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On March 20th, Islamophobe and 19th Century throwback, "Pastor" Terry Jones, held a mock trial where he put the Koran on trial, found it guilty and then burned it with video cameras rolling. It was part of something they called "International Judge the Koran Day" which, apparently took place only in the sad little backwater community in Gainesville, Florida where Jones has his "church".

NOTE: This diary is a follow-up to aaraujo's diary yesterday, Terry Jones is going to get me killed. aaraujo is in the military and currently stationed in Afghanistan.

You can read more about the event HERE if you have the intestinal fortitude to wade through their drivel. Here's a snippet of the hypocritical pap that Jones spews about his "religion":

This has been set up like an American court. Whether you have liked it or not, we have been trying to follow that example.  In an American court, you cannot be found innocent or guilty without a consequence. If you are found innocent, then the consequence, of course, is very comfortable. You get to go home and are free. At the same time, if you have been found guilty and have been charged with a very serious charge, as we have done today, you have been charged with murder, if you have been convicted of murder, you do not get to go home.

It does not matter if you are loved, your Mummy and Daddy love you, you do not get to go home because you have killed someone, you have been convicted of murder, and because of that, you will face punishment. You will go to jail. You will possibly some day be electrocuted or you will be shot up with poison because you are a murderer, you have been convicted of murder, you will not get to go home. That is what justice is. That is why today, if the Koran is found guilty, we cannot just simply forgive. We cannot just simply say we have a verdict. That is it, we don’t do anything else, we have had a happy trial. We must have a consequence. The Koran, then, must symbolically, through some type of action, be punished...

Let me emphasize again that it is not that we burn the Koran with some type of vindictive motive. We do not even burn it with great pleasure, or any pleasure at all. We burn it because we feel a deep obligation to stay with the court system of America. The court system of America does not allow convicted criminals to go free. The punishment was chosen by the people. If anyone, including our defense attorney and his family feel highly offended and angered by this action, they are more than welcome to leave at this time. We would excuse them. We thank them very much for their participation. Anyone else who is angered and offended by this action, you are more than welcome to leave.

They even got some "Moslems" to participate to defend the Koran. Another "Moslem" is a convert to Christianity who supported Jones infantile display of Islamophobia and religious intolerance. You can read the impressions of one of Jones' pathetic, small-minded followers, one of the people on his "jury", HERE.

I was tempted to write about this caveman when it happened but decided not to give him the publicity. However, shit just got real.

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — Violent protests over the burning of a Koran in Florida flared for a second straight day, with young men rampaging through the streets of this southern capital, flying Taliban flags and wielding sticks.

Nine people were killed and 81 injured in the disturbances, all from bullet wounds, according to Abdul Qayoum Pakhla, head of the provincial health department. One of the dead was a police officer. Kandahar has long been the heartland of the Taliban insurgency but has been relatively quiet in recent months since a surge of additional American troops arrived here.

The protests here came a day after a mob overran the headquarters of the United Nations in Mazar-i-Sharif Friday, killing 12 persons, seven of them international staff. The mob gathered after three mullahs at Friday Prayer urged action in response to the Koran burning by a pastor, Terry Jones, in Florida on March 20.

Jones' response was a hypocritical call for "retribution" saying he feels "devastated" and that his group doesn't "feel responsible for that".

It's worth emphasizing something in the New York Times piece:

Kandahar has long been the heartland of the Taliban insurgency but has been relatively quiet in recent months since a surge of additional American troops arrived here.

Thanks to Jones, a low-intelligence, fear-mongering man who distorts the word of Jesus Christ to fit his perverted and distorted world view, what had been a relatively quite region in Afghanistan is now again in flames with workers from the United Nations and other innocent people dead because of his intentionally provocative acts. This is beyond the pale.

I'm sure he's very pleased with himself as he washes the blood from his hands. Meanwhile, the rest of us in have to deal with the consequences of his actions. Innocent men and women have died and more will surely die, probably including men and women in the military who are in Afghanistan trying to help set up a stable government so that we can leave. All to please a sick, twisted, terrified little man and his flock of mindless sheep that follow him.

UPDATE: Just so we're clear, I believe that the mindless morons rioting and killing people because of this tiny-minded man's actions are fully responsible for their own actions and I have nothing but full-thoated condemnation of what they have done and are doing. However, Jones knew exactly what he was doing and what the outcome would be (or at least hoped for it) so he is culpable in the deaths as well.

