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June 13th, 2011
11:17 PM ET

At debate, Republican candidates spar over Islam

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - There weren’t too many sharp differences among the Republican presidential candidates in Monday night’s New Hampshire debate, but a crack did emerge over how Islam and Muslims ought to be treated in the United States.

The CNN debate opened with discussions on economic issues, but later veered toward faith-based matters like the role of religion in candidates’ decision making, abortion, gay marriage – and how the United States ought to treat Muslims living within its borders.

The exchange on that issue opened with a question to former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, who had said previously that he wouldn’t feel comfortable appointing a Muslim to his presidential Cabinet.

“I would not be comfortable because you have peaceful Muslims and then you have militant Muslims – those that are trying to kill us,” Cain said at Monday night’s debate. “And so when I said I wouldn’t be comfortable, I was thinking about the ones who are trying to kill us.”

Cain went further, addressing the prospect of Sharia, or Muslim law, being applied in the United States, which some conservatives say constitutes a growing threat to the American legal system.

“I don’t believe in Sharia law in American courts,” Cain said Monday. “I believe in American laws in American courts, period.”

“There have been instances in New Jersey, there was an instance in Oklahoma , where Muslims did try to influence court decisions with Sharia law,” he continued. “I was simply saying, very emphatically, American laws in American courts.”

Cain also said he would ask Muslims seeking jobs in his administration “certain questions … to make sure that we have people committed to the Constitution.”

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who spoke next, appeared to brush aside Cain’s concerns about Sharia and his suspicions of American Muslims.

“Of course, we're not going to have Sharia law applied in U.S. courts. That's never going to happen,” Romney said. "We have a Constitution and we follow the law.”

Romney then appeared to defend American Muslims, even if he didn’t mention them specifically.

“We recognize that people of all faiths are welcome in this country,” he said. “Our nation was founded on a principle of religious tolerance. That's in fact why some of the earliest patriots came to this country and why we treat people with respect, regardless of their religious persuasion.”

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich quickly jumped in to push back on Romney, siding more with Cain over the issue of Islam. Gingrich invoked Faisal Shahzad, the so-called Times Square bomber of 2010, who is a U.S. citizen from Pakistan.

“Now, I just want to go out on a limb here,” Gingrich said. “I'm in favor of saying to people, 'If you're not prepared to be loyal to the United States, you will not serve in my administration, period. '”

“We did this in dealing with the Nazis and we did this in dealing with the communists,” Gingrich continued. “And it was controversial both times, and both times we discovered after a while, there are some genuinely bad people who would like to infiltrate our country. And we have got to have the guts to stand up and say no.”

Cain’s and Gingrich’s comments on American Muslims supplied some of the night’s biggest applause lines.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Herman Cain • Islam • Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich • Politics

soundoff (206 Responses)
  1. Rainer Braendlein

    I see the following problem: Today most people are secularised both the people of the Western World and the people of the Orient.

    Migrant workers, I suppose, mostly come to the Western countries, in order to earn more money. For example in Turkey the wages are very low. And probably most of them are harmless secularised Moslems. However, they can be affected by the unholy Koran any moment. Every Moslem can become dangerous and harmful anytime. That is regretable.

    According to our Christian tradition we have freedom of religion. Nobody can force a Moslem to reject his own faith.

    The Western societies should merely make sure that the migrant workers get some information about the Christian faith. This would be a job for the Christian Church.

    Furthermore the people of every Christian country should be informed about the true colour of Islam. Indeed we should be somewhat on the alert.

    It is a real challenge to love people with a strange religion, but we should accept the challenge.

    June 14, 2011 at 7:51 am |
    • Stevie7

      "It is a real challenge to love people with a strange religion, but we should accept the challenge."

      -Anyone could easily say that about any religion other than their own

      "However, they can be affected by the unholy Koran any moment. Every Moslem can become dangerous and harmful anytime. "

      -That's like saying anyone could become a mass murder at any moment. Evil is committed all the time in the name of Christianity. It would just as absurd and wrong to assume that any Christian could become dangerous and harmful at any minute.

      "According to our Christian tradition we have freedom of religion."
      -I suppose, in a round about way, this is true. We have the first amendment not because of any Christian value or ideal, but because the founding father's wanted to ensure that Americans were subjected the oppression from, say, the Christian church of England. It was freedom FROM Christianity that inspired our freedom OF religion.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:44 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      @Stevie7

      The worst case interpretation of the unholy Koran is: Moslems should fight against Jews and Christians.

      The correct interpretation of the Holy Bible for Christians: Love your Muslim neighbour (of course the authorities of a Christian country have to protect their people, despite the commandment of love)

      June 14, 2011 at 11:40 am |
    • @Stevie7

      Do you also acknowledge there is a best case interpretation of the Koran and a worst case interpretation of the Bible?

      June 14, 2011 at 12:44 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      @Stevie7

      Regarding the basic doctrines of Christianity, there is only one correct interpretation of the Holy Scripture. At least Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Martin Luther had this opinion. They were king interpreters of the Bible.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • Stevie7

      So no one correctly interpreted the bible for well over 1,000 years? I think there are quite a lot of Christians who would vehemently disagree with you.

