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My Take: It’s time for Islamophobic evangelicals to choose
September 15th, 2012
10:00 PM ET

My Take: It’s time for Islamophobic evangelicals to choose

Editor's Note: Brian D. McLaren  is author of "Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road? Christian Identity in a Multi-Faith World" (Jericho Books/Hachette Book Group). 

By Brian McLaren, Special to CNN

I was raised as an evangelical Christian in America, and any discussion of Christian-Jewish-Muslim relations around the world must include the phenomenon of American Islamophobia, for which large sectors of evangelical Christianity in America serve as a greenhouse.

At a time when U.S. embassies are being attacked and when people are getting killed over an offensive, adolescent and puerile film targeting Islam - beyond pathetic in its tawdriness – we must begin to own up to the reality of evangelical Islamaphobia.

Many of my own relatives receive and forward pious-sounding and alarm-bell-ringing e-mails that trumpet (IN LOTS OF CAPITAL LETTERS WITH EXCLAMATION POINTS!) the evils of Islam, that call their fellow evangelicals and charismatics to prayer and “spiritual warfare” against those alleged evils, and that often - truth be told - contain lots of downright lies.

For example, one recent e-mail claimed “Egyptian Christians in Grave Danger as Muslim Brotherhood Crucifies Opponents."  Of course, that claim has been thoroughly debunked, but the sender’s website still (as of Friday) claims that the Muslim Brotherhood has “crucified those opposing" Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy "naked on trees in front of the presidential palace while abusing others.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Many sincere and good-hearted evangelicals have never yet had a real Muslim friend, and now they probably never will because their minds have been so prejudiced by Islamophobic broadcasts on so-called Christian television and radio.

Janet Parshall, for example, a popular talk show host on the Moody Radio Network, frequently hosts Walid Shoebat, a Muslim-evangelical convert whose anti-Muslim claims, along with claims about his own biography, are frequently questioned.  John Hagee, a popular televangelist, also hosts Shoebat as an expert on Islam, as does the 700 Club.

Many Christian bookstores that (used to) sell my books, still sell books such as Paul Sperry’s "Infiltration: How Muslim Spies and Subversives Have Penetrated Washington" (Thomas Nelson, 2008). In so doing, they fuel conspiracy theories such as the ones U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, promoted earlier this year.

In recent days, we’ve seen how irresponsible Muslim media outlets used the tawdry 13-minute video created by a tiny handful of fringe Christian extremists to create a disgusting caricature of all Christians - and all Americans - in Muslim minds. But too few Americans realize how frequently American Christian media personalities in the U.S. similarly prejudice their hearers’ minds with mirror-image stereotypes of Muslims.

Ambassador's killing shines light on Muslim sensitivities around Prophet Mohammed

Meanwhile, many who are pastors and leaders in evangelicalism hide their heads in the current issue of Christianity Today or World Magazine, acting as if the kinds of people who host Islamophobic sentiments swim in a tiny sidestream, not in the mainstream, of our common heritage. I wish that were true.

The events of this past week, if we let them, could mark a turning point - a hitting bottom, if you will - in the complicity of evangelicalism in Islamophobia. If enough evangelicals watch or try to watch the film trailer that has sparked such outrage in the Middle East, they may move beyond the tipping point.

I tried to watch it, but I couldn’t make it halfway to the 13-minute mark. Everything about it was tawdry, pathetic, even pornographic. All but the most fundamentalist believers from my evangelical Christian tribe who watch that video will be appalled and ashamed to be associated with it.

It is hate speech. It is no different from the anti-Semitic garbage that has been all too common in Western Christian history. It is sub-Christian - beneath the dignity of anyone with a functioning moral compass.

Islamophobic evangelical Christians - and the neo-conservative Catholics and even some Jewish folks who are their unlikely political bedfellows of late - must choose.

Will they press on in their current path, letting Islamophobia spread even further amongst them? Or will they stop, rethink and seek to a more charitable approach to our Muslim neighbors? Will they realize that evangelical religious identity is under assault, not by Shariah law, not by the liberal media, not by secular humanism from the outside, but by forces within the evangelical community that infect that religious identity with hostility?