I'm just sayin'...

Originally posted to Eclectablog - eclectic blogging for a better tomorrow on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:41 AM PDT.

Also republished by Foreign Relations.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Jones knew exactly (24+ / 0-)

    what he was doing, and he got the result he hoped for. What a despicable, sorry excuse for a human being.

    I don't excuse the people who carried out these murders, nor do I excuse the imams who incited these people to mob violence. But Jones bears significant blame for this. You don't provoke a mother bear, then feign ignorance when someone gets attacked.

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:49:07 AM PDT

    •  Just to add (15+ / 0-)

      I believe this clown lost most of his flock last year when he first planned to, and then didn't burn, the Q'uran. Maybe the rest of them will wise up after this.

      Arraujo, who is in the military in Afghanistan, posted this diary yesterday: Terry Jones is going to get me killed. Short diary, but many comments.

      "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

      by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:54:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  More like poking a hungry alligator and (6+ / 0-)

      expecting it to roll over for a tummy rub.

      “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”, Theodore Roosevelt

      by the fan man on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:56:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I would like to think a goof like... (10+ / 0-)

      this Jones thought that no one would bother reacting to0 his ranting.

      SURPRISE!

      This man Terry Jones is no Christian.  He is a narrow minded bigot.  Nothing more....albeit a dangerously stupid one.

      Today, 4/2/11, 7147 US and allied soldiers, and untold Iraqis and Afghans are dead. Pres. Obama, you inherited Bush's lies, now stop the madness.

      by boilerman10 on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:57:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So Muslims are animals now? (4+ / 0-)

      Telling choice of metaphor.

    •  This is racist. (6+ / 0-)

      Muslims aren't animals in the wild, they're human beings.

      Those that carried out these attacks have free will and chose to take such offense two weeks later to some asshole a world away that burned a book and lash out murderously.

      Violence and hatred isn't built into the Muslim brain from birth.

      •  It is not racist but.. (0+ / 0-)

        ....it is a denial of agency.  

         Agreed otherwise.  

        "...after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it."

        by Alec82 on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 11:07:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  racist? I don't think so... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt, happy camper, Terra Mystica

        Jones' just insulted their religion, their culture and their identity, and happy camper takes care to note their culpability, but the fact of the matter is, they've been living under a regime of force (provided and enforced by westerners) and they live in a place where naked force is employed on a daily basis. Force generates a forceful response. Always.

        So their reaction was almost certain to take some kind of form like this. I don't see how it could have been avoided the instant Jones acted and made it public.

        We saw the same thing here after 9/11. I don't include our national response decided on in Washington, but in the incidents of people attacking Muslims. Hell, the Park 51 community center and mosque controversy, and Jones act itself is an expression of this.

        It's an insidious, self-replicating dynamic, and this vicious circle needs to be broken.

        Ok, it's worth a diary to explain how all this works out, and as it happens there's supporting data. Stay tuned.

        "The cure for bullshit is fieldwork."
        Robert H. Bates, Eaton Professor of the Science of Government, Harvard University.

        by papicek on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 11:19:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  You're calling me a racist (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JVolvo, Terra Mystica, obatanga night

        over my choice of a metaphor to describe Jones' actions? You have no idea who I am, or what I think.

        Muslims aren't animals in the wild, they're human beings.
        I never said they were.
        Those that carried out these attacks have free will
        Read my comment again.
        Violence and hatred isn't built into the Muslim brain from birth.
        I never said that, either.

        Metaphors are comparisons that show how two things that are not alike in most ways are similar in one important way. The reaction of some Muslim fundamentalists to desecration of their holy book is to lash out at the nearest suitable target--the way a mother bear would if she felt her cubs were threatened. Does that make it more clear to you?

        This has happened in the past, and Jones certainly expected it to happen again. That's the reason he did it.

        The fact that any people can be incited to murder strangers over a perceived slight to their religion is just proof of Voltaire's observation that "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities."

        "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

        by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 12:35:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  For fuck's sake. (7+ / 0-)

      Terry Jones, a moron of galactic proportions, burned a book.

      A world away, Islamic fundamentalist lunatics killed 8 people and injured 81 others, because a world away, Terry Jones, a moron of galactic proportions, burned a book.

