Christianity is treated differently than those of other faiths are in the U.S., President Trump said Saturday in criticizing political leaders for not handling all religions equally.
Trump made the comments during the Coronavirus Task Force briefing.
“I am somebody that believes in faith,” Trump said. “And it matters not what your faith is, but our politicians seem to treat different faiths very differently. … I don’t know what happened with our country, but the Christian faith is treated much differently than it was. And I think it’s treated very unfairly.”
Trump’s remarks came after he was asked about his retweet of a post on Twitter from author Paul Sperry, who wrote, “Let's see if authorities enforce the social-distancing orders for mosques during Ramadan (April 23-May 23) like they did churches during Easter.”
Let's see if authorities enforce the social-distancing orders for mosques during Ramadan (April 23-May 23) like they did churches during Easter— Paul Sperry (@paulsperry_) April 15, 2020
Trump said his retweet was directed at politicians, not imams.
“I just spoke with leaders and people that love mosques; they love mosques,” he said, referencing a phone call he had with imams, rabbis and ministers. “But I would say that there could be a difference. And we’ll have to see what will happen, because I’ve seen a great disparity in this country. I’ve seen a great disparity.”
He then referenced “a very strong anti-Israel bent in Congress with Democrats” that would have been “unthinkable 7 or 8 or 10 years ago.”
“And now they’re into a whole different thing between Omar and AOC,” he said, referencing Reps. Ilhan Omar and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. “... I mean, the things that they say about Israel are so bad.”
Politicians, he said, “go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques. And I don’t want them to go after mosques, but I do want to see … what their bent is.”
Trump was asked if he believed imams “wouldn’t follow social distancing.”
“No, I don’t think that at all,” he said.
Photo courtesy: The White House/Public Domain
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.