If I could get one message through to my evangelical friends, it would be this: The greatest threat to evangelicalism is evangelicals who tolerate hate and who promote hate camouflaged as piety.

No one can serve two masters. You can’t serve God and greed, nor can you serve God and fear, nor God and hate.

The broad highway of us-them thinking and the offense-outrage-revenge reaction cycle leads to self-destruction. There is a better way, the way of Christ who, when reviled, did not revile in return, who when insulted, did not insult in return, and who taught his followers to love even those who define themselves as enemies.

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Yes, “they” – the tiny minority of Muslims who turn piety into violence – have big problems of their own. But the way of Christ requires all who claim to be Christians to examine our own eyes for planks before trying to perform first aid on the eyes of others. We must admit that we have our own tiny minority whose message and methods we have not firmly, unitedly and publicly repudiated and rejected.

To choose the way of Christ is not appeasement. It is not being a “sympathizer.”

The way of Christ is a gentle strength that transcends the vicious cycles of offense-outrage-revenge.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Brian D. McLaren.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Islam • Opinion

soundoff (8,500 Responses)
  1. Lisa

    The are a few extremists amongst the many moderates. They look the same, talk the same and read from the same book. We cannot tell them apart until it is too late. Some of the them announce their views and some hide it because they know a spotlight will be cast on them and they will no longer be able to operate under the cloak of annonymity. THAT'S what people fear.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  2. Jimjones11111

    In the words of the great beat poet, Rodney king, "why can't we all just get along."

    September 16, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • hmm

      cause our leaders can't

      September 16, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

      Because of hinduism, criminality of hindu Jew's, filthy self centered and hindu corrupter of truth absolute.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  3. ISLAMOWHAT? really?

    you must be kidding...muslims have more tolerance shown to them in a country that in reality, should not have to show them any sympathy. Muslims have how many mosques in the US???? How many churches are in the middle east???

    I am SOOOOO tired of this false narrative liberals like to spin...islamopphobia my butt.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • Brad

      There is more Evangelicalphobia than there is Islamaphobia. This blogger lives in a world of its own. *rollseyes*

      September 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Burnell

      Mmmm. events that are evidence of Islamophobia, lets see burning of Muslim mosque, massacre of Sihks at their temple probably because the christian was to stupid to realize that Sihks aren't Muslim, murder of various muslim and arab looking people due to islamophobia, really no islamophobia, really, come on at least I am honest enough to admit humans in general are violent thugs and not just because of their faith.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
    • BioHzrd

      It looks like you missed the point of the article entirely. Your statement is a prime example of this us-them mentality. This isn't about how many churches they have or how they treat us. This is about espousing the values and beliefs that we claim to hold. If you claim to be a true Christian and live by Jesus's word, if you claim to believe in religious tolerance, then you can't out the other side of your mouth espouse hate and intolerance. This is about showing inclusion and tolerance at home, in the US. Its about being the responsible example. The article is about evangelicals actually practicing what they preach. My understanding of Christianity is that Jesus loved even his most dire enemies and died to save those that despised him and wanted him dead. Based on this, I don't think Jesus would ask how many Churches they have built before they deserve understanding and tolerance.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • Isabella

      Agree.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
  4. hmm

    we should be afraid of 1B+ united against our society group. why can't you bring bible to saudi arabia, our "ally", but it is OK to bring theirs to "our" countries?

