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What's important for America

Reader comment on item: Confirmed: Barack Obama Practiced Islam

Submitted by Rosemarie (United States), Aug 2, 2008 at 19:54

The relevant question is, ‘What has Barack, or any adult, done or said to help other people, American society, and the world grow and move in more positive directions?'

In America, neither the circumstances of our birth nor our actions as children dictate who or what we are as adults. Freedom of religion is fundamental to our society. As a child, Barack may have occasionally prayed in a mosque with his father and perhaps has studied the Muslim religion. Many children and adults have visited mosques (and perhaps prayed in them) and many have been exposed to Islam (e.g., in the context of Old Testament bible studies or studies of comparative religion). Such actions do NOT make Barack or anyone else a Muslim, at least not in the U.S.

In America then, we can look to the Koran, what a person says about what he/she believes, or, preferably, to the actions of each adult to determine who is a Muslim. (The fourth option, looking into a person's heart, is reserved for God (Allah)).
--According to the Koran, ALL mankind is born Muslim and each of us has (before birth) acknowledged that Allah is our Creator and the only true God. After we are born, some of us follow the true faith (Islam, according to the Koran), others follow other religious teachings (e.g., Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism), and still others deny the existence of a Creator or simply don't care.
--Barack professes that he is a Christian. Obviously, not everyone believes him.
--If we examine a person's actions (which is typical in the Christian faith), Barack or any ‘good' Muslim must (1) profess his/her faith, (2) pray in the proper way at five specific times each day, (3) give to the poor, (4) fast during the month of Ramadan, and (5) travel to Mecca.

We can't know what's in Barack's heart (e.g., in whose name he gives to charities), but given the amount of scrutiny he's under, we surely would know if he's praying at the five specified times each day and we will certainly know if he fasts during the month of Ramadan (all of September in 2008).

In the meantime, as voters, we should focus on the candidates' positions on important issues, their voting records and their history of service to America. That's the privilege and the responsibility of each American.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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