Overheard on CNN.com: Should Breivik be called a Christian fundamentalist?
Oslo shooting suspect Anders Breivik seen leaving court
July 25th, 2011
04:58 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Should Breivik be called a Christian fundamentalist?

Comments of the Day:

"The guy said in his own manifesto that he wasn't a religious Christian, that his affiliation to Christianity was political. So why should we claim the guy?" -bamagrad03

"I find it interesting that when the terrorists are Muslims, people jump all over their faith, yet when they're Christian, they say that their religion had nothing to do with their act of terrorism. Double standard much?"–WillH85

Who is the suspect in the Norway attacks?

Norway terror suspect claims to have worked with 2 other cells

Purported manifesto, video from Norway terror suspect detail war plan

Anders Behring Breivik, a white Norwegian member of the conservative Progress Party, has been charged with the worst violence in Norway in decades. The suspect told investigators he belonged to The Knights Templar, which he described as an armed Christian order, fighting to rid the West of Islamic suppression. A manifesto bearing his name rants against Muslims and their growing presence in Europe.

Descriptions of him as a Christian fundamentalist had CNN.com readers arguing over whether those terms are accurate and relevant.

Yoduh99 said, "His manifesto is not specifically against Muslims but against multiculturalism and the 'Islamization' of Europe, which he believes the ruling Labor Party has allowed; therefore he went after them and their children. He's also agnostic, not a Christian extremist, though he believes in preserving the European Christian-based culture."

Treadmill replied, "I am afraid you are mistaken; read what he said on June 11: 'I prayed for the first time in a very long time today. I explained to God that unless he wanted the Marxist-Islamic alliance and the certain Islamic takeover of Europe to completely annihilate European Christendom within the next hundred years he must ensure that the warriors fighting for the preservation of European Christendom prevail.' ”

SSearthquake said, "Stop calling him 'right-wing Christian fundamentalist.' He crossed the line and he is nothing but a terrorist and whatever his views are, he cannot be defended." indigoth replied, "I disagree. He claims he was a Christian and there's no reason to think otherwise. Sure, he committed a very un-Christian act, but that doesn't change his religion. He is a 'right-wing Christian fundamentalist,' but he is also a terrorist."

faisalsh said, "Christian leaders often blame Muslim clerics of sympathising with the cause of the terrorists. I think that these events are very sad, however, it drives home the point that no terrorist belongs to any religion." IxNay said, "He is a Christian, but not one you would call a good Christian; remember that when you hear that someone is not following the tenets of Islam and you feel the need to berate the whole religion."

Suburbanite1 said, "Real Christians don't kill kids in the name of Christianity." BMILL said, "An awful lot of people who considered themselves to be Christians have killed a remarkably large number of people over the centuries. In America, you have to look no further than what happened to the Native Americans for evidence."

LonnieD5 said, "lol. Religion has nothing to do with this. It doesn't matter what religion you are, anybody could have something cause them to snap. The guy was a psycho; that's all there is to it. If he is a Christian, it's not even relevant."

kris5967 said, "I hope the Religious Right (and all religious and patriotic people, for that matter) can learn from this tragedy. This man acted from a jumping off point of religious zeal and patriotism and he let it take him over the edge. His religious devotion became intolerance and his patriotism became xenophobia and hatred. Let him be an example to us all of what not to become."

GameIsOvr said, "The same thing could happen here. This lunatic simply took Teabagger values to the next level. Anti-immigrant, anti-tax, pro-Christian, and xenophobic. All right-wing, conservative, Republican values."

MartinOM said, "This is the result of extreme views. Right-wing or left-wing, it makes no difference. Intolerance is not the answer."

