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President Obama to visit Baltimore mosque

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  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    The Baltimore Sun, January 30, 2016: Obama to visit Baltimore County mosque

    President Barack Obama will visit a mosque in Baltimore County on Wednesday amid growing concern about hostility directed toward Muslim Americans. It will be Obama's first visit to an American mosque as president.

    Obama will deliver remarks at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, located in Catonsville, and will meet with community members there to discuss religious freedom, White House officials said Saturday.

    "The president believes that one of our nation's greatest strengths is our rich diversity," White House spokesman Keith Maley said. "As the president has said, Muslim Americans are our friends, and neighbors; our co-workers, and sports heroes — and our men and women in uniform defending our country."

    President Obama of course is right to visit a mosque now with Islamophobia on the rise, but many Democrats oppose his visit because of the politics. Republicans, on the other hand, support it for the politics. That may seem the opposite of what one would expect, but for Republicans, it helps cement the false view that Obama is a secret Muslim. Polls show that 45 percent of Republicans believe he is Muslim. It will be political fodder for them, and they are already salivating at the trough.

    Is President Obama making a political mistake by visiting the mosque?

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    The Baltimore Sun, January 30, 2016: Obama to visit Baltimore County mosque

    President Barack Obama will visit a mosque in Baltimore County on Wednesday amid growing concern about hostility directed toward Muslim Americans. It will be Obama's first visit to an American mosque as president.

    Obama will deliver remarks at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, located in Catonsville, and will meet with community members there to discuss religious freedom, White House officials said Saturday.

    "The president believes that one of our nation's greatest strengths is our rich diversity," White House spokesman Keith Maley said. "As the president has said, Muslim Americans are our friends, and neighbors; our co-workers, and sports heroes — and our men and women in uniform defending our country."

    President Obama of course is right to visit a mosque now with Islamophobia on the rise, but many Democrats oppose his visit because of the politics. Republicans, on the other hand, support it for the politics. That may seem the opposite of what one would expect, but for Republicans, it helps cement the false view that Obama is a secret Muslim. Polls show that 45 percent of Republicans believe he is Muslim. It will be political fodder for them, and they are already salivating at the trough.

    Is President Obama making a political mistake by visiting the mosque?

    I think considering the present situation it will make the "evangelicals" even more fanatic. Like I said many times the Constitution says "separation between church and state" so why involve "religion" into governing. It is time we get an "atheist" president who governs without having to resort to "bandaids" to satisfy snake oil salesmen.
  • Independent
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    The Baltimore Sun, January 30, 2016: Obama to visit Baltimore County mosque

    President Barack Obama will visit a mosque in Baltimore County on Wednesday amid growing concern about hostility directed toward Muslim Americans. It will be Obama's first visit to an American mosque as president.

    Obama will deliver remarks at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, located in Catonsville, and will meet with community members there to discuss religious freedom, White House officials said Saturday.

    "The president believes that one of our nation's greatest strengths is our rich diversity," White House spokesman Keith Maley said. "As the president has said, Muslim Americans are our friends, and neighbors; our co-workers, and sports heroes — and our men and women in uniform defending our country."

    President Obama of course is right to visit a mosque now with Islamophobia on the rise, but many Democrats oppose his visit because of the politics. Republicans, on the other hand, support it for the politics. That may seem the opposite of what one would expect, but for Republicans, it helps cement the false view that Obama is a secret Muslim. Polls show that 45 percent of Republicans believe he is Muslim. It will be political fodder for them, and they are already salivating at the trough.

    Is President Obama making a political mistake by visiting the mosque?

    in my eyes? no. in the eyes of the xenophobic, christianist right? yes.
  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Dutch -- Yes I might agree with you ideologically, but politically it is probably something that needs to be done as a symbolic nature. There are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world, of which a relatively small percentage (6 million) live in the United States. The 6 million, by the way, is similar to the Jewish population in America. Obama has visited synagogues in Washington DC, Dallas and Stockholm, so why not a mosque?

