New arguments about US Presidential hopeful Barack Obama’s religious history have been brought up in the media this week. While Obama has repeatedly stated that he is a Christian and belongs to the United Church of Christ, others are intent that Obama has had a history with Islam – and may be an apostate. An Op-ed by the New York Times writes that opinion in the Muslim world has been strongly in favor of Obama; but the op-ed warns against conflating his half-African identity with his Muslim heritage. As the son of a Muslim father, Senator Obama was born a Muslim under Muslim law – and it makes no difference that his father later renounced his religion. Choosing Christianity, in Muslim eyes, makes Obama an apostate – or irtidad or ridda in Arabic – the worst of all crimes that a Muslim can commit. For more information about this issue, additional details can be found in the articles and reactions in the links below.

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