The Election and Muslim America

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

We're joined by Eboo Patel, founder and executive director or the Interfaith Youth Core, who discusses Muslim America and how it will affect the president election.


Eboo Patel

Comments [37]

guy catelli from downtown manhattan

how electable would be a candidate named, say, Barack Mussolini Obama, Barack Gotti Obama, or Barack Corleone Obama?

Jul. 10 2008 01:55 AM
megan from Park Slope

"Sally Forth" --- please tone down down on your Israel & Jew-hating posts.


Jul. 09 2008 03:16 PM
hjs from 11211

JIM, Denis who ? and Ron Paul? who are they never heard of them.....

Jul. 09 2008 03:09 PM
jim fouratt from west village

I agree with AB about bias .. I brought up homophobia because it is the least mentioned and/or dismissed in the problems with federal funding of religious institutions .. and one that Obama, who I am still supporting because my litmus is the Supreme Court and judicial appointees, never initiates this discussion and tries to avoid any mention of gay and lesbian issues unless he has no way to avoid it .. he could have and still can learn from both Denis Kucinich and even Ron Paul that speaking truth to power and to the people is NOT avoiding controversial issues.

When any institution, faith-based or not, treats equally people in need than they are respecting the American way of life.

Jul. 09 2008 11:46 AM
Tom from Soho

Listening to WNYC in the past and hearing interviews about polygamy in the Bronx from Muslim immigrants seems to work against some of the statements of Eboo Patel and his vision for the acceptance of Muslims in America. When is it OK for Muslims in the US to adhere to Sharia law and other religious customs that work against the concept of our laws and constitution? Why should they not be grouped with other religious movements that are contrary to the American customs and law? Should we have to tolerate the hatred that was being preached from some Brooklyn and Jersey City mosques before 9/11?

Jul. 09 2008 11:41 AM
Dave from NYC

People who ask other people to condemn or otherwise react to dastardly deeds by their co-religionists reveal their own childish inclination to lump people together. It seems as if, in their insecurity, they need to be constantly reassured about a group they don't understand of that they fear.

We did not demand that Baptist preachers or Presbyterian ministers condemn sexual abuse of children by clergy merely because other Christian clergy (Catholic ones) were found engaging in the practice. We did not associate all Christians with the abuse because a few committed it, nor did we fear or despise all Christians because of it.

No more should we demand that Muslims constantly satisfy our seemingly endless need to know that not all Muslims plant bombs or commit honor killings. We should already know that such practices are abhorrent to most Muslims. If we don't know it already, we should do our own homework and not ask smart Muslims to take time out of their busy schedules to reassure us at every possible turn.

Jul. 09 2008 11:39 AM
eric from brooklyn

to say that this country won't vote someone with the middle name hussien is a harsh realistic point of view.

there has been ONE catholic president, other than that they have all been white protestant. period. liberman president? no chance. obama? i hope to god, but i doubt my reality...

Jul. 09 2008 11:31 AM
Jon P. from Hewitt, NJ

To #8 and all that say Islam should be out raged about anything related to their religion, where’s all the Catholic Church goers outrage on child sex abuse that’s been going on for decades and continues to go on right now? There’s a heck of a lot more Catholics in this country then Muslims. Funny, I don’t here any outrage from Catholics and their very serious ongoing scandal. Holding Muslims accountable for something someone did that’s Muslim is a weak argument and just a racist view hidden in fear….

Jul. 09 2008 11:31 AM

I Concur # 4!

'Post Modern'- or again 'cowardly'. He wants the delegates to take a more affirmative and inclusive stance to Islam, and yet is afraid to speak about racism that affects us all.

Jul. 09 2008 11:26 AM

Lame indeed and absurd as was his excuse about apology and new yorkers.

New Yorkers who kill New Yorkers don't make claims about it being BECAUSE they they are New Yorkers.

Jul. 09 2008 11:26 AM


He would have to add "as far as I know" to get that Clintonian flavor

Jul. 09 2008 11:25 AM


When a faith based organization is biased against anyone they should not get tax payer's money

Jul. 09 2008 11:23 AM
Mike from Brooklyn

Why not have McCain come out and say "I'm sure Barrack Obama doesn't beat his wife."

Jul. 09 2008 11:23 AM
Sarah from Bklyn

What does "Separation of Church & State" mean in all of this? I for instance don't get why "In God We Trust" is on currency, and "God bless America" is part of any governing America's vernacular.

Jul. 09 2008 11:23 AM
thatgirlinnewyork from manhattan

agree wholeheartedly with the first caller that obama should not have looked to overshadow the muslim rumours about him by talking up additional "faith-based initiatives". the government had no business supporting faith-based social programs beyond the tax breaks traditionally afforded them during bush's reign.

it's all so much twisting in the wind, and obama seemed to be above it. why pander to religious extremists? if he truly believes that the government support social programs, then they should be offered above and beyond religion, as has been prescribed by the founding fathers.

Jul. 09 2008 11:23 AM


Couldn't agree more.

