Powell Rejects Islamophobia

On NBC’s Meet the Press this weekend, former Secretary of State Colin Powell formally endorsed Barack Obama in this year’s … Continued

On NBC’s Meet the Press this weekend, former Secretary of State Colin Powell formally endorsed Barack Obama in this year’s presidential election.

Pundits will spend the next few days debating whether or not this endorsement matters. In truth, his endorsement of a politician matters less than his strong rejection of the Islamophobia that has tainted this race and that continues to exist unabated in many parts of America.

In a moment that would have made Tim Russert proud, Secretary Powell firmly renounced the divisiveness that has been perpetuated by his own party. During his interview, Secretary Powell exhibited a gravitas that has been unmatched thus far by politicians and pundits alike when it comes to an honest discussion of the state of a presidential race that has increasingly gone negative.

Since the beginning of this way-too-long presidential campaign Americans of conscience have longed for someone of such stature to repudiate the blatant bigotry towards Muslims. On Sunday Colin Powell lived up to his billing as senior American statesman.

I know I was not the only one moved to tears by the following remarks of Colin Powell:

“I’m also troubled by, not what Senator McCain says, but what members of the party say, and it is permitted to be said. Such things as ‘Well you know that Mr. Obama is a Muslim.’ Well the correct answer is ‘He is not a Muslim, he’s a Christian, he’s always been a Christian.’ But the really right answer is ‘What if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country?’ The answer is ‘No. That’s not America.’ Is there something wrong with some 7-year old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she can be president? Yet I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion he’s a Muslim and he might be associated with terrorists. This is not the way we should be doing it in America.

“I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw in a magazine. It was a photo-essay about troops who were serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was of a mother in Arlington Cemetery and she had her head on the headstone of her son’s grave. And as the picture focused in you can see the writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, showed that he died in Iraq, gave his date of birth, date of death. He was 20 years old. And then at the very top of the headstone, it didn’t have a Christian cross, it didn’t have a Star of David. It had a crescent and a star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Karim Rashad Sultan Khan. And he was an American, he was born in New Jersey, he was 14 at the time of 9/11 and he waited until he can go serve his counrty and he gave his life.”

“I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw in a magazine. It was a photo-essay about troops who were serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was of a mother in Arlington Cemetery and she had her head on the headstone of her son’s grave. And as the picture focused in you can see the writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, showed that he died in Iraq, gave his date of birth, date of death. He was 20 years old. And then at the very top of the headstone, it didn’t have a Christian cross, it didn’t have a Star of David. It had a crescent and a star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Karim Rashad Sultan Khan. And he was an American, he was born in New Jersey, he was 14 at the time of 9/11 and he waited until he can go serve his counrty and he gave his life.”

It is important that Secretary Powell’s statement not be minimized to a political endorsement. It was so much more.

But despite the powerful imagery and language used by Secretary Powell, there are two unfortunate facts that accompany his statement. First, the fact that I was so moved by his statement highlights the fact that the many calls for denouncing bigotry towards Muslims have gone ignored. Many Americans, not only American Muslims, have been denouncing Islamophobia in the campaign for over a year, making comments from high-profiled public officials long overdue. Secondly, the portion of the endorsement that I chose to highlight above is likely to get lost in the news. That is because decrying Islamophobia, even though it seemed to be the most important reason for Powell’s decision to endorse Obama, is simply not sexy. Very few in the media will give proper credit to Powell for rejecting prejudice towards Muslims. But of all the bigotries exposed in this election cycle, including racism and sexism, Islamophobia has been the most consistent and unchallenged.

Now, given today’s political climate, not holding or seeking office makes denouncing Islamophobia a lot easier. Furthermore, it should be noted that Islamophobia is not something that exists only within the Republican Party. After all, the man who has been the target of these so-called smears himself has not issued as strong and direct a rejection as Secretary Powell did this weekend. When Senator Hillary Clinton was battling Senator Obama for the Democratic nomination, she certainly allowed the Obama-is-a-Muslim whispers to continue. Obama has frequently denied the claim that he is a Muslim only by presenting the fact of his Christian faith and not addressing the crucial subtext of the claim: that there is something wrong with being a Muslim.

With his endorsement coming largely as a result of Obama’s ability to transcend party and race, Secretary Powell has raised the bar for whoever does win this historic election. Politicians of either party have been unwilling to denounce Islamophobia for fear of appearing both weak and willing to ‘pal around’ with ‘terrorists.’ By unequivocally attacking the bigoted tenor of the campaign, he struck at the heart of what politicians have for this entire political season felt a taboo subject to address.

In addressing the Powell endorsement in the coming days, one can only hope that both candidates Obama and McCain see it more as a rejection of heightened bigotry than as a mere endorsement of any one politician.

Written by
  • abhab

    Abed says: Because there is plenty wrong in being a Muslim, especially in this country. The Muslim ideology runs counter to all the ideals of the American culture. Freedom of conscience and freedom of religion being at the top of the long list. The respect of human dignity with equality for all, classes and genders, under the law is sacrosanct in this land.

  • David Waters

    test

  • Anonymous

    It is commendable for Colin Powell to say what he said.However, this man failed the world when it most mattered.By being a mouthpiece of the Bush adminstration and a crony of the Israel lobby, he purposefully told lies in the U.N.that ultimately started the aggression on Iraq.Of course, now he has a second chance and is being moralistic and opportunistic at the same time. Barack will probably put him as some kind of an adviser.

  • Anonymous

    It is commendable for Colin Powell to say what he said.However, this man failed the world when it most mattered.By being a mouthpiece of the Bush adminstration and a crony of the Israel lobby, he purposefully told lies in the U.N.that ultimately started the aggression on Iraq.Of course, now he has a second chance and is being moralistic and opportunistic at the same time. Barack will probably put him as some kind of an adviser.

  • Sara

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, Abed! Great point that can’t be stressed enough. I don’t typically watch Sunday morning TV, and just happened to tune in just as Colin Powell came on. Finally, someone of high rank and respect made sound and solid comments without rant or disrespect towards those he disagrees with.Your point on Islamophobia can’t be stressed enough – thank you for highlighting this issue. Perhaps we can begin to open dialogue and address it honestly, without political grandstanding and ignorance which has been accepted and gone unchallenged up to this point. Let’s get past fear of our differences, as well as our ignorance about those who are different from us.

  • goldhatresearch

    For US moslems, the most important thing is to keep in mind that many jews stayed in Germany even

  • Ken Winterberger

    This is well written and sadly true. The essence of what Powell said about ‘the really right answer’ will be ignored or glossed over. I will be going out of my way to spread this message though. Perhaps, if enough of us do spread these words they may help penetrate the the fog.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you, Abed, for shedding light on the importance of Powell’s anti-bigotry remarks. I too wish Obama would step up to the plate and have a frank discussion with the American people about religious divisiveness the way he did about race. The good news is that there are many of us who denounce bigotry in all of its forms — and we talk to our friends and neighbors in an effort to help them see beyond color, creed, and ethnicity. Prejudices die slowly, but they do eventually die. Perhaps if Obama wins and Powell takes a prominent place in his administration, Powell will have an opportunity to make many more public statements to help dismiss the fog of bigotry that keeps us from seeing the good in our fellow men. It’s a long road, but I will continue to walk it with you – and any who will stand with us!!Thanks again for your insightfulness!!

  • Bob R

    Abed, this is a well thought-out article. I agree with your basic premise, but I take exception to your reference to Powell’s remark where he attributes “members of the party” as having said that Obama is a Muslim. Hmmmm, what member of McCain’s campaign or GOP legislator has said that? I now that citizens have said it on blogs and the like. I know that the media gave these vague attributions as well. You seemingly accept innuendo as fact concerning this attribution and as a result you potentially encourage continued finger-pointing. I agree that it matters not what his religion is, and Obama should have been more precise and courageous in his answer and you rightly point this out. I can tell you, however, from my own experience that there are Republicans AND Democrats living on Main Street that have wrongly identified Obama’s religion.

  • sara

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, Abed! Great point that can’t be stressed enough. I don’t typically watch Sunday morning TV, and just happened to tune in just as Colin Powell came on. Finally, someone of high rank and respect made sound and solid comments without rant or disrespect towards those he disagrees with.Your point on Islamophobia can’t be stressed enough – thank you for highlighting this issue. Perhaps we can begin to open dialogue and address it honestly, without political grandstanding and ignorance which has been accepted and gone unchallenged up to this point. Let’s get past fear of our differences, as well as our ignorance about those who are different from us.

  • B Anderson

    Bhuyan (and Powell) raise an excellent point about Islamophobia and it is something that needs to be addressed in the United States. The lack of trust that people have of Muslims is completely unfounded (based solely on the background of those who perpetrated 9/11) and quite frankly sickening. When Timothy McVeigh committed that horrible act in Oklahoma City where were the people denouncing Christianity or equating Christianity to terrorism? There are bad people in every race, gender or religion but there are also good people as well. If you are going to judge someone (which if you are a Christian you should know that judgment should be left to the Lord) judge a person on their acts and who they are; not on their color, gender or religion.

  • Awni Sammakia

    I had tears in my eyes when I heard General Powell words. I felt that it may be time for some Americans to rid themselves of fear and, in some cases hate, toward people of different faith, such as Islam. I am a proud American of Islamic heritage and I love this country as much any other proud American. However, I feel sadness whenever someone attacks my religion based on false information fed malevolently.

  • mashoud

    It is commendable for Colin Powell to say what he said.However, this man failed the world when it most mattered.By being a mouthpiece of the Bush adminstration and a crony of the Israel lobby, he purposefully told lies in the U.N.that ultimately started the aggression on Iraq.Of course, now he has a second chance and is being moralistic and opportunistic at the same time. Barack will probably put him as some kind of an adviser.

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • Robert Case

    It is to bad Mr Powell chose to support the most liberal and Sociallist leaning person this country has ever know out side of a few other well know socilaist members of both the House and senate.All I can think of right now is HOLD ON TO YOUR POCKETBOOKS.Please take the time to look at what Sen

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • M.K Thapar

    What in the world in going on is religious polarization. To any action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. Therefore in order to fight this, nations have to encourge secularizm. Denouncing secularism openly or covetly, intentionally or unintentionally is dangerous and makes this world insecure. mr powell has taken the bull by its horns. i would like to see the intelectuals to come forword openly and join Mr powell in this mission.

  • Whatif?

    Very good text. Unfortunately, statements like….”..no he is not muslim (arab), he is a good citizen and good family man..’ do imply that being muslim is opposite from being a good family man, or good citizen. This is not what this country is all about, not about all being equal and having the same rights. This is the very reason America is great – its people. Many countries have the economic might, good standard of living etc…but not the spirit of equality, freedoms that we grant to others and enjoy ourselves.

  • Nalini Johnson

    It’s about time! This country is a melting pot, a cultural mosaic and all cultures should be celebrated no matter what our own affiliation or personal beliefs. Christian proselytism, while commendable when done in the true spirit of spiritual rebirth and compassion, should forcefully reject hate-mongering, especially in the political arena.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you, Abed, for shedding light on the importance of Powell’s anti-bigotry remarks. I too wish Obama would step up to the plate and have a frank discussion with the American people about religious divisiveness the way he did about race. The good news is that there are many of us who denounce bigotry in all of its forms — and we talk to our friends and neighbors in an effort to help them see beyond color, creed, and ethnicity. Prejudices die slowly, but they do eventually die. Perhaps if Obama wins and Powell takes a prominent place in his administration, Powell will have an opportunity to make many more public statements to help dismiss the fog of bigotry that keeps us from seeing the good in our fellow men. It’s a long road, but I will continue to walk it with you – and any who will stand with us!!Thanks again for your insightfulness!!

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • Truth Seeker

    Bigotry (i.e. unfounded hatred and/or criticism without a basis of fact toward a group or race of people ) is unacceptable. However, recognizing that a group ( in this case the world population of Muslims ) has a faith that includes exhortations to “put infidels in chains “as a blanket statement from the Koran (see the Saba chapter for example ) is not bigotry. It is a statement of fact. If Muslims wish to remove this component of their faith from their Koran and denounce any followers of Islam from portraying this as a part of their prophet’s life and directions to Muslims they should do so vigorously and throughout all the leadership of Islam. Has this happened across the leadership of Islam? No. The silence has been explained as a fear of offending Muslims who have taken over “the street.” I find that a poor excuse.I feel honored to live in a country where a Muslim American has made the ultimate sacrifice of his life to retain our freedom of faith here. I pray that more young men like him don’t need to be the victims of the worldwide mission of dominance found in the tenets of Islam. I admire Colin Powell and regret that he has left out in his faulty analysis a critical part of the problem with this so-called “Islamophobia” and has arrived at an incorrect conclusion. Let us see a campaign by Muslim’s worldwide on these violent and oppressive tenets of the Islamic faith that remain as integral parts of the Koran. Let us see a global attack within their own ranks under the banner of Islam and on the field of battle against terrorism in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Then, I think fears of Islam’s global mission to put infidels in chains can be decried as unfounded bigotry. Until that happens, these reactions to the basic threats and specific terrorist acts are not bigotry they are observations of fact.

  • Nalini Johnson

    It’s about time! This country is a melting pot, a cultural mosaic and all cultures should be celebrated no matter what our own affiliation or personal beliefs. Christian proselytism, while commendable when done in the true spirit of spiritual rebirth and compassion, should forcefully reject hate-mongering, especially in the political arena.

  • Sara

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, Abed! Great point that can’t be stressed enough. I don’t typically watch Sunday morning TV, and just happened to tune in just as Colin Powell came on. Finally, someone of high rank and respect made sound and solid comments without rant or disrespect towards those he disagrees with.Your point on Islamophobia can’t be stressed enough – thank you for highlighting this issue. Perhaps we can begin to open dialogue and address it honestly, without political grandstanding and ignorance which has been accepted and gone unchallenged up to this point. Let’s get past fear of our differences, as well as our ignorance about those who are different from us.

  • Demosthenes

    My father told me a story about how a Muslim man will not steal things lest he loses his hand.

  • Jon Rosen

    Nice post. It is very nice to see a Republican with the credentials of Colin Powell remind people of a very basic truth of America. Being an American transcends religion and national backgrounds. The strength of America comes from its Constitution and its people. This Constitution explicitly states that the people have freedom of religion and the government is agnostic. The first settlers of the United States came here seeking religious freedom. It’s a shame that religious fundamentalists think they have a better religion than everyone else. The Constitution states that these rights are inalienable. That means they are non-negotiable absolute rights.

  • Truth Seeker

    Bigotry (i.e. unfounded hatred and/or criticism without a basis of fact toward a group or race of people ) is unacceptable. However, recognizing that a group ( in this case the world population of Muslims ) has a faith that includes exhortations to “put infidels in chains “as a blanket statement from the Koran (see the Saba chapter for example ) is not bigotry. It is a statement of fact. If Muslims wish to remove this component of their faith from their Koran and denounce any followers of Islam from portraying this as a part of their prophet’s life and directions to Muslims they should do so vigorously and throughout all the leadership of Islam. Has this happened across the leadership of Islam? No. The silence has been explained as a fear of offending Muslims who have taken over “the street.” I find that a poor excuse.I feel honored to live in a country where a Muslim American has made the ultimate sacrifice of his life to retain our freedom of faith here. I pray that more young men like him don’t need to be the victims of the worldwide mission of dominance found in the tenets of Islam. I admire Colin Powell and regret that he has left out in his faulty analysis a critical part of the problem with this so-called “Islamophobia” and has arrived at an incorrect conclusion. Let us see a campaign by Muslim’s worldwide on these violent and oppressive tenets of the Islamic faith that remain as integral parts of the Koran. Let us see a global attack within their own ranks under the banner of Islam and on the field of battle against terrorism in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Then, I think fears of Islam’s global mission to put infidels in chains can be decried as unfounded bigotry. Until that happens, these reactions to the basic threats and specific terrorist acts are not bigotry they are observations of fact.

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • M.K Thapar

    What in the world in going on is religious polarization. To any action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. Therefore in order to fight this, nations have to encourge secularizm. Denouncing secularism openly or covetly, intentionally or unintentionally is dangerous and makes this world insecure. mr powell has taken the bull by its horns. i would like to see the intelectuals to come forword openly and join Mr powell in this mission.

  • chris

    You will be pleased to know that, around 7 a.m. Pacific time, at least, this article is the number one article on Google News. To check whether other outlets are covering this aspect of Powell’s endorsement, I clicked through to the page of related articles and, of the first five written by national reporters (i.e., not counting the Baltimore Sun blog, which did not mention Islam or muslims, either), only Time made similar points to yours. The L.A. Times, the International Herald Tribune, U.S. News & World Report, and CNN did not—at least in the articles presented on that Google News page.I am not a muslim, but at the point in “Meet the Press” where Powell asked why it should matter if a candidate were a muslim, I could not help saying “Thank you!” out loud to the TV screen. I am more than tired of the way that politicians, and it seems to be especially if not exclusively true of Republicans, pursue one agenda (defending the interests of the wealthy) while preying on every fear, sowing every doubt, and propagating what they know in their hearts to be lies, in order to get votes from people who would otherwise never support their agenda, but who are fearful enough, and who have so little experience of the wider world, that they can be rallied to vote against their best interests by appeals to patriotism and smears against the patriotism, or even the humanity, of the other party’s candidate. Candidates who rely on lies, fear, and hatred to get your vote are not candidates who share your values, no matter what they say.Thanks, Abed, for this well-written and informative article. Maybe it will get the media, mainstream or otherwise, to recognize the moral and historic importance of Powell’s statement.

  • Ed

    You’ve made some excellent points young man!!

  • Anonymous

    Powell said:

  • Whatif?

    Very good text. Unfortunately, statements like….”..no he is not muslim (arab), he is a good citizen and good family man..’ do imply that being muslim is opposite from being a good family man, or good citizen. This is not what this country is all about, not about all being equal and having the same rights. This is the very reason America is great – its people. Many countries have the economic might, good standard of living etc…but not the spirit of equality, freedoms that we grant to others and enjoy ourselves.