    September 16, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  5. hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

    There are no Religions, but Truth absolute, essence of existence, hindu's, criminals deny it in their hinduism ,denial of truth absolute. hinduism, religions are hinduism, corruption of truth absolute by hindu Jew's, filthy secular s, self centered.Word hindu is based on Latin word hindrance, negativity, HUN, great, Han to be great, hind, to be negative to both of them, hindu, a noun in negativity, hinduism, way of negativity,Pay attention to word AL HIND, from word HANOOD, self centered, denier of truth absolute, AL HIND means, land of deniers of truth absolute, relation ship to word SINDHU is hinduism, absurdity of hindu's denires of truth absolute to make hinduism, illegality justifiable..A hindu, murderer deserves nothing less than his hinduism, crime, Death. rest of it is your hinduism, denial of truth absolute. There is no other truth but Truth absolute, hindu's, ignorant's deny by their hindu soul, filthy desire, untill it is truth absolute followed by hindu Jew's, filthy self centered and their hindu gentile, criminal slaves, follower's of hindu Mithra ism, pagan savior ism labeled Christianity, world has no chance to see peace, Islam on earth. things will not change until and unless Americans follow truth absolute, unimpeded and dump hindu Judaism, filthy secular ism, For more visit http://www.limitisthetruth.com/blog.html and click on word Choice to open file.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Maddoginfog

      Put the plug back in the jug, or get back on your meds, or do whatever you have to in order to MAKE SENSE for once!

      September 16, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
  6. cholcobo3

    This guy says that stupid, caps-lock-typing people are islamophobic. Well, my grammar is perfect, I am highly educated, and I say that Islam is a militant, poisonous religion, and people who would prefer the politically correct fantasy are the REAL cowards.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

      Word Education manes knowledge, and you have none of education of truth absolute, but a hindu, ignorant after many years of schooling.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  7. Dyslexic doG

    when we all grow up and realize that ALL religion is foolishness, the world will be a much better place.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • Veritas

      And it will happen, maybe faster than we think, thanks to the advances in technology and communications. The number of people that state they don't belong to any particular organized religion is rapidly increasing in the US. In Europe very few are particularly religious. There is hope for humanity!

      September 16, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

      There are no Religions, but Truth absolute, essence of existence, hindu's, criminals deny it in their hinduism ,denial of truth absolute. hinduism, religions are hinduism, corruption of truth absolute by hindu Jew's, filthy secular s, self centered.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Veritas

      @hinduism source of hindufilthyracism: You don't sound human? Are we discussing with a robotic email responder?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Susie

      They already tried that...100 million people were killed in these countries.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • pepsee

      Hey muslim "hinduism source of hindufilthyracism", you guys are proving everyday what you are – murderous cancer of human society. Now shut up and give up destryoing the human race. The world is better of without the cancerous plague like you.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Veritas

      @Susie: You assume that the only way we can rid ourselves from destructive religions is by killing people? Maybe that is how theistic mind think. We can also simply educate ourselves and over time rational thinking, reason and science will prevail instead of religious hocus pocus. This is already happening in the western societies. And as many studies have shown, the level of religious fanaticism is inversely proportional to the level of education.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • Prime Directive

      We're on our own here, folks. When you can provide verified evidence for your god, we'll talk.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Rick

      It might be easier to convince Americans not to fear Muslims if we didn't see evidence of Muslim barbarity and hate nearly every night on the news. They hate Americans, they hate Jews, and when left alone they hate each other. No, it isn't all Muslims or even a majority- but it's enough brutal Muslims to feed into Christian hate-mongerers' hands.
      As Buddha said- "Hate does not overcome hate. Only love overcomes hate." (MLK paraphrased this teaching of the Buddha beautifully in his ministry as "Darkness cannot overcome darkness. Only light overcomes darkness.)

      September 16, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Susie

      Veritas, boy did you miss the boat on that one. Let me state it more clearly. In the last century, atheistic countries killed 100 million of their own people. Atheism offers no rational reason not to kill people who disagree, because of this, those in power end up killing dissidents.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  8. Surfer George

    'For example, one recent e-mail claimed “Egyptian Christians in Grave Danger as Muslim Brotherhood Crucifies Opponents." Of course, that claim has been thoroughly debunked, but the sender’s website still (as of Friday) claims that the Muslim Brotherhood has “crucified those opposing" Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy "naked on trees in front of the presidential palace while abusing others.”'

