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 Post subject: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:50 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
Posts: 1795
Location: Ottawa, Canada
As some of you may have already heard, a church in Florida is planning on hosting a mass book-burning this upcoming weekend. To commemorate September 11th, they're inviting their members to purchase - and burn - a copy of the Islamic holy book, the Qur'an.

Understandably, this has sparked a firestorm of controversy. U.S. General David Patraeus is urging the church not to go through with the event, reasoning that "Images of the burning of a Qur'an would undoubtedly be used by extremists in Afghanistan - and around the world - to inflame public opinion and incite violence."

He went on to say, "Even the rumour that it might take place has sparked demonstrations such as the one that took place in Kabul yesterday. Were the actual burning to take place, the safety of our soldiers and civilians would be put in jeopardy and accomplishment of the mission would be made more difficult."

There are several aspects of this story that strike me as intriguing:

Point #1: The whole message of the book-burning demonstration is to protest the violent tactics of Muslim extremists. And yet, American citizens - on American soil - are being encouraged to self-muzzle, to stifle their own right to self-expression and free speech, in their own country, out of fear that the culture being protested will react with violence. But that violence is precisely what people are trying to protest. A violent reaction would simply prove that the protestors were justified.

If the cure for racism and bigotry is to shine a light on it and expose it, why is the cure for violence silence and self-censorship?

Point #2: Doesn't the Muslim world see how Gen. Patraeus's warning make them look like crazed, violent, irrational barbarians? The warning itself presupposes that Muslim extremists have such violent natures, and so little self-control and intelligence, that's it's a foregone conclusion that they will react with violence. Unsurprisingly, many in the Muslim world have already proven this to be exactly the case. But shouldn't that assumption anger a rational, peaceful person? If someone admitted that they choose their words carefully around you, because they're worried you'll get angry and become violent, wouldn't that offend you? Or would you agree, and say, "Yup, you're probably right, I'm a hothead, don't get me mad!" Don't they see how being the recipient of such special treatment singles them out as the crazy, excitable kid whom cannot be reasoned with? And wouldn't they want to dispell that perception?

If a mosque in Tehran planned a Bible burning protest, would Ahmadinejad caution against it, for fear of inciting violent reprisal from Christian extremists around the world? The notion is absurd. The world perceives Muslims as an excitable, violent mob, but the reverse is not true. Why doesn't such a negative double-standard provoke Muslims to do something to alter that perception?

Point #3: If General Patraeus is worried about the reaction his soldiers will face from Muslims in Afghanistan, then I have an absurdly simple solution: Get your soldiers out of their country. Problem solved. No more soliders at risk. A growing portion of society has been calling for this for years already.

Point #4: General Patraeus said that if the protest goes ahead, then the "accomplishment of the mission would be made more difficult." What "mission" is he talking about? Because I was under the impression that, in the months after 9/11, the objective of the "mission" was clearly to strike back at those who attacked the US, and defeat them. Now, he's making it sound like the "mission" is to establish a peaceful, friendly relationship with those who not only already attacked us, but have made it abundantly clear they'll do it again if we so much as burn a book or draw a cartoon of their prophet.

It seems to me that if the mission was still to "defeat" them, then upsetting them by burning a book would be inconsequential with regard to the war effort. I would think invading their land and shooting their soldiers would upset them a great deal more than burning a few copies of their book, half a world away.

But if the mission has surreptitiously evolved to making friends with them, then I'm unconvinced that that's an achievable objective. Why do we care so much what these irrational, violent, misogynistic, anachronistic barbarians think about us, anyway? We already know what they think about us. THEY HATE US. I thought they made that pretty clear on 9/11.

Every day, newspapers are filled with stories of the latest, crazy antics of this culture. A judge considers deliberately severing a criminal's spine to paralyze him under the "Eye for an eye" clause of Sharia law. An adult Canadian woman is held hostage in Saudi Arabia because her father won't grant her permission to leave the country. A couple is stoned to death in a village in Afghanistan for having the gall to fall in love with each other, instead of the individuals chosen by their parents. Again and again, we hear tales that seem like they were torn from the pages of a medieval work of fiction. But these didn't happen 500 years ago - they just happened this year. 2010. Those things are all actual news stories that happened in the past couple of months! While the Western world is passing universal health care, another culture is literally banning pop music (Iran). It's incredible.

And yet, even in the face of all that lunacy, we're still encouraged to treat these folks as our intellectual equals. We're told that just because their way is different doesn't mean their way is inferior. We're supposed to be tolerant and accepting of all cultures in this multicultural melting pot. But even as we put on a brave face and pretend to accept the insanity bubbling out of the desert, deep down in our hearts we all know it's crazy. It's just not politically correct to say it out loud.