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • Safat

    The Powell interview was a big topic of conversation at the dinner table last night. My father was beaming with pride as the former Sec. of State was articulating on national television what he has felt for the past 18 months. As a Muslim with a very similar childhood to your own, I agree with your opinion and took a lot of pride in what the Secretary had to say. However, the negative reaction to Muslims can, at times, be over blown and used as a crutch.Whenever America encounters a new group of people, there has always been a transitory period of getting to know one another. During this period ignorance, hate, and confusion prevail on both sides. In time, these feelings will gave way to logic and reason. I remind you that we did not have it nearly as bad as the Germans, Irish, Italians, and Catholics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The only way to expedite this process is to stop isolating ourselves and to become a part of the American discourse. Your blog is a step in the right direction. I hope this encourages people to step out of the Mosques and their homes and engage with their neighbors. Congratulations on the blog, Abed. I look forward to reading your posts in the future.

  • Adrian Silva

    Collin Powell is a true patriot and one of the best secretary of state this country has ever had.

  • Jalal Uddin

    I applaud former Secretary of State Colin Powell for endorsing Obama and standing up against bigots; whom are a threat to a better America.

  • Kuriakose Pulikeel

    Powell said:

  • Jack C

    It is about time that this issue was addressed! Way to go Powell, I hope we see more of this in the coming weeks.

  • CaitStClair

    Thank you.

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • Ed

    You’ve made some excellent points in your editorial young man. I am an African American Christian, but believe whole heartedly in your comments ref someone finally speaking out against

  • Michael Bergman

    Good for Colin Powell, and good for you for highlighting it.

  • Bashar

    First,… many thanks to the Washington Post for posting this article, there are so many American whom are so good to Muslims in this country, the percentage of the good is much higher than the bad, and Secretary Powell position is one of those whom are rising-up to the true American value. His position today similar to President JFK position Vs. Governor Wallace in the 1960’s, I’m sure no one wanted to be related to governor Wallace in today’s America, it is a good product vs. defective product, it can be sold for some time, but American customers will not be fouled forever by those who sales the defective products.

  • Reb Kittridge

    “Palling around with terrorists” has nothing to do with muslims. It has to do with radical associations.An Islamic background or associations are only cause for questioning when you give indications that Israel does not have a right to exist, or when you are publicly supported by organizations that sponsor terror, such as Hamas. Or, obviously, when you personally harbor disdain for the United States of America or Christians (infidels?)in general.There are plenty of decent, Americanized Muslims in this country, who I’m sure many people would be proud to support. I believe that I would, if they met the proper qualifications. Such people wouldn’t need to deny their faith; however, they would speak out against the radical extremes of the religion, something that is very rare in the Muslim community. More than speak out against it, they would need to show, by deed, that they denounce such activity. It is easy to speak words, but it isn’t necessarily indicative of your true intentions.Again, the terrorist in question that you allude to IS NOT MUSLIM. He is a white American-born terrorist. He is an extremist. Please don’t let your personal biases affect or distort your reporting (or confusion, in this case) of the facts.Also, where is your analysis of the racial divisiveness preached by Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s spiritual supporter (U.S. of KKK A)? Or Louis Farrakhan? Come on buddy.

  • Bashar

    First,… many thanks to Washington Post for posting this article, there are so many American whom are so good to Muslims in this country, the percentage of the good is much higher than the bad, and Secretary Powell position is one of those whom are rising up to the true American value. His position today similar to President JFK position Vs. Governor Wallace in the 1960’s, I’m sure no one wanted to be related to governor Wallace in today’s America, it is a good product vs. defective product, it can be sold for some time, but American customers will not be fouled forever by those who sales the defective products.

  • norma carmell

    Colin Powell is just looking for revenge because things didn’t go HIS way when he was at the white house—who’s kidding who? Besides he’s definiyely looking for his old job back after quitting like aspoiled brat. Let him rot. GO MCCAIN / PALIN 2008.

  • Jack C

    It is about time that someone addressed this! Way to go Powell. I hope we will hear more statements similar to this in the coming weeks.

  • Adrian Silva

    Collin Powell is a true patriot and one of the best secretary of state this country has ever had.

  • Bashar

    First,… many thanks to Washington Post for posting this article, there are so many American whom are so good to Muslims in this country, the percentage of the good is much higher than the bad, and Secretary Powell position is one of those whom are rising up to the true American value. His position today similar to President JFK position Vs. Governor Wallace in the 1960’s, I’m sure no one wanted to be related to governor Wallace in today’s America, it is a good product vs. defective product, it can be sold for some time, but American customers will not be fouled forever by those who sales the defective products.

  • Ela Booty

    Bravo! Very well put. Often we point out a problem or issue but don’t get at what the real issue–and you so clearly spelled it out that the issue at hand is that people think there is something wrong with being a Muslim. I didn’t see Colin Powell’s interview on Meet the Press, and I’m glad to read that he addressed the issue and said it out loud. No one seems to be taking a stand and speaking up when things like this happen. And it’s not just about saying “what’s wrong with being a Muslim?” Because if our country’s leaders are not speaking up about that, then what else are they not speaking up about. A great leader is willing to say what others might not say.Thank you for sharing this part of Colin Powell’s interview and for bringing light to the real issue.

  • Nalini Johnson

    It’s about time! This country is a melting pot, a cultural mosaic and all cultures should be celebrated no matter what our own affiliation or personal beliefs. Christian proselytism, while commendable when done in the true spirit of spiritual rebirth and compassion, should forcefully reject hate-mongering, especially in the political arena.

  • reb kittridge

    “Palling around with terrorists” has nothing to do with muslims. It has to do with radical associations.An Islamic background or associations are only cause for questioning when you give indications that Israel does not have a right to exist, or when you are publicly supported by organizations that sponsor terror, such as Hamas. Or, obviously, when you personally harbor disdain for the United States of America or Christians (infidels?)in general.There are plenty of decent, Americanized Muslims in this country, who I’m sure many people would be proud to support. I believe that I would, if they met the proper qualifications. Such people wouldn’t need to deny their faith; however, they would speak out against the radical extremes of the religion, something that is very rare in the Muslim community. More than speak out against it, they would need to show, by deed, that they denounce such activity. It is easy to speak words, but it isn’t necessarily indicative of your true intentions.Again, the terrorist in question that you allude to IS NOT MUSLIM. He is a white American-born terrorist. He is an extremist. Please don’t let your personal biases affect or distort your reporting (or confusion, in this case) of the facts.Also, where is your analysis of the racial divisiveness preached by Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s spiritual supporter (U.S. of KKK A)? Or Louis Farrakhan? Come on buddy.

  • Bashar

    First,… many thanks to Washington Post for posting this article, there are so many American whom are so good to Muslims in this country, the percentage of the good is much higher than the bad, and Secretary Powell position is one of those whom are rising up to the true American value. His position today similar to President JFK position Vs. Governor Wallace in the 1960’s, I’m sure no one wanted to be related to governor Wallace in today’s America, it is a good product vs. defective product, it can be sold for some time, but American customers will not be fouled forever by those who sales the defective products.

  • Anonymous

    reject your troubled ass.

  • Jodi O’Donnell

    You are 100 percent correct, Abed. While I have thought what Colin Powell said, and what you said, I haven’t articulated it. I’ve focused on debunking the lie instead of pointing out the greater truth.Let us hope that Gen. Powell’s words help to turn the conversation toward the sort of frank, constructive discourse that is especially needed right now.

  • M.K Thapar

    What in the world in going on is religious polarization? To any action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. Therefore in order to fight this, nations have to encourage secularism. Denouncing secularism openly or covertly, intentionally or unintentionally is dangerous and makes this world insecure. Mr. Powell has taken the bull by its horns. I would like to see the intellectuals to come forward openly and join Mr. Powell in this mission.

  • Max Strom

    Dear Sir,An excellent piece of writing. You have captured the essence of a gigantic moral issue which, as you stated, has gone unchecked. I am a 52 year old white male, and I believe America is a nation for all people of all religions to thrive. Thank you for your insight, wisdom, and eloquence.

  • Harvey Stratford

    Islamaphobia? Islamaphobia? Why should anyone be concerned about Islam?Just two of many items from just today’s news.Opening statements start in Fort Dix plot trialTaliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • Noël

    I am glad Colin Powell stepped up to point out what the media is totally ignoring.How about when the crazy lady at the McCain rally said to McCain that she heard Obama was a Muslim, and McCain responded, ‘No Mam, he is a decent man, a family man.’ The implication is that apparently Muslims are not decent or family people. The blatant, GOP-sanctioned discrimination is repulsive in a country that is supposed to support religious freedom. Their whole campaign is predicated on frightening ignorant people.

  • Nalini Johnson

    It’s about time! This country is a melting pot, a cultural mosaic and all cultures should be celebrated no matter what our own affiliation or personal beliefs. Christian proselytism, while commendable when done in the true spirit of spiritual rebirth and compassion, should forcefully reject hate-mongering, especially in the political arena.

  • Deb

    God Bless all Americans.

  • Mirza

    The amount of islamophobia in US is amazing. There are radio DJs calling for Nuking of Muslim countries, there are religious pastors calling for war against Islam so that the Jesus would return, and there are news releases every time some Muslim person anywhere in the world says something unappetizing. I remember CNN giving 15 minutes of air time to some Muslim woman in Sweden who made death threats to a Swedish cartoonist. There are attacks in USA against Mosques and Muslims, which are not reported in the mainstream media. Islamophobia is really the only accepted form of bigotry here in the US. I am not a religious Muslim, but I come from that background and I have felt uneasy many times here in my country.

  • Gretchen

    Way to go, Colin Powell! He cut to the heart of the matter – either we are Americans or we are not. Race and creed are not part of it.

  • peter almassian

    Mr.Abed,is young,optimist,one-sided.I suggest he listens to Islamic leaders;political,and religious.Read some books and papers,some fatwas that coming out of Islamics cradle, middle east.Even listen to American borne black muslim rhetoric.Then he can answer his own question “What is wrong to be a muslim”.  Part of the creed is that Islam is the last and summit of all religions,and now that all those other religions are trumped therefore there adherent misguided.Of Course Christianity has the same claim.But,they do not believe in conversion by force of dagger….

  • Deb

    God bless all of America.

  • Harvey Stratford

    Islamaphobia? Islamaphobia? Why should anyone be concerned about Islam?Just two of many items from just today’s news.Opening statements start in Fort Dix plot trialTaliban say they killed aid worker for spreading ChristianityPowell just sewed up the last 1% of the Muslim vote and 2% of the Black vote in just one appearance.

  • Mirza

    The amount of islamophobia in US is amazing. There are radio DJs calling for Nuking of Muslim countries, there are religious pastors calling for war against Islam so that the Jesus would return, and there are news releases every time some Muslim person anywhere in the world says something unappetizing. I remember CNN giving 15 minutes of air time to some Muslim woman in Sweden who made death threats to a Swedish cartoonist. There are attacks in USA against Mosques and Muslims, which are not reported in the mainstream media. Islamophobia is really the only accepted form of bigotry here in the US. I am not a religious Muslim, but I come from that background and I have felt uneasy many times here in my country.

  • Greg

    I am a Muslim and Black American. I voted for Dem as well as Rep candidates. What difference does one’s religion make. Bush is a Christian and look at the lies and deceit he carried out.

  • Max Strom

    Dear Sir,An excellent piece of writing. You have captured the essence of a gigantic moral issue which, as you stated, has gone unchecked. I am a 52 year old white male, and I believe America is a nation for all people of all religions to thrive. Thank you for your insight, wisdom, and eloquence.

  • James

    Mr. Bhuyan,Thank you for your article. I did not see Powell’s interview, and of course did not see this segment of it in the major headlines. “Powell endorses Obama” is the only story the press is likely to spread. I agree that discrimination of Muslims is not appropriate in this pluralistic society. However, I am very wary of the blanket term “Islamophobia”. My concern is that any discussions of Islam that candidly address important challenges facing it, are invariably called “Islamophobic.”For instance – many would call the following statement, in a normal “politically correct” context, Islamophobic or fear mongering or hate speech.- There are terrorists, who are Muslims, who base their actions and beliefs on teachings and history found in the Koran and Hadith.While many would call this divisive, hateful, distorting a “peaceful religion” – the statement is true.The solution is not to silence people who bring light to the problem (as indiscriminately tossing the word Islamophobic is generally used for). The solution is to reform the cause – those who are wreaking havoc throughout the world in the name of religion.Ironically, those who accuse others of Islamophobia seem to be the ones who cannot or will not come to grips with the reality of this very Islamic problem.

  • Anonymous

    Islamaphobia? Islamaphobia? Why should anyone be concerned about Islam?Just two of many items from just today’s news.Opening statements start in Fort Dix plot trialTaliban say they killed aid worker for spreading ChristianityPowell just sewed up the last 1% of the Muslim vote and 2% of the Black vote in just one appearance.

  • Max Strom

    Dear Sir,An excellent piece of writing. You have captured the essence of a gigantic moral issue which, as you stated, has gone unchecked. I am a 52 year old white male, and I believe America is a nation for all people of all religions to thrive. Thank you for your insight, wisdom, and eloquence.

  • Mitch

    “Obama has frequently denied the claim that he is a Muslim only by presenting the fact of his Christian faith and not addressing the crucial subtext of the claim: that there is something wrong with being a Muslim.”He can’t do that, unfortunately. Too many bigots would assume that he was trying to sneakily admit that he IS a Muslim, and he has virtually no chance of reversing that kind of deep-seated racism anyway. Denouncing it would do Obama more harm than good.Fortunately, that’s why we have fine people like Colin Powell.

  • Awni Sammakia

    I had tears in my eyes when I heard General Powell’s words. I felt that it is time that some Americans rid themselves of fear, and sometimes hate, toward Islam.

  • Gina St.Phillips

    I feel much the same! So many times I have cringed as I have heard the right hinting at Obama being a Muslim as if that is the equivalent of anti-American or even evil. But equally troubling are the responses from the left, so quick to point out that Sen. Obama is a Christian as if only Christians can a. love America, and b. become president. Why has it taken so long for a person of any political standing to speak the truth on this issue?Even when Sen. McCain decided to call a woman at a rally on her claim that Sen. Obama was a Muslim and friend of terrorists, he said (and I am paraphrasing) “No ma’am, he’s a Christian and a good man.” I wanted to scream! If one of the candidates for President of the United States of America can’t even stop perpetuating this Christian=good and Muslim=evil sentiment when actually trying to do the right thing, how will we ever heal as a nation?I am proud that our country still has statesmen like Gen. Colin Powell to lead the way.

  • Max Strom

    Dear Sir,An excellent piece of writing. You have captured the essence of a gigantic moral issue which, as you stated, has gone unchecked. I am a 52 year old white male, and I believe America is a nation for all people of all religions to thrive. Thank you for your insight, wisdom, and eloquence.

  • Steve Hanes

    Abed,Rest assured that you were not the only one moved to tears by Mr. Powell’s account. It is sadly ironic when the very people who claim possession of a faith teaching “love of fellow man” as a primary tenet are the instigators of hatred.

  • James

    Mr. Bhuyan,Thank you for your article. I did not see Powell’s interview, and of course did not see this segment of it in the major headlines. “Powell endorses Obama” is the only story the press is likely to spread. I agree that discrimination of Muslims is not appropriate in this pluralistic society. However, I am very wary of the blanket term “Islamophobia”. My concern is that any discussions of Islam that candidly address important challenges facing it, are invariably called “Islamophobic.”For instance – many would call the following statement, in a normal “politically correct” context, Islamophobic or fear mongering or hate speech.- There are terrorists, who are Muslims, who base their actions and beliefs on teachings and history found in the Koran and Hadith.While many would call this divisive, hateful, distorting a “peaceful religion” – the statement is true.The solution is not to silence people who bring light to the problem (as indiscriminately tossing the word Islamophobic is generally used for). The solution is to reform the cause – those who are wreaking havoc throughout the world in the name of religion.Ironically, those who accuse others of Islamophobia seem to be the ones who cannot or will not come to grips with the reality of this very Islamic problem.

  • Scott Sleek

    Thank you for this post. I was also moved to tears by Colin Powell’s remarks, and saw past the political endorsement to absorb the more important message.

  • Zlatko

    Abed,Salaam. It’s refreshing to hear someone of Powell’s stature make these comments about Islamophobia… and it’s been long overdue. CNN’s Campbell Brown wrote a similar piece on the condemnation of these ideas. Both echo the notion of “so what if he WAS Muslim?” That of course is the underlying problem. It’s an issue as you mentioned that Obama himself has never addressed. He is so adamant about denouncing his ties to Islamic faith that he never condemns using Islam as a negative in the first place. It’s as if someone said “Obama is a Nazi” and he repudiates the accusation as hate speech. Add to this the fact that his campaign has been removing women with hijabs from appearing behind him during rally speeches, along with his unequivocal support for Israel without EVER mentioning what he will do for Palestinians, and you have the most anti-Muslim presidential candidate we’ve seen in quite some time. Even Bush has spoken about the Palestinian perspective.Because of this blatant pandering for the “anti-Islamic” vote, he should be losing every American Muslim’s support. He’s not because many Muslims feel this unfounded comfort in him. He’s still the “better” choice and he will “help Muslims”. There is absolutely no evidence of this. I never vote republican and the democrats only have my vote to lose. I am forced to vote for a third option this election because the person I would have voted for otherwise treats my faith like a disease he has to avoid and deny having. Until shown some respect, a Muslim should stop tossing his or her vote to candidates that go out of their way to show their indifference towards the said vote. We need to make the Muslim vote a vote worth fighting for… similar to that of the Jewish and Christian vote.

  • Chuck in Illinois

    Outstanding! I too was moved by his rejection of this frenzy of Islamophobia. As a black American (Christian) who is very aware of the divisions fostered in this country to the benefit of a few narrow-minded nitwits I was extremely proud of Gen. Powell’s comments.Decent people need to take a stand. Stand up for equality. Denounce religious prejudice with the same vigor you would racial prejudice.To quote MLK: “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”

  • Mirza Borogovac

    The amount of islamophobia in US is amazing. There are radio DJs calling for Nuking of Muslim countries, there are religious pastors calling for war against Islam so that the Jesus would return, and there are news releases every time some Muslim person anywhere in the world says something unappetizing. I remember CNN giving 15 minutes of air time to some Muslim woman in Sweden who made death threats to a Swedish cartoonist. There are attacks in USA against Mosques and Muslims, which are not reported in the mainstream media. Islamophobia is really the only accepted form of bigotry here in the US. I am not a religious Muslim, but I come from that background and I have felt uneasy many times here in my country.