'Can I touch it?' The fascination with natural, African-American hair

In a CNN.com story and video, women of color told of how returning their hair to its natural texture sometimes causes strangers to reach out and touch them. Some think the response is funny, but others are angered by what they think is latent racism. CNN.com readers, however, said it had nothing to do with race and everything to do with harmless curiosity.

ankelly said, "Give me a break. Why is it that black women are the only people who complain that others touch their hair? As a curly redhead, I have had my head touched a lot since I was a baby, and I don't feel wronged or write articles about exploitation. Pregnant women have their bellies touched all the time. If you are going to spend time writing an article on this, then knock off the racial victimization and keep the bigger picture in mind."

cpg352223 agreed: "I'm a white guy who had well-groomed shoulder-length hair in my early 20s. During a couple of summers spent on an inner-city youth project, African-American kids - children and teenagers alike - were continuously asking to touch my hair. Why does everything have to be about race relations? Blacks and whites have different textured hair and simple curiosity is just that."

maggitsmom said, "It's just curiosity. When I visited India, a few people asked about my blond hair, and some even touched it. Yes, it invaded my personal space, but I wasn't offended. They had simply never seen a white/blond person, in person, before. Can we please stop turning everything into racism?"

AshKetchum said, "I am African-American and I have natural hair. I get how this is an invasion of personal space, but I don't agree with it being a racial thing. Black and white people want to touch my hair all the time. But some people have rude tendencies to just want to touch people without permission. My white friends especially tell me how soft my hair is, like their soft lamb toys they had when they were young."

puddytat said, "As a black woman I have the urge to touch the hair of complete strangers of different ethnicity. I'm merely curious. I'm from the Caribbean and we've got a beautiful mix of people - blacks, whites, Indians, Asians. I once sat on the bus behind a guy with locks, and I reached out and touched his hair without permission. I felt terrible doing it, but curiosity got the better of me. I should've asked first. But as humans we come in all different colours and shapes and textures and sometimes we just want to know what the other 'feels like.' The person being asked does not need to be so sensitive. It's just hair. ..."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (101 Responses)
  1. Free Norway

    Osama is crap when compared with Breivik. This guy is the best. Acts like this are very nice for history and a good lesson for terrorists, you don't have to be a nasty terrorist, you can have class and do a video.

    July 25, 2011 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Tony Gerards ( Uncovering The Truth )

    The truth is out there / Google ; the truth behind aliens and their covert agenda , then hit search and view 1 or 2 of the many web pages on this subject ..... Get ready to be shocked this is not disinformation! This is the real thing ! Find out what THEY (the eye of the pyrimiad)-back of one dollar bill) dont want u to know!!

    July 25, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hole in your tin foil hat

      You should call Jesus Christ.. I mean James Cameron.. All his enemies of humanity come from above just like God and the angels come from above. Seems Jesus I mean James is upset at our creator for casting him down with us lowly humans.. In the Abyss the US government was going to blow up the aliens under the sea (Notice how down was where the good aliens were? What else is down? Oh yes Hades), but the US government was stopped and the cute and friendly aliens lived on. Oh and T itanic? Love story gone bad, lots of cheating.. He directed Piranha 2 also which is a nod at deadly fish with teeth.. Don't let your worm stick one of them tuna.. Terminator was about another JC (John "Con"ner) who was mankind's only hope against "skynet".. Lol The enemy of Pandora in Avatar?.. The sky people.. Now you are probably one of those guys that thinks HAARP (HARP) is causing earthquakes around the world.. Two hit Christchurch New Zealand within months of each other. It's all pretty deliberate.

      July 25, 2011 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jeff Frank ( R - OHIO )

    Should Breivik be labeled a Christian Fundimentalist?
    Should Ronald McDonald sing in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir?

    July 25, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Philip

    if he's a christian, he isn't trying very hard. I'd label him as a 'domestic terrorist'..a fellow citizen who terrorizes his neighbors. I wonder if domestic terrorists are responsible for 40 times as many deaths as international terrorists, or 50 times as many. Anyone know?

    July 25, 2011 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    It's easy to hide human issues under religious banners.
    Breivik is advocating for his race with any power he can reach.
    He's not alone: so are Muslims.
    Breivik's name could easily be Turner: same brand of heroism.
    This iceberg is big.

    July 25, 2011 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  6. royce

    Give me a break Bush said he prayed to god and that he was told to start the war and start bombing.. women children mothers fathers and a few terrorist as well. Yet all christians were so happy with what he did. In fact i saw people who said they voted for him just because of his religion. Lets face it these people are just nuts and listing to them and quoting every single word of theirs is being just as crazy. Would you listen to someone ranting in an insane asylum or could you even say that the person ranting in the asylum was religious? The problem is most people are crazy! so your gona find nutzos in every religion or non religion.. make sense?

