Evangelist Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham, opted to jump directly into the conversation about President Obama‘s religion following this week’s Pew poll that revealed the country is increasingly confused about whether Obama is a Muslim. Graham, possibly taking some cues from Jerry Falwell in the inflammatory department, told CNN’s John King on Friday that he believes Obama, who only met his father once (who was a “confirmed atheist” at the time of his birth), was in fact born a Muslim:
“I think the president’s problem is that he was born a Muslim, his father was a Muslim. The seed of Islam is passed through the father like the seed of Judaism is passed through the mother. He was born a Muslim, his father gave him an Islamic name.”
King followed this tenuous declaration up yesterday by inviting Stephen Prother, a Professor of Religion at Boston University (who, I have to say, was not the most inspiring person I’ve ever heard speak on this topic) on the show to explain whether there was any truth to this theory.
Said Prothero: “This is part of why Americans are confused about the situation here is because we have people who are supposed to be responsible public leaders like Franklin Graham who are spreading what seems to me like a sort of disinformation campaign.” Additionally, why are people listening to an explanation of Islam from Christian evangelist Franklin Graham: “These are simplistic soundbites.” Prothero went on to say Americans are functionally illiterate about most religions including Christianity….and the conversation about Islam that is happening now is “at below a kindergarten level.” And doesn’t look to be elevated anytime soon. You can watch below.
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