Curtis Kalin of CNSNews.com (a division of the Media Research Center) spotlighted how CNN religion editor Daniel Burke likened French society's treatment of Muslims to the situation in Ferguson, Missouri around the time of the shooting of Michael Brown. Anchor Carol Costello turned to Burke during a panel discussion segment on Wednesday's CNN Newsroom, and underlined that "Muslims in France – they don't feel accepted by the country. They feel that many racist acts are carried out against them. Is the anger within France...coming from that, and not really religion?"
After dropping his reference to Ferguson, the editor zeroed in on France's anti-face veil law as an example of the European country's apparent mistreatment of Muslims: [video below]
DANIEL BURKE, CNN RELIGION EDITOR: You know what, Carol? That's a really excellent point. I think it – it's kind of like what we saw in Ferguson – that this was, kind of, a – in some way, the tinder that lit the spark – but the embers were already burning. There is a prevailing feeling in France, among many Muslims, that they are not treated as part of the state at large. France has a very proud – a very long secular history, and it's not always done the best of – kind of, integrating any of its religious minorities – French Muslims included.
And so, there's a feeling there that Muslims may be bullied – that they may be pushed to the side. There – they passed a law recently that – that banned the full face veil, which many Muslims took as an affront, because it's a religious belief. And if you really – really respect the freedom of expression – the freedom of belief – then why wouldn't they be allowed to use – you know, the full face veil? So I think you're really touching on something really deep, and really large there, Carol.
Kalin blasted Burke for his contention: "While it can be said that discontentment exists along racial lines in Ferguson and religious lines in France, to jump to the conclusion that the communities themselves share more blame than the actual perpetrators of a terrorist attack or looting and rioting is intellectually perilous and simply wrongheaded."
The CNN religion editor has a record of such liberal bias. Back in March 2014, Burke asserted in a CNN.com article that Pope Francis "reaffirmed the Catholic Church's opposition to gay marriage...but suggested in a newspaper interview that it could support some types of civil unions." In reality, the pontiff is on the record as opposing a proposed civil unions bill in Malta near the end of 2013.