    Sadly, I find it easy to believe that ideologues and mongers of every description would make such false claims as those reported in this article.
    What TRULY saddens me is the clear fact that there are those who, without consideration or verification respond to these false statements with their faith first. Believing in a God I can't see is one thing. Believing what ever some self appointed "leader" claims without some kind of validation is really dumb.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
  9. Farid

    I am a Muslim, and I am saddened at many of these messages posted. I do not agree with the protests and obivously condemn the violence, but there is a conspiracy in the media, especially in the right wing media, to portray Muslims in the worst possible light. Whenever a lunatic blows himself up, he is labelled "Muslim or Islamic" terrorist, but when Gabby Giifford was almost assassinated, or when the "Joker" killer shot movie goers, or when the Sikh Temple was terrorized or Andres Brevik killed 96 people including mostly children, they were not labeled the "Christian Joker" or the "Christian Assassin" or the "Christian Terrorist" or the "Norwegian Christian Killer". This only happens when the lunatic is Muslim. This does not include the Iraq War where over 250,000 Iraqis where killed in a war that could be claimed to be a "Christian Crusader War" instead of "Bush's War" as it is portrayed in the West. All I am saying is that I am a one of the world's 1.5 billion Muslims and my fundamental beliefs are no different than the fundamental beliefs of Christianity. I have believers in my faith that I am not proud of, as there are belivers in other faiths that I am not proud of, but fear of Islam or Muslims is as wrong as Anti-Semitism was during WWII.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Thank you for your courage in posting here. You are quite correct... hatred and fear of the "other" is present in ALL religions. Humans have to start dealing with each other as humans without all the attendant baggage, or we're doomed.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Susie

      I feel for you. You seem to be a peaceful person. However, own your religion and reform it, just as Christians did 400 years ago.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Brad

      The differance between a muslim killer and all the other violent killers such as the arizona/colarado/sikh temple killers is muslims kill in the name of their god. the rest of the lunatics were just gun crazed psychotic killers.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • ari

      i don't recall any religious motivation in the case of the giffords shooting. the man who shot her was a violent schizophrenic who was convinced that she was controlling him somehow, if i remember right.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Susie, you're being dishonest... Christians, in some sects, haven't "reformed" their religion one iota.

      Brad, you are ignoring the fact that the killer at the Sikh temple really WAS killing in the name of his "god." How about the abortion doctor killer that killed in the name of his "god?" You can glean any number of killings in the United States that were perpetrated in the name of a "god." They are all "crazy," but they also drag their "gods" into it as well. We are not above reproach.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Surfer George

      Susie wrote:
      "I feel for you. You seem to be a peaceful person. However, own your religion and reform it, just as Christians did 400 years ago."

      Due respect, but don't get me started...
      Catholic protected child abuse for DECADES
      "Christian" rejection of Science in favor of "Creationism"
      "Compassionate Conservative Christianity" that has no interest in what Jesus would do...

      There is a near endless list of Christian HYPOCRISY waiting to be addressed and resolved. OK, we've pretty much stopped burning witches, but there is a long LONG LONG way to go before we can reasonably call Christianity reformed.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • cholcobo3

      That's because they were CRAZY people, not BRAINWASHED by ISLAM. Sorry, but why do you associate with such a militant, poisonous religion?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Farid

      We do not know the motivations in many of the "Muslim" terrorists also. Many Afghans may feel that they do not want an invader in their country so they kill American troops. Many Iraqis may feel that their government is illegitamate so they blow up a car bomb. The Libyan killers may have been a leftover from Ghaddifi loyalists and went after the country that helped overthrow them. A Palestinian may be trying to fight an Isareli government that took his home. The Egyptian protesters may be getting their first tast of real freedom and are "intoxicated" to show what they can do with it, or maybe the Muslim Brotherhood party is trying to use religion to flex its political muscle. None of these reasons is really tied to being a Muslim or following Islam, but is tied to being a human with dozens of political reasons to act the way they do. We rarely see the real reasons someone other than he is a "Muslim" while on the other side other faiths terrorists are just "crazy or schizophrenic" or have some other "medical" reason why they killed. The difference made in the media is not fair.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Susie

      nkrempa...I think the dishonesty is yours. Where in the world do you see large groups of Christians killing people in the name of their beliefs? When there is a disagreement that might involve religion, such as in Ireland, the rest of the Christians are there doing their best to bring peace. So again, it is your dishonsety that is revealed here.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • Saewulf