      And who are you to say the that "correct" interpretation of the Koran is essentially the same as your "correct" interpretation of the bible – that peace and devotion to a god is the ultimate goal?

      Would you lump all Christians that do not believe in your interpretation with all Muslims who also don't share your theological views? I mean, according to you, they all have it completely wrong.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      Two basic doctrines of the Holy Bible are the divine sonship of Jesus Christ and that God is a Triune God: The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The unholy Koran rejects the divine sonship of Jesus Christ and the Trinity. Yet by rejecting this two basic doctrines the Koran is antichristian.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
    • Stevie7

      A religion that is not Christian is not "anti-Christian" unless you're attempting to state that over 1 billion people hate Christians – which is obviously a stretch. If by "anti-Christian" you just mean non-Christian, then you're just stating the obvious.

      Do you also believe that Hindus and Buddhist are prone to random acts of heinous evil at any point as well? Or do you just reserve your ignorance and bigotry for Muslims?

      June 14, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • Headless Chocolate Rabbit Hanging on a Cross with splinters in his...

      Rainer Braendlein

      Two basic doctrines of the Holy Bible are the divine sonship of Jesus Christ and that God is a Triune God: The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The unholy Koran rejects the divine sonship of Jesus Christ and the Trinity. Yet by rejecting this two basic doctrines the Koran is antichristian
      -----
      Do you even understand what you type?????????

      June 14, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  2. Student of World Religion

    In the second sura, or chapter, of the Qur’an (Al-Baqarah), two verses stand in marked contrast to one another. First, Allah encourages the Muslim to “fight them until there is no persecution and the religion is Allah’s (2:193). But then Allah tells Muhammad not to impose Islam by force, because “there is no compulsion in religion” (2:256). May the Muslim world be guided by leaders who are willing to follow the latter admonition.

    June 14, 2011 at 7:27 am |
  3. Reality

    o More on the koranic passages and world domination:

    "Mohammed could not have known the size of the world, but several passages in the Koran show that he envisioned Islam dominating all of it, however large it might be: “He it is who sent his messenger . . . that he may cause it [Islam] to prevail over all religions´(Koran 9:33, M.M. Ali; see also 48:28 and 61:9). M.M. Ali designates these three passages as “the prophecy of the ultimate triumph of Islam in the whole world.”

    Mohammed’s successors, the caliphs, quoted passages like these to inspire Muslim armies as they advanced out of Arabia, imposing Islam by the sword upon a peacefully unsuspecting Middle East and North Africa, as I described in the previous chapter.

    Islamic armies, imbued with what Mohammed claimed was divine authorization, imposed Islam by force over vast areas, all the while extorting wealth from subjugated Jews and Christians to fund their ongoing conquests. As I noted, major defeats at Tours, France, in A.D. 732, and again at Vienna, Austria, in A.D. 1683, halted Islam’s attempt to take all of Europe by force. Gradually Islamic forces were forced to retreat from Europe, except for part of the Balkans. But Islam has again set its sights on a conquest of Europe and of European civilization, wherever the latter has spread to North and South America and other regions. Muslim strategists ask their followers, Why do we find in these modern times that Allah has entrusted most of the world’s oil wealth primarily to Muslim nations?

    Their answer: Allah foresaw Islam’s need for funds to finance a final politico-religious victory over what Islam perceives as its ultimate enemy: Christianized Euro-American civilization. So, Islam follows Nazism, fascism and communism as the world’s latest hostile takeover aspirant.

    Nazis, fascists and communists failed. Does Islam have a better chance at success? I believe it will flounder if we awaken to its threat in time; yet, if there is not adequate planned resistance, Islam does have a better chance of succeeding. Communism’s world takeover attempt was guaranteed to fail because its economic policy was naively contrary to human nature. Advocating the rubric What is mine is thine, and what is thine is mine, communism failed to see that human nature will not keep those two balanced propositions in equilibrium. Like a female black widow spider consuming her mate, the latter part of the formula makes a meal of the former, leading to the collapse of any system based upon that formula.
    In contrast, political systems do well if they can persuade people to adhere to What’s mine is mine and What’s thine is thine maxims.

    Only if a strong religious incentive is added does such an idealistic formula have any long-term chance. Even then success will be spotty. But communism (and Nazism, for that matter) excluded religion. And that mistake was the final nail eventually clamping a lid on communism’s coffin. Communism, on a historical scale, perished while still in its childhood.
    Islam is not repeating communism’s mistake. Mating political cunning and incredible wealth with religious zeal, Islam does have a chance to succeed and will succeed unless major parts of the Western world unite to take appropriate countermeasures. But many Western leaders, unable to believe that a mere religion could possible be a serious political threat, keep proclaiming themselves as Islam-friendly, reasoning that all religions are good-aren’t they?

