Jonah Goldberg

This is why I think many people get too invested in the tenets of Muslim theology. Defenders of Islam, as well as apologists for terror, often say Islam means peace and point to this or that quote from the Koran. Opponents of Islam will often say that Islam is a religion of violence and conquest and point to a different part of the Koran. As a literary exercise, both sides have good arguments. But at the end of the day, Koranic exegesis will only get you so far. Ultimately, a religion is what its adherents do in its name.

And for a significant minority of Muslims, it is simply the case that Islam is a religion of violence. How else are we supposed to react to a Sudanese mob chanting for the execution of a schoolteacher because she permitted her students to name a teddy bear Mohammed. The people who should be angry about this fact are the majority of Muslims who claim theirs is a religion of peace (and, it should be noted, some Muslims were indeed mortified by the spectacle).

I have liberal Jewish friends who are sometimes flummoxed as to how I could hang out, ideologically or personally, with "Christian fundamentalists." My short answer is: Have you ever met any? I may not want some of them planning my next trip to Vegas, but the ones I've met couldn't be nicer or more polite.

And the same goes for Mormons. Yes, I think there's some weird stuff in Mormonism, but they might say "Same to you!" about Jews. Still, all of the Mormons I've met have been serious, kind and morally upstanding. Republicans might also note that Mormons are among the most reliably conservative senators and congressman.

I think the objections to Mormon theology are often sound. But I think there are sound objections to pretty much every theology. It's a good thing for Romney that while theology isn't relevant to picking a president, morality is.

Jonah Goldberg

Jonah Goldberg is editor-at-large of National Review Online,and the author of the book The Tyranny of Clichés. You can reach him via Twitter @JonahNRO.
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