The nation’s largest Muslim group is inviting President Barack Obama to visit an American mosque, enthusiastically embracing the president’s controversial comments at the National Prayer Breakfast this week comparing past Christian misdeeds to the Islamic State.
“We thank President Obama for clearly separating the brutal actions of ISIS from the faith of Islam and for reminding us all that violence and injustice are not part of any faith,” said Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations, in a statement Friday. “We invite the president to show public support for American Muslims by making the symbolic but significant gesture of visiting an American mosque in this time of growing Islamophobia.”
At the prayer breakfast in Washington, Obama described the Islamic State as “a brutal, vicious death cult,” but went on to call out past misdeeds done in the name of Christianity.
“Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,” Obama said. “In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”
Obama met with 15 Muslim leaders at the White House Wednesday, but the White House has not yet released the names, only that they were “American Muslim leaders.”