    President Obama is right to ignore the right wing extremists who sincerely believe he is a Muslim. Furthermore, his visit sends the right message to Islamic countries to counter anti-Islamic vile coming out of Trump's mouth that is receiving so much publicity worldwide. America's values are not Trump values.

    Dutch as a final point, you well know that we can never elect an atheist for president...at least one that is open about his/her beliefs. In American politics, atheists rank below Muslims on the likeability scale.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    Dutch -- Yes I might agree with you ideologically, but politically it is probably something that needs to be done as a symbolic nature. There are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world, of which a relatively small percentage (6 million) live in the United States. The 6 million, by the way, is similar to the Jewish population in America. Obama has visited synagogues in Washington DC, Dallas and Stockholm, so why not a mosque?

    President Obama is right to ignore the right wing extremists who sincerely believe he is a Muslim. Furthermore, his visit sends the right message to Islamic countries to counter anti-Islamic vile coming out of Trump's mouth that is receiving so much publicity worldwide. America's values are not Trump values.

    Dutch as a final point, you well know that we can never elect an atheist for president...at least one that is open about his/her beliefs. In American politics, atheists rank below Muslims on the likeability scale.

    Sure, I agree with your vision and I know I'm not likeable, because I tell the truth and accept facts as they are and I don't like snake oil salesmen; rather have some Chardonnay. Yes I know the majority here loves to be fooled by fantasy.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Schmidt Wrote: President Obama is right to ignore the right wing extremists who sincerely believe he is a Muslim. Furthermore, his visit sends the right message to Islamic countries to counter anti-Islamic vile coming out of Trump's mouth that is receiving so much publicity worldwide. America's values are not Trump values.

    I agree. I'm really glad President Obama is going to visit a Mosque. I wish he did it seven years ago, but understand why he couldn't.

    What frustrates me to no end is that our Constitution explicitly prohibits barring someone who worships a certain religion from participating in our democracy, but Republicans genuinely seem to have forgotten that fact. I just wish the Republican Party would allow people to believe or not believe in whatever they want.

    I follow the true definition of atheism, which is that I don't believe in God. It doesn't matter to me who or what someone else worships because I genuinely don't believe that it's my business to tell someone what they should believe in. I've never tried to convert a religious person to atheism and I politely inform anyone proselytizing to me that they may as well move on.

    Schmidt Wrote: Dutch as a final point, you well know that we can never elect an atheist for president...at least one that is open about his/her beliefs. In American politics, atheists rank below Muslims on the likeability scale.

    I don't know if I'm too sure about that. "Nones" are rapidly rising in America and now consist of 23% of the voting population. This number is only expected to rise because 35% of millennials classify themselves as "nones." Non religious people are also the largest single "religious" group among Democrats.

    If these numbers are accurate then we will potentially elect a "none" as President in my lifetime. It may take a few more decades, but my generation is the least religious generation our country has ever seen and I don't see that changing for future generations.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Jared, he problem is as you see in the present elections that the "evangelicals' have become more and more entrenched and fanatic than ever. So even an figure like Trump likes to "buy" them by showing a moldy "bible". I keep saying this is against Constitutional rules, which clearly states "separation between church and State". Right now these rules are totally ignored. In Iowa the preachers were fully involved in the caucus as was shown on TV.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: Jared, he problem is as you see in the present elections that the "evangelicals' have become more and more entrenched and fanatic than ever. So even an figure like Trump likes to "buy" them by showing a moldy "bible".

    People scream the loudest when they realize no one is listening. Church attendance is at an all time low not just in America, but in all of the Western world. The number of people who say they believe in God is also at an all time low. Evangelicals are having a hissy fit because they lost and are sore losers.

    Why in the world are you upset that Trump is pandering to Evangelicals? I say give him a bigger bullhorn. 13.1% of Americans are Evangelicals; 23% of Americans are "nones." We nones should donate as many moldy Bibles as we can to the Trump campaign because if Trump is the nominee then the Democrats can nominate Barney the Dinosaur and still win in November.