      Terry Jones, a moron of galactic proportions is responsible for burning a book.

      A world away, Islamic fundamentalists are responsible for killing 8 people and wounding scores of others.

      For fuck's sake.  Terry fucking Jones, who will do the planet a big favor when he isn't on it any more, burned a book.  That's what you're legally allowed to do in the United States.  You can be a moron.  And you can burn books.  And nothing Terry fucking Moron burns here makes him responsible for Islamic fundamentalists killing 8 people and injuring 81 others.  

      •  Free speech has limits. (0+ / 0-)

        Such as these, defined by the SC in Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 1942

        There are certain well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech, the prevention and punishment of which have never been thought to raise any constitutional problem. These include the lewd and obscene, the profane, the libelous, and the insulting or "fighting words" those that by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace. It has been well observed that such utterances are no essential part of any exposition of ideas, and are of such slight social value as a step to truth that any benefit that may be derived from them is clearly outweighed by the social interest in order and morality.
        Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, nor do I play one on the internet. But it seems to me this sort of speech might not be as protected as some others.

        Any lawyers here?

        "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

        by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 12:47:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Let's think about the word "immediate." (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Recall

          What do YOU think it means?

          "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

          by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 02:05:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Do you think (0+ / 0-)

            Jones deserves a pass because the Afghanis didn't hear about his actions until later? They were told what he did, and they then went on a murderous rampage because of it. Is that immediate enough for you?

            Intent is part of the concept of fighting words. His intent is very clear. This is the guy who had the Pentagon asking him not to do this shit last year, because it would put people in danger.

            He knew what would happen, and he did it anyway. Now he's claiming the UN must hold "Islam" responsible.

            Now, let's think about the word "patronizing". Do you think it's a good way to foster discussion?

            "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

            by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 02:30:07 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Jones a sad pathetic fool (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Recall

              who is garnishing some small publicity over his willingness to engage in over the top bigotry.  

              He doesn't deserve a "pass" for anything that he did, but he doesn't deserve to be accused of crimes just because you don't like what he did and because someone days later chose to commit their own crimes in response.

              Incitement is about immediate response to inflammatory rhetoric.  That was mentioned in your quote.  If you think it's "patronizing" for me to point this out, there's little I can do to convince you otherwise.

              "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

              by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 02:57:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  The court rejected that argument (0+ / 0-)

          in Texas v. Johnson (the flag burning case). The burning of a symbol is not considered to qualify as "fighting words."

          •  Texas v. Johnson link (0+ / 0-)

            http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/...

            The State's position, therefore, amounts to a claim that an audience that takes serious offense at particular expression is necessarily likely to disturb the peace and that the expression may be prohibited on this basis. 5 Our precedents do not countenance such a presumption. On the contrary, they recognize that a principal "function of free speech under our system of government is to invite dispute. It may indeed best serve its high purpose when it induces a condition of unrest, creates dissatisfaction with conditions as they are, or [491 U.S. 397, 409]   even stirs people to anger."

    •  republished... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eclectablog, happy camper, JVolvo

      by the Foreign Relations Group, with the following Editor's note:

      There aren't words to describe Terry Jones' criminal stupidity, and I find myself in agreement with happy camper that Jones' intent was to incite violence. In our bookstore, we are mindful of those who insist that any copy of the Qur'an be on the top shelve. For some, it is a symbolic act of faith that no other book should be above it. Burning a Qur'an? OMG

      There's no way this wasn't deliberate.

      "The cure for bullshit is fieldwork."
      Robert H. Bates, Eaton Professor of the Science of Government, Harvard University.

      by papicek on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 10:44:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He got the result he wanted ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eclectablog, JVolvo

      aided by the media.  He is not alone in his guilt..  While he has every right to say what he believes and take the actions he took, he has no 'right' to be amplified through the media.  The media makes choices each and every day on what it covers and what it does not.  It is implicit in aiding Jone's hate-mongering through the incessant coverage.

      Note to American media and journalists everywhere: you don't have to cover every idiot who tries to force his idiocy into the forefront of politics.   You have an obligation to weigh the consequences of doing so, and in the instance of Jones, you made a little known piece of trash into an international embarrassment who incited violence and killing. You are responsible.