Don't misunderstand - I'm not intolerant of individual Muslims. In fact, I have a great deal of respect for the Muslims I meet in my day-to-day life. These are the ones who looked around at their country, saw how crazy it was, and decided to move somewhere more rational. I believe the immigrants you run into in your daily lives are the smart ones, the ones who got out. However, that also has an unfortunate corrolary effect. If the smart, rational Muslims flee their homelands, that just leaves the crazy, irrational ones to run the show back home. It increases the density of the "craziness" in the mother country, leaving them free reign to continue their insane ways.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:03 pm 
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As an American, I am embarrassed by what those church whackos are planning to do. I think they should have the right to protest, and to burn whatever they want, but that does not mean they should do it. In a civilized society we should be well, civil, to each other. The book burning serves no purpose except to provoke others. It is akin to yelling "fire" in a crowded theater.

There is very little difference between what is planned and the cross-burnings and other atrocities committed in the South 40-50 years ago. Those actions were intended to intimidate and most states now have laws making acts of intimidation criminal. I hope the Florida authorities arrest all participants ans seize everything they have.

I also have to wonder what kind of idiot would participate in this kind of stunt. Undoubtedly these are ignorant, poor, and uneducated people that have been easily brainwashed by the preacher. Even most mainstream christian leaders have criticized him.

I wonder what people would say if they were burning bibles or torahs...


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:23 pm 
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kombat wrote:
Every day, newspapers are filled with stories of the latest, crazy antics of this culture. A judge considers deliberately severing a criminal's spine to paralyze him under the "Eye for an eye" clause of Sharia law. An adult Canadian woman is held hostage in Saudi Arabia because her father won't grant her permission to leave the country. A couple is stoned to death in a village in Afghanistan for having the gall to fall in love with each other, instead of the individuals chosen by their parents. Again and again, we hear tales that seem like they were torn from the pages of a medieval work of fiction. But these didn't happen 500 years ago - they just happened this year. 2010. Those things are all actual news stories that happened in the past couple of months! While the Western world is passing universal health care, another culture is literally banning pop music (Iran). It's incredible.


There is no doubt that more horror, death, and destruction in the world has been carried out in the name of religion than anything else. But the Muslim religion is not unique. Look at some of the horrible things Christians do including oppressing women and condoning (and committing) murder (usually of Jews, Muslims, or obstetricians). Read the newspapers from small town America and you will find frequent examples! After 9/11, GWB even gave a speech referring to the actions of the US as crusade - the term was no accident and was clearly intended to provoke religious fervor in support of our attacks on Muslim countries. Think about it, Al Queada operated out of, and the attacks were planned in Germany, yet we bombed Afghanistan and Iraq.

I am opposed to this war we have going on for many reasons. But i'm not opposed to pursuing and prosecuting the individuals that perpetrated terrorist acts against the US. I just hope that people see that it was religious fundamentalism that created the environment that produced the terrorists, not Islam. Fundamentalism seems to fester in poor, rural, uneducated areas like the mountains of Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran as well as the American South. And this book burning is yet another act by religious fundamentalists. It is a terrorist act to be committed by a bunch of nut cases who are impotent to actually make an effective contribution to anything.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 1:31 pm 
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kombat wrote:
A judge considers deliberately severing a criminal's spine to paralyze him under the "Eye for an eye" clause of Sharia law.


Ever read Leviticus and Deuteronomy? I have no doubt that given an hour or two I could dig up a few cases where American judges (probably in small towns in the South) have handed out sentences based on the equally barbaric punishments described in these books! Of course they are usually overturned...but so are most of the cases your mention. In most cases if the punishment is serious the cases are reviewed and "fixed" by the civil courts in these countries, though Iran is an exception.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 3:16 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:31 pm
Posts: 405
Quote:
I have no doubt that given an hour or two I could dig up a few cases where American judges (probably in small towns in the South) have handed out sentences based on the equally barbaric punishments described in these books!


Please do. If you find a story about an American judge issuing a cruel sentence based on Eye for an Eye, akin to paralyzation/stoning/etc, and it wasnt overturned before being carried out, I'll mail you $100.


Obviously, any sane and rational person would object to doing something for no other purpose than to piss off another group of people. However, burning korans isnt any different than horribly offensive movies, skits, shows, books, etc... that have victimized Christianity, Judaism, and other religions/groups. Stuff like the piss christ or burning flags, etc... goes on all the time and most people just roll their eyes and lament the ignorance of their countrymen.

As for the war, well it has become an unwinnable campaign against a virtual narco state setup in the southern/eastern portion of the country. US troops ignore drug dealing and sex slavery in the name of cultural understanding and then wonder why we never seem to gain any ground. It would take 200,000 troops, 20 years, and a few trillion dollars to run that place into a respectable nation.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 3:46 pm 
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Savarel wrote:
If you find a story about an American judge issuing a cruel sentence based on Eye for an Eye, akin to paralyzation/stoning/etc, and it wasnt overturned before being carried out, I'll mail you $100.


They always get overturned, that's my point. And, no, I've never heard of anything as harsh as paralyzation or stoning in this country. But I have heard of some lesser but still religion-inspired punishments.

