In its list of Top Five Attacks On America Committed By Christian Terrorists, Not Muslims, Occupy Democrats scrapes the bottom of the barrel to run parallels between Muslim and Christian terrorism. The list is actually useful for showing how empty these comparisons are. Let’s go through them.
1. The Knoxville Unitarian Universalist Church Shooting. Jim David Adkisson, a devout Christian and anti-abortion right-winger, walked into a Knoxville church on July 27th, 2008, and began firing a shotgun at children who were performing Annie Jr. He killed two and wounded seven, targeting the church because of its liberal teachings and his belief that “all liberals should be killed because they were ruining the country”.
That single event happened seven years ago. No mainstream Christian church supported it, and for good reason. Christian scriptures and traditions don’t lend themselves to such behavior. Jihad attacks, meanwhile, are committed routinely, daily, by the thousands, and again for good reason. Jihad is a sixth pillar of Islam, a requirement of all able-bodied Muslim men. Holy war is mandated in all four schools of Islamic jurisprudence, as well as the Shi’a sect.
2. The Campaign of Terror Against Abortion Doctors. In 1993, Dr. Richard Gunn was shot dead by an anti-abortion protester. In 1994, Drs. John Britton and James Barrett were shot to death by Reverend Paul Jennings. In 1998, Dr. Barnett Sleipan was shot dead in his home by a Christian terrorist. In 2009, Dr. George Tiller was shot by Scott Roeder in a church. The ability for Christian right-wingers to justify cold-blooded murder in the name of their pro-life beliefs is a colossal hypocrisy worthy of a terrorist group like ISIS. According to the National Abortion Federation, there have been 17 attempted murders, 383 death threats, 153 incidents of assault or battery, 13 wounded, 100 butyric acid attacks, 373 physical invasions, 41 bombings, 655 anthrax threats, and 3 kidnappings committed against abortion providers since 1977. Terrorist groups like the Taliban and ISIS are very fond of acid attacks and chemical weapons like anthrax; apparently Christian right-wing terrorists share that same preference.
That tally since 1977 adds up to a laughably small number, and again no mainstream Christian group ever endorsed these crimes. Even more laughable, though understandable, is that Occupy Democrats doesn’t tally the last 40 years worth of murders, death threats, assault/battery, wounded, acid attacks, physical invasions, and bombings of Muslim terror campaigns. The numbers would be so off the scales as to blatantly undermine the Christian analogy. Comparing Christian “anti-abortion terror” to Islamic jihad terror is holding a mosquito to a whale. There is no comparison.
3. The 1995 Oklahoma City Bombings. Timothy McVeigh, America’s most notorious domestic terrorist, was obsessed with the Seventh-Day Aventist splinter group known as the Branch Davidians, who resisted an ATF raid on their citadel at Mount Carmel in 1993. He travelled to Waco, Texas during the Waco Siege and heavily supported the religious extremists within it. Two years later, he detonated a fertilizer bomb at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing a hundred and sixty-eight people, including nineteen children, and wounded 648 others. This Christian specifically targeted innocent civilians and committed horrific acts of violence to make his political point heard – something Mr. Huckabee believes he should be incapable of, since he’s not a Muslim.
Can any PC apologist cite a Christian terrorist besides McVeigh? It was 20 years ago. He was a lone rogue.
4. Everything The Ku Klux Klan Has Ever Done. Since its creation after the American Civil War, the Ku Klux Klan has been terrorizing Americans in the name of Protestantism and racial purity. Known for their terrifying costumes and hoods, they wrought have fear and violence against blacks, Jews, immigrants, gays, and Catholics for hundreds of years, responsible for countless massacres, lynchings, rapes, and bombings that have killed thousands. In the modern day, it still has a membership of 5,000 to 8,000 terrorists that operate in individual chapters. Just two weeks ago, Frazier Glenn Cross, the leader of the Carolina Knights of the KKK, was sentenced to death by lethal injection for murdering a fourteen year old girl and two seniors outside the Overland Park Jewish Community Center in Kansas City. The man gave the Hitler salute during his trial and declared that “Jews are destroying the white race.” None of his victims were Jewish.
This is a classic false equivalence. Islam has a 1400-year history of fighting to restore a sharia-based caliphate, grounded in the example of Muhammad. The KKK are a fringe Christian group whose behavior directly opposes that of their savior. Large movements of Muslims fighting for a caliphate is the historical norm in Islam. A movement like the KKK is scorned and condemned by the Christian world — which is no surprise to anyone who understands Christianity.
5. The Massacre At Zion Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C. On Wednesday, June 17th of this year, a man rose from a pew in the historically black Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, and opened fire with a .45 caliber pistol, killing nine worshipers, including pastor and State Senator Clementa Pickiney. The shooter has been photographed wearing patches representing the racist apartheid regimes in Southwest Africa, had a Confederate license plate on his vehicle. All signs points to this being a hate crime- not only is it the oldest black church in the South, it was a symbol of resistance against slavery, and a survivor reported that the shooter yelled ‘I have to do it. You rape our women and you’re taking over our country. And you have to go.” Roof was a member of a local Lutheran church, yet somehow his baptism didn’t prevent him from gunning down innocent people in a house of worship, defiling a sacred place with hate and murder.
This one is both a bad and good analogy. Bad for all the reasons of the above examples: Roof was a lone rogue. Good for what it says about the power of ideas, and thus spotlighting liberal hypocrisy: When a southern racist like Roof walks into a church and shoots African-American people because — in his own words — he was inspired to do so by the Confederate Flag, liberals are perfectly willing to take him at his own words. And rightly so. But when someone burns a copy of the Qur’an, or draws a cartoon of Muhammad, and jihadis — in their own words — kill the offending arsonists and artists for blaspheming against the Prophet, liberals retreat into denial. They insist that jihad attacks are inspired by political grievances, poverty, and/or lack of education, all of which are demonstrably false myths. Liberals acknowledge the ideological power of that which they want to condemn. The Confederate flag represents southern racism, so it’s easy to be honest about it. The Qur’an represents one of the world’s major religions; it’s not easy to be honest about that.
So the next time one of your conservative friends tries to “school” you on the “evils of Islam,” just name a couple items from this list. The rampant xenophobia that has taken hold of the Republican Party is an affront to everything this nation stands for. Terrorism spawns from the desperation of humankind, and for that, we are all guilty.
No, the next time one of your friends — conservative or otherwise — tries to educate you about Islam, allow yourself to be educated, instead of manufacturing bigotry where it doesn’t exist. It is true that there are genuine anti-Muslim bigots, but that has nothing necessarily to do with criticism of Islam as a religion, and as a system of pernicious ideas which are reinforced by vast numbers of Muslims across the globe.