Common Word, Common Lord

Common Word, Common Lord

A Very Telling Gaffe

In the Name of the God, the Compassionate and Infinitely Merciful

A gaffe by a Rick Santorum staffer says a lot. Speaking to MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on Monday, spokeswoman Alice Stewart said:

There is a type of theological secularism when it comes to the global warmists in this country. That’s what he was referring to. He was referring to the president’s policies in terms of the radical Islamic policies the president has.

She quickly called MSNBC after the segment and said she misspoke, actually meaning “radical environmental policies.”

Ohhhh, I see! She meant environmental rather than Islamic.


This makes me wonder about a couple of things: first, does the spokeswoman’s slip mean that – deep down – she thinks that President Obama really is a “secret Muslim”? And second, is the association between “radical” and “Islamic” so ingrained, so natural, that it can easily slip out of one’s tongue? In either case, it makes me very sad.

It makes me very sad that still, in 2012, associating President Obama with Islam is used as a smear. It recently happened at a Rick Santorum campaign event, in fact, and Senator Santorum did not correct the person making the assertion. This is wrong. It is wrong to try to smear someone by wrongly accusing them of being Muslim (or Jewish, or Christian, or any other religious faith). We should have better respect for religious faith and choice than that.


It is equally sad that the association between “radical” and “Islamic,” it seems, has indeed become so natural. Yes, the Muslim worldwide community has its radical elements: but so does every other religious community. Yes, extremists who called themselves Muslims attacked the country on 9/11: but so did extremists who were Christians in 1995 in Oklahoma City. Yes, there are Muslims who have been caught plotting terrorist attacks, but as a recent study shows, their numbers are dwindling and the threat from American Muslims has been exaggerated.

I wish religion and religious faith would be taken out of politics and the Presidential campaign. Whatever religion we choose to profess: Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Mormonism, or no “-ism” at all, it should not matter. That is a personal choice, and we must all have respect for each other’s personal religious beliefs. That is what makes our country so wonderful: that we can live and work with people of all faiths in peace, harmony, and brotherhood.

It is the way that the Lord wanted us to live on earth, and so let us work to make His desire a reality.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Rev. George E. Blair III

    Barack Hussein Obama’s mother was a Christian, grandmother was a Christian and great-grandmother was a Christian. He was born into a Christian/Muslim home. So what. Being born in a garage does not make you an automobile.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Haime52

    A person’s religion should be a deep part of who that person is. It informs their view of the world and its state. That being said, it should not intrude into legislative realms or an attempt be made, even a little bit, to make it executive policy. That is slope we all should fear. A world without it would be a terible place, a world with it married to government would be one too.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Susan Weiss

    Consider this: Barach Hussein Obama’s father was a Muslim, his grandfather was a Muslim and his great-grandfather was a Muslim.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment william spires

    It is also very telling that the author of this article is so hung up on whether someone thinks obama is a muslim. The real important point is that Islam and muslims are not interested in keeping their religion out of government and want a Theocratic government.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Steve Burby

    Rick Santorum and indeed all of the Republican candidates in this election cycle have proven themselves unfit–even incapable–of governing this nation, which is made great by its tolerance and diversity. Until everyone sees religion as a path to personal insight and understanding, as opposed to a tool to force one’s will upon others, and around which a secular polity can be created which supports the best in all of us, religious intolerance will dominate the public conversation. The Republican party is continuing its downward slide toward demagoguery and irrelevance. Its influence is disproportionate to its competence.

  • Pete A.

    I think you said this very said, and I agree with you. Only hope more people will come to feel this way!

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Mattie Morrison

    Exceptional facts pointed out on this topic!

  • Gordon C. Stewart

    The Santorum comments (his own and his spokesperson)are demaguery.I have a piece on religion and politics (Santorum’s criticism of the President’s statement at the national Prayer Breakfast) on the blog called “I’m so sorry!” ( There is another piece on the site called “Religion and Politics” that speaks more directly to your comment about keeping religion out of politics. We all need to think about this very long and hard.

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