I've been seeing an unhealthy number of people claiming that the country's tolerance towards Islam worsened since the Bush years.
This is, to put it mildly, insane.
During Bush's tenure as President, the country launched two wars against overwhelmingly Muslim nations. The Republican party exploited the public's limited understanding of differences within the Muslim world to draw bogus connections between Al Qaeda and Iraq both for political gain and to enact truly disastrous policies. Andrew Sullivan was writing about whether Democrats were a fifth column. And no one seemed to mind.
The latest nonsense isn't worse, only different. That George Bush managed to saying nice things about religious pluralism doesn't eliminate the rank xenophobia of the mid-Aughts.
Ann Coulter was still popular enough to get on TV all the time, and she of course said that we should go over there, kill all their leaders and convert them to Christianity.
Bush called our Worldwide Global War on Global Worldwide Terrorism a "crusade." One of our top-ranked generals in Iraq said that "our god is stronger than their god" to his troops.
My pastor at the time organized church members to hang out in shifts at a local dry cleaners/laundromat owned by people of Middle Eastern descent because of the harassment they were receiving.
There's a difference between George W. Bush personally talking about monkey gods and ragheads, and George W. Bush doing a damn thing to keep his fellow right-wing psychotics in check. Well done for pointing this out. I hope the people pushing this - Josh Marshall in particular - wake up and stop letting their memories get so foggy.
Considering the heartless pragmatism of the George W Bush gang, all this "nostalgia" is probably a result of cleverly placed paid PR organizations working on his legacy.
It is ignorant that people thing converting those of other religions to Christianity would create world peace. I mean the Christians are so good at peace on the world stage.
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