ADL Letter to Christian Broadcasting Network

Pat Robertson

The Christian Broadcasting Network

June 2, 2011

Dear Mr. Robertson:

We were deeply disturbed by your remarks on the May 31 edition of The 700 Club concerning Muslims in Europe and America following a segment on the growing construction of mosques on the European Continent.  You asked the question, why is it bigoted if one speaks out “against an institution that is intent on dominating us and imposing Sharia law and making us all part of a universal Caliphate?  That is the goal of some of these people.  Why is that bigoted?  Why is it bigoted to resist Adolf Hitler and the Nazis and to say that we don’t want to live under Nazi Germany?”

Your statements here were troubling on several levels.  For one, the suggestion that Muslims who, as you put it, “come into Europe and build their mosques” and “come into America and set up their schools and madrassas” are doing so in an effort to “exercise domination over the world” is a false notion based on hateful stereotypes of Islam.  While you did qualify your statement with “some of these people,” you then pre-empted it with a series of generalizations.  In fact, many if not most Muslims in Europe and in America immigrated to find a better life for themselves and to freely practice their faith.  Sure, there is a minority of Muslims with extreme views. But the overwhelming majority of Muslims rejects these views and wants little more than the ability to practice their faith openly and freely and to be accepted as contributing members of society.  It is wrong to paint all Muslims with such a broad brush, or to portray all Muslims as extremists as you have done here.

Second, the notion that Islam is something that needs to be opposed in the same manner as people resisted Adolf Hitler and the Nazis is outrageous and offensive.  Nazism was a racist and genocidal political movement unlike any other in history, responsible for the massacre of six million Jews and millions of others in the Holocaust.  One simply cannot and should not lump Muslims into the same category as Hitler.

So in response to your question about why is it bigoted for people to “oppose Muslims,” to me the answer is clear:  It is bigoted when one assumes the worst about an entire faith based on the beliefs of a few; it is bigoted to paint all Muslims (or for that matter, Christians or Jews) with the broadest of brushes when in fact you are talking about a many-faceted and culturally diverse belief system; it is bigoted to suggest that the Islamic faith has nefarious and sinister plans to take over majority Christian nations when this is false at its core.  Sadly, the answer to your question may be found within your own statements, which I believe should be categorically rejected by all reasonable people.


Abraham H. Foxman
National Director

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