      We need to start now, this very instant, holding those in positions to make better decisions over what is 'news' accountable for their lack of intelligence.

      'Destroying America, One middle class family and one civil liberty at a time: Today's GOP'

      by emsprater on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 10:49:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The American media DID hold off on publishing (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MartyM, greatdarkspot

        the story.

        The reason the Afghani's learned about Terry fucking moron Jones and his book burning is because Karzai, Afghanistan's president, ANNOUNCED it.  Where is HIS culpability?

        •  They DIDN'T hold off on ... (0+ / 0-)

          taking an unknown, unkempt moron and putting him front and center in the public eye when the whole thing began.

          Otherwise, Karzai wouldn't even have known this idiot's name.

          'Destroying America, One middle class family and one civil liberty at a time: Today's GOP'

          by emsprater on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 04:47:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  the american court system that i know (13+ / 0-)

    does not find one innocent, it assumes one is innocent.

    Whatever action a great man performs, common men follow. And whatever standards he sets by exemplary acts, all the world pursues. The Gita 3.21

    by rasbobbo on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:56:00 AM PDT

  •  Jones is a reprehensible bigot (8+ / 0-)

    but I'm not inclined to hold him accountable for events on the other side of the globe in which other people chose to engage.

    "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

    by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 07:58:39 AM PDT

    •  You agree with Rev Jones' message (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      emsprater, skrekk, MartyM
      Pastor Terry Jones: a homophobic used furniture salesman with a love of controversy

      He said he was "absolutely not responsible" for the atrocities, and tried to move the conversation to Muslims, saying: "We must take a serious, serious look at Islam. It's a violent religion that promotes acts of violence. I believe we need to bring this before the UN."

      You're in good company...NOT!

      Plutocracy too long tolerated leaves democracy on the auction block, subject to the highest bidder ~ Bill Moyers

      by Lefty Coaster on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 10:15:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He would not be held accountable (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skrekk, MartyM

      in a US court. But, if you do something knowing that it will likely produce violence after being repeatedly warned by all and sundry, then I think that it is ethically reasonable to hold that person responsible for the consequences of his actions. As a matter of personal ethics, you can chose not to, but I don't.

    •  We don't know how the burning was portrayed in (0+ / 0-)

      Afghanistan - it's likely the news we're getting here is quite different from the portrayal there, and I suspect a direct link is being drawn between the burning and official US policy - I very much doubt this was portrayed as the work of a fringe cult.  Words like this from Jones are especially a problem:

      We burn it because we feel a deep obligation to stay with the court system of America. The court system of America does not allow convicted criminals to go free. The punishment was chosen by the people.

      Not to excuse violent religious extremists, but the message we're sending is "we'll occupy your country for 9 years for a crime you didn't commit, keep that occupation going because we're concerned about your southern neighbor, torture and kill your men, bomb your wedding parties and kill your women & children, and now we'll disrespect your faith."

      •  Afghanis were told the "U.S." (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skrekk

        supported burning the Koran - rather than one fringe religious cult.
        And these Afghanis are illiterate and easily influenced.

        If the GOP did ONE thing to help the average worker, Unions would donate to THEM.

        by MartyM on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 11:59:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Why didn't U.S. media tell us Jones had (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kestrel9000, collardgreens

    done this last weekend?  (I wonder if more security measures would have been taken that could have prevented this slaughter if more people had known what Jones had done.)

    The influence of the [executive] has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished.

    by lysias on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:02:44 AM PDT

  •  I don't know who is worst.... (5+ / 0-)

    This Jones asshole for doing this to purposely stir people up, or the assholes who would get so worked up over some clown burning a book half way around the World, that they would murder innocents. Both are reprehensible.

    Just another day in Oceania.

    by drshatterhand on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:04:52 AM PDT

  •  This diary is as wrong as Jones (15+ / 0-)

    Jones is an asshole.  That's absolutely true.

    But there is absolutely no justification for killing innocent people because somebody in the US burned a book.  That's disgusting and horrible.

    •  Nobody is saying otherwise (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TFinSF, emsprater, Nimbus, PeterHug, JVolvo

      But he's as culpable as they are because he knew the impact it would have.