Savarel wrote:
Obviously, any sane and rational person would object to doing something for no other purpose than to piss off another group of people. However, burning korans isnt any different than horribly offensive movies, skits, shows, books, etc... that have victimized Christianity, Judaism, and other religions/groups. Stuff like the piss christ or burning flags, etc... goes on all the time and most people just roll their eyes and lament the ignorance of their countrymen.

I agree, all those things you mentioned fall in the same category. They serve no purpose but to provoke. Not sure what a "piss christ" is but I doubt I would want to have anything to do with that either and would group the idiots that did with the koran burners. And flag burners are no better than the politicians that drape themselves in the flag - they are both violating the flag code-of-conduct for political purposes.


Savarel wrote:
As for the war, well it has become an unwinnable campaign against a virtual narco state setup in the southern/eastern portion of the country. US troops ignore drug dealing and sex slavery in the name of cultural understanding and then wonder why we never seem to gain any ground. It would take 200,000 troops, 20 years, and a few trillion dollars to run that place into a respectable nation.
[/quote]

Again, no argument, except I think you underestimate the costs!


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 4:10 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:31 pm
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piss_Christ

Its a Christian symbol(Jesus on the cross), submerged in urine and then passed off as art. It was the controversy dujour when it came out.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 4:32 pm 
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Savarel wrote:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piss_Christ

Its a Christian symbol(Jesus on the cross), submerged in urine and then passed off as art. It was the controversy dujour when it came out.


Ok, that's pretty dumb in my opinion. I can see why that would be patently offensive to many. And as an atheist, I would not take part in a display of it. I fail to see the artistic merit.

But anyone who understands how that would be offensive and provocative should understand why the Koran burning is offensive to Muslims. Are their sensibilities somehow unimportant? How "Christian" is that?


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 4:47 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
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Location: Ottawa, Canada
DoingHomework wrote:
But anyone who understands how that would be offensive and provocative should understand why the Koran burning is offensive to Muslims. Are their sensibilities somehow unimportant? How "Christian" is that?


The point is, there's a difference between being offended and indignant, and reacting with primitive violence. People were "offended" at the desecration of Christian symbols. But when Newsweek reported that guards in Guantanamo flushed a Koran down the toilet, 16 people died.

When a Danish cartoonist published a depiction of the Prophet Mohammed, buildings were destroyed and over 100 people died.

Because of a cartoon.

As far as I know, not one single person died over the "Piss Christ."

That's the difference.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 11:00 am 
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Well of course I would not condone violence. And I am not going to defend Muslim extremists for killing people. Nor would I defend Christian extremists for killing obstetricians. It's the same thing!

I'm glad the Florida whackos have the RIGHT to burn whatever they want. It's just a shame they don't have the intelligence and decency to refrain from what is nothing more than an attempt to incite.

We should eliminate all types of extremism and fundamentalism and there is no better place to start than right here at home.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 10:55 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
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Location: Ottawa, Canada
DoingHomework wrote:
Well of course I would not condone violence. And I am not going to defend Muslim extremists for killing people. Nor would I defend Christian extremists for killing obstetricians. It's the same thing!


DH, I see what you're trying to do, but I don't think it's working. While it's true that some Christian zealots have killed abortion doctors, they did it because of what they perceived as murder. Islamic extremists killed 100 people over a cartoon.

It's nowhere near the same league of craziness.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 7:33 am 

Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 10:59 am
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In Uganda, the anti-homosexuality law makes being gay a crime punishable by death. This law was inspired by American Christian missionaries that spoke to the Ugandan government.

Oh, can I claim the $100?

“It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind...
Three generations of imbeciles are enough.”

Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. in Buck v. Bell

In this case, a woman, Carrie Bell, was an unwed mother due to being raped. Her mother, Emma, had been institutionalized for being promiscuous. Carrie was forcibly sterilized by the state of Virginia for the crime of having a child (the child of her rapist) out of wedlock.


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 Post subject: Re: Florida church plans to burn Qur'an on 9/11
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 2:54 pm 
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kombat wrote:
DoingHomework wrote:
Well of course I would not condone violence. And I am not going to defend Muslim extremists for killing people. Nor would I defend Christian extremists for killing obstetricians. It's the same thing!


DH, I see what you're trying to do, but I don't think it's working. While it's true that some Christian zealots have killed abortion doctors, they did it because of what they perceived as murder. Islamic extremists killed 100 people over a cartoon.

It's nowhere near the same league of craziness.


Seems pretty crazy to me. I think they are BOTH wrong. Any extremists who condone or commit murder simply because they don't agree with what someone else legally did is a nutcase. Does that apply to capital punishment? No, because we have a system of government that has determined capital punishment is acceptable when certain procedures are followed. It is not doled out by idiots that simply don't like what someone said.

Christian whackos who kill obstetricians are in the same category as people who fly airplanes into buildings.


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