Such a hue and cry has gone up about the President besmirching Christians by mentioning the Crusades as evidence that Muslims are not the only religion that resorts to violence. You would think that the President had committed a crime, given the rancor that his words have evoked.
Well, he did liken the Crusades to terrorism didn’t he? We all know that the Crusades could not have been terrorism. After all there was such a thing as The Children’s Crusade and all of us know that children cannot be terrorists, don’t we? Maybe we should have asked some of the kids whose lives we’ve blasted away with our drones if they were terrorists.
The problem with the President’s reaching back to the Middle Ages to find an example of a bloody Christian legacy, is that he was being polite not to mention more recent atrocities. A brief 51 years ago, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Swerner were killed and bulldozed beneath an earthen dam near Philadelphia, Mississippi, with the complicity of the Klan, the County Sheriff and the Philadelphia police. Now I have very little doubt, especially since one of the Klan’s emblems is a cross, that a majority of those guilty of that terrorism considered themselves Christian.
The recent report by the Equal Justice Initiative reveals that more than 4,000 blacks, men, women and children, were lynched/murdered in the 100 or so years between Reconstruction and the 1950s, in our southern States. That figure didn’t include the three Civil Rights workers mentioned above, two of whom were white, by the way. The President’s time-line is a bit off.
You don’t think those lynchings/murders were terrorism? To what other purpose were these heinous acts being put? It was to make sure “owa nigras know they place.” You can ‘google’ photos of the crowds that gathered around trees and gallows to witness these acts of terror. Take a look at the men, arms-folded in satisfaction, grinning up at the mutilated corpses; look carefully at their pinafore-clad teen and pre-teen girls grinning in … , what, certainly not horror! If the lynchings took place on a Saturday, I’d wager good money that most of those crowds showed up at a Methodist or Baptist Church in their towns the next morning. I’d also bet they did not come with repentance on their minds.
When they did show up for worship, they probably sang a rousing ‘Onward Christian Soldiers.’