Jim Gilmore, a former Virginia governor, and a possible Republican presidential candidate next year, is trying to put words into my mouth.
Of the remarks made this week by President Obama about the Crusades and how Christianity has produced acts of violence in the name of its religion, Gilmore said that Obama has “offended every believing Christian” with his statement.
Um, governor? As a “believing Christian,” sir, I am categorically not offended by those remarks.
If you listen to the president’s remarks in their totality, he said at the prayer breakfast that Islam isn’t the only religion that’s been perverted by cultists who are performing terrible deeds in the name of their religion. Christians launched the Crusades a millennium ago and, yes, did some terrible things to non-believers who stood in their path as they marched through the Middle East.
“Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,” Obama said. “In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”
The president is holding the United States up to a higher standard than all that he cited.
Deputy White House press aide Eric Schultz said: “The president believes that America is the greatest country on earth, not only because of our military or economic prowess or because we serve in a unique leadership role amongst the international community.”
That hasn’t stopped right-wing critics from slamming the president. Erick Erickson, author of RedState.com, said Obama isn’t even a “meaningful” Christian, whatever in the world that means. Good grief, young man. The president has proclaimed his faith repeatedly whenever he’s given the chance.
But I digress …
Barack Obama understands history as well as any American, and as well as any practicing Christian. He knows Christians have committed barbaric acts. He merely was seeking to put this whole discussion of present-day terrorism being carried out by Islamic radicals in some historical context.
And I’m fully confident the remains fully dedicated to fighting those radical Islamists to the death.
So, let’s chill out here. I’m not offended by what the president said. I am more interested in ensuring that we continue to fight the war against international terrorism.