    A Muslim strategist in Beverly Hills, California, declared several years ago, as quoted by a friend of mine: “Now that the struggle between Western democracies and international communism is winding down, it is time for the real and final struggle to begin, and we are going to win!” D. Richardson

    June 14, 2011 at 7:14 am |
  4. Yoann

    Newt tired to liken communists and Nazis to muslims, I'm not sure that Newt is aware that communist and Nazis came from Russia and Germany which are overwhelmingly Christian countries

    June 14, 2011 at 7:07 am |
  5. Kebos

    Islam is a joke. Like Christianity and Judiasm, they were all cooked up in the empty deserts of Arabia to grow like the virus they are to infect the minds of people. Mankind needs to break these shackles to think for themselves. Spirituality is one thing, but to worship something that does not exist is a very silly and futile notion.

    June 14, 2011 at 7:03 am |
  6. libsrretards

    cnn........you are a worthless network asking a stupid question like this anyway........that nerdy sissy guy asking the questions last night...appeared to be as stupid as biden.

    June 14, 2011 at 5:21 am |
  7. FairGarden

    Americans are naive to think that various religious or ethnic or unreligious people don't have ambition or ideals as long as they are allowed to live in America. If you don't stick to the Judeo-Christian values, you lose everything humane and civil in the matter of time.

    June 14, 2011 at 4:33 am |
    • read your history

      which humane tradition. would it be slavery of people from Africa or the wipping off and killing of the Native people of the Americas. Get a life pilgrim and read your history

      June 14, 2011 at 6:09 am |
    • Stevie7

      Yup, nothing civil occurred before Judaism. Total Anarchy. Greek democracy? Myth. Roman republic? Pure fiction. Everything was totally barbaric before judaism.

      Wearing blinders and making up your own history must be fun

      June 14, 2011 at 10:53 am |
  8. FairGarden

    But if the Sodomites and baby-killers control the inter-pre-tation of the US con-sti-tution, it won't help the nation. It will only speeds up the swift corrosion of USA.

    June 14, 2011 at 4:28 am |
    • Ron

      It must be really sad living in fear. For conservative Christians, it appears the ONLY problems this country faces is gays, abortion and Muslims. And, with all the fear mongering, comes the best part, 'vote for me because I'll protect you.'
      I do not want either group telling me what I can and can not have based off of their religious beliefs or ideology.
      The problem is, both want to "save" you and control your life because they "know" better. Hockey pucks, both have simply become a controlling, manipulative religious/political unit. I, for one, do not want or need to live in a fascist country controlled by either group.

      June 14, 2011 at 7:43 am |
  9. FairGarden

    Muslims, beware of American liberals. They think they can make you worthless by drawning you with filthy pleasures as they did with the pseudo-christian population in USA. Read the Bible and protect your human dignity. Don't be made into perverted by American perverts.

    June 14, 2011 at 3:53 am |
  10. Revenge of the Return of the Attack of the 400 Foot Fluffy Bunny from Beyond the 433 Dimension

    When you have nothing to offer, sell fear. That's the cornerstone of conservative politics.

    June 14, 2011 at 2:12 am |
    • Yo Yo Dawg!

      Foshizzle

      June 14, 2011 at 2:22 am |
    • Fluffy Bunny Hasenpfeffer for Everyone!

      Better than the liberal 'hope and change' carrot on a stick, 'eh? 'Tis all lies. Libya.. really? How much munnie they think I got?

      June 14, 2011 at 3:37 am |
    • John Richardson

      Pretty much all political, religious and philosophical movements use fear tactics at some point or other, The Dems in 2008 were fear mongering such things as gasoline prices (despite having members who had argued for years that prices should have been higher than they were and on a par with Europe's prices to slow down consumption and its ill effects). I'm betting that the Dems won't be talking gas prices this go round, eh?

      June 14, 2011 at 7:18 am |
    • Juggling Squirrel-Jesus

      Fear seems to be the corner stone for most religions as well.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • Revenge of the Return of the Attack of the 400 Foot Fluffy Bunny from Beyond the 433 Dimension

      So Hasenpfeffer offered nothing and sold fear instead. Thanks for proving my point.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  11. GoDestroy

    Every one of these Greedy Obstructionist Pigs will only drive the country back to the dark ages... Here comes segregation and white supremacist skinheads and coneshaped hooded gowns... Except for Romney who is a little better... but he will simply run a country as a business and ruin it... A country cannot be purely run as a business which only looks at the bottomline. It has moral and civic responsibilities to its citizens regardless of the bottomline.

    June 14, 2011 at 1:46 am |
  12. Truth about Islam

    Islam is the most dangerous political-religious group in the world...Is almost worse than Communism. Quran really contain dozens of verses promoting violence.
    ~~Quran (8:12) – "I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them"
    ~~Quran (9:73) – "O Prophet! strive hard against the unbelievers and the hypocrites and be unyielding to them; and their abode is hell, and evil is the destination." Dehumanizing those who reject Islam, by reminding Muslims that they are merely firewood for Hell, makes it easier to justify slaughter. It also explains why today's devout Muslims have little regard for those outside the faith.
    ~~Quran (61:10-12) – "O ye who believe! Shall I lead you to a bargain that will save you from a grievous Penalty?- That ye believe in Allah and His Messenger, and that ye strive (your utmost) in the Cause of Allah, with your property and your persons: That will be best for you, if ye but knew! He will forgive you your sins, and admit you to Gardens beneath which Rivers flow, and to beautiful mansions in Gardens of Eternity." This verse was given in battle. It uses the Arabic word, Jihad.
    --Qur'an teaches the violence though Muslims pretend that it doesn't... Jihad,Al-Qaeda, terrorism are, in the name of the prophet Mohamed and Allah...Muslims clerics encourage the male youths in Pakistan to violate the Christian girls if they will do that will got in heaven 70 virgins.... Terrible, Absolutely terrible!!!-

    June 14, 2011 at 1:41 am |
    • Mona

      1) "Islam" means "peace through the submission to God".