      Actually, Farid, I wasn't aware that the Joker killer or most any of the others were killing people because of their religion. In fact, I didn't know what religion they actually were themselves. They were simply killing for sport. When Muslims kill or attempt to kill others it's almost always because of some perceived religious slight. If Christians started doing that the streets would be ankle deep in blood here in the west. We VERY RARELY kill because of religion. Instead we get a lawyer and sue people. That's civilisation. :)

      September 16, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • pepsee

      muslims incite violence worldwide – like what we are seeing now as it is spreading and saw in the past many times. We never saw anything like this from any other religion – they are all localized. muslim rage spread like plague, SARS. This is a fact – everybody with eyes and ears have experienced it in our lifetime many times, not just now.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Man+X

      Violence is evil whether it is done in the name of religion or otherwise. The reason why the world is wary of muslims is the fact that muslims get easily riled and take to violence at the slightest provocation, case in point this film.If everybody decides to turn violent because some produced a movie they did not like this world would become a bloody place.

      Muslims need to realize that resorting to violence is not the answer to what you perceive to be a problem.If you don't like a movie then don't watch it, boycotting the movie would have been the best form of retaliation.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Isabella

      My question to you: did the Jews killed an American ambassador, committed all sort of atrocities? Really you have lots of gull to compare Muslims to the Jews.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  10. hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

    Word hindu is based on Latin word hindrance, negativity, HUN, great, Han to be great, hind, to be negative to both of them, hindu, a noun in negativity, hinduism, way of nagativity.A hindu, murderer deserves nothing less than his hinduism, crime, Death. rest of it is your hinduism, denial of truth absolute. There is no other truth but Truth absolute, hindu's, ignorant's deny by their hindu soul, filthy desire, untill it is truth absolute followed by hindu Jew's, filthy self centered and their hindu gentile, criminal slaves, follower's of hindu Mithra ism, pagan savior ism labeled Christianity, world has no chance to see peace, Islam on earth. things will not change until and unless Americans follow truth absolute, unimpeded and dump hindu Judaism, filthy secular ism, For more visit http://www.limitisthetruth.com/blog.html and click on word Choice to open file.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • Veritas

      Of course, when you say that, I am intrigued as religious folks are well known to lie profusely. So this is what I gather from wikipedia:

      The word Hindu is derived (through Persian) from the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historic local appellation for the Indus River in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent, which is first mentioned in the Rig Veda.[11][12][13]
      The word Hindu was borrowed into European languages from the Arabic term al-Hind, referring to the land of the people who live across the River Indus,[14] itself from the Persian term Hindū, which refers to all Indians. By the 13th century, Hindustān emerged as a popular alternative name of India, meaning the "land of Hindus".[15]

      These kinds of lies and conspiracy theories are rampant in especially islam. Religious people are not healthy.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Veritas

      ...and when I read what you are writing, assuming that you are in Pakistan, I am so glad I live here in the US and never need to set foot in your country. There is clearly good and bad civilizations.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • hinduism source of hindufilthyracism.

      Pay attention to word AL HIND, from word HANOOD, self centered, denier of truth absolute, AL HIND means, land of deniers of truth absolute, relation ship to word SINDHU is hinduism, absurdity of hindu's denires of truth absolute to make hinduism, illegality justifiable.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • Veritas

      This is actually pretty interesting, maybe I am "debating" with one those brainwashed kids from the pakistani madrasas I have read about? The ones that are fed lies and hatred by crazy islamist "teachers"? Fascinating.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Veritas

      The other interesting aspect is that what is called islam is many times just a tool for hatred based on territorial disputes (India/Pakistan, Iran/Israel/Palestinians, Shia/Sunni, etc etc) or general jealousy towards the west since our culture has fared much better than regressive islamic theocracies.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • pepsee

      We are seeing what mad dogs like you called "hinduism source of hindufilthyracism" are doing to the human race. We are not only hearing your barking, we are seeing how you are destryoing the human race with your cancerous ideas and murderous acts. That movie maybe corny but it depicted the essence of your religion.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • *eyeroll*

      Don't you realize hindi existed before latin? And certainly before the huns.

