Guess Who’s Not Coming To Dinner? Glenn Back
Glenn Beck, during one of his sarcastic promotional photo ops.
Who would have thought…in a nation full of right-wing as well as left-wing lunatics, I guess even vitriol has a ceiling!
Ignore That Previous Statement…Thou Will Judge!In yet another instance in a long list of proofs that religion and stupidity are a dangerous mix, controversial Florida pastor Terry Jones publicly last month burned a copy of the Quran, the sacred book of scripture among the world’s billion or so Muslims. According to Jones, his reasoning (or lack thereof) was “to raise awareness of this dangerous religion and dangerous element.” Jones went further in defense of his actions, citing that "We decided to put the Quran on trail…I was the judge but I did not determine the verdict. I was just a type of referee so that people got their time to defend or condemn the Quran….a ‘jury’ of people from all over Florida debated the radicalism of Islam, and the ‘Quran was found guilty.’" (http://abcnews.go.com/CleanPrint/cleanprintproxy.aspx?unique=1302180053583&pfurl=http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=13281689).
In response to this, what adherents to Islam deem as sacrilege of the highest order, violent protests have erupted in Afghanistan, culminating with the deaths of 11 people, including an attack on a United Nations compound where 7 UN workers were killed. Jones is no stranger to controversy. This action was actually a postponement of his previous threat to burn a copy of the Quran on the anniversary of the Sept 11th terrorist attacks last year, but chose not to after intense criticism and public pressure which included a personal plea from President Obama. In response to the deaths in Afghanistan, the Florida pastor has remarked that he feels that he bears no responsibility…of course. He’d rather bear the notoriety of publicity, not the burden or responsibility for his actions.
In most cases, the Constitution asserts that both freedom of speech and religions are absolutes, even demonstrative speech such as flag burning and religious ethnocentrism such as asserting that “My God can beat your God up!” But there is also that caveat/exception about shouting fire in a burning theater. And a religiously intolerant Southern American religious figure (for want of a better term) burning a Quran while Westerners are working in a hostile environment, which is the ancestral home of the religiously xenophobic Taliban amounts to literally shouting fire and a theater (of war). One has to wonder what similar level of outrage was going through Jones’ mind when Robert Mapplethorpe sank that crucifix into that jar of urine back in the 80s and called it “art?”