Many of you, I’m sure, read about the Pew study last August that determined 18% of Americans (roughly one in five) believe that President Obama is a Muslim. And I’m sure many might be tempted to disprove this claim as patently ridiculous. My response? What should it matter if he was?
Let’s be honest. Those who cast doubt on Obama’s religious affiliation are not driven by compelling evidence – they are simply fomenting Islamophobia for abject political purposes.
Take a look at this interview clip with Sarah Palin (above). She purports to be making argument against a media “double standard” – but she plays her true cards when she refers to our president as “Barack Hussein Obama.”
This is about as patently cynical as it gets. It’s clear that Palin and her ilk aren’t really all that interested in media accountability or presenting anything resembling evidence. They’re really just riding a rising wave of American anti-Muslim prejudice, pure and simple.
My two cents? We need to spend less time trying to dissuade irrational people from holding irrational ideas and more time calling out these Islamophobes for who they really are. No, Obama is not a Muslim, but if we’re not troubled in the least by the prospect of a Muslim president, then it seem to me we should be prepared to stand up and say so in no uncertain terms.