CJ Werleman Keeps Changing His “From Islamophobe to Defender of Muslims” Origin Story
Antisemite, serial liar and plagiarist CJ Werleman positions himself as some kind of crusader against Islamophobia. In what seems to be an attempt to gain credibility as part of this “crusade”, Werleman likes to speak about how he is a reformed Islamophobe.
From his 2018 op-ed I Cured My Islamophobia. You Can Too:
Like all forms of racism, Islamophobia constructs and informs a seductive narrative, one that is easily digestible, and one that promises to make the complex more palpable.
Hello, my name is CJ and I’m a recovering Islamophobe.
I was an Islamophobe for a four year period spanning 2005 to 2009. These respective year dates are significant because 2009 was the year I began writing my third book — Koran Curious: a Guide for Infidels and Believers, while 2005 was the year I witnessed an al-Qaeda (Jemaah Islamiyah) terrorist attack in Indonesia, an event I described in great detail in my most recent book The New Atheist Threat: Dangerous Rise of Secular Extremists, which also explains my journey into and out of Islamophobia.
Essentially, an Islamist terrorist attack turned me into an Islamophobe, whereas studying the Quran, researching Islam and Islamic cultures helped cure me.
Note how his tale of redemption from anti-Muslim bigotry is bookended by a terror attack and writing his book on the Quran. Clearly, he remembers the years very well, since they were so significant in his life and his rebirth as a fighter of evil.
And Werleman has repeated that timeline elsewhere:
Yet in a 2015 account of his journey he wrote in a Facebook post, the time period is 2005-2010. Not only that, but there, he seems to be claiming that he became even more of an anti-Muslim bigot in 2009, the year he supposedly started seeing the light:
Werleman offers up another version of events in this video interview from December 2017:
Note here, he began seeing the light when he started studying terrorism, not the Quran. And his “epiphany” was 2008-2009.
In another interview from March 2018, Werleman claims he started studying terrorism after he published his God Hates You book in 2009:
This motivated me to write a book on religion, and in 2009 I published God Hates You. Hate Him Back: Making Sense of the Bible, which blamed much of what is wrong with the world today, particularly terrorism, on religion.
Long story short, the book became very popular in the US, enjoying the number 1 ranking on Amazon Kindle for religious criticism for several months. But then I began studying terrorism as an academic discipline, attaining a degree in counterterrorism/security, while also currently pursuing a master’s in terrorism studies.
Not long into my studies, I realized how wrong I was in blaming religion or Islam for the motives of those who engage in terrorism. So, don’t buy the book. The premise is entirely wrong! Save your money lol.
Since the book came out in November 2009 and he claims it enjoyed the number 1 ranking for “several months”, his epiphany – according to this narrative – was around 2010, not 2008-2009 as he claimed mere months earlier.
Meanwhile in this November 2018 Instagram post, Werleman suggests he started his terrorism studies around 2005:
In other words, Werleman keeps changing his story
- He stopped being an Islamophobe either in 2008, 2009, or 2010
- He saw the light either after studying the Quran, researching Islam and Islamic cultures or while engaged in his terrorism studies
- He began his terrorism studies either around 2005 or 2010
Further evidence of Werleman’s lying can be seen from his anti-Muslim tweets:
Besides the sheer bigotry and un-funniness of these tweets, note the dates. He was tweeting in an anti-Muslim manner all through 2009 until late 2011, way after the latest year (2010) he has claimed to have seen the light.
Given all of these inconsistencies plus his track record in dishonesty and lying, there is little doubt in my mind he is lying again about his journey from Islamophobe to defender of Muslims.
I suspect he decided to switch teams when he realized how lucrative it could be. As of the time of this post, he has 637 Patrons on Patreon, paying anywhere from $1 to $500 per month. And some of his shows have also been sponsored by extremist Muslim groups.
Werleman will no doubt continue to lie while it pays for him to do so.
Update: Werleman is claiming Israel is behind Islamophobia:
Funny how he was an Islamophobe without any Israel help all those years.