Evidence of a disturbing lack of knowledge about Islam with at least one GOP candidate for president. Others, sadly, show the same ignorance.
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When speaking about radical Islamic terrorism at a campaign stop Friday, Gov. Scott Walker noted that there are a “handful of reasonable and moderate followers of Islam.”
His comments at a VFW Post in Derry, New Hampshire, triggered a quick response from a Muslim advocacy organization, which called on him to apologize.
“These types of inaccurate statements reflect a lack of understanding of Islam and Muslims that is, frankly, not presidential,” said Robert McCaw, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). “If Mr. Walker believes only a ‘handful’ of Muslims are moderate or reasonable, then he is ignoring the very clear reality that violent extremists murder more Muslims than they do people of any other faith.”
When asked Saturday if Walker had misspoken, campaign spokeswoman AshLee Strong said the Wisconsin governor knows that most Muslims are peaceful.
“The Governor knows that the majority of ISIS’s victims are Muslims. Muslims who want to live in peace – the majority of Muslims – are the first target of radical Islamic terrorists,” Strong said in a statement.
Strong did not say whether Walker planned to apologize.
The council has criticized Walker previously. In July, it called on Walker to cut ties with Kevin Hermening, a former Iran hostage. In the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Hermening called for wiping out the capitals of seven heavily Muslim countries if they didn’t support American efforts to kill Osama bin Laden, and for the deportation of undocumented immigrants, especially those of Middle Eastern descent.