President Barack Obama spent nearly 20 percent of his Oval Office address on terrorism to urge Americans not to be racist, about twice as long as he took to describe the threat of ISIS.
In the third Oval Office address of his presidency Sunday, Obama spoke for 1,910 words. He spent 372 words telling Americans not to discriminate against Muslims, compared to 160 words directly referencing the threat of ISIS.
Obama used an additional 131 words, roughly 7 percent of the speech, to talk about the need for stricter gun laws.
“Here’s what else we cannot do. We cannot turn against one another by letting this fight be defined as a war between America and Islam. and they account for a tiny fraction of more than a billion Muslims around the world — including millions of patriotic Muslim Americans who reject their hateful ideology. Moreover, the vast majority of terrorist victims around the world are Muslim. If we’re to succeed in defeating terrorism we must enlist Muslim communities as some of our strongest allies, rather than push them away through suspicion and hate.
That does not mean denying the fact that an extremist ideology has spread within some Muslim communities. This is a real problem that Muslims must confront, without excuse. Muslim leaders here and around the globe have to continue working with us to decisively and unequivocally reject the hateful ideology that groups like ISIL and al-Qaida promote; to speak out against not just acts of violence, but also those interpretations of Islam that are incompatible with the values of religious tolerance, mutual respect, and human dignity.
But just as it is the responsibility of Muslims around the world to root out misguided ideas that lead to radicalization, it is the responsibility of all Americans — of every faith — to reject discrimination. It is our responsibility to reject religious tests on who we admit into this country. It’s our responsibility to reject proposals that Muslim Americans should somehow be treated differently. Because when we travel down that road, we lose. That kind of divisiveness, that betrayal of our values plays into the hands of groups like ISIL. Muslim Americans are our friends and our neighbors, our co-workers, our sports heroes — and, yes, they are our men and women in uniform who are willing to die in defense of our country. We have to remember that.
My fellow Americans, I am confident we will succeed in this mission because we are on the right side of history. We were founded upon a belief in human dignity — that no matter who you are, or where you come from, or what you look like, or what religion you practice, you are equal in the eyes of God and equal in the eyes of the law.”
While Obama discussed ISIS in abstract terms or reiterated strategy, he only used 160 words in reference to the threat ISIS posed. Those words encompassed 8 percent of the speech. (RELATED: Scarborough Rips Obama For Being ‘Hunkered Down In His Ideological Bunker’)
Here are the following instances The Daily Caller deemed Obama was talking about the threat ISIS posed. (RELATED: MSNBC Terrorism Analyst Rips Obama’s ISIS Strategy: Not ‘An Incredibly Strong Prescription’)
“And as groups like ISIL grew stronger, and as the Internet erases the distance between countries, we see growing efforts by terrorists to poison the minds of people like the Boston Marathon bombers and the San Bernardino killers.”
“The threat from terrorism is real, but we will overcome it. We will destroy ISIL and any other organization that tries to harm us. Our success won’t depend on tough talk, or abandoning our values, or giving into fear. That’s what groups like ISIL are hoping for.”
“…we are cooperating with Muslim-majority countries — and with our Muslim communities here at home — to counter the vicious ideology that ISIL promotes online.”
“…to focus on the common goal of destroying ISIL — a group that threatens us all.”
“…that individual is motivated by ISIL or some other hateful ideology.”
“That, too, is what groups like ISIL want. ISIL does not speak for Islam. They are thugs and killers, part of a cult of death.”
Also in Obama’s speech were 131 words where he pontificated about gun control and assault weapons. Roughly 7 percent of the words out of Obama’s mouth were relating to guns. (RELATED: Obama Calls Gun Control ‘A Matter Of National Security’)
“To begin with, Congress should act to make sure no one on a no-fly list is able to buy a gun. What could possibly be the argument for allowing a terrorist suspect to buy a semi-automatic weapon? This is a matter of national security. We also need to make it harder for people to buy powerful assault weapons like the ones that were used in San Bernardino. I know there are some who reject any gun safety measures. But the fact is that our intelligence and law enforcement agencies — no matter how effective they are — cannot identify every would-be mass shooter, whether that individual is motivated by ISIL or some other hateful ideology. What we can do — and must do — is make it harder for them to kill.”
In the introduction of his speech, Obama updated the nation specifically on the San Bernardino terrorist attack and used 200 words to do it. That occupied 10 percent of his word count.
The majority of Obama’s speech — 1,011 words or about 53 percent — was dedicated to the history of the U.S. fight against terrorism, the current strategy to defeat ISIS, and steps that he wants Congress to take. (RELATED: Republican Presidential Candidates Rip Into Obama Over Oval Office Speech)