      "Back off, man. I'm a scientist."
      -- Dr. Peter Venkman

      by Eclectablog on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:07:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't agree (6+ / 0-)

        If you used the word "responsible" I think you'd have an argument to make, but he's not guilty of the acts of violence, though I can see an argument (I'd probably disagree with it) to be made to the effect that he's partially responsible.  

        But really: incitement is generally about whipping up a crowd in the heat of the moment to do something that goes beyond the pale.   But really, anyone ready to start a riot because they are offended by the non-violent actions of someone else across the globe is just looking for any reason they can come up with to start that riot.

        "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

        by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:11:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I Just Love (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          emsprater, radmul

          The amerikan mentality, Not!!!

          As it raises the bar on so called 'free speech',  that which if pointed at the ones doin would and does get them royally pissed!!

          In case you missed it, we've occupying and destrying as we kill and maim others in their country while the folks here, no different then the extremist anywhere, have been condemning All who belong to a religious ideology, while those here claim "God" as their supreme leader!!

          What's been going on, since both occupations of choice started, has been getting Soldiers 'over there' killed and maimed and innocent civilians, there, anywhere a criminal terrorist seeks and can do harm in retaliation, on this planet the same in 'terror' attacks while we wage blatant terror there and terror with words here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          CCR:"If you're a torturer, be careful in your travel plans. It's a slow process for accountability, but we keep going."

          by jimstaro on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:26:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Words and Actions (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lefty Coaster, emsprater, PeterHug

          Cut like bullets and bombs into those directed at, just ask us who've served in our wars of choice why they continue and reap recruits as they do!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          Look at the school bully and the actions taken by kids being the victims of!!

          This asswipe, and Oh So Many More, like a whole cable channel, are just as guilty as if they shot those they point their intolerant hate speak and actions at with guns!!!!!!!

          CCR:"If you're a torturer, be careful in your travel plans. It's a slow process for accountability, but we keep going."

          by jimstaro on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:31:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed. The point is not that they overreacted, (0+ / 0-)

        it's that he had good reason to know that they would overreact, and it didn't make any difference to him. He wanted to make a point, put on a show, and get publicity, and did so knowing that the result would probably be a riot, at the very least, or some murderous act of retaliation. And that was OK with him, and that makes him responsible (if not legally, then morally).

  •  Conrast these actions with... (9+ / 0-)

    ...how muslim scholars feel about the Bible. Sure, they see it as 'corrupted' but stil treat it as holy scripture. Around 9/11 last year, when Terry Jones planned his first Koran Burnings, my local (Dutch) newspaper interviewed someone teaching at the (conservative!) Al Azhar University in Cairo and asked the question why there aren't any muslims burning Bibles. His answer was a shocked: "To burn holy scripture would be blasphemy! This is forbidden for any muslim!"
    I find this answer much more in the spirit of Jesus than what this self-appionted "pastor" did!

  •  The only people responsible for these (8+ / 0-)

    attacks are those who carried them out.

    Pastor Jones is an asshole that burned a book, but he did nothing violent.

    Middle East Muslims aren't children, and shouldn't be treated as such.  They can control their own actions.

    •  I agree with you wholeheartedly........ (6+ / 0-)

      There are many things people in this world do that I don't like but I would never go pluck some innocent person off the street and kill them over it.

      What a ridiculous notion that people can not or will not control their actions.

      "A senseless tragedy remains forever tragic, but it's up to us whether it remains forever senseless - Robert Brault

      by MsLillian on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:22:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What it reminds me of... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lefty Coaster, bobsc

        ...is a discussion I had some years ago when the big controversy was over "gangsta rap".  I pointed out that lyrics glorifying substance abuse, violence and promiscuity can be found in many genres of music, including jazz, rock, country and even opera.  The predictable response was, "well, that's different."  Further discussion revealed that the real difference, in that person's mind, was that young black men are somehow not able to handle hearing those kinds of themes without proceeding to act them out.  

    •  true - the entire premise of this diary (0+ / 0-)

      might be questioned. The rioters were people who have spent a decade under military occupation by a foreign power which for the most part has contempt for their faith - that is, the most important thing in their existence - which has imposed a corrupt and brutal government on them, and which seems to have no intention of going away or allowing them to control their own destiny. That's why they rioted. I find it hard to condemn them for being upset and taking action, though if I were Afghan (and therefore felt I had a moral right to weigh in with them on the issue) I would certainly question their approach and choice of targets!

