Is the Only Good Muslim a Bad Muslim?
President Obama called for a world full of good Christians and bad Muslims.
Since my piece last week analyzing President Obama’s remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast, I’ve been invited on a number of radio shows to talk about it. My task has been complicated by the fact that the president had two major points:
1) Christians should not overlook our own history of using our faith as a pretext for cruelty and intolerance.
This is sobering but true, and I hope that Christians believe it, so that we resist our own temptations to mistake our own egos and will-to-power for the will of almighty God. There is no room for Christian nostalgia about witch-trials or the persecution of “heretics.”
2) Muslims who persecute unbelievers are betraying their own faith.
This is uplifting but false. I hope that Muslims believe it, so that they oppose sharia law, honor-killing and the execution of “apostates” (i.e., Christian converts). I hope that Christians do NOT believe it, because this happy face, bearded-Unitarian image of Islam renders them helpless to defend themselves, and unable to offer real help to persecuted non-Muslims around the world.
In essence, the President was calling on Christians to be good Christians, and Muslims to be bad Muslims. The world would surely benefit from both.
I’ve never heard a better discussion of this issue than a debate I moderated a few years back between Boston College professor Peter Kreeft, and Jihadwatch editor Robert Spencer. The title was straightforward: “Resolved — That the Only Good Muslim is a Bad Muslim.” It’s long, but well worth watching. The real action starts at 3:40, so fast-forward to there.