  • Awni Sammakia

    I had tears in my eyes when I heard General Powell’s words. I felt that it is time that some Americans rid themselves of fear, and sometimes hate, toward Islam.

  • Will Burns

    While I agree with any stance against bigotry, I think you’re energies are misplaced. One headline on Google’s news page today states “Taliban say they killed aid worker for spreading Christianity.” I think that killing someone for their faith or culture is the ultimate bigotry. It makes prejudiced and inaccurate emails about Obama look like child’s play. I don’t understand why bloggers like you don’t spend more time speaking out against people perpetrating actual hate crimes.

  • learningisjoy

    I feel much the same! So many times I have cringed as I have heard the right hinting at Obama being a Muslim as if that is the equivalent of anti-American or even evil. But equally troubling are the responses from the left, so quick to point out that Sen. Obama is a Christian as if only Christians can a. love America, and b. become president. Why has it taken so long for a person of any political standing to speak the truth on this issue?Even when Sen. McCain decided to call a woman at a rally on her claim that Sen. Obama was a Muslim and friend of terrorists, he said (and I am paraphrasing) “No ma’am, he’s a Christian and a good man.” I wanted to scream! If one of the candidates for President of the United States of America can’t even stop perpetuating this Christian=good and Muslim=evil sentiment when actually trying to do the right thing, how will we ever heal as a nation?I am proud that our country still has statesmen like Gen. Colin Powell to lead the way.Gina St.Phillips

  • Steve Hanes

    Abed,Rest assured that you were not the only one moved to tears by Mr. Powell’s account. It is sadly ironic when the very people who claim possession of a faith teaching “love of fellow man” as a primary tenet are the instigators of hatred.

  • Safat

    The Powell interview was a big topic of conversation at the dinner table last night. My father was beaming with pride as the Secretary articulated on national television what he had felt for the past 18 months. As a Muslim with a similar upbringing to your own, I agree with your opinion. However, the negative reaction to Muslims is, at times, overblown and is used as a crutch by the Muslim community. I remind you that the Germans, Irish, Italians, and Catholics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries had it much worse. Whenever America encounters a new group of people there is always a transitory period. This period is filled with confusion, ignorance, and hate. With time, prejudice gives way to logic and reason.The only way to expedite this process is to engage with our neighbors and become a part of our community. We cannot survive by talking only amongst ourselves in the comfort of our Mosques and homes. This blog is a step in the right direction and I hope it encourages people to become a part of this American discourse.Congratulations on the blog, Abed. I look forward to reading your posts in the future.

  • Zlatko

    Abed,Salaam. It’s refreshing to hear someone of Powell’s stature make these comments about Islamophobia… and it’s been long overdue. CNN’s Campbell Brown wrote a similar piece on the condemnation of these ideas. Both echo the notion of “so what if he WAS Muslim?” That of course is the underlying problem. It’s an issue as you mentioned that Obama himself has never addressed. He is so adamant about denouncing his ties to Islamic faith that he never condemns using Islam as a negative in the first place. It’s as if someone said “Obama is a Nazi” and he repudiates the accusation as hate speech. Add to this the fact that his campaign has been removing women with hijabs from appearing behind him during rally speeches, along with his unequivocal support for Israel without EVER mentioning what he will do for Palestinians, and you have the most anti-Muslim presidential candidate we’ve seen in quite some time. Even Bush has spoken about the Palestinian perspective.Because of this blatant pandering for the “anti-Islamic” vote, he should be losing every American Muslim’s support. He’s not because many Muslims feel this unfounded comfort in him. He’s still the “better” choice and he will “help Muslims”. There is absolutely no evidence of this. I never vote republican and the democrats only have my vote to lose. I am forced to vote for a third option this election because the person I would have voted for otherwise treats my faith like a disease he has to avoid and deny having. Until shown some respect, a Muslim should stop tossing his or her vote to candidates that go out of their way to show their indifference towards the said vote. We need to make the Muslim vote a vote worth fighting for… similar to that of the Jewish and Christian vote.

  • Sandra

    I do not generally post comments; however, your article angers me. Islamophobia has not been an issue in this presidential campaign, but perhaps it should be. Today, 10-20-08 (International Herald Tribune article), Muslims in Kabul killed a British Christian aide worker “because she was spreading Christianity,” and a suicide bomber hit a convoy of German troops killing 5 children while seriously wounding at least 2 of the soldiers. That’s only today, and only 2 examples of who-knows-how-many atrocities against human life because we have different faiths. And you think we should “repudiate the blatant bigotry towards Muslims.” I think we should be blatantly aware of conservative Muslims.

  • jerry rubin

    Thanks for writing this comment. I am Jewish and of all the statements made by Secr of State Powelll this was the most emotional comment made.The other issues can be used as positive or negative support for either candidate. But this comment about a soldier who lost his life at the age of 20 can still be recognized as a hero in America.This is no different then the African Americans in the Civil War, First and Second World Wars, Korea and Vietnam.This reminds also those Japanese Americans who gave their lives in the second world war while their families were in internment camps in that war.

  • Margaret Blankers

    Amen and amen! In McCain/Palin’s world, back in the 1400s, the Native Americans in this country should have been voicing their deep fears about those of us whose ancestors were Christians (translate: different) first coming onto these shores! (Come to think of it, you could certainly make a case that Christianity equaled terrorism then.) I’m a Christian, but it is shameful to me that people identify ANY actual religion with terrorism. Hello? McC/P might want to review the history of some of Christianity’s right-wingnuts?!What is “patriotism” but a love for one’s country and a desire to make it all it can be? Patriotic does not equal Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindi, Agnostic, Atheistic or any other religious preference. It’s time to stop the xenophobia!

  • Safat

    The Powell interview was a big topic of conversation at the dinner table last night. My father was beaming with pride as the Secretary articulated on national television what he had felt for the past 18 months. As a Muslim with a similar upbringing to your own, I agree with your opinion. However, the negative reaction to Muslims is, at times, overblown and is used as a crutch by the Muslim community. I remind you that the Germans, Irish, Italians, and Catholics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries had it much worse. Whenever America encounters a new group of people there is always a transitory period. This period is filled with confusion, ignorance, and hate. With time, prejudice gives way to logic and reason.The only way to expedite this process is to engage with our neighbors and become a part of our community. We cannot survive by talking only amongst ourselves in the comfort of our Mosques and homes. This blog is a step in the right direction and I hope it encourages people to become a part of this American discourse.Congratulations on the blog, Abed. I look forward to reading your posts in the future.

  • Mike

    Many US Citizens have a fearful reaction when they think of a Muslim in their backyard, let alone as a political candidate.Is this fear justified? No. It is, however a normal human reaction to a group of people that are from a different culture. It is also a normal human reaction to a group of people who have a record of attacking Western culture. Yet perhaps only 10% of Muslims express hatred to Western cultural norms, and perhaps only 1% of Muslims would ever consider violence against the West.This is still be a large enough factor to be a concern. People in the West need to be vigilant about letting their concerns move towards fear and letting their fears move towards racism.Secretary Powell has brought to light an excellent point. Political fear mongering has been an ugly part of this election by both parties.

  • jack fulcher

    In fact, Islam, through its Shari’ah laws, is in stark opposition to many of the principles that founded this country. For instance, Islam opposes the separation of church (or mosque) and state. Islam is supposed to govern the state. It also does not value free speech or equal rights for all – in fact, if you’re a kuffir or unbeliever, you should be shunned and will be taxed separately from Muslims. It would therefore be a grave error to allow a Muslim to become president of the US.

  • Anonymous

    I fully agree with what was said here. Collin Powell should be thanked for making this statement. I hope he will be forthcoming in explaining why he made the statements at the UN that were instrumental in getting us into the Iraq war.

  • Safat

    The Powell interview was a big topic of conversation at the dinner table last night. My father was beaming with pride as the Secretary articulated on national television what he had felt for the past 18 months. As a Muslim with a similar upbringing to your own, I agree with your opinion. However, the negative reaction to Muslims is, at times, overblown and is used as a crutch by the Muslim community. I remind you that the Germans, Irish, Italians, and Catholics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries had it much worse. Whenever America encounters a new group of people there is always a transitory period. This period is filled with confusion, ignorance, and hate. With time, prejudice gives way to logic and reason.The only way to expedite this process is to engage with our neighbors and become a part of our community. We cannot survive by talking only amongst ourselves in the comfort of our Mosques and homes. This blog is a step in the right direction and I hope it encourages people to become a part of this American discourse.Congratulations on the blog, Abed. I look forward to reading your posts in the future.

  • Chris

    As much as the radical Islamic terrorists hurt America and the world on 9/11/01 we must fight the temptation to paint all people of a certain religion as potential terrorists. That kind of thinking is dangerous.

  • M Michael

    This is a demonstration of a side of Colin Powell that many individuals are unaware of. It shows his greatness as a real American Citizen embrasing the values upon which this nation was founded. A great individual endorses another great individual!

  • jerry rubin

    Thanks for writing this comment. I am Jewish and of all the statements made by Secr of State Powelll this was the most emotional comment made.The other issues can be used as positive or negative support for either candidate. But this comment about a soldier who lost his life at the age of 20 can still be recognized as a hero in America.This is no different then the African Americans in the Civil War, First and Second World Wars, Korea and Vietnam.This reminds me also those Japanese Americans who gave their lives in the second world war while their families were in internment camps in that war.

  • chris

    You will be pleased to know that, around 7 a.m. Pacific time, at least, this article is the number one article on Google News. To check whether other outlets are covering this aspect of Powell’s endorsement, I clicked through to the page of related articles and, of the first five written by national reporters (i.e., not counting the Baltimore Sun blog, which did not mention Islam or muslims, either), only Time made similar points to yours. The L.A. Times, the International Herald Tribune, U.S. News & World Report, and CNN did not—at least in the articles presented on that Google News page.I am not a muslim, but at the point in “Meet the Press” where Powell asked why it should matter if a candidate were a muslim, I could not help saying “Thank you!” out loud to the TV screen. I am more than tired of the way that politicians, and it seems to be especially if not exclusively true of Republicans, pursue one agenda (defending the interests of the wealthy) while preying on every fear, sowing every doubt, and propagating what they know in their hearts to be lies, in order to get votes from people who would otherwise never support their agenda, but who are fearful enough, and who have so little experience of the wider world, that they can be rallied to vote against their best interests by appeals to patriotism and smears against the patriotism, or even the humanity, of the other party’s candidate. Candidates who rely on lies, fear, and hatred to get your vote are not candidates who share your values, no matter what they say.Thanks, Abed, for this well-written and informative article. Maybe it will get the media, mainstream or otherwise, to recognize the moral and historic importance of Powell’s statement.

  • Margaret Blankers

    As a U.S.-born Christian, I am shamed by the way some right-wingnuts are equating one’s non-Christian religion to terrorism. Anyone care to review the history of Christianity’s less than finer moments? Muslim, Jew, Christian, Agnostic, Hindi … doesn’t matter what one’s faith tradition is. Religion doesn’t equate terrorism. People perform heinous acts, not religions.I’m a patriot, which in this country has historically meant one who examines, questions and works for his/her country to be the best it can be. Christian or Jew are not synonyms for patriot. Muslim is not a synonym for terrorist. How God must cry at how we’ve screwed it up!

  • jerry rubin

    Thanks for writing this comment. I am Jewish and of all the statements made by Secr of State Powelll this was the most emotional comment made.The other issues can be used as positive or negative support for either candidate. But this comment about a soldier who lost his life at the age of 20 can still be recognized as a hero in America.This is no different then the African Americans in the Civil War, First and Second World Wars, Korea and Vietnam.This reminds me also those Japanese Americans who gave their lives in the second world war while their families were in internment camps in that war.

  • Ghareeb

    The issue of Islamophopia is one which we Americans, so fond of our right to freedom-of-religion, should easily overcome. The issue of Arab-phobia is another one altogether. When a person said to Senator McCain that Senator Obama is a Muslim, Mr. McCain responded in Mr. Obama’s defense, stating that he is “a decent. . . family man.” But Mr. McCain did not address the fact that this woman essentially accused Senator Obama of being of a race of which he is not; he did not proclaim that it is okay for people to be Arabs, just as it is okay for people to be black. He missed an opportunity to counter a racist statement, and by doing so accepted and perpetuated that racism. This is not America either; nor does Senator McCain represent the reasonable majority of Americans. In this country, where a black man is one of two top contenders for the presidency, we should all accept that Arab-Americans are an integral part of this country who should be included as part of America’s ambition to bring peace to the Middle East.

  • Barrie O. Ward The Canadian Geezer

    Colin Powell showed the ‘courage’ to speak a truth that cannot be claimed by others …. This article by Mr. Bhuyan is most intelligent and timely … and one would hope that it will be read by many …. and circulated broadly …. Thank you!

  • viper11

    I appreciate the service and military prowess of Colin Powell. What I do not aapreciate is the willingness of persons of the stature of Mr. Powell, to give credence to allowing foreiners to come to this country without assimilating into American society. Instead they come here to change our country because they want to make our country in their own image.

  • Benji

    Eloquently put, I could not agree more.

  • Rob Darrow

    Very well written and insightful post. I couldn’t agree with you (and Colin Powell) more.

  • Todd

    Well put. Thank you for pointing out Sec. Powell’s rejection of Islamophobia. I’m a Christian, white and a member of the GOP. One thing that I really dislike about my party is the racists and hate undertones. It’s not said outloud usually, but it’s obvious “those people” aren’t wanted in most conservative circles. I think folks are confusing a social pattern with American rights. Romney was a Mormon, long considered a cult by many groups. But Mormons don’t kidnap people and cut off their heads, so it’s a milder one that extreme Islam. Islam has been used to strike fear into the hearts and minds of America and perhap with some good reasons (D. Pearl). BUT. Under any civilized religion love is still love, hate is still hate. So even with good reason, it’s impossible for a people to fill up with love and hate at the same time. Sec Powell wouldn’t say it that way, but essentially it’s the core of the issue. And to Sec. Powell’s credit, calling out our own bigots and hate-mongers will hopefully be seen as one of the early steps of recovery. Thank you.

  • Ghareeb

    The issue of Islamophopia is one which we Americans, so fond of our right to freedom-of-religion, should easily overcome. The issue of Arab-phobia is another one altogether. When a person said to Senator McCain that Senator Obama is a Muslim, Mr. McCain responded in Mr. Obama’s defense, stating that he is “a decent. . . family man.” But Mr. McCain did not address the fact that this woman essentially accused Senator Obama of being of a race of which he is not; he did not proclaim that it is okay for people to be Arabs, just as it is okay for people to be black. He missed an opportunity to counter a racist statement, and by doing so accepted and perpetuated that racism. This is not America either; nor does Senator McCain represent the reasonable majority of Americans. In this country, where a black man is one of two top contenders for the presidency, we should all accept that Arab-Americans are an integral part of this country and should be included as part of America’s ambition to bring peace to the Middle East.

  • Truth Seeker

    Bigotry (i.e. unfounded hatred and/or criticism without a basis of fact toward a group or race of people ) is unacceptable. However, recognizing that a group ( in this case the world population of Muslims ) has a faith that includes exhortations to “put infidels in chains “as a blanket statement from the Koran (see the Saba chapter for example ) is not bigotry. It is a statement of fact. If Muslims wish to remove this component of their faith from their Koran and denounce any followers of Islam from portraying this as a part of their prophet’s life and directions to Muslims they should do so vigorously and throughout all the leadership of Islam. Has this happened across the leadership of Islam? No. The silence has been explained as a fear of offending Muslims who have taken over “the street.” I find that a poor excuse.I feel honored to live in a country where a Muslim American has made the ultimate sacrifice of his life to retain our freedom of faith here. I pray that more young men like him don’t need to be the victims of the worldwide mission of dominance found in the tenets of Islam. I admire Colin Powell and regret that he has left out in his faulty analysis a critical part of the problem with this so-called “Islamophobia” and has arrived at an incorrect conclusion. Let us see a campaign by Muslim’s worldwide on these violent and oppressive tenets of the Islamic faith that remain as integral parts of the Koran. Let us see a global attack within their own ranks under the banner of Islam and on the field of battle against terrorism in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Then, I think fears of Islam’s global mission to put infidels in chains can be decried as unfounded bigotry. Until that happens, these reactions to the basic threats and specific terrorist acts are not bigotry they are observations of fact.

  • M Collins

    The only other American in public life of comparable stature to denounce “Islamophobia” was President Bush. Shortly after September 11, he spoke out against attacks against Muslims and visited a Mosque. I recall his response seemed genuine and automatic, but since then, nothing. I am not a fan of the president, but he deserves credit for what he did a very sensitive time and only regret he did not continue to speak out against this bigotry.

  • Jennifer Martin

    Abed,I’m not sure if you read comments posted to your blog or not, but if you do, I pray your eyes are somehow drawn to this one.I am a Christian, and a McCain supporter. I lean conservative on most religious and political issues. I was feeling stung by Powell’s rejection of McCain, but then I came across this article, which, as you might suspect, I had never seen reported. This blog appeared in my “Google news” section for about thirty minutes before it was replaced by something else.My heart broke for the hypothetical seven year-old Muslim-American wanting to become president. I could imagine him or her spending their whole lives working toward a goal they might not ever be able to achieve due to the phobias of others. I admit that I rolled my eyes whenever I heard friends – everyday, normal people – say things like, “Obama is a Muslim, an Aye-rab.” But I would respond with things like “No, he’s not, he’s a Christian! A good Christian man!” I had missed the point, just like Obama himself has. While there is no excuse – understand where we are coming from. Right underneath your article on my news feed was this one: While these events are horrifying, and as a Christian I know what it is like to be blamed for events like The Crusades and the Inquisition despite the fact that they occured hundreds of years ago, you can’t help but perhaps see why other Christians, a bit uninformed, might be wary of Muslims in general. I myself didn’t hold a large enough distinction between the Taliban and Muslims in general until reading the Kite Runner. Honestly, I feel as if my eyes have been opened to something else that I need to keep pursuing. I couldn’t find your e-mail address anywhere on this site. If you could e-mail me at the address I have posted, I would be very grateful. I just have so many more things I think I’d like to talk about. Thank you so much,

  • Truth Seeker

    Bigotry (i.e. unfounded hatred and/or criticism without a basis of fact toward a group or race of people ) is unacceptable. However, recognizing that a group ( in this case the world population of Muslims ) has a faith that includes exhortations to “put infidels in chains “as a blanket statement from the Koran (see the Saba chapter for example ) is not bigotry. It is a statement of fact. If Muslims wish to remove this component of their faith from their Koran and denounce any followers of Islam from portraying this as a part of their prophet’s life and directions to Muslims they should do so vigorously and throughout all the leadership of Islam. Has this happened across the leadership of Islam? No. The silence has been explained as a fear of offending Muslims who have taken over “the street.” I find that a poor excuse.I feel honored to live in a country where a Muslim American has made the ultimate sacrifice of his life to retain our freedom of faith here. I pray that more young men like him don’t need to be the victims of the worldwide mission of dominance found in the tenets of Islam. I admire Colin Powell and regret that he has left out in his faulty analysis a critical part of the problem with this so-called “Islamophobia” and has arrived at an incorrect conclusion. Let us see a campaign by Muslim’s worldwide on these violent and oppressive tenets of the Islamic faith that remain as integral parts of the Koran. Let us see a global attack within their own ranks under the banner of Islam and on the field of battle against terrorism in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Then, I think fears of Islam’s global mission to put infidels in chains can be decried as unfounded bigotry. Until that happens, these reactions to the basic threats and specific terrorist acts are not bigotry they are observations of fact.

