Over the last 10 years, America has spent nearly a trillion dollars in a noble attempt to bring democracy to the Muslim world. Bush tried to bring it through a war of liberation. Obama tried to bring it through encouraging the “Arab Spring.” Yet most knowledgeable people, both left and right, will admit that democracy is not taking in Islam. Consider Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Afghanistan, Iran and even Iraq. But why does the collapse of one totalitarian regime simply lead to another? I believe understanding the difference between Islam and Christianity is the answer.

The word Islam means “submission.” Submission to Allah, to the Koran, to Muhammed and to the religious leaders. Freedom, expressed in democracy, is antithetical to the very foundation of Islam. Individual freedom is an offense to Islam. The basic rights of free thought, free speech or religious freedom defy the Koran. The act of criticizing the Prophet or denouncing Islam results in death. In fact, right now, an American pastor is being tortured in Iran for sharing Christ in that country.

On the other hand, Christianity is the foundation for democracy. Christian belief in the value of the individual is the basis of our freedom. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.”

Just like Communism is contrary to free-market capitalism, is it not time to realize that Islam, at its core, is contrary to individual freedom and democracy?

John Shepherd