Americans United for Separation of Church and State today criticized TV preacher Pat Robertson for a virulent attack on Islam.
On the live version of his “700 Club” program today, Robertson charged that Islam is not a religion of peace, that Muslims are demonic and satanic and that they are trying to take over the world.
Said Robertson, “These people are crazed fanatics and I want to say it now: I believe it’s motivated by demonic power, it is satanic and it’s time we recognize what we’re dealing with…. The goal of Islam, ladies and gentlemen, whether you like it or not, is world domination.” He insisted that “Islam is not a religion of peace.”
In the version of the show posted on the Internet, the offensive remarks were deleted.
The Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director, said the attempt to erase the comments was too little, too late.
“At a time when inter-religious tensions around the world are at an all-time high, Robertson seems determined to throw gasoline on the fire,” said Lynn. “His comments are grossly irresponsible. Robertson seems to be wrestling with demons of his own, namely intolerance and bigotry. To condemn an entire religion because of the behavior of some is deplorable.
“It is certainly appropriate that Robertson has removed the offensive comments from the Internet version of the show,” Lynn added. “However, it is imperative that he issue an immediate and unequivocal apology, because millions of viewers have already heard the inflammatory remarks. When will Robertson ever learn to think before he speaks?”
Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.