We thank President Barack Obama for his courageous stance on terrorism and his rejection of the trend to malign the religion of Islam.

This week, the president gave one of the most significant and poignant speeches of his presidency. Some say it may go down in history as one of the most defining speeches of any presidency. President Obama defended his position that Muslims and Islam are not enemies to this world and vowed to never ascribe the slur “radical Islam” to what he referred to as ‘one of the world’s great religions’.

In the two days following the shocking mass shooting in Orlando, Fla., presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump used his media appearances to chide President Obama for not using the term “radical Islam” to describe the shooter’s supposed religious affiliation. Mr. Trump declared that the president was being politically correct, weak, ineffective and should resign in shame.

President Obama responded with resolve and poise, rejecting the notion that Islam and radicalism are one and the same: “For a while now, the main contributions of some of my friends on the other side of the aisle have made in the fight against ISIL is to criticize this administration and me for not using the phrase ‘radical Islam.” … What exactly would using this label accomplish? What exactly would it change? Would it make ISIL less committed to trying to kill more Americans?  Would it bring in more allies? Is there a military strategy that is served by this? The answer is none of the above.  Calling a threat by a different name does not make it go away.  This is a political distraction,” said the president.

President Obama eloquently and accurately stated, “Groups like ISIL and al Qaeda want to make this a war between Islam and America, or between Islam and the West. They want to claim that they are the true leaders of over a billion Muslims around the world who reject their crazy notions. If we fall into a trap of painting all

Muslims with a broad brush, and imply that we are at war with an entire religion, then we are doing the terrorists’ work for them.”

We hear President Obama’s call to action loud and clear: The American people must not fall prey to the demonization of an entire faith and erosion of true American values in the name of fear. As the President reminded, “We’ve gone through moments in our history before when we acted out of fear — and we came to regret it.  We’ve seen our government mistreat our fellow citizens.  And it has been a shameful part of our history.”

“This is a country founded on basic freedoms, including freedom of religion.  We don’t have religious tests here.  Our Founders, our Constitution, our Bill of Rights are clear about that.  And if we ever abandon those values, we would not only make it a lot easier to radicalize people here and around the world, but we would have betrayed the very things we are trying to protect — the pluralism and the openness, our rule of law, our civil liberties…”

The Islamic Post, its volunteer staff and its worldwide readership have spent the better part of two decades exposing and denouncing the campaign to pervert Islam. President Obama is an inspiration and has the full commitment of the Islamic Post and the community of The Muslims of America to reject distortion of Islam from all internal and external forces.

 

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