A Catholic bishop sat on a stage with a Muslim Brotherhood-linked imam and implored Catholics not to join their fellow Americans who engage in “the scourge of anti-Islamic prejudice” and “bigotry.”
San Diego Bishop Robert W. McElroy made the statement during a recent interfaith conference while alongside Sayyid Sayeed, a leader of the Islamic Society of North America, or ISNA.
“We are witnessing in the United States a new nativism, which the American Catholic community must reject and label for the religious bigotry which it is,” the bishop said Feb. 17 at the University of San Diego’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice.
The event was part of the first national Catholic-Muslim dialogue held at the university.
ISNA, which represented U.S. Muslims at the conference, is a front for the Muslim Brotherhood, as documented in court records filed during the Holy Land Foundation terror-financing trial of 2008 in Dallas. The Brotherhood is considered an extreme Islamist organization by many countries including Egypt, where it was founded in the 1920s.
Brotherhood identifies ‘enemies of all faiths’
Sayyid Syeed, director of ISNA’s Office for Interfaith and Community Alliances, spoke glowingly of new bridges being built between the world’s various faith communities.
“This is the shape of a new millennium of alliance-building for common values of mutual respect and recognition,” Syeed said. “All faiths are striving to promote those divine values enshrined in our sacred texts and scriptures, so that those who exploit them for reinforcing hate, extremism, violence and instability are identified as the enemies of all faiths.”
Bishop McElroy said U.S. Catholics should reject the “repeated falsehoods” that Islam is inherently violent, that Muslims seek to supplant the U.S. Constitution with Shariah law, and that Muslim immigration threatens “the cultural identity of the American people,” reported the Catholic News Service.
Such claims, he said, smack of the anti-Catholic bigotry that was once prevalent in the United States.
But author and activist Robert Spencer, a Catholic who is critical of Islam’s holy book, the Quran, says the bishop’s analysis is flawed.
“No Catholics were committing acts of terrorism and justifying them by pointing to Catholic texts and teachings,” Spencer says. “There was no global Catholic terrorist movement boasting about how it would by and by destroy the United States.”
McElroy’s comments should not come as a shock given his position as a member of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops – one of five faith-based groups that contract with the U.S. government to resettle thousands of Islamic refugees from Syria, Iraq, Somalia and other Muslim countries in the U.S. every year. The Catholic bishops will resettle 30 percent of the 85,000 foreign refugees President Obama has pledged to bring to the U.S. this year, and the government will pay them $1,950 per head for their services.
John Guandolo, a former FBI agent who specializes in counter-terrorism training, said the good bishop is playing right into the hands of the Islamists.
“The Bishop — whether he knows it or not — is imposing the Islamic Law of Slander on his flock,” Guandolo wrote in a blog titled “Truth: It’s the new hate speech.”
The bishop’s denunciation of “bigotry” should not be seen as a denial of the reality of Islamic terrorism, according to the Catholic News Service.
“I want to underscore that it is not bigotry to fear or to combat the violence and terror which some Muslims in the world have unleashed in the name of faith,” he explained, while adding the caveat that some Christians have also attempted to use their faith to justify acts of violence.
Drawing moral equivalency between Islam and Christianity is a favorite tactic of the left, but it doesn’t hold up to historical scrutiny, says Spencer.
“So apparently if you think that Islam is inherently violent, you’re not only wrong, but you’re a bigot,” Spencer wrote in his blog, JihadWatch.
While the bishop paints a picture of Islam as a religion of peace in which only a tiny minority of imams preach violence against “infidels,” this is simply not true, according to Spencer.
To avoid bigotry, in the bishop’s eyes, “you have to ignore or deny the readily demonstrable fact that the Quran exhorts believers to violence, and that all mainstream Islamic sects and schools of Islamic jurisprudence teach that the Muslim community has a responsibility to wage war against and subjugate unbelievers,” Spencer writes.
“You’re also a bigot, in McElroy’s view, of you believe that ‘Muslims seek to supplant the U.S. Constitution with Sharia law.’ If you believe only some Muslims seek to do that, are you only a partial bigot? McElroy didn’t say.”