    •  You are in agreement with Rev Jones on that (0+ / 0-)

      Plutocracy too long tolerated leaves democracy on the auction block, subject to the highest bidder ~ Bill Moyers

      by Lefty Coaster on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 10:20:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Jones is a scam artist (5+ / 0-)

    douchebag that belongs in jail.  His "church" is a joke and nothing more than a tax evasion scheme.  He basically got his ass kicked out of Germany for running a scam.  Were he in jail, where he belongs maybe his addle brained followers would go get real jobs and be too busy working to babble mindless bullshit from their bibles.

    ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

    by Kristina40 on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:26:04 AM PDT

  •  While he may be a racist and islamophobe. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tytalus, bobsc, radmul, pasadena beggar

    The rioters are to blame, not him.

    As an athiest I don't care one whit whether the Bible or Torah or Koran or the Books of Mormon are being used for kindling.  All religions are equally illegitimate.

    Distrust of authority should be the first civic duty. - Norman Douglas

    by Fossil on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 08:33:27 AM PDT

  •  Jones and Free Speech (7+ / 0-)

    I condemn what Jones says and does.

    But I am also appalled at how quickly we Americans surrender our free speech rights under threat from abroad.  

    Pakistanis and Afghans can enact whatever laws they want for themselves.  But once we begin to accept that what they want in Afghanistan or Pakistan should govern the US, the First Amendment is done for.

    "Hidden in the idea of radical openness is an allegiance to machines instead of people." - Jaron Lanier

    by FDRDemocrat on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 09:16:25 AM PDT

    •  The First Amendment guarantee of free speech (0+ / 0-)

      is not infinite, nor is it absolute.  There are things that you can say which are NOT permitted as protected speech - IANAL, but I think that this is called the "fighting words" doctrine (wiki link) and I would say that burning a Koran after a halfassed fake trial would probably count.

      •  Texas v. Johnson (0+ / 0-)

        A

        Texas claims that its interest in preventing breaches of the peace justifies Johnson's conviction for flag desecration. 4   [491 U.S. 397, 408]   However, no disturbance of the peace actually occurred or threatened to occur because of Johnson's burning of the flag. Although the State stresses the disruptive behavior of the protestors during their march toward City Hall, Brief for Petitioner 34-36, it admits that "no actual breach of the peace occurred at the time of the flagburning or in response to the flagburning." Id., at 34. The State's emphasis on the protestors' disorderly actions prior to arriving at City Hall is not only somewhat surprising given that no charges were brought on the basis of this conduct, but it also fails to show that a disturbance of the peace was a likely reaction to Johnson's conduct. The only evidence offered by the State at trial to show the reaction to Johnson's actions was the testimony of several persons who had been seriously offended by the flag burning. Id., at 6-7.

        The State's position, therefore, amounts to a claim that an audience that takes serious offense at particular expression is necessarily likely to disturb the peace and that the expression may be prohibited on this basis. 5 Our precedents do not countenance such a presumption. On the contrary, they recognize that a principal "function of free speech under our system of government is to invite dispute. It may indeed best serve its high purpose when it induces a condition of unrest, creates dissatisfaction with conditions as they are, or [491 U.S. 397, 409]   even stirs people to anger." Terminiello v. Chicago, 337 U.S. 1, 4 (1949). See also Cox v. Louisiana, 379 U.S. 536, 551 (1965); Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School Dist. 393 U.S., at 508 -509; Coates v. Cincinnati, 402 U.S. 611, 615 (1971); Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell, 485 U.S. 46, 55 -56 (1988). It would be odd indeed to conclude both that "if it is the speaker's opinion that gives offense, that consequence is a reason for according it constitutional protection," FCC v. Pacifica Foundation, 438 U.S. 726, 745 (1978) (opinion of STEVENS, J.), and that the government may ban the expression of certain disagreeable ideas on the unsupported presumption that their very disagreeableness will provoke violence.

        Thus, we have not permitted the government to assume that every expression of a provocative idea will incite a riot, but have instead required careful consideration of the actual circumstances surrounding such expression, asking whether the expression "is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action." Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444, 447 (1969) (reviewing circumstances surrounding rally and speeches by Ku Klux Klan). To accept Texas' arguments that it need only demonstrate "the potential for a breach of the peace," Brief for Petitioner 37, and that every flag burning necessarily possesses that potential, would be to eviscerate our holding in Brandenburg. This we decline to do.

