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Ben Shapiro / February 11, 2015

Shut Up, Because the Crusades

This week, President Obama spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast, where he proceeded to inform an audience of Christians that they ought not judge radical Muslims currently engaged in beheading journalists, defenestrating gays, crucifying children, and engaging in mass rape of women. Why, pray tell, should Christians remain silent? Because, Obama informed them with Ivy League pride, “Unless we get on our high horse and think that this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ. So it is not unique to one group or one religion.” At some point in our collective history, our ancestors engaged in tribal warfare and cannibalized their fallen enemies. So shut up about the Nazis, you hypocrites.

This week, President Obama spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast, where he proceeded to inform an audience of Christians that they ought not judge radical Muslims currently engaged in beheading journalists, defenestrating gays, crucifying children, and engaging in mass rape of women. Why, pray tell, should Christians remain silent? Because, Obama informed them with Ivy League pride, “Unless we get on our high horse and think that this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ. So it is not unique to one group or one religion.”

At some point in our collective history, our ancestors engaged in tribal warfare and cannibalized their fallen enemies. So shut up about the Nazis, you hypocrites.

Forget Obama’s historical ignorance, if you can, for just a moment. Forget that the Crusades, for all their brutality and horror, were a response to Islamic aggression; forget that the Inquisition was an attempt to systematize legal punishment for anti-Christian activity rather than leaving it to the heated mob; forget that all abolitionist leaders were devout Christians; forget that hundreds of thousands of Christians marched to their deaths during the Civil War singing the words “as He died to make men holy, so we die to make men free”; forget that the chief leaders of the civil rights movement were Christian leaders like Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.

Focus instead on the fact that President Obama felt the necessity to defend radical Islam at all. Why defend radical Islam? What is the point?

Obama defends radical Islam because he does not think in terms of ideology, but in terms of power dynamics. If radical Muslims commit terror, it is because they feel helpless and hopeless. If they feel helpless and hopeless, it is because Westerners made them feel that way. If Westerners made them feel that way, it is because Western ideology must be exploitative and evil.

In other words, Obama cites the Crusades as justification for shutting Christians up because the Crusades caused all of this. If Christians had just kept their pieholes shut several thousand years ago, none of this would have happened. Obama’s ignorant and bigoted gloss on Christian history isn’t a throwaway line: it’s the centerpiece of his philosophy. Radical Islam isn’t the problem because Christianity is. And we know that Christianity is the problem because radical Islam is violent. In this skewed version of reality, modern Christianity’s fantastic record is a direct outgrowth of its disreputable past.

Obama extends this bizarre philosophy to every part of life. Those who murder Jews in Israel aren’t motivated by radical Islam: They were exploited by those evil, non-murdering Jews. Those who riot in Ferguson aren’t motivated by a corrupt ideology of victimhood: They were exploited long ago by those who cower in their stores, trying to prevent the looting. Those who sire children they abandon, drop out of school and refuse to hold down jobs aren’t predictable refuse of a broken philosophy: They are victims of those who get married, stay in school and hold down jobs. Success is the ultimate indicator that your philosophy is evil. Failure is the ultimate indicator that you are a victim, regardless of your ideology.

Obama’s philosophy is the philosophy of failure. No wonder radical Islam holds a cherished place in his heart, while Judeo-Christian religion find itself in his doghouse.

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