Running for president of the United States undoubtedly provides candidates with a unique platform to present ideas, influence change, and express ideas. Donald Trump’s candidacy, however absurd, has even sparked plenty of support because he addresses issues others are afraid to say, according to some. However, Trump has also been met with major criticism and Republican candidate Ben Carson is following in very similar footsteps, if not already miles ahead of him.
The retired neurosurgeon told NBC’s Meet The Press that he completely disagreed with electing a Muslim to run the United States of America because the Islam faith “is inconsistent with the values and principles of the Constitution,” which calls into question why a person’s faith should be a determining factor in becoming president. The comment comes after a member of a Donald Trump rally called President Obama a Muslim, claiming that Muslims were a problem in this country. Trump responded to the comment on CNN’s State Of The Union calling “radical Muslims” an issue, not quite defending Obama, but let’s keep things in perspective.
Carson, who is a devout Christian, went on to say that it depends on who the Muslim is, and “if their life has been consistent with things that will elevate this nation and make it possible for everybody to succeed and bring peace and harmony, then I’m with them.” But, couldn’t the same be said about Christians?
Muslim and Minnesota Democratic representative Keith Ellison was appalled by Carson’s sentiment, saying that for him or any Republican candidate for that matter, “to suggest that someone of any faith is unfit for office is out of touch with who we are as a people…every American should be disturbed that these rational figures are engaging in and tolerating blatant acts of religious bigotry,” even calling Carson’s comments a form of fear mongering.
And Ellison was not the only one with something to say. Fellow GOP candidate Lindsey Graham tweeted that Carson is “not ready to be Commander-in-Chief. America is an idea, not owned by a particular religion.” He also tweeted that Carson needs to apologize for his comments. Meanwhile, the Council on American-Islamic values is preparing to ask for Carson’s withdrawal from the race.
On the other hand, some strongly agree with Carson’s claim, including political activist Pamela Geller, who said in reference to Barack Obama, “He claims he is a Christian, but his father and his stepfather were Muslims and he was raised in a Muslim country. He went to an Islamic school and excelled in Qur’an classes while growing up in Jakarta,” writing that it would be dangerous to elect a Muslim president on her website.
Geller’s statement is alarming on so many levels and the point of the matter here is that it’s ridiculous that this argument is even being had in the year 2015. I’m with the majority. Ben Carson needs to apologize for his ignorant statements and needs to take a long look in the mirror to analyze whether or not HE is someone who makes it possible to bring peace and harmony to the nation, because right now he is doing everything but that.