  • VA Mike

    Abed .. I agree with you that Islamaphobia is wrong, and my issues with Obama are not related to either his race or some confusion of his religous affiliation. I object to Obama because he is a Socialist who believes in taking from those who have worked hard to be successful and giving to many who don’t work at all. Giving a tax refund to those who don’t pay taxes is a bribe for their vote. Regretfully there are many who see the federal government as a cash machine, not realizing that it’s not the government’s money, but OUR money. Then again, if they don’t pay taxes, it’s not their money anyway. I will help those who need it, a hand up, NOT a hand out. Powell is wrong to endorse Obama and regretfully he feels socialism is OK. He’s wrong & Obama is wrong. Welcome to the United Socialist States of America. If Obama wins this election, I will fly my American flag upside down until he is gone. It is a sad day for American values, that a person who has such disdain for what made America great should be so close to the Presidency. Sadder still that so many Americans would surrender their personal freedom to allow a government to become so powerful. You watch, I give it 90 days and the attackes on the 1st and 2nd amendments will begin. God Help US!!

  • Jennifer Martin

    Abed,I’m not sure if you read comments posted to your blog or not, but if you do, I pray your eyes are somehow drawn to this one.I am a Christian, and a McCain supporter. I lean conservative on most religious and political issues. I was feeling stung by Powell’s rejection of McCain, but then I came across this article, which, as you might suspect, I had never seen reported. This blog appeared in my “Google news” section for about thirty minutes before it was replaced by something else.My heart broke for the hypothetical seven year-old Muslim-American wanting to become president. I could imagine him or her spending their whole lives working toward a goal they might not ever be able to achieve due to the phobias of others. I admit that I rolled my eyes whenever I heard friends – everyday, normal people – say things like, “Obama is a Muslim, an Aye-rab.” But I would respond with things like “No, he’s not, he’s a Christian! A good Christian man!” I had missed the point, just like Obama himself has. While there is no excuse – understand where we are coming from. Right underneath your article on my news feed was this one: While these events are horrifying, and as a Christian I know what it is like to be blamed for events like The Crusades and the Inquisition despite the fact that they occured hundreds of years ago, you can’t help but perhaps see why other Christians, a bit uninformed, might be wary of Muslims in general. I myself didn’t hold a large enough distinction between the Taliban and Muslims in general until reading the Kite Runner. Honestly, I feel as if my eyes have been opened to something else that I need to keep pursuing. I couldn’t find your e-mail address anywhere on this site. If you could e-mail me at the address I have posted, I would be very grateful. I just have so many more things I think I’d like to talk about. Thank you so much,

  • Edward Mangan

    Thank you Mr Powell. I’m just dissapointed that you didn’t step up to the plate long ago, say about 6-8 years ago. And what were you protecting?America is a young country and has a lot of growing up to do. Like the 6th grade bully, it appears that America will be the champion of it’s own demise.

  • Todd

    Well put. Thank you for pointing out Sec. Powell’s rejection of Islamophobia. I’m a Christian, white and a member of the GOP. One thing that I really dislike about my party is the racists and hate undertones. It’s not said outloud usually, but it’s obvious “those people” aren’t wanted in most conservative circles. I think folks are confusing a social pattern with American rights. Romney was a Mormon, long considered a cult by many groups. But Mormons don’t kidnap people and cut off their heads, so it’s a milder one that extreme Islam. Islam has been used to strike fear into the hearts and minds of America and perhap with some good reasons (D. Pearl). BUT. Under any civilized religion love is still love, hate is still hate. So even with good reason, it’s impossible for a people to fill up with love and hate at the same time. Sec Powell wouldn’t say it that way, but essentially it’s the core of the issue. And to Sec. Powell’s credit, calling out our own bigots and hate-mongers will hopefully be seen as one of the early steps of recovery. Thank you.

  • Buddy Jacob

    Yes, Americans are weary of Muslims:Fox News (10/20/08): Charity Worker Shot Dead in Afghanistan for ‘Spreading Christianity’And Obama is a Christian? Where in the Bible does it encourage or even condone abortion? True Christians do not believe in abortion, as Obama does.

  • Truth Seeker

    Bigotry (i.e. unfounded hatred and/or criticism without a basis of fact toward a group or race of people ) is unacceptable. However, recognizing that a group ( in this case the world population of Muslims ) has a faith that includes exhortations to “put infidels in chains “as a blanket statement from the Koran (see the Saba chapter for example ) is not bigotry. It is a statement of fact. If Muslims wish to remove this component of their faith from their Koran and denounce any followers of Islam from portraying this as a part of their prophet’s life and directions to Muslims they should do so vigorously and throughout all the leadership of Islam. Has this happened across the leadership of Islam? No. The silence has been explained as a fear of offending Muslims who have taken over “the street.” I find that a poor excuse.I feel honored to live in a country where a Muslim American has made the ultimate sacrifice of his life to retain our freedom of faith here. I pray that more young men like him don’t need to be the victims of the worldwide mission of dominance found in the tenets of Islam. I admire Colin Powell and regret that he has left out in his faulty analysis a critical part of the problem with this so-called “Islamophobia” and has arrived at an incorrect conclusion. Let us see a campaign by Muslim’s worldwide on these violent and oppressive tenets of the Islamic faith that remain as integral parts of the Koran. Let us see a global attack within their own ranks under the banner of Islam and on the field of battle against terrorism in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Then, I think fears of Islam’s global mission to put infidels in chains can be decried as unfounded bigotry. Until that happens, these reactions to the basic threats and specific terrorist acts are not bigotry they are observations of fact.

  • Arp

    Secretary Powell’s comments should resonate through a land where people prize the 1st Amendment for its guarantee of religious freedoms. For a perspective on what it’s like to be Muslim in America, you might read “The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf,” by Mohja kahf. It’s a sad and hopeful recounting of one girl’s struggle to find her identity as a Muslim in a sea of non-Muslim people with whom she wants to be at home in Indianapolis as a speaker of Arabic, and as a Muslim woman. I’m not in the book-selling business, but this novel puts Secretary Powell’s comments into perspective. Good for him! And a lesson in humility and understanding for the rest of us.

  • Demosthenes

    Why does one group or another want us to believe all Muslims are evil?

  • VAMike

    Abed .. I agree with you that Islamaphobia is wrong, and my issues with Obama are not related to either his race or some confusion of his religious affiliation. I object to Obama because he is a Socialist who believes in taking from those who have worked hard to be successful and giving to many who don’t work at all. Giving a tax refund to those who don’t pay taxes is a bribe for their vote. Regretfully there are many who see the federal government as a cash machine, not realizing that it’s not the government’s money, but OUR money. Then again, if they don’t pay taxes, it’s not their money anyway. I will help those who need it, a hand up, NOT a hand out. Powell is wrong to endorse Obama and regretfully he feels socialism is OK. He’s wrong & Obama is wrong. Welcome the United Socialist States of America. If Obama wins this election, I will fly my American flag upside down until he is gone. It is a sad day for American values, that a person who has such disdain for what made America great should be so close to the Presidency. Sadder still that so many Americans would surrender their personal freedom to allow a government to become so powerful. You watch, I give it 90 days and the attacks on the 1st and 2nd amendments will begin. God Help US!!

  • Buddy Jacob

    Yes, Americans are weary of Muslims:Fox News 10-20-08: Charity Worker Shot Dead in Afghanistan for Spreading ChristianityAnd Obama is a Christian? Where in the Bible does it encourage or even condone abortion? True Christians do not believe in abortion, as Obama does.

  • Sergeant Ward

    A Statesman has spoken the truth that exposes the

  • Edward Mangan

    Thank you Mr Powell. I’m just dissapointed that you didn’t step up to the plate long ago, say about 6-8 years ago. And what were you protecting?America is a young country and has a lot of growing up to do. Like the 6th grade bully, it appears that America will be the champion of it’s own demise.

  • Fred

    Secretary Powell said, politicians of either party

  • James Jones

    I’d like to hear your comments on Americanaphobia.Also like to point out the fact that few americans truly believe Mr Obama is Muslim. Especially since his longtime pastor the dishohorable Rev. Wright is a “Christian”.

  • TheDmosthenes

    Why does one group or another want us to believe all Muslims are evil?

  • Margaret Blankers

    To FViper 11 … What on earth does allowing “foreigners to come into this country without assimilating into American society …” got to do with Barack Obama? He was born in Kansas – I live in Kansas!Also, I bet your own family has roots from another country (unless you are Native-American). Are you telling me that YOUR family immediately assimilated “into American society”? I’ve got news for you: “American Society” is an assimilation of ALL OF THE emmigrants who have come into it over the past 270 years+. Ever hear of an “Little Italy district,” a “China Town,” an “English Pub”? Get over yourself!

  • Todd H

    Well put. Thank you for pointing out Sec. Powell’s rejection of Islamophobia. I’m a Christian, white and a member of the GOP. One thing that I really dislike about my party is the racists and hate undertones. It’s not said outloud usually, but it’s obvious “those people” aren’t wanted in most conservative circles. I think folks are confusing a social pattern with American rights. Romney was a Mormon, long considered a cult by many groups. But Mormons don’t kidnap people and cut off their heads, so it’s a milder one that extreme Islam. Islam has been used to strike fear into the hearts and minds of America and perhap with some good reasons (D. Pearl). BUT. Under any civilized religion love is still love, hate is still hate. So even with good reason, it’s impossible for a people to fill up with love and hate at the same time. Sec Powell wouldn’t say it that way, but essentially it’s the core of the issue. And to Sec. Powell’s credit, calling out our own bigots and hate-mongers will hopefully be seen as one of the early steps of recovery. Thank you.

  • Suzanne W.

    I cannot tell you what a huge relief I feel at reading your article. I have been so incredibly frustrated with the media completely ignoring — and implicitly buying into — anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry in our country. The media seems to think that McCain’s comment to the woman who claimed that Obama was an “Arab” to be just fine when it was not. The correct answer is, “it doesn’t matter what race or religion Mr. Obama is. That is what makes our country great.” Instead the reaction is all too often, “oh no, of course he isn’t! He’s a good, Christian man.” What an outrage that more people are not denouncing this blatant bigotry! Thank you VERY much for saying so eloquently what needs to be said. Shame on McCain for not saying this first.

  • Fred

    Secretary Powell said, politicians of either party

  • Bob

    I appreciate and applaud you for calling attention to ongoing narrow-mindedness and unthinking bigotry in our country. General Powell is a distinguished American and his call for avoiding wedge issues, particularly Islamophobia, is monumental and greatly appreciated.Now we need someone to stand up and speak for rationality, education for science, and modernism in a world terrified by advancement and knowledge.

  • M Michael

    Colin Powell has demonstrated that he is not just a military icon, but a great individual. He has embrased and expressed a major principle upon which this country was founded. He is right!Key members of the Republican Party must rise above the level of bigotry and prejudice. His endorsement of Senator Barack Obama is therefore very appropriate!

  • Todd

    Well put. Thank you for pointing out Sec. Powell’s rejection of Islamophobia. I’m a Christian, white and a member of the GOP. One thing that I really dislike about my party is the racists and hate undertones. It’s not said outloud usually, but it’s obvious “those people” aren’t wanted in most conservative circles. I think folks are confusing a social pattern with American rights. Romney was a Mormon, long considered a cult by many groups. But Mormons don’t kidnap people and cut off their heads, so it’s a milder one that extreme Islam. Islam has been used to strike fear into the hearts and minds of America and perhap with some good reasons (D. Pearl). BUT. Under any civilized religion love is still love, hate is still hate. So even with good reason, it’s impossible for a people to fill up with love and hate at the same time. Sec Powell wouldn’t say it that way, but essentially it’s the core of the issue. And to Sec. Powell’s credit, calling out our own bigots and hate-mongers will hopefully be seen as one of the early steps of recovery. Thank you.

  • tyler whitehouse

    great post. too bad we don’t have more influential politicians not currently holding offices who have the courage of their convictions and aren’t willing to play politics as usual.i, an agnostic, was also truly inspired and moved by his statements. however, i am sure that many shocked and frightened by them. for those people, you ought to go read some Rumi and perhaps find some balance in your life that allows you to have a more inclusive and understanding view of the world and your own life.

  • Anonymous

    Actually, the issue is not whether it is ok to be muslim in the USA (who cares?) the question remains, “is is ok for the President of a “christian” nation, to be another religion?” Please don’t raise the church-state separation issue either – the question is whether a president of a different religion can effectively lead those he has a fundemental difference in opinion with? Just as the law prevents our CA governer from being president(a law trying to prevent a non-american from leading america), how can someone of a different religion effectively understand the needs of a nation who claims it’s religion to be christianity? I’m not questioning Obama’s christianity with this – I’m just trying to point out that Obama’s religion does matter.

  • jl

    I too am delighted that Powell made that stand. Its a shame, shame, shame, for a country such as this to exclude people based on their faith – this is after all a country that often sites “the faith of our founding fathers” and “moral values” – especially in Republican circles. I’m disappointed that my fellow Christians haven’t demanded that the nonsense stops. I think the reason Obama has not directly denounced the statements about his being a muslim is the same as why he doesn’t directly denounce racist statements (did you see the dollar bills printed by the republican party showing Obama with chicken wings, cool-aid and water melon?). He is of the opinion that American’s are smart enough these tactics for what they are. He may also be thinking, “why answer a fool?”But I agree with you that because there is a very sizeable ignorant part of the country that is unapologetically discriminatory, a lot of people in high profile positions should be speaking out. The rest of the world just watches and smirks at the hypocrasy.

  • Anonymous

    good comments. Too bad the campaigns and media have chosen not to address this issue. This to me, is very un American. It goes against what our country stands for most strongly- accepting all nationalities and religions.

  • James Jones

    I’d like to hear your comments on Americanaphobia.Also like to point out the fact that few americans truly believe Mr Obama is Muslim. Especially since his longtime pastor the dishohorable Rev. Wright is a “Christian”.

  • bekbek

    I agree, and quite passionately. What he said was simple and beautiful, and I am sad that it will get lost among all the talking points of both candidates. As an atheist, I don’t expect my beliefs to be accepted or even noted in political campaigns in this country; but it has truly shocked me that Islamic Americans can be so maligned –or at the best, ignored– in this political process. Apparently the ideals of freedom and equality are only held to when convenient.Still, I have great hopes for an Obama presidency, not only for what he can do as a leader, but for the doors the simple fact of his presidency may open for all people in this country, regardless of gender, race, or religious beliefs.

  • Inasamaale

    Thank out for pointing out a nuance that was lost to me until you mentioned it. I doubt that Obama will say what Powell so emphatically stated “so what is wrong with being a Muslim?” but it is high time Obama should say something to that effect.Thank you again.Insamaale

  • MD

    First – John McCaine (or anyone in his campaign) NEVER said that Obama was Muslin!Second – it has nothing to do with Obama being Muslim or Christian! It has to do with not telling the truth! Any by the way – - people who are against Obama are not against his color or religion…they are against what he stands for.Also, I guess you haven’t watched Chris Matthews and Keith Obermann. They have done nothing but spread lies/ half truths/ and trash the Republicans and anything that is good about this country. That is called propaganda.

  • Kim

    I actually yelled “Amen!” as General Powell made his statement regarding Islamophobia, finally calling out the bigotry which has been growing ever prevelant in our society. It is distressing that the same disrespect is reinvented year after year, for so many types of citizens whether they be homosexual, African American, Indian, Hispanic, female, …the list goes on. It is an elementary lesson that though someone may be different than you, does not make them someone to dislike, disrespect, or treat with condescension. I wish that all of our leaders would stand up against bigotry, unconcerned with retaliatory fear and consistently demonstrate tolerance and diplomacy rather than ignore the whispers, go with the flow, and turn a blind eye should a blatant, hateful statement be made. This strategy just allows bigotry to fester, killing our ability to be true Americans – a mezcla, the melting pot of the world.

  • Jennifer Martin
  • Why not tell the truth

    First – John McCaine (or anyone in his campaign) NEVER said that Obama was Muslin!Second – it has nothing to do with Obama being Muslim or Christian! It has to do with not telling the truth! Any by the way – - people who are against Obama are not against his color or religion…they are against what he stands for.Also, I guess you haven’t watched Chris Matthews and Keith Obermann. They have done nothing but spread lies/ half truths/ and trash the Republicans and anything that is good about this country. That is called propaganda.