Jul. 09 2008 11:22 AM
jim fouratt from west village

When a faith base insitituion is homophobic they should not get tax payers money form the gov

Jul. 09 2008 11:22 AM

His answer about speaking out against honor killings was cowardly and lame. What a cop out

Jul. 09 2008 11:20 AM
Sally Forth from Soho

If people talked this way about Jews or Israelis it would be called anti-Semitism.


Jul. 09 2008 11:19 AM
Jon from Bronx, NY

Just wanted to thank you and your guest for working towards an intelligent and nuanced view of religion at a time of (as far as I see it) increasingly anti-religious attitudes in our society (i.e. the Four Horsemen).

I am an Orthodox Jew and am hopeful that we can work towards true religious tolerance in our great country.

Jul. 09 2008 11:19 AM
Mr. C from Jersey City

What happened to the separation of church and state? Leave religion out of politics and focus on the real issues. Silly America acting like a five-year-old.

Jul. 09 2008 11:19 AM
Mike from Brooklyn

If you're shocked that people are uncomfortable voting for a muslim for President of the US, I almost feel sorry for you. It's one thing to think it's a sad state of affairs, but to expect anything else at this point is a sign of being completely tone-deaf to political reality, if not human nature.

Jul. 09 2008 11:19 AM
Mickey Bitsko from Downtown Manhattan

Interesting viewpoint, but Mr. Patel mentioned that the U.S. is the "most observant nation in the West." He should visit Mexico some time.

By the by, I'm an athiest and could care less about the role of religion in society, and will happily vote for a candidate who agrees with Darwin, and that there's a need for a lot more education in the sciences.

Jul. 09 2008 11:18 AM
David from Manhattan

I agree with this caller. Politicians on the national level ignore Americans who don't believe in an invisible man up in the sky.

To the guest: The history of Islam is not "venerable" as you said (nor is that of any religion). The legacy of organized religion on this planet is one of violence, terror, and hatred.

Jul. 09 2008 11:18 AM
Bo from Brooklyn - Prospect Heights

A history of tolerance in the United States? Native Americans and Mormons might have another point of view. Original colonies regularly persecuted non-conforming religionists.

Religion is the problem as long as it is allowed into the public discourse of government. Period.

Jul. 09 2008 11:17 AM
michael winslow from INWOOD

Actually the only religion not tolerated in this country is not belonging to one.

Look at the armed forces and the prayers before missions.

Also the law suit by a member of the armed forces who was shunned because he was an atheist.

Jul. 09 2008 11:16 AM

Thanks Steve,
How about embracing the existence of atheits and agnostics in our midst?
It's bigotry that atheism is a political kiss of death.

Jul. 09 2008 11:16 AM
Andrea Sandvig from NYC

An honor killing just a day ago makes it hard to understand why no Muslim groups have come out screaming that this is unacceptable. It makes Islam suspicious...just as the Polygamist Mormons are suspicious.I want both candidates to make strong statements about faith.

Jul. 09 2008 11:15 AM

People are shockingly uneducated about civics. I heard many things over the past few months that indicated to me that many people in this country simply do not understand that adherence to Christianity is not a legal requirement for the Presidency.

Jul. 09 2008 11:15 AM
Sally Forth from Soho

George Bush the media and AIPAC are mostly responsible for this anti-Muslim bigotry in this country. It was virtually non-existent before 9/11 and afterwards Bush used this as tool to draw a divide.

It's disgusting.

Jul. 09 2008 11:15 AM
Stan from New Jersey

Thank you for discussing the issues rather than irrelevant distractions.

None of the various clergy persons defamed by some in the media are running for President.

Neither Presidential candidate is running for God.

Senator Obama is running for President of the United States of America, not of the NAACP or Urban League.

Senator McCain is running for President of the United States of America, not of the White Citizens Council or Skinheads.

Please continue your responsible use of the media.

Jul. 09 2008 11:14 AM
Robert from NYC

Eboo Patel is absolutely correct about how Obama handled the Muslim situation.

Jul. 09 2008 11:14 AM
Bill from New York, NY

Too "postmodern"? How is it postmodern?

I thought it was a good question.

Jul. 09 2008 11:14 AM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

I think atheism should be a requirement for public office - look how much it's helped us having a religious nutjob in the White House for the past 8 years. Bush has actually said his god told him to attack Iraq. A shame his god didn't tell him to get us some health care and rebuild the infrastructure instead. Like George Carlin said - belief in an invisible man in the sky is bad for you.

Jul. 09 2008 11:12 AM
Robert from NYC

Mr.Patel is absolutely got it right.

Jul. 09 2008 11:10 AM
Jocko Homo Devo from Smart Patrol, NY


I wanted to let you know that I enjoy listening to your show everyday and you are the best. Thank you this great show.

Keep up the good work.

Jul. 09 2008 11:08 AM
Jocko Homo Devo from Smart Patrol, NY

Religion shouldn't be a factor in choosing a President. We should be looking at the person's stand on issues like the economy, war and international affairs.

Jul. 09 2008 10:56 AM

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