…if President Obama says it. Or so seems to be the mentality in mainstream media.

But some ‘alternative media’ are holding his remarks up to scrutiny. Here’s a good example….

The New York Times carries a story about Obama’s representation of Muslim America, and doesn’t question it.

The president said the United States and other parts of the Western world “have to educate ourselves more effectively on Islam.”

“And one of the points I want to make is, is that if you actually
took the number of Muslim Americans, we’d be one of the largest Muslim
countries in the world,” Mr. Obama said. “And so there’s got to be a
better dialogue and a better understanding between the two peoples.”

Yes, we need better dialogue and understanding between peoples, no question. But let’s take a closer look at that premise…

There are all sorts of interesting things about his
statement, none of which seem to be explored by the mainstream media.
One thing I find curious is how during a recent trip abroad, President
Obama emphasized that we’re not a Christian country.

But perhaps the most important thing that journalists should be
noting about this statement is, well, that it’s just not true. I’m not
referring to the fact that no matter how many particular religious
adherents live within our borders, it doesn’t change the secular
make-up of our government. I simply mean that if you actually take the
number of Muslim Americans, the United States would not be one of the
largest Muslim countries in the world. The New York Times simply quotes
Obama and doesn’t mention anything about the statement’s inaccuracy!

And how inaccurate is it? Look at the numbers in the Pew Forum’s Survey there.

Muslims account for 0.6% of the U.S. population. While
some groups say there are millions more, Pew’s results would mean there
are fewer than 2 million Muslims in the country.

Wikipedia has a list of 38 countries with a majority Muslim
population. Obviously we’re not on that list. And if you go by sheer
numbers, we’re not one of the largest by that measure either. Or, as
Noah Pollak writes over at Commentary:

“Obama is right — we’re one of the largest, only outranked by
Indonesia, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Turkey, Egypt, Nigeria, Iran,
Algeria, Morocco, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iraq, Uzbekistan,
Ethiopia, Russia, Yemen, China, Syria, Malaysia, Tanzania, Mali, Niger,
Senegal, Tunisia, Somalia, Guinea, Azerbaijan, Burkina Faso,
Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Cote d’Ivoire, Congo, Libya, Jordan, Chad,
Turkemenistan, Philippines, France, Kyrgyzstan, Uganda, Mozambique,
Sierra Leone, Ghana, Cameroon, Thailand, Mauritania, Germany, Oman,
Albania, Malawi, Kenya, Eritrea, Serbia and Montenegro, Lebanon,
Kuwait, the UAE, and … well, at some point here you get to the United
States, which has (estimates vary) around 1-3 million Muslims.”

But….that wouldn’t work for his narrative. And it’s all about controlling the narrative.

Sheila Liaugminas

Sheila Liaugminas is an Emmy award-winning Chicago-based journalist in print and broadcast media. Her writing and broadcasting covers matters of faith, culture, politics and the media....