Regular reader and local heathen Clifton sent along a link describing the mounting pressure Rev. Terry Jones is facing over his ill-advised “Burn-a-Koran Day”, due to be staged on September 11, 2010.
Jones, who is known for posting signs proclaiming that Islam is the devil’s religion, says the Constitution gives him the right to publicly set fire to the book that Muslims consider the word of God.
Gen. David Petraeus warned Tuesday in an e-mail to The Associated Press that “images of the burning of a Quran would undoubtedly be used by extremists in Afghanistan — and around the world — to inflame public opinion and incite violence.” It was a rare example of a military commander taking a position on a domestic political matter.
Jones responded that he is also concerned but is “wondering, ‘When do we stop?’” He refused to cancel the protest set for Saturday at his Dove World Outreach Center, a church that espouses an anti-Islam philosophy.
“How much do we back down? How many times do we back down?” Jones told the AP. “Instead of us backing down, maybe it’s to time to stand up. Maybe it’s time to send a message to radical Islam that we will not tolerate their behavior.”
Still, Jones said he will pray about his decision.
What do you want to bet that after he prays about his decision, he will come to the conclusion that this is a really good idea? Given that for most people, praying to your deity is just a way of reinforcing your decisions by granting them extra weight (cross-reference self-projection as God), unless he suddenly has a pang of conscience for fanning the flames of this religious crusade, he’ll come to the conclusion that his god is just fine with his plans. It’s a function of the Ouroboros aspect of prayer, as outlined in my Why Prayer is Nonsense series.
Forget the fact that burning books is an execrable practice carried out by cowards who feel threatened by ideas that contradict their own. Let’s say that it’s his constitutional right to burn books. There’s nothing, technically, wrong with burning a book, right? So why not get the bonfire REALLY going? I say, for every single Qu’ran that’s thrown in the pyre, a copy of the Bible (any translation will do, but especially the one Jones believes in!), the Torah, the Upanishad, Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species, Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion, L. Ron Hubbard’s Dianetics, and a VHS cassette of Jerry Maguire must needs be thrown in as well. Sound fair?
If Jones says “no way”, you know why. It’s not about getting back at Muslims that he feels hurt his country. It’s, instead, entirely about trying to do violence to one religion in furtherance of another, deepening the chasm between human beings that believe in Christ and human beings that believe in Muhammad. That chasm may have existed for a very long time, practically since Christianity and Islam split, but this entire escapade is about firing another salvo. It’s about subjugating one set of delusions in preference for another. It’s about fanning the flames of an existing physical conflict in which real human beings are dying over whose fan-fiction about Yahweh is better.
And that’s just ass-backward. Live and let live, and let whatever deity might actually exist prove it him/herself.
(Title quote by Winston Churchill.)