"Egyptian-German scholar Hamed Abdel-Samad said in a recent lecture that Islam has "turned hatred into a holy duty and war into a religious precept." The reticence of many European politicians and intellectuals toward criticizing Islam is the manifestation of a "reversed racism," he said, calling it the "racism of low expectations." On the issue of religious reform, Abdel-Samad said: "I do not believe in reforming religion. I believe in reforming people's minds and their relation to religion." "
"Hamed Abdel-Samad was born in 1972, the third of five children, in Giza, the part of Cairo where the pyramids are located. He describes his mother in glowing terms and his father as an intimidating patriarch who regularly beat his wife, a man whose influence he felt the need to run from. In time, however, Hamed’s father would become one of his strongest supporters. He stopped preaching at one point when his son became political and began to see himself as a failure as a husband and father. But he then went back into the pulpit to defend his son when a fatwa went out on him for his first book, The Fall of Islam. Hamed learned the Qur’an by heart as a child and had been expected to follow in his father’s footsteps and become an imam. "