      2) "Muslim" means "anyone or anything that submits itself to the will of God".

      3) Islam is not a cult. Its followers number over 1.5 billion worldwide. Along with Judaism and Christianity, it is considered to be one of the three Abrahamic traditions.

      4) There are five pillars of practice in Islam. These practices must be undertaken with the best of effort in order to be considered a true Muslim: A) Shahadah – declaration of faith in the oneness of God and that Muhammad is the last prophet of God. B) Formal prayer five times a day. C) Fasting during the daylight hours in the month of Ramadan. D) Poor-due "tax" – 2.5% of one's savings given to the needy at the end of each year. E) Pilgrimage to Mecca at least once, if physically and financially able.

      5) There are six articles of faith in Islam. These are the basic beliefs that one must have in order to be considered a true Muslim. They are belief in: A) the One God. B) all the prophets of God. C) the original scriptures revealed to Prophets Moses, David, Jesus, and Muhammad. D) the angels. E) the Day of Judgment and the Hereafter. F) the divine decree (or destiny).

      6) Islam is a complete way of life that governs all facets of life: moral, spiritual, social, political, economical, intellectual, etc.

      7) Islam is one of the fastest growing religions in the world. To become Muslim, a person of any race or culture must say a simple statement, the shahadah, that bears witness to the belief in the One God and that Prophet Muhammad was the last prophet of God.

      8) "Allah" is an Arabic word that means "God". Muslims also believe that "Allah" is the personal name of God.

      9) Allah is not the God of Muslims only. He is the God of all people and all creation. Just because people refer to God using different terms does not mean that they are different gods. Spanish people refer to God as "Dios" and French people refer to God as "Dieu", yet they are all the same God. Interestingly, most Arab Jews and Arab Christians refer to God as "Allah". And the word Allah in Arabic appears on the walls of many Arab churches.

      10) The Islamic concept of God is that He is loving, merciful, and compassionate. But Islam also teaches that He is just and swift in punishment. Nevertheless, Allah once said to Prophet Muhammad, "My mercy prevails over my wrath." Islam teaches a balance between fear and hope, protecting one from both complacency and despair.

      11) Muslims believe that God has revealed 99 of His names (or attributes) in the Holy Qur'an. It is through these names that one can come to know the Creator. A few of these names are: the All-Merciful, the All-Knower, the Protector, the Provider, the Near, the First, the Last, the Hidden, and the Source of Peace.

      12) Muslims believe in and acknowledge all the prophets of old, from Adam to Jesus. Muslims believe that they brought the message of peace and submission (islam) to different peoples at different times. Muslims also believe that these prophets were "muslims" because they submitted their wills to God.

      13) Muslims neither worship Muhammad nor pray through him. Muslims solely worship the unseen and Omniscient Creator, Allah.

      14) Muslims accept the original unaltered Torah (the Gospel of Moses) and the original Bible (the Gospel of Jesus) since they were revealed by God. However, none of those original scriptures are in existence today, in their entirety. Therefore, Muslims follow the subsequent, final, and preserved revelation of God, the Holy Qur'an.

      15) The Holy Qur'an was not authored by Muhammad. It was authored by God, revealed to Muhammad, and written into physical form by his companions.

      16) The Holy Qur'an has no flaws or contradictions. The original Arabic scriptures have never been changed or tampered with.

      17) Actual seventh century Qur'ans, complete and intact, are on display in museums in Turkey and many other places around the world.

      18) If all Qur'ans in the world today were burned and destroyed, the original Arabic would still remain. This is because millions of Muslims, called Hafiz (or "preservers") have memorized the text letter for letter from beginning to end, every word and syllable. Also, chapters from the Qur'an are precisely recited from memory by every Muslim in each of the five daily prayers.

      19) Muslims do not believe in the concept of "vicarious atonement" but rather believe in the law of personal responsibility. Islam teaches that each person is responsible for his or her own actions. On the Day of Judgment Muslims believe that every person will be resurrected and will have to answer to God for their every word, thought, and deed. Consequently, a practicing Muslim is always striving to be righteous.

      20) Islam was not spread by the sword. It was spread by the word (Islamic teachings) and the example of its followers. Islam teaches that there is no compulsion in religion (the Holy Qur'an 2:256 and 10:99).

      21) Terrorism, unjustified violence and the killing of innocent people are absolutely forbidden in Islam. Islam is a way of life that is meant to bring peace to a society, whether its people are Muslim or not. The extreme actions of those who claim to be Muslim may be, among other things, a result of their ignorance or uncontrolled anger. Tyrant rulers and those who commit acts of terrorism in the name of Islam are simply not following Islam. These people are individuals with their own views and political agendas. Fanatical Muslims are no more representative of the true Islamic teachings than Timothy McVeigh or David Koresh are of Christianity. Extremism and fanaticism is a problem that is common to all religious groups. Anyone who thinks that all Muslims are terrorists should remember that the famous boxer Muhammad Ali, perhaps the most celebrated person of our era, is a practicing Muslim.