  • Dennis

    Abed, I really enjoyed your article and I am glad that you address such an important issue. Here is what I see here in America both polictically and socially.Islam is misunderstood here in America. This is a fact. That being said I have to lay the blame on Islam itself. Where are emissaries for Islam? Whydid they not condem 9/11? Who here in America does one go to to ask questions and find the truth about Islam? There is no one!!Islam is looked upon with fear because because of the last 20 years of history. 9/11 highjackers were Muslim as were the attackers of the USS Cole, WTC (first attack) and countless other places and people through out the world. For various reasons too long to talk about here, Islam does not get along with its neighbors. In England as well as Cananda Islam wants Shiria law and not the law which was in place before Isalm arrived to those two great countries. Islam has sent death threats to a cartoonist who depicted Muhamed and knifed a relative of Van gough in Europe. No one can criticize Islam or Mohamed without hatred or death threats. Should we talk about the many years of suicide bombings on non Muslims and Muslims? I think there is a lot to be uncertain and fearfull of when it comes to Islam.Colin Powell remarks are interesting as they are false. Many believe that race has motivated Powell’s decision due to at least one fact: Powell had 4 years to address the perception that the GOP divisiveness was there. Powell’s silence was deafening!!! Furthermore by your statement in your article do you imply that the Democrat party is NOT divisive?? Does Powell imply the same? Powell was never a Republican, he was a RINO (Republican In Name Only) I knew this when he stated that he was antigun many years ago. Owning a firearm is a protected right in this Country, anyone wanting to remove that right is anti America and anti Constitutional and NOT a Republican.Obama might or might not be Muslim and I dont really care. Here is what I do know however:Both his Father and his step father are/were Muslim. Islam/Muslims have never apologized publically for 9/11 or any other suicide attack anywhere let alone here in the United States of America. Islam/Muslims does not want to immerse themselves and become a part of the culture and countries that they sought haven in and enjoy the benifits thereof and want to be seperate and have their own laws.The ideas bigotry against Islam laying squarely with Islam. If you will not embrace the culture you are in this is what happens. There will be fear and mistrust until it is resolved. At least here in America we do not tax Muslims more because you are a Muslim nor do we behead them and kill thier family as what Muslims are doing in parts of Africa and other areas that have both a Christian/Isamic mix.The GOP does not like Obama NOT because he is or might be a Muslim. The GOP does not like him because he is a socalist who has no experience. He is the second term of President Carter. There are always a small fraction of any political party who say stupid things about the other candidate. Both Palin and Barack know this.Powell’s move is based on Race which is sad. Race has no place here and yet Barack conjured it up and continues to fan the flames on the backs of Liberal White Guilt.One final question….would the Muslims in any Middle East country be as tolerant of Christians/Non Muslims as we are of Muslims here in the United States of America? Could these Non Muslims pratice thier own faith openly and enjoy thier own culture openly? I think not!!!Dennis

  • Hassan

    Thank you for your review and comments Abed…I too was moved by Sec Powell’s remarks denoucing Islamophobia in Amercia! While watching Meet the Press and not knowing what Sec Powell was planning to say I could not help but throw my arms up in the air like I just witnessed a winning field goal when he talked about this issue. I am a proud Muslim American and have been shocked how both parties have behaved…if you recall even during the Democratic primaries these same fears were used! I hope other prominent Americans will seize this moment to also reject this bigotry. Peace

  • Md

    First – John McCaine (or anyone in his campaign) NEVER said that Obama was Muslin!Second – it has nothing to do with Obama being Muslim or Christian! It has to do with not telling the truth! Any by the way – - people who are against Obama are not against his color or religion…they are against what he stands for.Also, I guess you haven’t watched Chris Matthews and Keith Obermann. They have done nothing but spread lies/ half truths/ and trash the Republicans and anything that is good about this country. That is called propaganda.

  • Karlos Waterman

    It is wonderful that Gen. Powell brought his condemnation against bigotry in such a prominent address. The leaders of both parties have failed in their duty to address the prejudice behind accusing Sen. Obama of being a Muslim. I appreciate the awkwardness of Sen. Obama himself meeting the prejudice head on, but it would be a courageous move. Sen. McCain and the Republican Party have even a greater duty to condemn the anti-Muslim prejudice since it is being used to their advantage. How about it, mavericks?

  • truthhurts

    I would also say this is the first concrete way to address the issue of how to combat terrorism, that is not to dangerously generalize the extremism with the an entire faith. This is what the thugs like bin Laden hoped will happen and they nearly succeeded. American people need to be smart enough to fight this the right way and I am glad a person of the stature of secretary Powell is able to provide a lens of clarity though the mist and haze of reactionary wars.

  • mo

    First – John McCaine (or anyone in his campaign) NEVER said that Obama was Muslin!Second – it has nothing to do with Obama being Muslim or Christian! It has to do with not telling the truth! Any by the way – - people who are against Obama are not against his color or religion…they are against what he stands for.Also, I guess you haven’t watched Chris Matthews and Keith Obermann. They have done nothing but spread lies/ half truths/ and trash the Republicans and anything that is good about this country. That is called propaganda.

  • Greg

    You make a very good point, and I felt the same way when watching Meet the Press. I share your hopes. It’s a tragedy, and usually inaccurate, when any group is demonized. An Obama presidency will, in the long run, do a lot to reduce the polarizations which have increased during the current administration. (Thanks, Karl.)However, it would have been very helpful to see, and I cannot recall seeing, a strong and visible denunciation by major Islamic figures or groups, of the 911 attack. Yes, I did see a couple of interviews on talk shows, but no concerted joint statement by moderate Islam, or Saudi Arabia, that I can recall.I do not doubt that most Muslims in the free world were dismayed by that attack, but that sentiment didn’t get impressed upon the American public.

  • Netherlands Antilles

    I think secretary of state COLIN POWELL do the right things.OBAMA BIDEN 08…!!!@

  • lester

    Abed, I think what you are pursuing with your studies is very important and I think the Islamaphobia article is excellent.In the press we only see radical muslim terrorism. We almost NEVER hear about muslims as patriots. There are many muslims in our area. However, I know almost nothing about them. Most I wouldn’t know were muslims unless I inquired, it is not obvious who is a muslim and, like a lot of folks, muslims are not inclined to divulge their religious beliefs upon a first meeting or encounter.When I see someone in tradtional muslim garments, I do not inquire about their politics; instead I find myself bending over backwards to show that they are accepted and that all Americans don’t feel towards them like the hate vending Islamaphobics do.My point – I believe that most of America does not know enough about our muslim neighbors and that works to foment ignorance and mistrust.Perhaps you could suggest a muslim themed newspaper or magazine one could read that highlights American muslim life. The magazine I envision would primarily be for muslims but also for non-muslims that want to get to know our muslim neighbors better. This instrument would be something similar to Ebony magazine. If one does not exist perhaps it could be created.I understand there may be a fear factor working against patriotic muslims’ speaking up. It takes courage to speak counter to the rantings of an active, radical group. I wouldn’t want harm to come to anyone. I don’t know if I would have the courage to speak up, but neither would I be comfortable waiting for someone outside my group to speak for me, no matter how well intentioned. However, to change the course of the discourse, EVERY AMERICAN needs to raise their voice.Thank you for bringing Powells’ comment to light. Keep up the good work and good luck.

  • Hassan

    Thank you for your review and comments Abed…I too was moved by Sec Powell’s remarks denoucing Islamophobia in Amercia! While watching Meet the Press and not knowing what Sec Powell was planning to say I could not help but throw my arms up in the air like I just witnessed a winning field goal when he talked about this issue. I am a proud Muslim American and have been shocked how both parties have behaved…if you recall even during the Democratic primaries these same fears were used! I hope other prominent Americans will seize this moment to also reject this bigotry. Peace

  • Ruth

    This is a wonderful article. I have read about Colin Powell’s endorsement but this part of it wasn’t mentioned in those articles. Why is it that you have to go to college to learn about other cultures. Why can’t our children learn about them in grade school like they learn Math, History, English and Science? Learning to understand cultures around the world will promote peace as opposed to ignorance and fear. For a country that is as rich and powerful as the U.S. it is shameful that only in the last 20 years children are finally being taught not to fear those with disabilities. It is far – far behind in understanding cultures of the world.

  • Netherlands Antilles

    OBAMA BIDEN 08…!!!COLIN POWELL DO THE RIGHT THINGS.

  • Gary B

    My wife and I were both profoundly moved by Powell’s statements regarding Islam. I was nodding in agreement and felt my heart fill with emotion at his words. These were my thoughts, coming from Powell. And like you, I teared up with a mixture of pride and shame: Pride for Powell, Obama, and the boy who gave his life: Shame that our country still has so far to go to free itself of racism and bigotry.I also hope that this message from Powell does not get lost in the news. I hope that of all the words from this election, these are the ones that resonate the most.Gary B

  • Jose G Barreau

    I agree that there is no place in America for Islamophobia or any other discrimination and Colin Powell certainly made very good points and he is an admirable leader. One other aspect that I beleive has driven Islamophobia is the lack of loud opposition to radical Islam which has cast a dark shadow on the religon as a whole and moderate Muslims are partly to blame for the Islamophobia in my opinion but this certainly does not excuse it. I feel it would be beneficial for the muslim community of which I have many friends to be less gray and more black or white about there positions on vioent opposition. A new administration in the U.S may facilitate this development in the future.

  • bob wright

    I completely agree Abed. The whole suggestion that “he is a Muslim” counts just by itself, without even having to say “All Muslims are terrorists, anti-American, and Satanic” is disturbing and disgusting. Obama is stuck with that one for now – you have to pick your fights, and getting drawn into ‘defending America’s enemies’ – which is how the rabies brigade would then frame it – isn’t practical in the midst of the ongoing hate and paranoia fest. I’m glad that Powell stepped up on that one. It’s troubling to see that rock-bottom support that McCain has: that 43% of the population would vote for him if he started calling for internment camps. 43% would vote for him if he’d pulled out a gun and shot Obama during the debates. 43% of the country is very, very peculiar, and I hope that Muslims in America and around the world understand that at least they are not (yet) the majority.

  • Gary

    My wife and I were both profoundly moved by Powell’s statements regarding Islam. I was nodding in agreement and felt my heart fill with emotion at his words. These were my thoughts, coming from Powell. And like you, I teared up with a mixture of pride and shame: Pride for Powell, Obama, and the boy who gave his life: Shame that our country still has so far to go to free itself of racism and bigotry.I also hope that this message from Powell does not get lost in the news. I hope that of all the words from this election, these are the ones that resonate the most.Gary B

  • Harvey

    I am not a Muslim and I was moved to tears as well. You are 100% right. This is the same type of behavior evidenced during the Vietnam war, the Korean “conflict” and World War II. Resorting to the use of stereotype and identifying American citizens as the “other”, or as “pinkos”, etc. has been the low road to success in American politics for several generations. This strategy has produced nothing but short term gain for the politicians and long term pain for those people identified as the “villains” in these political side shows. I think you could have also included the national media in this article because there has been very little written or shown on television about this issue.

  • M Michael

    Bravo! Mr Colin Powell. You have demonstrated the type of character that defines a Real American Hero. Your comments and endorsement are absolutely right!

  • Anonymous

    I am not a Muslim and I was moved to tears as well. You are 100% right. This is the same type of behavior evidenced during the Vietnam war, the Korean “conflict” and World War II. Resorting to the use of stereotype and identifying American citizens as the “other”, or as “pinkos”, etc. has been the low road to success in American politics for several generations. This strategy has produced nothing but short term gain for the politicians and long term pain for those people identified as the “villains” in these political side shows. I think you could have also included the national media in this article because there has been very little written or shown on television about this issue.

  • Kevin

    Colin Powell showed exceptional statesmanship and personal integrity in his remarks. It should be noted, however, that the Islamic community, both domestically and internationally, has been entirely too silent in their response to terrorists perverting the teachings of Islamic religion to justify their murderous actions. Lastly, I would like to volunteer that this is not just a Christianity-Islam issue. If we are to achieve lasting world peace, religious tolerance must be extended to those of ALL religious beliefs, including atheists and agnostics.

  • Harvey

    I am not a Muslim and I was moved to tears as well. You are 100% right. This is the same type of behavior evidenced during the Vietnam war, the Korean “conflict” and World War II. Resorting to the use of stereotype and identifying American citizens as the “other”, or as “pinkos”, etc. has been the low road to success in American politics for several generations. This strategy has produced nothing but short term gain for the politicians and long term pain for those people identified as the “villains” in these political side shows. I think you could have also included the national media in this article because there has been very little written or shown on television about this issue.

  • Kevin

    Colin Powell showed exceptional statesmanship and personal integrity in his remarks. It should be noted, however, that the Islamic community, both domestically and internationally, has been entirely too silent in their response to terrorists perverting the teachings of Islamic religion to justify their murderous actions. Lastly, I would like to volunteer that this is not just a Christianity-Islam issue. If we are to achieve lasting world peace, religious tolerance must be extended to those of ALL religious beliefs, including atheists and agnostics.

  • frank burns

    Powell’s answer is light-years ahead of McCain’s. When a woman said into the mic at a McCain rally, “Obama is an Arab,” McCain grabbed the mic away and opined, “No, ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man.” Don’t believe it? Then look it up, a direct quote — it was reported in all the papers a couple of weeks ago.

  • Test

    Jodi’s test

  • Harvey

    I am not a Muslim and I was moved to tears as well. You are 100% right. This is the same type of behavior evidenced during the Vietnam war, the Korean “conflict” and World War II. Resorting to the use of stereotype and identifying American citizens as the “other”, or as “pinkos”, etc. has been the low road to success in American politics for several generations. This strategy has produced nothing but short term gain for the politicians and long term pain for those people identified as the “villains” in these political side shows. I think you could have also included the national media in this article because there has been very little written or shown on television about this issue.

  • Islamaphobia v. Reality

    You are wrong on so many levels that it’s difficult to know where to start. Might we assume by your surname that you are yourself a Muslim? If so this might explain your myopic view that the current anti-Muslim trends are “blatant bigotry”. Radical Muslims around the world have been calling for insurgent war against Americans and Jews for decades. Do you deny this? Recent attacks, both successful and not, have reinforced the FACT that elements within the Islamic community are actively attempting to undermine US interests both here and abroad. Are you ignoring this?What it highly likely is that you are yet another brainwashed puppet sent to study in our schools and spread your propaganda that Islam is peaceful – which smacks of Hitler’s propaganda just before launching an attack on Europe. Japan sent an ambassador to negotiate during the Pearl Harbor attack. The list goes on and on. Let me make one point perfectly clear – I am not given to personal prejudices and lovingly accept anyone of any faith or creed. I am proud to call myself a follower of Christ. Like most Americans I believe that a person should have freedom to exercise their religion as they see fit; be it across the world or across my backyard fence. If they wish to worship Budda or Mohammed or their BMW automobile I am willing to fight for their right to do so. But, like most Americans, I CANNOT accept and will not tolerate religions and religious leaders who force their beliefs on others.This is not to say that you are not free to knock on my door and share your beliefs. I will welcome you into my home and hear what you have to say. I will share with you my faith and perhaps we will come to a common understanding. This is our way…the way of America. We tolerate much but are willing to fight for the oppressed. We allow you to stand on our streetcorners and preach your doctrine of hatred and violence – because that is your right as part of a free society. But you’d if you cross the line you WILL get what you deserve. You label it “Islamiphobia” but I call it self-defense. As long as it’s proponents are willing to do whatever it takes to spread their twisted gospel of hatred and fear (not to mention oppression of women) Americans will demand a defensive posture in order to protect our freedoms…yours included.

  • Tex-Chick

    If Islam were merely a world religion, this kind of thinking would be right on target. Unfortunately, Islam is a political movement with its leaders wanting to dominate the world and force their way of life on the world. Those Muslims who claim to be secular or religious and peace-loving, but not political/radical, are not denouncing the radicals within the Islamic world. When will Muslims living in this country think like Americans first, denouncing the radicals completely? When will Muslims in this country stand up against the hatred being taught in American mosques or the intolerance being taught in Middle East Studies programs in American universities? Most Americans find it unthinkable that a Muslim should come to power in the greatest free country in the world. We want to continue to live in freedom here.

  • Islamaphobia v. Reality

    You are wrong on so many levels that it’s difficult to know where to start. Might we assume by your surname that you are yourself a Muslim? If so this might explain your myopic view that the current anti-Muslim trends are “blatant bigotry”. Radical Muslims around the world have been calling for insurgent war against Americans and Jews for decades. Do you deny this? Recent attacks, both successful and not, have reinforced the FACT that elements within the Islamic community are actively attempting to undermine US interests both here and abroad. Are you ignoring this?What it highly likely is that you are yet another brainwashed puppet sent to study in our schools and spread your propaganda that Islam is peaceful – which smacks of Hitler’s propaganda just before launching an attack on Europe. Japan sent an ambassador to negotiate during the Pearl Harbor attack. The list goes on and on. Let me make one point perfectly clear – I am not given to personal prejudices and lovingly accept anyone of any faith or creed. I am proud to call myself a follower of Christ. Like most Americans I believe that a person should have freedom to exercise their religion as they see fit; be it across the world or across my backyard fence. If they wish to worship Budda or Mohammed or their BMW automobile I am willing to fight for their right to do so. But, like most Americans, I CANNOT accept and will not tolerate religions and religious leaders who force their beliefs on others.This is not to say that you are not free to knock on my door and share your beliefs. I will welcome you into my home and hear what you have to say. I will share with you my faith and perhaps we will come to a common understanding. This is our way…the way of America. We tolerate much but are willing to fight for the oppressed. We allow you to stand on our streetcorners and preach your doctrine of hatred and violence – because that is your right as part of a free society. But you’d if you cross the line you WILL get what you deserve. You label it “Islamiphobia” but I call it self-defense. As long as it’s proponents are willing to do whatever it takes to spread their twisted gospel of hatred and fear (not to mention oppression of women) Americans will demand a defensive posture in order to protect our freedoms…yours included.

  • frank burns

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • mzafrullah

    Abed, you have done well to highlight Colin Powell’s stance against Islamophobia. The trouble is that the fear of Islam has been inculcated over the centuries and it will take more than a few senior statesmen repudiating it to rectify the situation. Under ideal circumstances some education about Islam would have helped. But the trouble is that a lot of Americans come from parts of Europe that were either ruled by or were in direct conflict with Turkey. The stories they have to tell may not be true of post-WWII Turkey but some are certainly true of pre-WWII turkey. To make the matters worse a lot of modern day Muslims seem to have the notion that Islam means fighting and killing non-Muslims, which it certainly does not.PS. Indeed every child born in the US has the right to dream of becoming the President of this great country, but let us not rush it. There are a lot walls to be felled before that can happen. Mr. Powell’s statement is a remarkable first step. This indicates that we will eventually get there, though a lot of patience and a lot of hard work will be needed.

