerated by technology. Because communications has improved substantially over the years, it also has much broader international reach. But war has not been particularly “cleaned up” along the way. It is still a bloody, evil, horrific thing. Modern technology assures that we all see it up close for what it is,

    It is important to remember words attributed to Robert E. Lee:

    “It is well that war is so terrible — lest we should grow too fond of it.”

  36. Uxixu says:

    Ignorant hyperbole from an individual who was never qualified to be elected once, much less twice, is hardly surprising, even if it’s still shameful.

  37. frjim4321 says:

    “Ignorant hyperbole from an individual who was never qualified to be elected once, much less twice, is hardly surprising, even if it’s still shameful.” – Uxixu

    I think you might have forgotten to qualify that statement as a personal opinion rather than a verifiable empirical fact.

  38. Uxixu says:

    On the contrary, dear Reverend Father Jim, it’s not disputed that the current POTUS never led anything in the private sector, nor held a real job or much significant experience outside of community agitation or academia and his legislative record in state office and as a US Senator was quite undistinguished. Certainly not well enough in comparison to the other 43 men who held the office. He was elected by feeling rather than fact and because of his skin rather than because of the content of his character, which has been shown to be quite despicable.

    Unless you’re disputing the veracity of his utter misrepresentation of the Crusades or Inquisition, perhaps?

  39. Dennis Martin says:


    The Seventeenth Century occurred after the Sixteenth. The Thirty Years War was a war between nation-states, nation-states that had emerged in the wake of the rise of royal absolutism. Royal absolutism reduced the church to a department of the nation-state, de jure in Protestant realms and city-states, de facto in some Catholic realms. The theological dispute begun in the early 16th century might not have lasted had the princes not chosen sides in the 1540s. The kings enlisted the aid of the bourgeoisie against the nobles and the bishops, then turned round on the smaller cities within their realms and reduced them to acquiescence.

    Emperors had attempted to dominate the Church throughout the Middle Ages but failed, indeed, the empire begun by Charlemagne shattered on the effort to subdue the Church. But in the wake of that failure (1250), an opening emerged for the rise of consolidated nation-states instead of checkerboard principalities. As the nation-states (unknown to the Middle Ages) consolidated, their rulers reduced all opposition, including the Church (bishops; the English bishops under Henry VIII, for instance).

    The distinction between temporal and spiritual power and authority is the unique contribution of the Christian West to world history (Ambrose, Augustine). It did not really develop in the Christian East. It has never been known in Islam. It has not really been known in the modern West except perhaps for brief attempts under the First Amendment to the US Constitution and any similar structures elsewhere. But the First Amendment and creaking religious pluralism (really a form of shared civic Christianity that tolerated other religions when they had relatively adherents) was destroyed by the US Supreme Court beginning in the 1940s and following. It is now gone and we are well on our way to a unified Absolutism of the Instrumentalized Power.

    Reducing the two powers/authorities to one princely power in the 1500s and 1600s inaugurated modernity and led to the horrors of nationalism from 1600-1945. To describe the Thirty Years War as a war of Christian sects is, while nominally not completely false, seriously misleading.

  40. Dennis Martin says:

    “Clintonesque degree of greatness” ?????

  41. Kathleen10 says:

    In Obama’s book, his ode to the Kenyan, Muslim father who abandoned him, apparently Obama stated that he would always defend Islam, if it came to it. So on this one point he has told the truth, and it is unfortunate nobody bothered to take this seriously before either election. I believe he is a Muslim, and will one day, come out of that closet.

  42. jhayes says:

    Uxixu wrote: Ignorant hyperbole from an individual who was never qualified to be elected once, much less twice, is hardly surprising, even if it’s still shameful.

    That’s the problem with democracy – sometimes people you don’t like get elected.

  43. Uxixu says:

    jhayes wrote: [i]That’s the problem with democracy – sometimes people you don’t like get elected.[/i]

    There’s a good reason the Founders despised democracy:

    “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself. There was never a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” — John Adams

    My oath was to the Republic with checks and balances to keep populist demagogues without any real leadership ability or experience from getting elected. The Populists have been chipping away at those checks and balances for about a hundred years and given us… leaders such as we now have.

  44. Lynn Diane says:

    With regard to whether President Obama is a Moslem, I think he is the same as his mentor, Saul Alinsky, and doesn’t believe in God. He does, however, retain a childhood affinity for Islam since he grew up in Indonesia and attended a madrasa there. He also likes Islam because so many Moslems hate the U.S.

  45. Kerry says:

    Columnist Star Parker, speaking with Mark Levin, and present at the National Prayer Breakfast, said how shocked were those listening to President Blue Falcon, and stunned . It was, she said, an occasion for ‘prayer’, and therefore, people “Prayed!” His politicizing, (one trick high horse) was simply unwelcome.
    On reflection, I think he simply cannot abide any gathering of people at which all the attention is not on him. And now it is.

  46. Gratias says:

    Baracka Hussein Obama does not realize that Christendom gave rise to the Western Civilization we lived in before the enlighted Freemasons hijacked our culture. Obama is anti-Christian and pro-Muslim. Attending Mosque and Madrassa at age nine in Indonesia must leave a deep impression on a weak mind. How this man became President with such a chip on his shoulder is hard to fathom but we will have to resist him if we want to survive.

    Obama is a Cintonesque disgrace to his races.

  47. LeGrandDerangement says:

    Uxixu & jdhayes,

    In reflecting on the dismal quality of “leaders” throughout the Federal apparatus, the 600-lb gorilla in the corner is always the apathy and ignorance of voters.

  48. jhayes says:

    LeGrandDerangement, but Churchill said:

    Many forms of Gov­ern­ment have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pre­tends that democ­racy is per­fect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democ­racy is the worst form of Gov­ern­ment except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.…

  49. RoyceReed says:

    Yes, ISIS burned a man alive several days ago. Yes, the crusades were a long time ago. But we must remember that not so very long ago Southern white Christians did the same, if not worse, to a myriad of African-Americans. I’m saddened to see “Christians” posting memes of the burning Jordanian man justifying waterboarding and other forms of torture. We are not Old Testament Christians; and eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. Here is what the USCCB has to say on torture and the Catholic conscience: http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/torture/torture-is-a-moral-issue.cfm


  50. LeGrandDerangement says:


    I agree; it hinges on us to make an effort to become knowledgeable on the candidates, not just accept the fluff of the political conventions.

  51. KateD says:

    Lynn Diane – In Islam, if your father was a Muslim, you are a Muslim and you may not change your faith, under penalty of death.

    Royce Reed – We have every right to be realistic, knowledgeable and defend ourselves, our families, our nation, our way of life and the innocent wherever and whenever we can.

  52. Bruce says:

    “Clintonesque degree of greatness”
    I laughed so hard my coffee almost came out my nose!

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