We are pretty used to Fox News’ foot-in-mouth-moments and holier-than-thou attitude. However, they amaze us every time! In this particular video, one sees an amazed Lauren Green who just can’t seem to wrap her head around the fact that Reza Aslan, a Muslim, would write a book about the history of Jesus of Nazareth, a Jew who lived more than 2,000 years ago.
Reza Aslan, a professor at the University of California was there to discuss his book, “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” had to repeat at least twice that he holds four degrees, one in the New Testament, is fluent in biblical Greek, and has been studying the Bible for two decades, and the fact that he was a Muslim just doesn’t come in to it. Yet Ms. Green couldn’t move past her bewilderment.
"But it begs the question, why you would be interested in the founder of Christianity?" demanded the host again and again.
"Because it's my job as an academic; I am a professor of religion. It's what I do for a living," answers a frustrated Aslan.
But the concept kept alluding the clueless host!
"To be clear, I am a historian. I am a PhD in the history of religions. This is a piece of history," said the very chagrined professor. "I'm not sure what my faith has to do with my twenty years of academic study... I think it's strange that instead of debating the merits of the book, we're actually discussing the right of the scholar to actually write it."
During the ten-minute interview she used arguments from the religious right that said Aslan’s faith had been concealed by the ‘liberal media’.
His book offers a different interpretation of Jesus and has upset some Christians. But so would any book written on a religion or any other theory for that matter!
One might ask if writing on another religion is so closely associated with the religion the author belongs to, what of the likes of Karen Armstrong and Martin Ling?
And what knowledge or motive would Michael H. Hart have to put Mohammadas the most influential person in history? What motive indeed?
Bookshelves are full of authors who have written on Islam and other religions regardless f their own faith! There are a horde of Christian and Non Muslim authors who have penned about Islam.
What of the following:
Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources by Martin Lings,
The First Muslim: The Story of Muhammad by Lesley Hazleton.
These are only a handful of examples!
But who tells that to the fanatics at Fox?
People with any sense are incensed at the incredulous behavior of the anchor and have taken the world of Twitter by storm.
American right to @rezaaslan : "How dare you write on Christianity!" Islamic conservatives a few years ago: "How dare you write on Islam!"— Paul Harvey (@pharvey61) July 28, 2013
So I'm actually reading @rezaaslan's Zealot & Christians should be interested in his arguments. They should want to know Jesus in context.— Alisa Harris (@alisaharris) July 28, 2013
I wrote a book on Africa. I'm American. No one treated me like @rezaaslan is being treated for Zealot.— Jonathan Berman (@Jonathan_Berman) July 27, 2013