      Get a life.
      Better yet, go play in traffuc and let the rest of us get a better life.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
  11. BryanDrakeShow

    I love how every other outlet focuses on the fact that it was ore planned, but this lockstep "tolerant" focuses on the video. Hmm guess the leader of the country where the attack went down is lying too. He must be a republican right?

    September 16, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
    • nkrempa

      "Every other outlet" being Faux News? The entertainment channel??

      Most outlets have focused on the fact that the attack in Libya MIGHT have been planned to coordinate with a planned protest against the film. The operative word here is "MIGHT." As in possibly, maybe, could have been. Most outlets are at least committed to waiting until they gather more information before loudly proclaiming theories as fact.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
      • BryanDrakeShow

        It's only Faux because you don't like it. Doesn't look so might now does it?

        September 18, 2012 at 9:36 am |
  12. stevenbeto

    Crimes against humanity neither augment nor validate the holiness of any text.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  13. ari

    "In recent days, we’ve seen how irresponsible Muslim media outlets used the tawdry 13-minute video created by a tiny handful of fringe Christian extremists to create a disgusting caricature of all Christians – and all Americans – in Muslim minds. But too few Americans realize how frequently American Christian media personalities in the U.S. similarly prejudice their hearers’ minds with mirror-image stereotypes of Muslims."

    you know what the difference is, friend?

    we don't go storming embassies and killing diplomats in them because of that.

    find another false-equivalence argument, this one's getting old.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • nkrempa

      No, the false equivalence here is yours.

      You falsely believe that, just because Christians don't go storming embassies and rioting, they are somehow superior to other brainwashed individuals of other religions. ANY group, and I mean ANY group, that espouses hatred and fear of almost 2 billion people merely based on their religious affiliation is phobic, pure and simple.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Ben

      I also tire of the false equivalencies drawn between the Muslim and Western worlds, but it doesn't seem to me that the author is doing it here

      September 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • ari

      @nkrtempa you're the one claiming that all religious people (>6 billion people) are brainwashed, and i'm the phobic one? lord.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • jamilahk

      No, you don't storm embassies. You bomb countries, killing innocent civilians. That's so much better, isn't it?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Lisa

      To nkrempa, no, he's correct. The point is obviously to fear the violence and the killing. Hatred will always exist. We can work to control it and educate those who hate but violence and killing can't be tolerated.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • ari

      @jamilahk oh, iraq and afghanistan were about killing muslims now? you people need to get your talking points straightened out. in 04 it was about oil, in 08 it was about israel, now it's about a crusade?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • jamilahk

      @ari: GWBush used the word "crusade." Remember that?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Isabella

      To Jamilahk:

      How do you explain that so many Sunnites kill so many Shiites and this is the fault of the USA, I suppose? Just admit that Islam is the cause of a lot of blood shedding in the world.

      September 16, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
  14. someone

    Stop crocodilophobia!!! Embrace a crocodile!!!

    September 16, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
  15. Caxton

    I think that people need to quit acting like sheep and start thinking for themselves. All this death around the world for apparent "Gods" that no one has, nor will ever have, any concrete proof ever existed. Religion is the biggest hoax in the history of humanity. Wake up people. Muslim, Christian, doesn't matter, it's all based on fairy tales and people are killing each other over it? It's scary to think we live in a world where you can have these fairy tales shoved down your throat for so many years that you never question it or look for proof of existence. I DARE you to seek your own evidence of any of this religeos propaganda rather than relying on someone else's word. Those are called "Cults", although they don't cause nearly the amount of bloodshed as religion.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • cholcobo3

      Well, Roman Catholics may be stupid, but they don't go around killing people. Muslims are a clear and present danger to humanity. We must irradiate them with nukes before they do it to us first.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • RBSG

      Correction: They don't go around killing people anymore. For centuries, it was a very treacherous sect, slaughtering many who disagreed (including Muslims).