  • fregger

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • Muhammad Zafrullah

    Abed, you have done well to highlight Colin Powell’s stance against Islamophobia. The trouble is that the fear of Islam has been inculcated over the centuries and it will take more than a few senior statesmen repudiating it to rectify the situation. Under ideal circumstances some education about Islam would have helped. But the trouble is that a lot of Americans come from parts of Europe that were either ruled by or were in direct conflict with Turkey. The stories they have to tell may not be true of post-WWII Turkey but some are certainly true of pre-WWII turkey. To make the matters worse a lot of modern day Muslims seem to have the notion that Islam means fighting and killing non-Muslims, which it certainly does not.PS. Indeed every child born in the US has the right to dream of becoming the President of this great country, but let us not rush it. There are a lot walls to be felled before that can happen. Mr. Powell’s statement is a remarkable first step. This indicates that we will eventually get there, though a lot of patience and a lot of hard work will be needed.

  • Netherlands

    Obama Biden 08…!!!

  • mzafrullah

    Abed, you have done well to highlight Colin Powell’s stance against Islamophobia. The trouble is that the fear of Islam has been inculcated over the centuries and it will take more than a few senior statesmen repudiating it to rectify the situation. Under ideal circumstances some education about Islam would have helped. But the trouble is that a lot of Americans come from parts of Europe that were either ruled by or were in direct conflict with Turkey. The stories they have to tell may not be true of post-WWII Turkey but some are certainly true of pre-WWII turkey. To make the matters worse a lot of modern day Muslims seem to have the notion that Islam means fighting and killing non-Muslims, which it certainly does not.PS. Indeed every child born in the US has the right to dream of becoming the President of this great country, but let us not rush it. There are a lot walls to be felled before that can happen. Mr. Powell’s statement is a remarkable first step. This indicates that we will eventually get there, though a lot of patience and a lot of hard work will be needed.

  • Gary D. Tanous

    As a Christian and life long Republican, I have long admired Colin Powell, even his support of Barack Obama. I worked in the middle East for several years in the past, including Syria and Saudi Arabia, I have come to believe they are not bad people, rather just the opposite. It seems they have more understanding of us than we of them. With Obama as president, maybe the Palestinians will get a fair shake at long last. But this election is not about peace in the middle east. As a small business man, if I were to vote my pocket book as I believe the majority of Americans will, I would vote for McCain. However, I believe the vast majority of Americans are looking for a free hand out, and they will vote their pocket books too and therefore for Obama. Pocket books vs. the world. This election will truly prove what most of us stand for. Greed. World peace is a distant second concern.

  • Marcus Wilbanks

    As a retired Navy veteran I have a great deal of respect and admiration for General Powell. If he feels Obama is the right man for the job that is his opinion. I do not however buy his reasoning. Obama has been endored by Lewis Ferricon. Mr. Ferricon’s Nation of Islam preaches and promotes hated and advocates the destruction of the white race. This belief is based upon the teachings of Islam according to Mr. Ferricon. I don’t think this particular kind of religion is good for this country. I believe that we as a nation should continue to stand up against those who are preaching this hate. If General Powell feels compelled to support and vote for this hate, so be it, he is a free man. I for one would not vote for anyone who is endorses by Lewis Ferricon. Sorry!

  • jean jacques Dessalines

    You know RELIGION is a very very bad SCHOOL for people EDUCATION,that cause to much war between humanity;they should close all type of church whatever CATHOLIC, MUSLIM, PROTESTANT,ADVENTIST,

  • tom

    buy news media companies in the usa or work for media companies ,run for congress or a senate seat there are very wealthy arabs and muslims, including bin ladin 300 million, he could have bought a big piece of a media company (voting shares of stocks ) here but he choose the wrong path, you yourself wrote a nice piece and i understand what you are saying,there are 1.4 billion muslim and arabs in the world and you hear about the few extremists all the time..go into journalisim or politics here in the usa if you want to change things.

  • somerseten

    Republicans in California years ago ran anti-immigrant campaigns that were borderline racist, and now they wonder why Hispanics, even conservative Hispanics, tend to vote Democratic.If you migrate from a Muslim country, even if you convert to Christianity, under the current Republican attack mode they are suspected terrorists.This is not America. This is hatemongering.I’m so thankful I heard Colin Powell speak up for our country and its values.

  • somerseten

    Republicans in California years ago ran anti-immigrant campaigns that were borderline racist, and now they wonder why Hispanics, even conservative Hispanics, tend to vote Democratic.If you migrate from a Muslim country, even if you convert to Christianity, under the current Republican attack mode they are suspected terrorists.This is not America. This is hatemongering.I’m so thankful I heard Colin Powell speak up for our country and its values.

  • Joe

    Islamophobia, eh? Most Muslims are as ignorant of the history and beliefs of their religion as are Christians. But consider…How man people did Muhammad personally kill or directly order to be killed? How many raids against caravans did he perform? How many battles did Muhammad lead? How many people did he order to be tortured by commanding acts like cutting off their hands and feet?You can find out the answers to all of these questions, not by going to anti-Islamic website, but by simply studying the Quran, Hadith, and their own authenticated history books.Taking that into account plus Islam’s history (especially the last 10 years), I’m wracking my brain as to why someone might be concerned about Muslims being violent…You see, the more like Muhammad they become, the more the rest of the world has to worry about…

  • fregger

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • joe42

    Islamophobia, eh? Most Muslims are as ignorant of the history and beliefs of their religion as are Christians. But consider…How man people did Muhammad personally kill or directly order to be killed? How many raids against caravans did he perform? How many battles did Muhammad lead? How many people did he order to be tortured by commanding acts like cutting off their hands and feet?You can find out the answers to all of these questions, not by going to anti-Islamic website, but by simply studying the Quran, Hadith, and their own authenticated history books.Taking that into account plus Islam’s history (especially the last 10 years), I’m wracking my brain as to why someone might be concerned about Muslims being violent…You see, the more like Muhammad they become, the more the rest of the world has to worry about…

  • joe42

    Islamophobia, eh? Most Muslims are as ignorant of the history and beliefs of their religion as are Christians. But consider…How man people did Muhammad personally kill or directly order to be killed? How many raids against caravans did he perform? How many battles did Muhammad lead? How many people did he order to be tortured by commanding acts like cutting off their hands and feet?You can find out the answers to all of these questions, not by going to anti-Islamic website, but by simply studying the Quran, Hadith, and their own authenticated history books.Taking that into account plus Islam’s history (especially the last 10 years), I’m wracking my brain as to why someone might be concerned about Muslims being violent…You see, the more like Muhammad they become, the more the rest of the world has to worry about…

  • frank burns

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • BlairSupporter

    How naive this article seems. I am a British citizen, and if I were American, in earlier elections I’d probably have voted Democrat. But not now, were I in a position to vote. The reason? I believe that many people ARE planning to vote for Obama BECAUSE he is black. Wrong reason.(I’ll come on to the religion issue later, and the question of his birth country.)Recently I listened to an American radio broadcast where Obama’s policies were replaced by McCain’s, and then people were asked about why they were voting for Obama.For instance, “Are you voting for Obama because of his policy of staying in Iraq and his policy against stem-cell research?””Yeah”, they all said. “I agree with him on that.”WRONG answers.They are voting for Obama for one reason only – his RACE. Or they are voting AGAINST the Republicans (which is the usual reason one party wins or loses anyway – people’s “anti” votes.)Only a small percentage of people (probably) are voting for Obama because he is likely to be seen by outsiders as having Muslim links and forebears.But this does not make that religious issue less relevant. In fact it makes it more important. It seems all Muslim countries WANT Obama as US president? WHY, since they know little about him as a politician? Race and/or expected empathy for Islam? Most probably. There are also issues around Obama’s birthplace and original, birth religion. Why he doesn’t answer those in one fell swoop and show his birth certificate is beyond me. McCain has shown his.So is Obama an eligible candidate, born in America. I simply don’t know. Do you? If he wasn’t, then you could also have Tony Blair as President! Now THAT would be something you could be proud of, people of faith and no faith. We know where HE stands.Right now there is a report of a young British/South African charity worker’s murder in Afghanistan. The Taliban says it is because she was a Christian. The head of the NGO concerned says he doesn’t accept that. Why not? He thinks it was an “opportunistic killing”. What does that mean? An opportunity to kill a Christian? Or a caucasian? Or a woman? Or what?Or an opportunity to send a message? What message?There needs to be less head-in-the-sand nonsense over this by those of us in the free liberal west who think others have the same approach to faith as we have. Whether they are in the huge minority or not, people who SAY they are ‘True Muslims’ are daily killing others.DAILY. Worldwide.And the moderate Muslims are compliant by their silence.As for Colin Powell – words escape me.

  • BlairSupporter

    How naive this article seems. I am a British citizen, and if I were American, in earlier elections I’d probably have voted Democrat. But not now, were I in a position to vote. The reason? I believe that many people ARE planning to vote for Obama BECAUSE he is black. Wrong reason.(I’ll come on to the religion issue later, and the question of his birth country.)Recently I listened to an American radio broadcast where Obama’s policies were replaced by McCain’s, and then people were asked about why they were voting for Obama.For instance, “Are you voting for Obama because of his policy of staying in Iraq and his policy against stem-cell research?””Yeah”, they all said. “I agree with him on that.”WRONG answers.They are voting for Obama for one reason only – his RACE. Or they are voting AGAINST the Republicans (which is the usual reason one party wins or loses anyway – people’s “anti” votes.)Only a small percentage of people (probably) are voting for Obama because he is likely to be seen by outsiders as having Muslim links and forebears.But this does not make that religious issue less relevant. In fact it makes it more important. It seems all Muslim countries WANT Obama as US president? WHY, since they know little about him as a politician? Race and/or expected empathy for Islam? Most probably. There are also issues around Obama’s birthplace and original, birth religion. Why he doesn’t answer those in one fell swoop and show his birth certificate is beyond me. McCain has shown his.So is Obama an eligible candidate, born in America. I simply don’t know. Do you? If he wasn’t, then you could also have Tony Blair as President! Now THAT would be something you could be proud of, people of faith and no faith. We know where HE stands.Right now there is a report of a young British/South African charity worker’s murder in Afghanistan. The Taliban says it is because she was a Christian. The head of the NGO concerned says he doesn’t accept that. Why not? He thinks it was an “opportunistic killing”. What does that mean? An opportunity to kill a Christian? Or a caucasian? Or a woman? Or what?Or an opportunity to send a message? What message?There needs to be less head-in-the-sand nonsense over this by those of us in the free liberal west who think others have the same approach to faith as we have. Whether they are in the huge minority or not, people who SAY they are ‘True Muslims’ are daily killing others.DAILY. Worldwide.And the moderate Muslims are compliant by their silence.As for Colin Powell – words escape me.

  • joe42

    Islamophobia, eh? Most Muslims are as ignorant of the history and beliefs of their religion as are Christians. But consider…How man people did Muhammad personally kill or directly order to be killed? How many raids against caravans did he perform? How many battles did Muhammad lead? How many people did he order to be tortured by commanding acts like cutting off their hands and feet?You can find out the answers to all of these questions, not by going to anti-Islamic website, but by simply studying the Quran, Hadith, and their own authenticated history books.Taking that into account plus Islam’s history (especially the last 10 years), I’m wracking my brain as to why someone might be concerned about Muslims being violent…You see, the more like Muhammad they become, the more the rest of the world has to worry about…

  • frank burns

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • frank burns

    Unlike McCain — when the lady said into the mic, “Obama is an Arab,” he pulled the mic away and said, “No ma’am, Obama is a decent person and a family man!”

  • BlairSupporter

    How naive this article seems. I am a British citizen, and if I were American, in earlier elections I’d probably have voted Democrat. But not now, were I in a position to vote. The reason? I believe that many people ARE planning to vote for Obama BECAUSE he is black. Wrong reason.(I’ll come on to the religion issue later, and the question of his birth country.)Recently I listened to an American radio broadcast where Obama’s policies were replaced by McCain’s, and then people were asked about why they were voting for Obama.For instance, “Are you voting for Obama because of his policy of staying in Iraq and his policy against stem-cell research?””Yeah”, they all said. “I agree with him on that.”WRONG answers.They are voting for Obama for one reason only – his RACE. Or they are voting AGAINST the Republicans (which is the usual reason one party wins or loses anyway – people’s “anti” votes.)Only a small percentage of people (probably) are voting for Obama because he is likely to be seen by outsiders as having Muslim links and forebears.But this does not make that religious issue less relevant. In fact it makes it more important. It seems all Muslim countries WANT Obama as US president? WHY, since they know little about him as a politician? Race and/or expected empathy for Islam? Most probably. There are also issues around Obama’s birthplace and original, birth religion. Why he doesn’t answer those in one fell swoop and show his birth certificate is beyond me. McCain has shown his.So is Obama an eligible candidate, born in America. I simply don’t know. Do you? If he wasn’t, then you could also have Tony Blair as President! Now THAT would be something you could be proud of, people of faith and no faith. We know where HE stands.Right now there is a report of a young British/South African charity worker’s murder in Afghanistan. The Taliban says it is because she was a Christian. The head of the NGO concerned says he doesn’t accept that. Why not? He thinks it was an “opportunistic killing”. What does that mean? An opportunity to kill a Christian? Or a caucasian? Or a woman? Or what?Or an opportunity to send a message? What message?There needs to be less head-in-the-sand nonsense over this by those of us in the free liberal west who think others have the same approach to faith as we have. Whether they are in the huge minority or not, people who SAY they are ‘True Muslims’ are daily killing others.DAILY. Worldwide.And the moderate Muslims are compliant by their silence.As for Colin Powell – words escape me.

  • ro

    As usual you left wing nuts want to blame all of US for everything. There will always be a few idiots who hate Muslims, Jews and Christians. To imply as Colin Powell did that there is some rampant Islamaphobia is iresponsible. The phobia is against those radical islam. This also goes both ways. Where are the muslims groups denouncing radical Islam

  • Chris Watson

    YES!These freedoms are not always comfortable, however they are our duty and right as American citizens. Too few people have read the Bill of Rights or the Constitution since High School. We forget that America is much more than grilling out on the lawn with friends drinking beer. Being Americans put a burden upon people of all faiths, and no faith, to live together in a free and civil society. America could be again that Beacon of Light to the disenfranchised and hopeless around the world and at home. I hope that within our lifetimes America again keeps that promise and re-earns that trust.

  • Marc Edward

    abhab writes “Because there is plenty wrong in being a Muslim, especially in this country. The Muslim ideology runs counter to all the ideals of the American culture.”Which “Muslim ideology”? Shiia, Sunni or Suffi? The pan-arabist, the pan-Islamist, the Islamizationist, the wahabbist – what?ctj Bush writesThat would only be because Christians cannot understand or tolorate other people’s religions. The fact is that to Muslims, Islam is part of the same religion as Christianity. Islam has traditionally tolorated Christian communities. Seems you’re the ignorant one!”The goal of both Islam and Christianity is that everybody should be either Muslim or Christian.”Wrong again.Truth Seeker writesI’ll bet my home you’ve never read the Quran. You don’t know what you’re talking about. Through most of the history of Islam communities or Christians and Jews were allowed to florish. My guess is the lines you are citing (probably incorrectly) are concerning the polytheists who were in control of Mecca while Muhammad was building his power in Medina. If you bothered to crack a book once in a while you’d know Islam considers itself an extension of Christianity and Muslims worldwide have no desire of need to convert Christians (as to them ITS THE SAME RELIGION).Islamaphobia v. Reality writes I certainly do. Where’s your evidence? Yeah, I didn’t think you had anything!”What it highly likely is that you are yet another brainwashed puppet sent to study in our schools and spread your propaganda that Islam is peaceful”Actually Islam is supposed to be peaceful. The Quran made the original rules of war (wars should only be fought in defense, no torture, no killing of civilians women or children, no forced conversions). Under Islamic rule, generally Jews and Christians could worship how they wished.”which smacks of Hitler’s propaganda just before launching an attack on Europe”Oh, don’t even go there. Nothing I love more than tearing holes into a historical ignoramous when if comes to WW2.”Japan sent an ambassador to negotiate during the Pearl Harbor attack. “As I thought you don’t know wtf you’re talking about.Dennis (lies) writesMany Muslims condemned the 911 attacks. Why don’t you google the question before making a fool of yourself?”does not get along with its neighbors.”Isreal and the USA have been invading countries a lot in the last 20 years. What countries have been invaded by countries with Islamic governments?”In England as well as Cananda Islam wants Shiria law”Quick question brainiac – which sect uses Sharia law? Yeah, I didn’t think you knew. You are an ignorant foolish person and a bigot.

  • Kert

    Can I ask how Powell gets away with rejected the policies that he helped to form? He was in Bush’s cabinet for 4 of the 8 years and was a huge part of the Iraq war. This seems to be his main criticism. It kind of seems like Powell is looking for Obama to win and just wants to be in his cabinet or other position. I’ve always felt Powell was a very competent individual and could be a candidate for president. I’m disappointed with this though. He should at least have some better answers for why he is rejecting policies he helped produce.

  • Don Pohlman

    Marcus Wilbanks:

  • Don Pohlman

    Marcus Wilbanks:

  • BlairSupporter

    How naive this article seems. I am a British citizen, and if I were American, in earlier elections I’d probably have voted Democrat. But not now, were I in a position to vote. The reason? I believe that many people ARE planning to vote for Obama BECAUSE he is black. Wrong reason.(I’ll come on to the religion issue later, and the question of his birth country.)Recently I listened to an American radio broadcast where Obama’s policies were replaced by McCain’s, and then people were asked about why they were voting for Obama.For instance, “Are you voting for Obama because of his policy of staying in Iraq and his policy against stem-cell research?””Yeah”, they all said. “I agree with him on that.”WRONG answers.They are voting for Obama for one reason only – his RACE. Or they are voting AGAINST the Republicans (which is the usual reason one party wins or loses anyway – people’s “anti” votes.)Only a small percentage of people (probably) are voting for Obama because he is likely to be seen by outsiders as having Muslim links and forebears.But this does not make that religious issue less relevant. In fact it makes it more important. It seems all Muslim countries WANT Obama as US president? WHY, since they know little about him as a politician? Race and/or expected empathy for Islam? Most probably. There are also issues around Obama’s birthplace and original, birth religion. Why he doesn’t answer those in one fell swoop and show his birth certificate is beyond me. McCain has shown his.So is Obama an eligible candidate, born in America. I simply don’t know. Do you? If he wasn’t, then you could also have Tony Blair as President! Now THAT would be something you could be proud of, people of faith and no faith. We know where HE stands.Right now there is a report of a young British/South African charity worker’s murder in Afghanistan. The Taliban says it is because she was a Christian. The head of the NGO concerned says he doesn’t accept that. Why not? He thinks it was an “opportunistic killing”. What does that mean? An opportunity to kill a Christian? Or a caucasian? Or a woman? Or what?Or an opportunity to send a message? What message?There needs to be less head-in-the-sand nonsense over this by those of us in the free liberal west who think others have the same approach to faith as we have. Whether they are in the huge minority or not, people who SAY they are ‘True Muslims’ are daily killing others.DAILY. Worldwide.And the moderate Muslims are compliant by their silence.As for Colin Powell – words escape me.