    July 25, 2011 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Truth

    @Royce: Anyone with a college education and some critical thinking skills can carve up any of their beliefs. Notice how they dodge questions? I'm just a believer. Where is Jesus to get Bush for all the children he killed? Oh he's saved because he didn't actually do any killing and believes in Jesus? Lol Jesus' track record is really bad in terms of keeping his flock safe.

    July 25, 2011 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Queenie

    Just wow.
    These comments are...wow.

    Moving on to the hair thing, it's always better if one gets permission from me before touching my hair, especially if I just did it...
    "Don't touch the do!"

    July 25, 2011 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Philip

    @anti-Philip...I didn't blast Islam, I quoted the Koran. Those words are their own words, not mine. Nor did I call Christianity "the religion of love"...I quoted verses from the bible. Many people base their views of Christianity on how today's "Christian" leaders behave, or on how "Christian" religions foment war. Very few study the bible to learn what Christianity is. They take old-laws meant for ancient Israelites and assume that they still apply. You mentioned laws on stoning children that remained in force right-up until the time of Christ. If a child disobeyed his parents, he was to be stoned to death. Yet, not one child was ever stoned. Israelite children didn't even think about being disobedient, they had never even observed a child being disobedient. It was something that they just didn't do. If kicking your dog carried the death penaly, it wouldn't take too long before people didn't even think about doing it. But you try to use this old law to prove Jesus a liar? that's thick

    July 25, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anti-Philip

      @Philip: You quoted the Koran and I quoted the Bible. You made excuses and deflections as many Muslims would do to defend their beliefs. The Bible is the basis for christianity and it's the only book being read at church. You just said basically oh well that doesn't apply now because that was for them not us. So I ask you enlightened one.. What does apply? You're going to cherry pick the word of God? What if the Israelite child had a cheating mom and became unruly from the broken home? Basically one gets stoned while one gets forgiven. This is what people are handing their souls over to the dark lord for?

      July 25, 2011 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  10. blueskiesmom

    Just because a mouse is in the cookie jar – that doesn't make it a cookie. No he should not be called a Christian anything. What he did was a sin.

    July 25, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    OK, then, Queenie, we'll watch out for your do.

    July 25, 2011 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Queenie

    Thanks, JIF.
    You can touch me do anytime...with permission, of course.

    July 25, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Queenie

    Uh oh....

    July 25, 2011 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Tony Gerards ( Uncovering The Truth )

    @ truth seekers ? Google (DUMB)-Deep under ground military bases/military bases then search : find out about the dulce facility in new mexico and what they are doing in the installations, find out how the cia nsa nsc and other covert intelligence groups are in control of the illegal global drug trade and how the money is funneled into these black ops and black buget programs that r being hidden from the U S public /like the dulce base in N.M. ***the truth is out there***

    July 25, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. gung hoe

    Hey anti phillip b 4 you are so quick 2 critisize someone 4 their believes why dont you read a really good book not in bits and pieces but from cover 2 cover and who knows something might sink in that thick head of yours naw your to filled with hatred to accept jesus love

    July 25, 2011 at 11:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anti-Gung Hoe

      @gung hoe: When a book is preached as being the perfect word of God and I can find faults or contradictions in it then it ceases to be perfect and I no longer need to read every page front to back. I can find some true metaphors and good advice in there, but if I interpret Genesis as a story of how a deceptive worm can break up a couple with lies then I am quickly shouted down by certain people that the story of Adam and Eve has nothing to do with anyone else and it's a word for word story about the first man and woman. The tree was the tree of knowledge and some evil man got stupid Eve to believe him. We often call deceptive men snakes, but many christians will tell me it was a real talking snake and the fruit was an apple. There may be some good parts in the Communist Manifesto, but I'm not going to join the communist party, because the book was used as a guide to remove one set of elites by force and install another group of elites. I'd give myself to Jesus if he would be so kind as to build me a time machine, reverse my aging and clean up his flock of wolf/sheep that made many of my formative years a living he!!. He was always a no show when I needed him, but his followers were always quick to kick me when I was down. If they were not true christians then he should have gone all biblical vengeance on the phonies.. Too late for that I'm afraid. He is no better than any angel as all God's children are loved equally.

      July 26, 2011 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
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