      22) The word "jihad" does not mean "holy war". Instead, it means the inner struggle that one endures in trying to submit their will to the will of God. Some Muslims may say they are going for "jihad" when fighting in a war to defend themselves or their fellow Muslims, but they only say this because they are conceding that it will be a tremendous struggle. But there are many other forms of jihad which are more relevant to the everyday life of a Muslim such as the struggles against laziness, arrogance, stinginess, or the struggle against a tyrant ruler or against the temptation of Satan, or against one's own ego, etc

      June 14, 2011 at 1:50 am |
    • habib

      I am sick of evangelical christian telling Muslims what the Quran says. Why dont you guys spend your time preaching christianity and tell us what is right about the Bible?

      These are just pure blatent lies. And you are sowing hatred and counting on the ignorance of the readers. You should be ashamed of cursing and belittling your fellow neighbors and instead treat them with love.

      We have children and work and earn a living. You are accusing us of murder.

      If you are curious about Islam and Muslims why dont you be citizen in humanity and meet your fellow muslims.

      You win people over by befriending them not by spreading lies about them.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:56 am |
    • Oh Please Tell Me More

      You people are funny.

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B82yt3rCMdk&w=640&h=390]

      memritv.org

      June 14, 2011 at 3:49 am |
    • Chris

      Fact: Islam believes in Jesus Christ and preaches that he is the messiah. Any questions?

      June 14, 2011 at 6:04 am |
    • John Richardson

      @Chris Yes, where did you get the idea that Islam considers Jesus the messiah?

      June 14, 2011 at 7:22 am |
    • John Richardson

      @Mona I prefer peace without submission to the "will" of a non-existent god who is simply a puppet for the imperial will of certain humans. And to say that Islam was not spread by the sword but by the word is an outrageous lie and proof positive that YOUR "submission to the will of Allah" was no call to truth, but to spin doctoring. Christianity and Islam are the world's two largest religions because they are the world's two most imperialistic religions.

      June 14, 2011 at 8:10 am |
  13. Mona

    Why is it that a religion like Islam must always be put on trial for the actions of its NON believers? No one that kills, hurts and attacks another is practising ANY faith, least of all Islam. EDUCATE before you condemn!!
    Has there been no Christian, Hindu , Jewish crimes ever comitted? When are hopefully intelligent Americans going to realize that terrorism exists in all major countries whether its in Ireland, India, Bosnia or USA? And madmen will use any religious excuse to justify their causes and thirst for power. Despite 10 years after the most horrific event, we have learnt NOTHING!
    I had hoped that we could produce a somewhat intelligent leadership especially among the republicans. Tonights debate among our "chosen" representatives only proved to the rest of the world that we are truly conceited, deranged and STUPID!!! Wake up America...before we are run over by countries that are more sensitive, driven and smarter in their choice of policy and issues.

    June 14, 2011 at 1:39 am |
    • GoDestroy

      I second you Mona! Good points!

      June 14, 2011 at 1:47 am |
    • Religion has no place in our government.

      Intelligent policy would mean disregarding any religiously motivated actions as being irrational, for starters.
      Hence any restrictions on any religion-dominated person based on their being religious should apply equally to all.
      But disregarding the irrational is not a religion-biased decision. It is a logical and intelligent decision.
      Religion has no place in our government. Any attempt to violate this precept enshrined in the 1st Amend. should be blocked no matter who is involved.
      From your small-town mayor who also happens to be a preacher, to any President who creates a religious office in the Executive Branch, they all should be held accountable and their violations nullified to the extent possible.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:39 am |
    • Frogist

      @Mona: I wholeheartedly agree that muslims should not be singled as enemies because of their faith. It is true that every religion, country etc has its share of criminal elements. But I have to disagree that the people who were hurting or killing others are "non-believers". Firstly the term non-believer could apply to those like myself who are agnostic or atheist which I don't think was the point you were trying to make. But I also think that terrorists (muslim, christian or otherwise) would argue that they are following their faith. They would argue that their interpretation of their faith is the correct one. Much as you argue your interpretation of non-violence is the correct one. I think this is the ultimate nature of religion. Everything is up to personal interpretation. There are no absolutes.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  14. Ken

    Everyone's so worried about Muslims that they're disregarding our own domestic terrorists.

    June 14, 2011 at 1:23 am |
  15. Marco Budgyk

    I'm so embarrassed for the Republicans I can't tell you.

    June 14, 2011 at 1:15 am |
  16. StevenB

    Anyone else find it hugely ironic that it is the black guy caling for racial profiling?

    June 14, 2011 at 12:56 am |
    • habib

      Yeah I was think the exact same thing. Plus, how do you think Keith Ellison, Muhammad Ali, Andre Carson, Kareem Abdul Jabber, and the millions of other Muslims feel when Mr. Cain is making these loaded accusations.