    Dutch Wrote: I keep saying this is against Constitutional rules, which clearly states "separation between church and State". Right now these rules are totally ignored. In Iowa the preachers were fully involved in the caucus as was shown on TV.

    The Constitution actually says no such thing.

    Thomas Jefferson wrote in his letter to the Danbury Baptist Association that the Constitution "build[s] a wall of separation between Church & State." The 1st Amendment states that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

    The 1st Amendment both prohibits the Government from discriminating against any religion and allows anyone, including politicians and clergy, to speak their minds freely. Iowa preachers had every right to be fully involved in the caucuses. As did Iowa Rabbis, Imams, and leaders of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The 1st Amendment allows all of that. That's what makes it so great. Freedom of speech does not mean Freedom from speech.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:
    Dutch Wrote: Jared, he problem is as you see in the present elections that the "evangelicals' have become more and more entrenched and fanatic than ever. So even an figure like Trump likes to "buy" them by showing a moldy "bible".

    People scream the loudest when they realize no one is listening. Church attendance is at an all time low not just in America, but in all of the Western world. The number of people who say they believe in God is also at an all time low. Evangelicals are having a hissy fit because they lost and are sore losers.

    Why in the world are you upset that Trump is pandering to Evangelicals? I say give him a bigger bullhorn. 13.1% of Americans are Evangelicals; 23% of Americans are "nones." We nones should donate as many moldy Bibles as we can to the Trump campaign because if Trump is the nominee then the Democrats can nominate Barney the Dinosaur and still win in November.

    Dutch Wrote: I keep saying this is against Constitutional rules, which clearly states "separation between church and State". Right now these rules are totally ignored. In Iowa the preachers were fully involved in the caucus as was shown on TV.

    The Constitution actually says no such thing.

    Thomas Jefferson wrote in his letter to the Danbury Baptist Association that the Constitution "build[s] a wall of separation between Church & State." The 1st Amendment states that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

    The 1st Amendment both prohibits the Government from discriminating against any religion and allows anyone, including politicians and clergy, to speak their minds freely. Iowa preachers had every right to be fully involved in the caucuses. As did Iowa Rabbis, Imams, and leaders of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The 1st Amendment allows all of that. That's what makes it so great. Freedom of speech does not mean Freedom from speech.

    So Jared where does the statement " separation" of "church" and State" comes from, if it is not law; I did not invent it.
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    You're not Muslim or American...... You're Muslim and American. Pres. Barack Obama
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: So Jared where does the statement " separation" of "church" and State" comes from, if it is not law; I did not invent it.

    I told you--it was from Thomas Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptist Association that he wrote in 1802.

    Here is the letter in full:

    To messers. Nehemiah Dodge, Ephraim Robbins, & Stephen S. Nelson, a committee of the Danbury Baptist association in the state of Connecticut.

    Gentlemen

    The affectionate sentiments of esteem and approbation which you are so good as to express towards me, on behalf of the Danbury Baptist association, give me the highest satisfaction. my duties dictate a faithful and zealous pursuit of the interests of my constituents, & in proportion as they are persuaded of my fidelity to those duties, the discharge of them becomes more and more pleasing.

    Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

    I reciprocate your kind prayers for the protection & blessing of the common father and creator of man, and tender you for yourselves & your religious association, assurances of my high respect & esteem.

    Th Jefferson
    Jan. 1. 1802.

    Note the bold lettering.

    Look--I'm not disagreeing with you. I think Trumps actions are batshit crazy, but I'm also a firm believer in free speech and our Constitution. He has the right to say whatever crazy thing he wants, just as long as he doesn't scream "fire!" in a crowded theater.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    TJ Wrote: You're not Muslim or American...... You're Muslim and American. Pres. Barack Obama

    Thanks for getting us back on topic, TJ. The White House just posted his entire speech. I encourage everyone to watch it.