  • Kert

    Can I ask how Powell gets away with rejected the policies that he helped to form? He was in Bush’s cabinet for 4 of the 8 years and was a huge part of the Iraq war. This seems to be his main criticism. It kind of seems like Powell is looking for Obama to win and just wants to be in his cabinet or other position. I’ve always felt Powell was a very competent individual and could be a candidate for president. I’m disappointed with this though. He should at least have some better answers for why he is rejecting policies he helped produce.

  • Asghar SHAH

    I do thank General Powell for what he did their are more muslims in this world than all the klux klanish Republican party and thier fundamentalist evangicals put to gather in this world, these evangalicals have more in common with Al-Qeeda which may have have been a U.S. creation to begin with and has nothing to do with Islam as we know of it. Yes so what if he is a christain or a Jew ? General Powell is right we are all Americans, How ever one must remember it is muslim oil we use to heat our homes drive our cars and our economy, it is the Muslim Soveriegn funds that bail out Merrill Lynch and Citibank, and finally it is Muslim blood in millions that we have shed in Iraq And Afghanistan and not the other way around.

  • Philip T. early

    I am Muslim American and i must point out that will your article is good. I am diappointed that the only time that you see justice is when it is in the favor of Muslims. General Powell’s endorsement of Obama and denouncing Islamophobia was not the most important reason. This naive single minded view from mainly immigrant Muslims troubles me as a native American Muslim.Powell’s most important reason fro endorsing Obama was becuase it was the right thing for America and world. Please stop naval gazing and see justice outside of your narrow self interest.Racial profiling is racial profiling regardless who the victim is. Follow Powells lead and stand for justice outside of Islam and Muslim issues.

  • Kert

    Can I ask how Powell gets away with rejected the policies that he helped to form? He was in Bush’s cabinet for 4 of the 8 years and was a huge part of the Iraq war. This seems to be his main criticism. It kind of seems like Powell is looking for Obama to win and just wants to be in his cabinet or other position. I’ve always felt Powell was a very competent individual and could be a candidate for president. I’m disappointed with this though. He should at least have some better answers for why he is rejecting policies he helped produce.

  • rasheed manji

    i have to disagree with powell about muslims and islam. islam is NOT a religion of inclusiveness or tolerance. the koran itself instructs muslims to remain apart from those who are not muslim, it instructs muslims not to befriend non-muslims, it says jews are pigs, it says if a muslim man can’t afford a dowery then he can take a slave for a wife. islam believes ONLY in a theocracy – it is antithetical to democracy. it is our DUTY to oppose a practicing, belieing muslim as a leader of our democracy.

  • rasheed manji

    islam is antithetical to democracy. muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-muslims. the koran itself refers to jews as pigs. the koran says that if a muslim man can’t afford a dowery then he can take a slave for a wife. islam is neither inclusive nor tolerant. it has no place in our democracy.

  • rasheed manji

    islam is antithetical to democracy. muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-muslims. the koran itself refers to jews as pigs. the koran says that if a muslim man can’t afford a dowery then he can take a slave for a wife. islam is neither inclusive nor tolerant. it has no place in our democracy.

  • Will Stamps

    Our politicians need to wake up. Our nation is great only because in encompasses peoples of so many nationalities, races and religions. Unfortunately, there are those who would have us vote based upon our nationality, our race and our religion. It is time that our country takes pride in its diversification. We can not afford to single out a particular people and say that they are not “American”. So, America, I say to you, be proud of who you are. Revel at all of the differences that make you a great American. America needs EVERY ONE an American. Hooray for General Colin Powell – a truly great American.

  • rasheed manji

    Islam is antithetical to democracy. Muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-Muslims. The koran itself refers to Jews as pigs. The koran says that if a Muslim man can’t afford a dowery then he can take a slave for a wife. Islam is neither inclusive nor tolerant. It has no place in our democracy.

  • Philip

    I am an American Muslim and I can tell you that this was not the most important reason Powell endorsed Obama. The most important reason was becuase it was the right thing to do. Please see beyond your owe personal interest and join Colin in standing for justice for the sake of justice. After 911 many immigrant Muslim’s seem to have seen racial profiling for the first time ever!Look in the mirror and say what have I learned from this corageous man? How will I change my racial and ethnic views moving forward. Yes, I speaking directly to you my Muslim brother(s) and Sisters.

  • rasheed manji

    Islam is antithetical to democracy. Muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-Muslims. The koran itself refers to Jews as p i g s. The koran says that if a Muslim man can’t afford a dowery then he can take a slave for a wife. Islam is neither inclusive nor tolerant. It has no place in our democracy.

  • Rasheed Manji

    Islam is by its own definition antithetical to democracy. It has no place in our political culture.

  • Anonymous

    raheed manji (or is it Irshad?), you are a bloody idiot and clueless!

  • Will Stamps

    Our politicians need to wake up. Our nation is great only because in encompasses peoples of so many nationalities, races and religions.Unfortunately, there are those who would have us vote based upon our nationality, our race and our religion. It is time that our country takes pride in its diversification. We can not afford to single out a particular people and say that they are not “American”. So, America, I say to you, be proud of who you are. Revel at all of the differences that make you a great American. America needs EVERY ONE an American. Hooray for General Colin Powell, a truly great American among many. To Presidential candidate Obama, I say, “Embrace your heritage”. You have much to be proud of.

  • Truth Seeker18

    In response to Marc Edwards insinuation that my quote was not verifiable and that I don’t read books…please note!Marc, check your Koran for the quote.

  • Will Stamps

    Our politicians need to wake up. Our nation is great only because in encompasses peoples of so many nationalities, races and religions. Unfortunately, there are those who would have us vote based upon our nationality, our race and our religion. It is time that our country takes pride in its diversification. We can not afford to single out a particular people and say that they are not “American”. So, America, I say to you, be proud of who you are. Revel at all of the differences that make you a great American. America needs EVERY ONE an American. Hooray for General Colin Powell, a great American among many. To Presidential candidate Obama, I say, “Embrace your heritage”. You have much to be proud of.

  • Marc Edward

    rasheed manji writes Nope. The first successor to Muhammad was picked in a democratic fashion. In fact different Muslims movements embraced democracy as a reflection of the original Ummah in Medina.”muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-muslims.”I doubt that. Islam is an extension of Judism and Christianity (that’s how it sees itself) so your assertion seems doubtful. You got a citation? Didn’t think so!

  • Marc Edward

    rasheed manji writes Nope. The first successor to Muhammad was picked in a democratic fashion. In fact different Muslims movements embraced democracy as a reflection of the original Ummah in Medina.”muslims are taught by the koran not to befriend non-muslims.”I doubt that. Islam is an extension of Judism and Christianity (that’s how it sees itself) so your assertion seems doubtful. You got a citation? Didn’t think so!

  • Will Stamps

    Our politicians need to wake up. Our nation is great only because in encompasses peoples of so many nationalities, races and religions. Unfortunately, there are those who would have us vote based upon our nationality, our race and our religion. It is time that our country takes pride in its diversification. We can not afford to single out a particular people and say that they are not “American”. So, America, I say to you, be proud of who you are. Revel at all of the differences that make you a great American. America needs EVERY ONE an American. Hooray for General Colin Powell, a great American among many. To Presidential candidate Obama, I say, “Embrace your heritage”. You have much to be proud of.

  • Draesop

    Senator Obama has to deal with his being Black in America and aspiring to be President. It was wonderful of General Powell to step forward and identify the elephant in the room. It was done without equivocation and in a manner that even Joseph Six-Pack and Mrs Palin could understand. It may take some time for the Buchanan children and many other members of their group to fully grasp the relevence of Gen Powell’s Sunday morning sermon. Incidentally, it was also a cleansing time for General Powell whose lifelong contributions, in my opinion, had been irrevocably sullied by his close association with the Bush administration as they lied their way into the Iraqui occupation.

  • Will Stamps

    Our politicians need to wake up. Our nation is great only because in encompasses peoples of so many nationalities, races and religions. Unfortunately, there are those who would have us vote based upon our nationality, our race and our religion. It is time that our country takes pride in its diversification. We can not afford to single out a particular people and say that they are not “American”. So, America, I say to you, be proud of who you are. Revel at all of the differences that make you a great American. America needs EVERY ONE an American. Hooray for General Colin Powell, a great American among many. To Presidential candidate Obama, I say, “Embrace your heritage”. You have much to be proud of.

  • Draesop

    Senator Obama has to deal with his being Black in America and aspiring to be President. It was wonderful of General Powell to step forward and identify the elephant in the room. It was done without equivocation and in a manner that even Joseph Six-Pack and Mrs Palin could understand. It may take some time for the Buchanan children and many other members of their group to fully grasp the relevence of Gen Powell’s Sunday morning sermon. Incidentally, it was also a cleansing time for General Powell whose lifelong contributions, in my opinion, had been irrevocably sullied by his close association with the Bush administration as they lied their way into the Iraqi occupation.

  • Jodi

    One more test…

  • Tim

    I also think that if the international community shares in the feeling that we are NOT Islamophobic, the insurgencies we are currently fighting will lose a lot of support. It is because of things like Abu Ghraib and Guantanimo that puts us on the map, but ultimately it is the public’s underlying fears that allow places like Gitmo to stay open and events like Abu G’s participants to get off with some minor wrist slaps.

  • RTGreenwood

    Is it true that if you were once a Muslim and you convert to Christianity that Muslims will kill you? Didn’t that happen to a guy in Afghanistan?

  • rory

    Islamaphobia = Imaginary excuse for Muslims to avoid self-reflection and (ironically) change.

  • BlueTwo1

    Nineteen instances of a class of persons who call themselves Muslims successfully attacked the United States of America on 11 September 2001. Other members of the same class are none too pleased with certain unidentified acts of the United States of America and have pledged to damage Our Nation in the future. Should the acts and threats of a small fraction of a class automatically call into question all members of the class? Obviously not. But many people in this country want to generalize because Muslims are not particularly common or well-known (and therefore suspect) in the tractless deserts of humanity in small town America. Did you hear Obama is a Muslim? Well, you heard wrong. He is a Christian.

  • Koppo

    Why should Islam be a consideration? How big a landslide would it be if Kareem Abdul Jabar ran for mayor of Los Angeles?

  • Katie

    I believe that Islamophobia is a huge problem in this country. Most Americans don’t just fear and hate Radical Islam, but distrust and loathe all followers of the Islamic faith. And sadly, many Americans believe that radical Islam = Islam. There is so much hate and intolerance in this country when it comes to this issue. I have seen so much prejudice and misunderstanding, and just plain ignorance or laziness. I am a Catholic who spent 7 years in Catholic school, but I have been lucky enough to be repeatedly exposed and welcomed into participation in and education about the Muslim faith. I believe that someone who has taken the time and effort to truly understand Islam and give it a chance will see that it is a beautiful, peaceful, welcoming religion with generous, loving, diligent followers. I believe that our country, its people, and its government could learn something from the values espoused by Islam. The United States of America is a place of FREEDOM. “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Ring any bells? Religious tolerance is at the basis of our country. And personally, I say, if you don’t like it, you can get out.

  • Katie

    I believe that Islamophobia is a huge problem in this country. Most Americans don’t just fear and hate Radical Islam, but distrust and loathe all followers of the Islamic faith. And sadly, many Americans believe that radical Islam = Islam. There is so much hate and intolerance in this country when it comes to this issue. I have seen so much prejudice and misunderstanding, and just plain ignorance or laziness. I am a Catholic who spent 7 years in Catholic school, but I have been lucky enough to be repeatedly exposed and welcomed into participation in and education about the Muslim faith. I believe that someone who has taken the time and effort to truly understand Islam and give it a chance will see that it is a beautiful, peaceful, welcoming religion with generous, loving, diligent followers. I believe that our country, its people, and its government could learn something from the values espoused by Islam. The United States of America is a place of FREEDOM. “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Ring any bells? Religious tolerance is at the basis of our country. And personally, I say, if you don’t like it, you can get out.

  • Katie

    I believe that Islamophobia is a huge problem in this country. Most Americans don’t just fear and hate Radical Islam, but distrust and loathe all followers of the Islamic faith. And sadly, many Americans believe that radical Islam = Islam. There is so much hate and intolerance in this country when it comes to this issue. I have seen so much prejudice and misunderstanding, and just plain ignorance or laziness. I am a Catholic who spent 7 years in Catholic school, but I have been lucky enough to be repeatedly exposed and welcomed into participation in and education about the Muslim faith. I believe that someone who has taken the time and effort to truly understand Islam and give it a chance will see that it is a beautiful, peaceful, welcoming religion with generous, loving, diligent followers. I believe that our country, its people, and its government could learn something from the values espoused by Islam. The United States of America is a place of FREEDOM. “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Ring any bells? Religious tolerance is at the basis of our country. And personally, I say, if you don’t like it, you can get out.

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”

  • Anonymous

    According to a poll taken in March 18 of 2004 , of four mainly Muslim nations, , by the Pew Global Attitudes Project of the Pew Research Center, around 31% of Turks now support the radical movement of Osama bin Laden, while in Morocco it is 45%, and in Jordan it is 55%. Of particular concern, according to this poll, support for Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, one of Islam’s largest countries, has risen to 65% of the population, or roughly 80 million people, and this in a country which now possesses atomic weapons!Following the recent Iraqi war, and the atrocities uncovered in the Abu Ghraib prison, that figure has probably moved even higher; and this, in a strong Western environment, situated outside the traditional world of Islam.While not all Muslims are evil terrorists, we cannot neglect to take these fundamental features of Islam into consideration

  • JANESCHE

    Powell said he was troubled that some Republicans — he excluded McCain — continue to say or allow others to say that Obama is a Muslim, when he is a Christian. Such rhetoric is polarizing, he said.Following the recent Iraqi war, and the atrocities uncovered in the Abu Ghraib prison, that figure has probably moved even higher; and this, in a strong Western environment, situated outside the traditional world of Islam.While not all Muslims are evil terrorists, we cannot neglect to take these fundamental features of Islam into consideration

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”As a former Army officer, the Colin Powell I once respected, like McCain’s service which I also once respected, has no more meaning to me now than the contempt I have for Cheney, Rove, Rice and Georgie Jr.

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”As a former Army officer, the Colin Powell I once respected, like McCain’s service which I also once respected, has no more meaning to me now than the contempt I have for Cheney, Rove, Rice and Georgie Jr.

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”As a former Army officer, the Colin Powell I once respected, like McCain’s service which I also once respected, has no more meaning to me now than the contempt I have for Cheney, Rove, Rice and Georgie Jr.

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”As a former Army officer, the Colin Powell I once respected, like McCain’s service which I also once respected, has no more meaning to me now than the contempt I have for Cheney, Rove, Rice and Georgie Jr.

  • Roy

    Powell’s sell out to Cheney at the UN to justify the Christian Oil Crusades that had nothing to do with the 9/11 conspiracy was not only “Islamophobia” but also “Islamscapegoatia”As a former Army officer, the Colin Powell I once respected, like McCain’s service which I also once respected, has no more meaning to me now than the contempt I have for Cheney, Rove, Rice and Georgie Jr.

  • darin

    WELL, OBAMA AND POWELL ARE COMPLETELY DIFFERANT PEOPLE, AND THERE VIEWS– DONT YOU AGREE? WHY WOULD POWELL ENDORSE OBAMA? RACE MABE? DO YOU SEE THE BLACKS RUNNING TO THE POLLS ON CNN? MANY OF THEM WERE ASKED WHY ARE YOU VOTING FOR OBAMA-THEY HAD NO ANSWER-(BUT THEY KNOW HES BLACK)- WHOS RACIST HERE?– OBAMA DIDNT EVEN VISIT OUR WOUNDED TROOPS OVERSEAS, I CAN SEE WHY GEN POWELL WOULD ENDORSE SUCH A FINE GENTLEMAN- DONT YOU? IN FACT, POWELL IS NO DIFFERANT THAN ANY OTHER BLACK–THE RAW TRUTH– QUOTES FROM OBAMAS BOOK–quote- i will stand with the muslims should the politial winds shift in an ugly direction–THE AUDACITY OF HOPE — by obamai never emulate white men and brown men whose fates didnt speak to my own. It was into my fathers image, the black man, son of africa, that id packed all the attibutes i sought in myself, the attributes of martin, and malcolm, DuBois and madela..chilling stuff huh? sounds like good character for a new president of the united states of america huh? obama supporters, you need to clean the wax out of your ears and listen what your canidate is saying– A CLEAR RACIST BLACK MAN– wake up

  • Joel Miller

    Colin Powell’s diplomatic attack on Islamophobia is like standing up for the Jews in Germany around 1931. Bravo!

  • Joel Miller

    Colin Powell’s courageous and diplomatic stand against Islamophobia is the equivalent of standing up for Jews in Germany around 1931. Bravo, General Powell!

  • mbus

    All major religions call their adherents to some mighty high standards: love, purity, selflessness, etc. All of ‘em.If we’re judging a religion by its followers, they all fail, don’t they? Unless, of course, you believe yours to be the only true religion; in which case your failings don’t matter.Now that’s the religion I want to belong to: one where just by being a member, I don’t have to behave well!Salvation on a silver platter.

  • Kewlbob

    Colin Powell is an anachronistic puzzle! He has to go down as the most strange political figure in American history.

  • Kewlbob

    Powell rejects islamiphobia. So do I, however I also reject Islamifacism.