      Plus do we really want the CEO of a pizza chain (Godfather Pizza - never heard of it) to run our country?

      June 14, 2011 at 2:36 am |
    • Frogist

      @StevenB: Highly ironic. Although some will make the claim that he's not profiling based on race but religion. How that makes a difference is beyond me.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  17. GoDestroy

    There can be good and evil people in any race or religion... take a close to home example... We have a good black president, Obama (arguably one of the greatest US presidents) and an evil black candidate for president, Cain (who shouldnt even be allowed near the White house).

    June 14, 2011 at 12:45 am |
    • Oh Please Tell Me More

      Wouldn't it be a bítch if Obama either píssed off or lost the trust of so many people that Cain actually got in?
      Never would happen.

      'nah.

      *thunderous applause at mention of controlling muslims*

      'nah.

      June 14, 2011 at 3:55 am |
  18. US Patriot

    Any potential candidate who doesn't whole-heartedly disagree with the implementation of sharia law is a fool and is guilty of treason. This is America... American soil, American law, American courts, American justice. This is not the Middle East and it had better never become the middle east.

    One last note: anyone who wouldn't check the background of ANYONE including muslims desiring a position in our government would be very very foolish. That would be asking to be hit again.

    June 14, 2011 at 12:38 am |
    • AB

      Like the failed background check on the oil nexus between Bush/Cheney's Halliburton and the use of tax dollars to fund an illegitimate war in Iraq?

      June 14, 2011 at 1:49 am |
    • Why do "patriots" abhor real freedom?

      "Never was patriot yet, but was a fool." John Dryden

      "Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about." Mark Twain

      "The very idea of true patriotism is lost, and the term has been prosti-tuted to the very worst of purposes. A patriot, sir! Why, patriots spring up like mushrooms!" Robert Walpole

      "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." Samuel Johnson

      June 14, 2011 at 2:23 am |
    • habib

      Two point 1) please read about Sharia - it basically means law in arabic and does not have any religious connotations. So these are very ignorant comments. Just like Allah mean monotheistic God in arabic and the bible and the torah uses the word Allah because its simply the arabic word for God. Plus, Islamic law prohibits implementation of Islamic law in a country with majority population are not muslims.

      2) I agree with your statement that EVERYONE should have their background checked. Unfortunately, Mr. Cain, thinks that since he is a Non-muslim he is should be subject to less scrutiny then if he was muslim.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:42 am |
    • Oh Please Tell Me More

      Sharia? Sure. It's worked out so well in Britain. How many sharia courts in England? Over a hundred.

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mM2dC1iWzww&w=640&h=390]

      patcondell

      June 14, 2011 at 4:03 am |
  19. Nick Rymond

    YOU OBVIOUSLY HAVE NO CLUE ABOUT ISLAM. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO VERSES IN THE KORAN THAT PROMOTES HATE AND DEATH. IN FACT WHATEVER PASSAGES THAT DO DISCUSS THE KILLING OF AGGRESSORS ARE THE SAME AS IN THE BIBLE.

    YOU ARE CONFUSING WHAT YOU READ AND HEAR ON THE NEWS WITH WHAT ISLAM IS ABOUT. YOU ONLY KNOW ABOUT ISLAM BECAUSE OF WHAT THE NEWS TELLS YOU. FACT IS ISLAM WAS NEVER AN ISSUE UNTIL THE US MEDDLED IN THE MUSLIM WORLD. YOU NEVER EVEB HEARD OF MUSLIMS UNTIL THE US MEDDLED IN THE OIL RICH COUNTRIES OF THE MIDDLE EAST. YOU NEVER HEARD OF ISLAM UNTIL THE US CREATED OSAMA BIN LADEN AND SADAAM HUSSEIN.

    SO DONT PRETEND TO KNOW ABOUT ISLAM. ISLAM IS A PEACEFUL RELIGION WITH OVER 1.5 BILLION FOLLOWERS. IF EVEN ONE TENTH OF ONE PERCENT WERE TERRORISTS WE WOULD ALL BE DEAD.

    I SUGGEST READING ISLAM FOR DUMMIES AND BRUSH UP ON YOUR IQ.

    June 14, 2011 at 12:38 am |
    • US Patriot

      How about not shouting. We can all read. As a matter of fact, all caps makes it more difficult to read, if anything. I stopped trying after the first sentence. Use caps sparingly in a paragraph to emphasize a word or two, not the whole thing.

      June 14, 2011 at 12:40 am |
    • US Patriot

      Oh and here is some interesting information... guess you don't know much about the Quran either... LOL...

      The Quran contains at least 109 verses that call Muslims to war with nonbelievers. Some are quite graphic, with commands to chop off heads and fingers and kill infidels wherever they may be hiding. Muslims who do not join the fight are called 'hypocrites' and warned that Allah will send them to Hell if they do not join the slaughter.

      Unlike nearly all of the Old Testament verses of violence, most of the verses of violence in the Quran are open-ended, meaning that the historical context is not embedded within the surrounding text. They are part of the eternal, unchanging word of Allah, and just as relevant or subjective as anything else in the Quran.

