Town Hall: President Obama discusses the terminology of terrorism

Town Hall: President Obama discusses the terminology of terrorism
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President Obama answered a difficult question from a concerned American Citizen, regarding why he refuses to use the term “radical islamic terrorism” (and related terms) to describe ISIS and other terrorist groups. According to the President, it’s a manufactured issue, and use of the term is inaccurate, and unfair to majority Muslims who do not condone the brutal actions and ideology of these violent groups.

This has been a divisive issue for Americans, with right-leaning citizens happy to embrace the term, while more politically liberal ones generally prefer alternatives, like “radical jihadist terrorists.” According to the President and prominent members of his administration, it’s not worth using the term in question if we end up offending muslims, especially¬†Muslim governments whose cooperation we require to achieve our national security goals.
“President Barack Obama has taken a lot of criticism from political opponents over his rhetoric when it comes to terrorism. But on Wednesday at a CNN presidential town hall, he was asked to defend why he refuses to say “Islamic” terrorism to a Gold Star mother.

“My son gave his life for acts of terrorism,” audience member Tina Houchins told Obama at the town hall moderated by CNN’s Jake Tapper. “Do you still believe that the acts of terrorism are done for the self-proclaimed Islamic religious motive? And if you do, why do you still refuse to use the term … Islamic terrorist?”” (

Learn more about President Obama’s town hall (

Photo: Pete Souza [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


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