Geraldo Rivera and Barack Obama Versus the Truth About Christianity and Islam

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Last week, President Obama told Americans not to get on their “high horse” and think that the murderous atrocities being committed by Muslims in Africa, Syria, Iraq, and the Middle East are “unique.”

“Remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,” he added. “In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”

Then, Friday on The O’Reilly Factor on Fox News, Geraldo Rivera told Bill O’Reilly that most wars in history were religious wars.

Before we deal with the President’s overwrought comments, let’s immediately dismiss Geraldo’s fabrications.

According to R.J. Rummel, author of “Death by Government,” only about 2.65 million of the 133 million murderous atrocities (mass murders, political deaths, genocides) committed before the 20th Century involved religious conflicts.

Furthermore, Vox Day in “The Irrational Atheist” notes that there were about 22 atheist regimes in the 20th Century, including the communist regimes in China, Russia, Yugoslavia, Vietnam, North Korea, and Cambodia, and they murdered more than 153 million people in less than 80 years!

Finally, according to the “Encyclopedia of Wars” by Charles Phillips and Alan Axelrod, religious wars account for only 7%, or 123, of the 1,763 wars in recorded human history.

Furthermore, 66 of those 123 religious wars, more than 50%, involved Islam, the so-called “religion of peace.” Yet, Islam did not even exist as a religion for 3,000 years of recorded human warfare.

That brings us to President Obama’s comments about the Crusades, the Inquisition, slavery, and Jim Crow.

In the first place, the Crusades to TAKE BACK the Holy Land and other fights against Muslims INVADING Europe did not begin until the Muslims had rampaged across the Middle East and North Africa for about 400 years, slaughtering and forcibly converting vast numbers of Christians, including destroying about 30,000 churches in the Middle East beginning in 1004 under Calipha Al-Hakim.

In fact, the event that precipitated the First Crusade occurred in 1077 A.D. when the Seljuk Turks swept into Jerusalem and murdered about 3,000 people, many of them Christians.

Secondly, contrary to what the President claimed, there was not simply one Inquisition. Over 500 years, there were several inquisitions, including the Spanish Inquisition. Over those 500 years, only about 6,000 murders and deaths occurred. Also, one of the reasons why officials organized inquisitions against heretics was to control public attacks and lynch mobs against alleged heretics, to stop them from getting out of hand and resulting in even more deaths, including the murder of innocent people.

Concerning the slavery of Africans and other people, slavery was never justified “in the name of Jesus.” At the most, it was justified by some Christians as an inevitability, or as part of Old Testament laws that regulated slavery to stop it from becoming thoroughly murderous and heinous.

Furthermore, many Non-Christian Muslims and Arabs, and even African pagans, were very active in the slave trade in the Middle East and Africa.

Also, however, it was Christians in the 18th and 19th Centuries who actually led the fight AGAINST slavery and abolished it, first in the British Empire and, then, in the United States. In fact, more than 359,000 Union troops died in the Civil War that freed the slaves in the United States. Most of those troops were Christians.

Finally, it was also Christians like the Rev. Martin Luther King who led the fight against the Jim Crow laws in the South, which were finally abolished in the 1960s.

Clearly, Geraldo Rivera and Barack Obama don’t know what the heck they’re talking about. Like too many Americans, they have been fed atheist falsehoods and loony leftist lies about history. For the most part, these lies have been an attempt by Anti-Christian bigots to discredit Christianity and Western Civilization.

In reality, Christianity has been the greatest force for good in the history of mankind. It created the religious and political liberty under which we now live. It ended slavery in the British Empire and the United States. It led the fight against segregation in the Southern United States. It has built more hospitals, schools, universities, and organizations to help the needy than any other faith or ideology.

Jesus Christ came to give His life for us. He died for His enemies. Sadly, too many Muslims and atheists, including Mohammed, the founder of Islam and the author of the Quran, seem to want to kill their enemies and steal their property.

Dr. Ted Baehr is founder and publisher of Movieguide®:  The Family Guide to Movies and Entertainment and president of Good News Communications, Inc. (GNC), a non-profit Christian group. Dr. Tom Snyder is editor of Movieguide® and a vice-president of GNC.