      Unfortunately, there are very few verses of tolerance and peace to abrogate or even balance out the many that call for nonbelievers to be fought and subdued until they either accept humiliation, convert to Islam, or are killed. This proclivity toward violence – and Muhammad's own martial legacy – has left a trail of blood and tears across world history.

      June 14, 2011 at 12:43 am |
    • habib

      There are absolutely NO verses in the Quran calling Muslims to kill nonmuslims. That is just fact.

      The verses you are referring to are in reference to Muslims who were actually under attack. The Quran clearly states that Muslims are prohibited from being the aggressors.

      That is just common sense. If someone attacked us in America would you not find it justified to stop them with force until they reconsiled. Its peoples moral right that is upheld in the UN human rights charter that countries or people subject to attack have the right to defend themselves.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:48 am |
  20. Reality

    What instigated the attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon? And what drives today's 24/7 mosque/imam-driven acts of terror and horror? The koran, Mohammed's book of death for all infidels and Muslim domination of the world by any means.

    Muslims must clean up this book removing said passages admitting that they are based on the Gabriel myth and therefore obviously the hallucinations and/or lies of Mohammed. Until then, no Muslim can be trusted anytime or anywhere..................................

    June 14, 2011 at 12:09 am |
    • Megha

      Obviously you're completely IGNORANT on the issue of Quran (Not Koran)and it's contents. You really need to educate your self before you accuse The Holy Book and The messenger of the Holy Book. Stop spreading haterade!!!!

      June 14, 2011 at 12:56 am |
    • kathic

      Right because your book written by 30 powerful old men with its deletions, changes and fabrications is the literal truth of God. All three of the desert religions are nonsense.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:22 am |
    • Nick

      Megha, Just like Quran is not Koran; Hatred is NOT haterade.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:26 am |
    • Skeeve

      You really don't understand do you...You even sound surprised... Well then I suggest you sit down and without self-righteous patriotic hysteria analyze (I hope you know the meaning of this word...) US foreign policies of the last 40-50 years. You will have your answer right there. Terrorism never just happens for no reason and is always the weapon of the weak that essentially exhausted (or think that they exhausted) all other means to convey the message

      June 14, 2011 at 5:52 am |
    • Reality

      Only for the those interested in a religious update:

      1. origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482

      "New Torah For Modern Minds

      Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

      Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

      The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine docu-ment. "

      2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.
      earlychristianwritings.com/theories.html

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!
      3. Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:

      Adulterous preachers, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

      4. Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

      This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

      And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

      Current crises:

      The Sunni-Shiite blood feud and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

      5. Hinduism (from an online Hindu site) – "Hinduism cannot be described as an organized religion. It is not founded by any individual. Hinduism is God centered and therefore one can call Hinduism as founded by God, because the answer to the question ‘Who is behind the eternal principles and who makes them work?’ will have to be ‘Cosmic power, Divine power, God’."

      The caste/laborer system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence are problems when saying a fair and rational God founded Hinduism."

      Current crises:

      The caste system and cow worship/reverence.

      6. Buddhism- "Buddhism began in India about 500 years before the birth of Christ. The people living at that time had become disillusioned with certain beliefs of Hinduism including the caste system, which had grown extremely complex. The number of outcasts (those who did not belong to any particular caste) was continuing to grow."
      "However, in Buddhism, like so many other religions, fanciful stories arose concerning events in the life of the founder, Siddhartha Gautama (fifth century B.C.):"

      Archaeological discoveries have proved, beyond a doubt, his historical character, but apart from the legends we know very little about the circu-mstances of his life. e.g. Buddha by one legend was supposedly talking when he came out of his mother's womb.

      Bottom line: There are many good ways of living but be aware of the hallucinations, embellishments, lies, and myths surrounding the founders and foundations of said rules of life.

      Then, apply the Five F rule: "First Find the Flaws, then Fix the Foundations". And finally there will be religious peace and religious awareness in the world!!!!!

      June 14, 2011 at 7:04 am |
    • Reality

      "Koran

      American Heritage Dictionary:
      Ko·ran

      qur'an

      or Qur·'an (kə-răn', -rän', kô-, kō-)
      n.
      The sacred text of Islam, considered by Muslims to contain the revelations of God to Muhammad. Also called Alcoran.

      Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/qur-an#ixzz1PFP1q9eG"

      June 14, 2011 at 7:08 am |
    • Reality

      Our War on Terror and Aggression:

      An update (or how we are spending or how we have spent the USA taxpayers’ money to eliminate global terror and aggression)

      The terror and aggression via a Partial and Also Recent Body Count

      – the koranic/mosque driven acts of terror and horror continue:

      The Muslim Conquest of India – 11th to 18th century

      ■"The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

      and the 19 million killed in the Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C by Muslims.

      and more recently

      1a) 179 killed in Mumbai/Bombay, 290 injured

      1b) Assassination of Benazir Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh

      2) 9/11, 3000 mostly US citizens, 1000’s injured

      3) The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US troops killed in action, 3,483 and 925 in non combat roles. 99,901 – 109,143 Iraqi civilians killed as of 3/3/2011/, mostly due to suicide bombers, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and http://www.defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf

      4) Kenya- In Nairobi, about 212 people were killed and an estimated 4000 injured; in Dar es Salaam, the attack killed at least 11 and wounded 85.[2]

      5) Bali-in 2002-killing 202 people, 164 of whom were foreign nationals, and 38 Indonesian citizens. A further 209 people were injured.

