A number of conservative Crusades scholars, some people I consider friends, have told me how wrong my Guardian piece is. They have not, though, really told me why. I thought I would boil my piece down to six core arguments and number them, in hopes of receiving better feedback. Maybe a real discussion could break out.
1) Christianity can and has, like other religious and secular ideologies, sparked the creation of an “us versus them” epistemology which enables horrific acts of violence.
3) There is a Crusades-reclamation project among conservative journalists and politicians, who, like liberal journalists and politicians, in fact often don’t know very much about history. [that’s citing Matt Gabriele’s excellent work on this topic].
4) Quote – “There’s no question that crusaders were sometimes driven to slaughter non-Christian civilian populations both in Europe and in southwest Asia, all in the name of religion.”
5) Quote – “Reminding the public about ugly moments in the history of Christianity does not make one anti-Christian.”
6) Quote – “We need humility. We must recognize our fallibility, we must study the past to understand why things happen, and then we must try to do better.”