The Brotherhood’s plan for ‘grand jihad’
The Muslim Brotherhood strategy for domination of America is spelled out in an internal document seized by the FBI after the Sept. 11 attacks. The so-called “Explanatory Memorandum” refers to a process of “settlement” or non-violent “civilization jihad” in which Islam gradually replaces all other religions through immigration, non-assimilation and political agitation. This process is described as “a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”
That’s a direct quote from “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America,” by Mohamed Akram, May 19, 1991.
“So while decrying as bigotry the idea that Muslims are seeking to supplant the Constitution with Sharia, McElroy was speaking alongside a representative of an organization linked to efforts to do exactly that,” Spencer writes. “Ah, the wonderful ironies of ‘interfaith dialogue.'”
Bishop McElroy also said you’re a bigot if you believe Muslim immigration threatens “the cultural identity of the American people.”
He didn’t mention that his organization, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, receives tens of millions in U.S. taxpayer dollars annually to relocate Muslims from the Middle East and Africa to the United States.
“He did not explain how the introduction into the country of massive numbers of people with no cultural or theological traditions of freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and equality of rights for women could not end up threatening the cultural identity of the American people,” Spencer writes. “He didn’t have to explain: as far as he is concerned, these propositions are dogmas to be taken on faith, not assertions to be evaluated on the basis of evidence.”
Bishops help Brotherhood stamp out ‘Islamophobia’
WND reported earlier this week that the Council for American-Islamic Relations, another front for the Muslim Brotherhood, has launched a campaign to stamp out “Islamophobia” in America.
In that article WND quoted former Muslim imam and son of a Muslim Brotherhood operative, Dr. Mark Christian, saying the term “Islamophobia” was an invention of the Brotherhood. The label is a way of creating fear among non-Muslims, essentially banning all speech critical of Islam, which is one of the main tenets of Shariah law. Neither Muslims nor non-Muslims are allowed free speech under Shariah when it comes to criticizing Islam or its prophet.
Dr. Christian, who lives under a fatwa (death threat) after leaving Islam in his native Egypt, said Christians should be taking the exact opposite approach to Islam. They should speak out about the Quran’s incitement of violence and its requirement that women be subjugated.
“I believe uniting together to fight the dangers of Islam will eliminate terrorism and end Islamophobia both at the same time,” said Christian, founder of the Global Faith Institute. “The word Islamophobia itself is a reflection of a very deep-seated Islamic intolerance and an absolute rejection of the freedom of speech.”
WND has previously reported that Omar Ahmad, one of the co-founders of CAIR, stated in 1998 that Islam’s ultimate goal was to become the dominant religion in America, not to be one faith among “equals.” Ahmad tried to deny he ever made those comments but the California newspaper that reported his remarks refused to back down from its story.
The 1998 Argus article, also published in the sister San Ramon Valley Herald, paraphrased Ahmad saying: “Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant,” and, “The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.”
Current CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper also indicated in a 1993 interview with the Minneapolis Star Tribune that he wants to see the U.S. become a Muslim country.
“I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future,” Hooper told the paper. “But I’m not going to do anything violent to promote that. I’m going to do it through education.”
Following the way of Europe?
Unless the Brotherhood’s goal of banning speech deemed “anti-Islamic” or “Islamophobic” is reversed, America will end up in the same place that many Europeans find themselves in today, Christian said.
In Britain, for example, speakers such as Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller are barred from entering the country. A petition to ban Donald Trump has gained 400,000 signatures. Yet, Islamic preachers of jihad, such as Anjem Choudary, openly spread their message of hate across the U.K.
At the same time, Christian preachers who speak critically of Islam can be arrested and charged with hate crimes. That’s exactly what happened to pastor Michael Overd when he made remarks over loudspeakers in Taunton, Somerset.
Overd, 50, was fined £200 and ordered to pay compensation and costs totaling £1,200 at Bristol Crown Court.
He was cleared of a second similar charge and another of causing “racially aggravated” harassment aimed at Muslims.
“What race is Islam again?” asks Spencer. “I keep forgetting.”
Sentencing judge Shamim Qureshi told Overd he “knew full well the power of words to hurt.”
After being told he would have to pay restitution to his victim, Overd initially refused but was threatened with a 45-day prison sentence if he did not.
Similar cases are piling up across Europe.
Last week a man in Scotland was arrested for a Facebook post disparaging Muslim refugees in Scotland.
This week a Dutch man was arrested for wearing a pig hat because it was deemed by police as being potentially insulting to Muslims (who were nowhere around).