While most of America has come to an agreement that President Obama’s National Prayer Breakfast speech was absolutely ridiculous, faux-conservative David Brooks shows why conservatives consider him with such disdain.
On Sunday he was on PBS when he offered nothing but effusive praise of President Obama and his remarks at the prayer breakfast. I kid you not, the dude actually praised Obama’s comments!
And so what he said was utterly normal and admirable and a recognition of historical fact and an urge towards some humility.
(The comments come at around the 6 minute mark.)
I think, if the president had come as an atheist to attack religion and to attack Christianity, the Republicans would have a point. That’s not what a president should be doing.
But that’s not how he came. He has used that prayer breakfast year after year to talk about his own faith, his own faith journey, his own struggles. He’s used it — he has come as a Christian. And the things he said were things — I have never met a Christian who disagreed with what he issued, that the religion has been perverted, that we have to walk humbly before the face of the lord, that God’s purposes are mysterious to us.
This is not like some tangential, weird belief. This is at the core of every Christian’s faith and every Jew’s faith. And so what he said was utterly normal and admirable and a recognition of historical fact and an urge towards some humility. And so I thought the protests were manufactured and falsely manufactured.
Sadly, what Brooks fails to take into account is how inaccurate this portrayal of Christianity is and how far from the point the argument is.
The Crusades did not happen in a vacuum. The Crusades took place nearly 300 years after the first Muslim attack on mainland Europe. By the time of the Crusades, the Moorish Empire had ruled in Spain and Portugal (two HEAVILY Catholic nations) for more than 100 years! They had invaded France, launched wars in Italy and Greece and had already stolen most of the Byzantine Empire’s territory! In fact, by the time the Crusades would end, all that would be left of the Byzantine Empire would be its capital city, Constantinople… and that would fall soon after the Crusades! So, let’s stop pretending that the dozen or so battles that Christianity initiated were some kind of evil march against Islam… when Islam had already launched HUNDREDS of battles against Christians.
Also, while the Crusades (and American slavery) may have been conducted by “Christians,” there is nothing in the Bible (or Christian teaching) that would encourage or support these endeavors. Meanwhile, the “radical Muslim” can point to many scriptures in the Koran (and from Islamic tradition) that support violent jihad.
So this is not an apples to apples comparison. Both the President and David Brooks are WAY OFF.
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