      6) Bali in 2005- Twenty people were killed, and 129 people were injured by three bombers who killed themselves in the attacks.

      7) Spain in 2004- killing 191 people and wounding 2,050.

      8. UK in 2005- The bombings killed 52 commuters and the four radical Islamic suicide bombers, injured 700.

      9) The execution of an eloping couple in Afghanistan on 04/15/2009 by the Taliban.

      10) – Afghanistan: US troops 1,141 killed in action, 242 killed in non-combat situations as of 03/03/2011. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror

      11) The killing of 13 citizen soldiers at Ft. Hood by a follower of the koran.

      12) 38 Russian citizens killed on March 29, 2010 by Muslim women suicide bombers.

      13) The May 28, 2010 attack on a Islamic religious minority in Pakistan, which have left 98 dead,

      14) Lockerbie is known internationally as the site where, on 21 December 1988, the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 crashed as a result of a terrorist bomb. In the United Kingdom the event is referred to as the Lockerbie disaster, the Lockerbie bombing, or simply Lockerbie. Eleven townspeople were killed in Sherwood Crescent, where the plane's wings and fuel tanks plummeted in a fiery explosion, destroying several houses and leaving a huge crater, with debris causing damage to a number of buildings nearby. The 270 fatalities (259 on the plane, 11 in Lockerbie) were citizens of 21 nations.

      15 The daily suicide and/or roadside and/or mosque bombings in the terror world of Islam.

      16) Bombs sent from Yemen by followers of the koran which fortunately were discovered before the bombs were detonated.

      17) The killing of 58 Christians in a Catholic church in one of the latest acts of horror and terror in Iraq.

      18) Moscow airport suicide bombing: 35 dead, 130 injured. January 25, 2011.

      19) A Pakistani minister, who had said he was getting death threats because of his stance against the country's controversial blasphemy law, was shot and killed Wednesday, 3/2/2011

      20) two American troops killed in Germany by a recently radicalized Muslim, 3/3/2011

      21) the kidnapping and apparent killing of a follower of Zoraster in the dark world of Islamic Pakistan.

      22) Shariatpur, Bangladesh (CNN 3/30/2011) - Hena Akhter's last words to her mother proclaimed her innocence. But it was too late to save the 14-year-old girl. Her fellow villagers in Bangladesh's Shariatpur district had already passed harsh judgment on her. Guilty, they said, of having an affair with a married man. The imam from the local mosque ordered the fatwa, or religious ruling, and the punishment: 101 lashes delivered swiftly, deliberately in public. Hena dropped after 70 and died a week later.

      Other elements of our War on Terror and Aggression:

      -Operation Iraqi Freedom- The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US Troops killed in action, 3,481 and 924 died in non-combat, 99,901 – 109,143 Iraqi civilians killed as of 3/3/2011/, mostly due to suicide bombers, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and http://www.defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf
      – Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan: US troops 1,141 killed in action, 242 killed in non-combat situations as of 03/03/2011. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror,

      – Sa-dd-am, his sons and major he-nchmen have been deleted. Sa-dd-am's bravado about WMD was one of his major mistakes. Kuwait was saved.

      – Iran is being been contained. (beside containing the Sunni-Shiite civil war in Baghdad, that is the main reason we are in Iraq. And yes, essential oil continues to flow from the region.)

      – North Korea is still u-ncivil but is contained.

      – Northern Ireland is finally at peace.

      – The Jews and Palestinians are being separated by walls. Hopefully the walls will follow the 1948 UN accords. Unfortunately the Annapolis Peace Conference was not successful. And unfortunately the recent events in Gaza has put this situation back to “squ-are one”. And this significant stupidity is driven by the mythical foundations of both religions!!!

      – – Fa-na–tical Islam has basically been contained to the Middle East but a wall between India and Pakistan would be a plus for world peace. Ditto for a wall between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

      – Timothy McVeigh was exe-cuted. Terry Nichols will follow soon.

      – Eric Ru-dolph is spending three life terms in pri-son with no par-ole.

      – Jim Jones, David Koresh, Kaczynski, the "nuns" from Rwanda, and the KKK were all dealt with and either eliminated themselves or are being punished.

      – Islamic Sudan, Dar-fur and So-malia are still terror hot spots.

      – The terror and tor-ture of Muslims in Bosnia, Kosovo and Kuwait were ended by the proper application of the military forces of the USA and her freedom-loving friends. Ra-dovan Karadzic was finally captured on 7/23/08 and is charged with genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the law of war – charges related to the 1992-1995 civil war that followed Bosnia-Herzegovina's secession from Yugoslavia.

      – the bloody terror brought about by the Ja-panese, Na-zis and Co-mmunists was with great difficulty eliminated by the good guys.

      – Bin Laden was executed for crimes against humanity on May 1, 2011

      June 14, 2011 at 7:11 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.