      September 16, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
  16. shane

    I am an atheist, but I still believe Islam is a joke and we should seriously consider nuking those respective countries.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • ngc1300

      Why do I keep hearing Randy Newman's "Political Science"?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  17. geckopelli

    A "PHOBIA" is an irrational fear.

    There's nothing irrational about fearing barbarians who call for your murder.

    The "irrational" part is giving these animals money. BOMB!

    September 16, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Okay, so you don't "irrationally" fear Muslims? So you rightly fear almost 2 billion people, solely on the basis of their religion, is that right?

      Read that carefully... two billion people... two billion... and you're deathly afraid of EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. of them.

      And that isn't phobic?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • Saewulf

      nkrempa,
      No, I don't fear all 2 billion of them. I only fear the large percentage of them that want to kill me. Can you please help me figure out which they are?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • yuri pelham

      Agree . It's about their behavior. But the politically correct will make any excuse. Our blindness to the war they are waging on is is what is scarey

      September 16, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Saewulf – how can you say it's a "large percentage" that want to "kill" you? Do you even know how many fundamentalist, radical Muslims there are compared with peaceful, moderate Muslims?? Or are you also making sweeping generalizations based on what you've been told?

      September 16, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  18. Going In Circles

    We can stop all of the hate by killing all of the Muslims.
    Then the Christians and Jews can go back to fighting over the holy land.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • jamilahk

      Stop hate with hate, right?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Saewulf

      Christians and Jews never actually fought over the holy land. It was Christians and Muslims. You've heard of the crusades?

      September 16, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  19. riabm60

    And if we say we are concerned about Islam and Muslims we are called Islamophobic.

    Only a blind person could claim that Islam and its followers are not a massive threat to the future security in the USA and the rest of the Western world.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Yup, yup... every single one of the almost 2 billion Muslims in the world today are gunning for every single adherent of any other religion. 24/7. 365 days a year. That's why we should FEAR every single one of them!!

      Oh, wait. If that were true, we'd be embroiled in world war right now, wouldn't we... I mean, 2 billion of 'em? Why are you still here??

      September 16, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • BryanDrakeShow

      The difference also is that the violence an craziness purported by these people makes them, according to their own scripture, a good Muslim. You haven't read anything on Islam I take it? By that I mean the actual Koran itself?

      You people who justify their actions in reaction to the movie should have zero problem with Christians kicking down Larry David's door and killing him. Oh wait didn't happen.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • nkrempa

      I don't justify anything in any of my comments. I also don't tolerate wholesale hatred and fear of an entire religion based on what some Islamophobic evangelical Christian sheepherder has to say.

      "You people" is another way for your to claim your smug self-righteousness and superiority, but it isn't working is it? You're still scared to death of almost 2 billion people on this planet for no other reason than the "god" they worship. Hope your gene pool evolves quickly as well... or that you have not yet procreated, cuz that would be just scary.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Saewulf

      nkrempa is sure fascinated with that "2 billion" number.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • nkrempa

      Saewulf – that "2 billion number" is a biggie. I mean, isn't that roughly the equivalent of being scared to death of every man, woman and child in the US, Canada and Mexico combined? Or more?? Does that strike you as rational, to be so afraid of THAT MANY people merely based on their religion?

      September 16, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  20. Erasmus

    I wish we could stop calling radically right wing Christians evangelicals. All Christian denominations seek others to follow Christ and thus are evangelical. The media uses the term evangelical because they are too pc to say crazies. I belong to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, but we would not be called Evangelical by the press.

    September 16, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • Susie

      I wish you would stop using ad hominem attacks against people you disagree with. I wish you would stop trying to paint those who disagree with you as radical. Its an old communist ploy that has no business in a dialogue. Now, present some facts and then we can actually discuss the truth.

      September 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
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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.