HBO’s “Real Time” host Bill Maher said that while President Obama’s remarks on Christianity at the National Prayer Breakfast were factual, he was incorrect to not point out the travesties of radical Islam on Friday.
Maher said that President Obama’s statements about the Crusades, slavery, and Jim Crow “are just facts,” to which Amy Holmes, anchor of the Blaze’s “The Hot List,” responded “but they’re also non-sequiturs at the moment. We don’t need our president worrying about European Christians from 800 years ago, we need him worrying about the beheaders, the immolators, the barbarians,” Maher thenn countered “he can do both,” which prompted Holmes to ask “so what does one have to do with the other?” Maher answered “I made this point myself a billion f*cking times, that if i was living in the 16th century, it would be Christianity you would be going after because they’re the ones who were the most violent and the most intolerant, but we’re not living in the 16th century. The problem with Obama making this statement is that he doesn’t make the follow-up statement that I always do. We did it then, they’re doing it now.”
Holmes responded “that is the contradiction, that while he is placing that barbarity within the context of Christianity, he is not willing to talk about radical Islamic jihad,” a point Maher agreed with.
Author Marianne Williamson defended the speech, saying that Obama “was speaking to people who theoretically understand the depth nuance and theological discussion, it is an important theological point that throughout history, there have been people, including Christians, who forces that used, that appropriated religion for evil purposes, that is what the Inquisition was, and that is what is going on now with Islam, and I’m proud on this one. I do not agree with the president on everything, but I say God bless him that he had that depth to talk about that.”
Maher then argued that there was no appropriating of Christianity or Islam for evil purposes, but agreed with Weekly Standard Senior Write John McCormack and Holmes that Obama was failing to criticize radical Islam.
Williamson countered “what I don’t understand about the point that you’re making here and the point that you’re making here. What is the purpose in making all Muslims wrong?” Maher and Holmes both interjected “no one is doing that.”
McCormack then argued that it was important to understand the nature of the enemy, stating “John Kerry said that these are a bunch of people who are just, they’re motivated by alienation and poverty and thrill seeking and a Democrat Congresswoman, Tulsi Gabbard, a veteran from Hawaii said you know what, if that’s the case we should just go out and give them some skateboards and some hogs so they can feel good about themselves and they get their kicks that way.”
Maher then said that ISIS creates a bit of a conundrum for him because he usually supports letting the Arab world take care of its own problems, but when sees their actions, he wants to “smoke these motherf*ckers,” and expressed frustration at Arab countries for not putting boots on the ground.
The panel then diverted onto the US’ foreign policy, but then went back to Islam in general when Williamson said that US foreign policy conversations were “treating the symptom, and not the cause.” Maher shot back, “no, the cause is Islam.” Williamson said that there were multiple causes to Islamic terrorism, including the Iraq War, Holmes and McCormack pointed out that the September 11th terrorist attacks pre-date the Iraq War, and Maher stated “if we had never done that [the Iraq War]…there’d still be millions of people who believe you deserve to die if you elope with the wrong person, draw the wrong cartoon, leave the religion.” Williamson then argued that in addition to being horrified over the murder of the Jordanian pilot, Americans should be horrified by the Iraq War.
Holmes responded “There’s a big problem, there’s a huge problem, as we saw this week, when, what we all regard as a barbaric organization puts on Jumbotrons in Syria the video of this young man being burnt and the townspeople are clapping and cheering, we have a huge problem here.” Maher concluded the discussion by declaring “it’s not a few bad apples.”
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