The establishment media became upset this weekend after President Donald Trump canceled the “White House Muslim Iftar Dinner tradition started by Thomas Jefferson.” But the media is wrong in every respect. Thomas Jefferson never held any Iftar dinner and only three out of 45 presidents ever hosted one, so there is no such “tradition” to cancel.
Amy B. Wang of the Washington Post led the pack with this nonsense that Thomas Jefferson held the “first Iftar dinner” with a June 24 piece entitled, “Trump just ended a long tradition of celebrating Ramadan at the White House.”
The often-used claim that Thomas Jefferson held the first Iftar dinner at the White House was trotted out by the Post’s Wang. She recounted the time when the diplomatic envoy from the Bey of Tunis, Sidi Soliman Melli Melli, visited Washington during Ramadan in 1805.
Jefferson invited the envoy to the White House for dinner at 3:30 PM—the time most Washingtonians had dinner in those days. But after he sent the invitation he was told that Melli Melli could not partake of a meal until after sunset because of Ramadan. Thomas Jefferson was faced with two choices: cancel the dinner entirely or simply have the meal later in the evening at a time when his guest could attend. As a good host and a decent person, Jefferson chose the latter.
In fact, all Jefferson did was change the time of his meal. He had no intention of honoring Islam. Jefferson simply was not honoring the religion of “the Musselmen”—as he termed Muslims at the time—when he changed the time of the meal. Also, there is no evidence that Jefferson asked Melli Melli what sort of food a “Musselman” would eat, so no special food was prepared to suit a Muslim’s religious needs. Jefferson neither inquired about religious accommodations nor was any made. All he did was move the time of the meal as a courtesy.
Further, Jefferson sent no letters containing proclamations about the meal being an Iftar dinner nor mentioning Islam, he never mentioned such honors in his private papers, and there is no record that he spoke to anyone about his intentions to honor the Muslim practice of an Iftar dinner.
Of course he didn’t. In fact, it might be instructive to have a look at how his contemporaries and colleagues viewed Islam:
In her ahistorical article, Wang also quotes John Quincy Adams who expressed “with an air of fascination” his dinner with the Tunisian envoy, but quotes Adams without also noting that the president thought Islam was a terrible and brutal creed.
What Adams thought about Islam is instructive. For instance, he described Islam as a religion of hate in a piece he wrote in the late 1820s:
The natural hatred of the Mussulmen towards the infidels is in just accordance with the precepts of the Koran…The fundamental doctrine of the Christian religion is the extirpation of hatred from the human heart. It forbids the exercise of it, even towards enemies…In the 7th century of the Christian era, a wandering Arab..spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth…He declared undistinguishing and exterminating war as a part of his religion…The essence of his doctrine was violence and lust, to exalt the brutal over the spiritual part of human nature.
Other prominent Americans at the time also disparaged Islam.
The father of American jurisprudence, Justice Joseph Story, throughly slammed Islam:
Mahomet aimed to establish his pretensions to divine authority, by the power of the sword and the terrors of his government; while he carefully avoided any attempts at miracles in the presence of his followers, and all pretences to foretell things to come. His acknowledging the divine mission of Moses and Christ confirms their authority as far as his influence will go while their doctrines entirely destroy all his pretensions to the like authority…And now, where is the comparison between the supposed prophet of Mecca, and the Son of God; or with what propriety ought they to be named together?…The difference between these characters is so great, that the facts need not be further applied.
Other founders agreed. Both Ben Franklin and John Quincy’s famed father, John Adams, criticized Islam as a doctrine of war, not a religion.
And they were right about that, too. There are many, many more such quotes from the Founders, plenty of them a lot harsher than these, plenty of which I’ve posted here over the years. But hey, as Reagan said: it’s not that liberals don’t know anything. It’s that so much of what they “know” isn’t so.
And speaking of insidious lies:
Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, of the “Ground Zero mosque”, once again wrote a deeply inaccurate article reprimanding Americans for their supposedly “right-wing caricature” of Islamic law, sharia, which he insists is not a threat to American law. In his recent article “The silly American fear of sharia law”, he denied that sharia is incompatible with US laws and the constitution. Oh, really?
Imam Rauf tries to blame sharia’s amputation and stoning on Biblical Law:
“Sharia is not about amputations and stoning. These extreme punishments carry over from earlier, biblical law” and “Within the history of Islam, they have rarely occurred. What Islamic law does prescribe are the same do’s [sic] and don’ts of the Ten Commandments.”
Imam Rauf’s article is, to say the least, misleading — especially regarding the Ten Commandments. Sharia is not only incompatible with Western legal system but is the direct opposite of Western values; it has violated all ten of the Ten Commandments.
Islam was created 600 years after Christianity not to affirm the Bible, but to discredit it; not to co-exist with “the people of the book” — Jews and Christians — but to replace them. It is hard to read Islamic law books without concluding that Islamic values are essentially “a rebellion against the Ten Commandments.”
The American people are not at all silly for opposing sharia. Even the supposedly benign laws of sharia regarding marriage and divorce that Imam Rauf claims are a religious right, totally destroy a woman’s right to divorce and retain custody of her children.
Accepting sharia in the US would totally change the Western concept of marriage by allowing polygamy, wife-beating, female genital mutilation, rape and marrying children.
Among many, many other barbaric horrors. Sorry, Muzzrat scum; we already have a legal system, thanks. We won’t be needing yours. Not now, not fucking EVER. Not while I can still draw breath…and a weapon.