Saturday, April 28, 2007

Muslim or Not? Obama's Convoluted Past...

Since it's a good chance Barack Hussein Obama may be the Democratic nominee, here is a good article to get familiar with his Muslim heritage and upbringing...


Reports about Obama's Muslim parentage and education have circulated in the news. While Sen. Obama has not personally addressed them, his press office has done so vigorously on his behalf. Along with CNN [1] , Obama's spokespeople address the public's interest in more information about Obama's connection with Islam as if there was nothing to discuss, and no need of further exploration. Responding to an Insight Magazine article [2] earlier this year contending that Obama was once enrolled in a madrassa, and charging that he "has not been forthcoming about his Muslim heritage," the Obama press office released a statement [3] in response to "these malicious and irresponsible charges."

"To be clear," the statement read, "Senator Obama has never been a Muslim, was not raised a Muslim, and is a committed Christian who attends the United Church of Christ in Chicago." As the former assertions seemed odd, if not untruthful to many observers, some in the media continued to examine Obama's upbringing. A friendly but detailed report [4] in The Los Angeles Times last month confirmed that Obama was registered as a Muslim at both the Roman Catholic school and the public school he attended in Indonesia during his youth.

In response to this article, Obama's press office adjusted their story. According to the Times, the statement now said, "รข€˜Obama has never been a practicing Muslim,' but as a child he had spent time in the neighborhood's Islamic center." In his autobiography, Dreams From My Father, Obama mentions his "Koranic studies" at the Indonesian public school, which he describes as "a Muslim school." In his newest book, The Audacity of Hope, Obama describes it as "a predominantly Muslim school," but says little else. That it was not a madrassa but a "Muslim school" only raises the question of how to draw the line between one and the other

Obama's father, Barack Hussein Obama Sr., was a Kenyan Muslim who was divorced from his mother when junior was two years old. "Although my father had been raised a Muslim, by the time he met my mother he was a confirmed atheist...," writes Obama in The Audacity of Hope. Later his mother married Lolo Soetoro, who was also a Muslim. According to a statement [3] from Obama's press office, however, "Senator Obama was raised in a secular household in Indonesia by his stepfather and mother."

Read the rest..

Side note about the United Church of Christ, they recently announced they are dropping any references to God as "him" and will refrain from using the word "lord"...

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