  • Vanessa

    This is one of the best opinion articles I have read about the election so far. Thank you so much!

  • Marine Corp Brat

    As far as Obama being a Muslim or racism or anything else is not as crucial as the fact that the Republicans have a right to have the questions answered and they are being denied that right. Because of that, you have the hostility and the ugly racism being spread around. But it goes on both sides, so don’t for one minute put it all on the Republicans. Obama could stop ALL of this by just ponying up his CERTIFIED birth certificate and a proper medical record, and his college paperwork all of which the American citizen has a right to request. But he doesn’t, so he must be hiding something right? Well that is the Republican view or he would just solve it by putting it to bed with the proper documents. The American public could handle a Muslim as leader of our country if there were not so many hidden secrets in a man that has less than 4 years of service and hasn’t even represented his senate seat for most of that time. Republicans want answers and nobody wants to give it to them and worst of all, it keeps getting covered up by all the slanted journalism. Sad day when you cannot get answers to your questions so you could make a better judgement call on who to vote for.

  • robin from la

    to Blairsupporter: First of all I am not voting for Barack Obama just because he is black and I am black. I would have never voted for Allen Keyes for senator of Illinois and guess what he was black. Secondly, Obama has shown his birth certificate he was born in Hawaii and the last time I checked Hawaii is a US state. It may be pretty and exotic but it is part of the stars that belong on the flag just like Alaska. OH and just a question do you know where Mccain was born? He actually was not born in the United States at all mr know it all. He was born in Panama. He was born on a military base in the Panama Canal Zone. The Panama Canal Zone is not represented on the flag anywhere.

  • Anonymous

    Dear Mr. Abed Z. Bhuyan,I do not Barack Obama is a muslim. Thanks for your opinions. Are you a US citizen? Have you signed up with selective service? If drafted, would you defend both the United States and Israel from muslim terrorists?A majority of muslims do not believe this? If they do, prove it.

  • Marvin Hulupla

    Dear Mr. Abed Z. Bhuyan,I do not Barack Obama is a muslim. Thanks for your opinions. Are you a US citizen? Have you signed up with selective service? If drafted, would you defend both the United States and Israel from muslim terrorists?A majority of muslims do not believe this? If they do, prove it.

  • Marvin Hulupka

    Dear Author,Are you a US Citizen? Have you signed up with the selective service? Have you or any member of your family ever served in combat role in the US military? If drafted would you defend the United States and Israel if ordered to do so.General Powell has 1st Amendment rights; he gets an “A” for political correctness. What percentage of the US Armed Forces is muslim? Citing a singular example to show the allegiance of millions of people is erroneous.All muslims are not terrorist, but 95% of all terrorists event since 1969 have been committed by muslims. We have read it and wept on 9/11/2001 We know the face of evil when we see it.

  • Marvin Hulupka

    Dear Author,Are you a US Citizen? Have you signed up with the selective service? Have you or any member of your family ever served in a combat role in the US military? If drafted would you defend the United States and Israel if ordered to do so.General Powell has 1st Amendment rights; he gets an “A” for political correctness. What percentage of the US Armed Forces is muslim? Citing a singular example to show the allegiance of millions of people is erroneous.All muslims are not terrorists, but 95% of all terrorists events since 1969 have been committed by muslims. We have read it and wept on 9/11/2001 We know the face of evil when we see it. General Powell is wrong.I know Obama is not a muslim; he is soft on Islamofacism. McCain knows he has a constitutional duty to protect this country. Maybe General Powell can explain this to Obama

  • copernicus

    As a scientist, I am unaware of any statistically significant evidence of there being any difference in the capability and intelligence of people of different races or ethnic background given equal opportunity and social support. That’s my take on the race / ethnicity issue. As for religion: I personally am an atheist and see no particular advantage to Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Shintoism, etc. Religions generally offer dogma (‘what one HAS to believe and adhere to’) in two areas: (1) theories about some of the great scientific issues: how did the world as we know it come about (the cosmos, the earth, the variety of living things, humans, etc) and (2) advice on how to live one’s life and relate to other humans, to other (non-human) creatures, to the environment, etc. As regards (1), science has unquestionably offered better theories, supported by convincing evidence (not dogma!), on most of these matters (e.g., Darwin’s account of evolution answers the question about the diversity of species) and this suggests that even the still unanswered questions (how did life emerge from a “soup” of inanimate chemicals) will eventually yield to a scientific account rather than an a priori dogmatic account. Nevertheless, I would say that scientists are used to there being adherents to theories different from theirs which offer answers to these classic and profound questions. Adherence to a different theory may provoke strong disputation and discussion but not, as a rule, persecution. (Okay, okay, there are notorious counterexamples but I think they are the exceptions.) As for (2) (how to live one’s life and to deal with one’s fellows, with the environment, etc.). I think there is wisdom to be found in many religions (esp. Hinduism = my personal opinion based on extensive experience and study). (I hasten to add: ethology and social psychology may eventually put some of the dogmas in this domain on a firm scientific basis — to give just one obvious example: all religions and most systems dictating behavior towards others give a special protected status to the young, the immature and otherwise helpless members of one’s own species; there is an obvious basis for this: if we didn’t give such protection, the next generation wouldn’t survive. We have only recently applied the same principle to the preservation of other species and the environment!) The upshot of this is that we should value the different recipes for living one’s life that the various religions offer and evaluate their merit. Conclusion: even atheists see some value in different religions and thus do not go out on pogroms, crusades, jihads, or campaigns to vote against (or for) specific political candidates based on their religious allegiance.Meta-conclusion: Obama-Biden (and, for that matter, Colin Powell) is better deserving of our allegiance and support than McCain-Palin.

  • DAVE from australia

    gee i am glad i dont live in the USA scary country I really hope Senator Obama wins the republicans are too right wing almost nazist

  • Archarito

    To the author:Technical note,When one connects to the blog through the main Wapo web page without posting a comment, one cannot see posts beyond about 1:30pm.

  • Archarito

    Your highly partisan pro-Islam censorship justifies and magnifies concerns about Islam Imperialism in America.

  • washpost

    As for Colin Powell, I just feel sorry for him – he was supporting the war and yet was not tough enough to stick it out. The Iraq people will always be grateful to this country but not for Powell who was coward when things got tough……and certainly never for Obama……who will never be respected for anything…..ok…ACORN and voter fraud……..ok….his PASTOR who hates this country….ok….his partner in radical education….AYERS…..ok……the guy that called him Messiah…..Farrakhan….or and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for all the money they gave him in 3 short years….and finally I am sure that leaders from IRAN and …VEnezuela….who are cheering him on….and think of that money they are donating to his campaign………

  • dkn9

    As for Colin Powell, I just feel sorry for him – he was supporting the war and yet was not tough enough to stick it out. The Iraq people will always be grateful to this country but not for Powell who was coward when things got tough……and certainly never for Obama……who will never be respected for anything…..ok…ACORN and voter fraud……..ok….his PASTOR who hates this country….ok….his partner in radical education….AYERS…..ok……the guy that called him Messiah…..Farrakhan….or and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for all the money they gave him in 3 short years….and finally I am sure that leaders from IRAN and …VEnezuela….who are cheering him on….and think of that money they are donating to his campaign………

  • dkn9

    As for Colin Powell, I just feel sorry for him – he was supporting the war and yet was not tough enough to stick it out. The Iraq people will always be grateful to this country but not for Powell who was coward when things got tough……and certainly never for Obama……who will never be respected for anything…..ok…ACORN and voter fraud……..ok….his PASTOR who hates this country….ok….his partner in radical education….AYERS…..ok……the guy that called him Messiah…..Farrakhan….or and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for all the money they gave him in 3 short years….and finally I am sure that leaders from IRAN and …VEnezuela….who are cheering him on….and think of that money they are donating to his campaign………

  • dkn9

    As for Colin Powell, I just feel sorry for him – he was supporting the war and yet was not tough enough to stick it out. The Iraq people will always be grateful to this country but not for Powell who was coward when things got tough……and certainly never for Obama……who will never be respected for anything…..ok…ACORN and voter fraud……..ok….his PASTOR who hates this country….ok….his partner in radical education….AYERS…..ok……the guy that called him Messiah…..Farrakhan….or and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for all the money they gave him in 3 short years….and finally I am sure that leaders from IRAN and …VEnezuela….who are cheering him on….and think of that money they are donating to his campaign………

  • Andrew

    There’s a reason why I’m not religious.”Religion is the politicization of faith”The to-and-fro dialogue I’ve just observed on this page unfortunately brings a tear. I’m turning to buddhism (and to anyone who dares and says, “but you just said you’re not religious”)…go pick up an Idiot’s Guide or something. It’s more a philosophy on life.

  • jfc1

    …dude, people in the “Heartland of America” don’t care what Colin Powell said. He’s black and might even be palling around with terrorists. Given that he’s a supposed Republican who supports a Democratic candidate for any office, he’s anti-American and probably a traitor to his country just like he’s a traitor to his party. They will dismiss him out of hand.

  • jfc1

    …dude, people in the “Heartland of America” don’t care what Colin Powell said. He’s black and might even be palling around with terrorists. Given that he’s a supposed Republican who supports a Democratic candidate for any office, he’s anti-American and probably a traitor to his country just like he’s a traitor to his party. They will dismiss him out of hand.

  • agramante

    Marc Edward. All that education and no sense. You can cherry-pick all kinds of horrific quotes from any book you please (including that once-banned-for-scatology, atheist drunk Joyce). Don’t parade your obviously worthless degrees in front of your mental superiors.Check the writings of Paul for plenty of misogynistic and at times racist statements. Peruse Apocalypse for all kinds of horrific treatments of those who don’t believe in the Truth. Or look all over the Old Testament for detailed accounts of the horrors the (later) Christian God visits on those he perceives to slight him.If you read Joyce but don’t understand the first subtlety of human concepts of divinity, you shouldn’t have graduated at all, fool.

  • Agramante

    Christianity has its share of ugly faces too, including hatred of women (peruse the writings of Paul), and a pretty murderous outlook for those who aren’t chosen (take a glance through Apocalypse). The fact is, you can find horrific statements in just about any religion you want to, and blow it up to a ridiculous generalization.Why does the Muslim world hate and fear references to the “Crusades”, after all? Will Christians try to claim they weren’t Christian efforts?If you’re sowing the seeds of hatred by looking for signs of it in others, then you deserve what’s coming to you.

  • Anonymous

    There seems to be the perception among the happily ill informed far right that what Al-Qaeda, and Taliban do is in line with islamic teaching. So than i suppose actions of KKK are values of American and Christian values? Ofcourse not. The irony of all this is that traditionally and currently Taliban and Al-Qaeda have been supported by more than anyone in line with the Saudi kingdoms Wahabbi idealogy and financing. And who is Americas biggest arab-muslim ally? Yes the Saudis. Maybe Bush should have considered taking democracy to the worlds most oppressed state. Anyhow I congratulate Powells comments, as late as they are and hope more democratics and republican(as unlikely as it may be) denounce such anti islamic rhetoric. As for Americans whom would like to believe islam is in the actions of Taliban etc, I as a muslim must say I see the same sense of eyes in the faces of Bush, Rumsfield, Palin, Mccain as I do on the faces of the leaders of Al-qeada, and the Taliban. The eyes of the devil amongst people.

  • baz

    I apologise for posting it so many times it kept saying error not posted so I assumed it didnt. Sorry fellow readers.

  • Katie

    I believe that Islamophobia is a huge problem in this country. Most Americans don’t just fear and hate Radical Islam, but distrust and loathe all followers of the Islamic faith. And sadly, many Americans believe that radical Islam = Islam. There is so much hate and intolerance in this country when it comes to this issue. I have seen so much prejudice and misunderstanding, and just plain ignorance or laziness. I am a Catholic who spent 7 years in Catholic school, but I have been lucky enough to be repeatedly exposed and welcomed into participation in and education about the Muslim faith. I believe that someone who has taken the time and effort to truly understand Islam and give it a chance will see that it is a beautiful, peaceful, welcoming religion with generous, loving, diligent followers. I believe that our country, its people, and its government could learn something from the values espoused by Islam. The United States of America is a place of FREEDOM. “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Ring any bells? Religious tolerance is at the basis of our country. And personally, I say, if you don’t like it, you can get out.

  • Muslim’s burden – not Obama’s

    Let’s stay on message here, ladies and gentlemen. The issue Abed is posing is: why didn’t Obama go one step further in replying to whether he was a Muslim or not by saying “does it matter?”The answer is because that’s not his place. Obama has overcome a *lot* to get to this point, and he still has a long way to go. He doesn’t need to take up the burden of this issue.Abed: you know who needs to take up this issue of “does it matter” if one is a Muslim? Yes, you and Muslims like you.Because right now, in the world, it totally matters whether you belong to a group that prescribes to an ideology subjugating 50% of the species (women), relegates 1/6th of non-Muslim humanity to 2nd class status (legally), and most importantly, defends itself at all costs rather than face the realities of Islamic extremism. Don’t ask Obama to reform your image. Reform yourself and the world will accept and respect you.

  • Muslim’s burden – not Obama’s

    Let’s stay on message here, ladies and gentlemen. The issue Abed is posing is: why didn’t Obama go one step further in replying to whether he was a Muslim or not by saying “does it matter?”The answer is because that’s not his place. Obama has overcome a *lot* to get to this point, and he still has a long way to go. He doesn’t need to take up the burden of this issue.Abed: you know who needs to take up this issue of “does it matter” if one is a Muslim? Yes, you and Muslims like you.Because right now, in the world, it totally matters whether you belong to a group that prescribes to an ideology subjugating 50% of the species (women), relegates 1/6th of non-Muslim humanity to 2nd class status (legally), and most importantly, defends itself at all costs rather than face the realities of Islamic extremism. Don’t ask Obama to reform your image. Reform yourself and the world will accept and respect you.

  • Countryman

    There is no doubt, it is obvious that attacks on WTC were home made. Only blind people(or sheeple) can continue spreading lies about mythical muslims’ conspiracy against America. If so many evidences and facts could not refute false beliefs,then nothing can do that. Bush and his administration are responsible for killing thousands of Americans and hundred of thousands of the Iraqis and the Afghans. No one can diny it. It says more than any words.

  • rohit

    “In a moment that would have made Tim Russert proud, Secretary Powell firmly renounced the divisiveness that has been perpetuated by his own party.”I do not see this at all. After 9-11, Bush has steadfastly refused to demonize Islam. At a meeting where one woman accused Obama of being a terrorist and called him an Arab, McCain defended Obama. I know many many American Muslims who have been running ordinary lives in the seven years since 9-11. One of them just asked me two days ago to write a letter for her promotion. Considering what happened on 9-11, America’s reaction, and also the Republican party’s reaction has been relatively mild towards domestic Muslims. Stop being hyper-sensitive.To be sure, there has been an excessively aggressive stance in foreign policy. But that aggressiveness in foreign policy has been shared by all three, Clinton, McCain and Obama. It was Clinton who said that she would “obliterate” Iran if it attacked Israel.

  • rohit

    “In a moment that would have made Tim Russert proud, Secretary Powell firmly renounced the divisiveness that has been perpetuated by his own party.” I don’t see this at all. Since 9-11, Bush has steadfastly refused to demonize Islam. Recently when one woman at a McCain meeting suggested that Obama was a terrorist and called him an Arab, McCain defended Obama. I know many many American Muslims who are living quiet and productive lives.It is true that AMerica’s foriegn policy has been rather aggressive, but that aggressiveness is shared by both parties. It was Hillary Clinton who said that she would “obliterate” Iran if it dared to attack Israel.

  • BigglesR

    I’m SO glad that CP said that. I’ve just expressed a similar sentiment on another site in that I find it very strange and sad that calling someone a Muslim or Arab is intended as an insult. I thought one of the major beacons of US democracy was that it tolerated all faiths & all races, and by example they expected and tried to get the rest of the world to do similar. The fact that neither Palin or McCain seem to explain that concept to their supporters speaks volumes about their politics. (Example: Woman At McCain Rally :”He’s an Arab” McCain: “No Ma’am, he’s a decent man”… the response seems to indicate being an Arab means your not decent) As for shouting the word ‘Socialist’ if you don’t agree 100% with the Republican mantra – Plain absurd. I’m afraid suggesting modifying a free market economy so that it doesn’t run riot , looking at how you can provide a saftey net for those who have hit hard times, or considering injecting some cash into important things – such as education, does not make anyone a rabid communist.

  • BigglesR

    I’m SO glad that CP said that. I just expressed a similar sentiment on another site in that I find it very strange and sad that calling someone a Muslim or Arab is intended as an insult. I thought one of the major beacons of US democracy was that it tolerated all faiths & all races, and by example they expected and tried to get the rest of the world to do similar. The fact that neither Palin or McCain seem to explain that concept to their supporters speaks volumes about their humanity. (Example: Woman At McCain Rally :”He’s an Arab” McCain: “No Ma’am, he’s a decent man”… the response seems to indicate being an Arab means your not decent) As for shouting the word ‘Socialist’ if you don’t agree 100% with the Republican mantra – Plain absurd. I’m afraid suggesting modifying a free market economy so that it doesn’t run riot , looking at how you can provide a saftey net for those who have hit hard times, or considering injecting some cash into important things – such as education, does not make anyone a rabid communist.

  • Asim, San Antonio

    Inadevertantly posted under anonymous.But my comments are no were to be seen now!!!!!!”General Powel is a true American Statesman.”My second comment was about higlighting Arab/Muslims’ substantional contributions human civilization-ALSO Disapppered!!!!!! WHY??????

  • Robert

    Mr. Bhuyan,First of all, Islamophobia does not exist. Fear of Islam is not a phobia, it is entirely rational and sensible. Just take a look around. Secondly, what “blatant bigotry” against Muslims? In the USA? You are inventing that. The American people have been fully tolerant towards our Muslim fellow-citizens. Better than any of us would get in any Muslim country, that’s for sure. Just look at how many mosques are going up around the country. Finally, instead of whining about supposed anti-Muslim bigotry, how about taking a forthright stand against Islamofascism.

  • JD

    RE: Obama saying he is not Muslim. I don’t think that inherently implies that he thinks there is something wrong with being Muslim. He is just clarifying that it is not his religion.

  • JD

    I do believe Powell’s endorsement of Obama is extremely valuable. It demonstrates that independent thought and values trump politics as usual.