There Is No Radical Christianity That Compares to Radical Islam
One of the persistent fallacies that emerges from the left side of the political spectrum after really any sort of mass atrocity, regardless of who perpetrated it or why, is that there is some sort of equivalence between violence in the name of radical Islam and violence in the name of, say, Christianity. As the Orlando shooting story has evolved, that has come in two forms: (1) arguments that equate Islam’s religious disapproval of homosexual sex and same-sex marriage and radical Islamic violence against gayswith Christian religious disapproval of homosexual sex and same-sex marriage; and (2) arguments that equate “lone wolf”perpetrators of outrages in the name of Islam with “lone wolf” perpetrators of outrages in the name of other causes unless they can be proven to be formally affiliated with, and materially supported by, groups such as Al Qaeda, ISIS, and Boko Haram.
This is dangerous nonsense that completely ignores the real-world context in two related ways.
First, there is no significant leadership in the modern Christian world – either religious or civil leadership – openly arguing for violence in the name of Christian doctrine, or providing it with a veneer of legitimacy. The leadership of the major denominations, from top to bottom, are foursquare against violence to enforce Christian morals, and the New Testament is notably short on violent punishments. “Yes,” I hear you say, “but Muslim leaders condemn violence too!” This is a debatable point in the specific case of violence against gays, as Andrew McCarthy has detailed, but even if you treat Islam-in-general as indistinguishable from Christianity-in-general in this regard, you still have to deal with radical Islam. Radical Islam is a significant, large-scale political movement around the world that is very much openly, proudly in favor of violence in service of the dictates of radical readings of Islamic law.