        Nor does Johnson's expressive conduct fall within that small class of "fighting words" that are "likely to provoke the average person to retaliation, and thereby cause a breach of the peace." Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 315 U.S. 568, 574 (1942). No reasonable onlooker would have regarded Johnson's generalized expression of dissatisfaction with the policies of the Federal Government as a direct personal insult or an invitation to exchange fisticuffs. See id., at 572-573; Cantwell v. Connecticut, 310 U.S. 296, 309 (1940); FCC v. Pacifica Foundation, supra, at 745 (opinion of STEVENS, J.). [491 U.S. 397, 410]  

        We thus conclude that the State's interest in maintaining order is not implicated on these facts. The State need not worry that our holding will disable it from preserving the peace. We do not suggest that the First Amendment forbids a State to prevent "imminent lawless action." Brandenburg, supra, at 447. And, in fact, Texas already has a statute specifically prohibiting breaches of the peace, Tex. Penal Code Ann. 42.01 (1989), which tends to confirm that Texas need not punish this flag desecration in order to keep the peace. See Boos v. Barry, 485 U.S., at 327 -329.

        •  Could you explicate this a bit for us nonlawyers? (0+ / 0-)

          Although I think the important part is this:

          We do not suggest that the First Amendment forbids a State to prevent "imminent lawless action."

          And the question then becomes, was the burning of the Koran by this idiot an action that could predictably lead to "imminent lawless action"?  I will leave that question open...

    •  I support free speech but... (0+ / 0-)

      ...if you shout "fire!" in a crowded theater and people are trampled to death trying to flee the nonexistent fire, you're still partially responsible for their death.

      Another analogy: a gunman has a gun to a hostage's head and says "I'll shoot this kid if anyone gets any closer." Someone runs at him and he shoots the kid.

      Doesn't the person running at him have some culpability?

      "Back off, man. I'm a scientist."
      -- Dr. Peter Venkman

      by Eclectablog on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 11:30:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And, similarly, if you (2+ / 0-)

        film a movie in which you shout "fire" and play it in a crowded theater on the other side of the globe, you are responsible for the people being trampled to death.

        Right?

        "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

        by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 12:11:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I am sorry, but that is not correct (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greatdarkspot

          Burning a Koran (or Bible or copy of the Constitution or whatever) is NOT the same as shouting "fire" in a crowded theater.

          Shouting "fire" falsely panics people into taking legitimate actions for self survival - to escape the flames - that they would not otherwise take.

          There is no correlation with book burning.  There is no threat to life or safety for the fanatics themselves from seeing a picture or reading a newspaper.  

          I can't believe this analogy is being trotted out.  

          What is in fact occurring here is mass intimidation.  People are so afraid of being called Islamophobes that they are letting a bunch of medieval fanatics determine what is the acceptable discourse in the USA.  Let's call it for what it is.

          "Hidden in the idea of radical openness is an allegiance to machines instead of people." - Jaron Lanier

          by FDRDemocrat on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 12:57:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I wonder if Mr Jones has a target (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happy camper

    on his head like Salmon Rushdie did and the Norwegian(?) fellow who published an anti Islamic cartoon.

    "Get up, Stand up" ~ Bob Marley

    by trinityfly on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 09:20:57 AM PDT

    •  I'm sure (0+ / 0-)

      some Imam somewhere will declare that Jones is fair game. It's inevitable.

      Before I get accused of singling out Muslims, allow me to note that there is no shortage of Christian assholes who call for death to Muslims.

      "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

      by happy camper on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 01:02:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Somebody should introduce Jones to "Jesus" (4+ / 0-)

    a very wise man (some say more) who taught that hate is wrong. Jones obviously doesn't believe that.

    Don't let millionaires steal Social Security.

    by Leo in NJ on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 09:21:29 AM PDT

  •  Hitting pastor Jones where it hurts (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kristina40, PeterHug, skrekk, JVolvo

    I'd recommend reading this article based on the headline alone, but at the end it offers some useful information on Jones himself, his church -- described as a cult by his daughter -- and the furniture company he uses to fund his activities.

    He has the right to believe whatever he wishes, and the freedom to speak of it. He does not have the right to make a living off it, and no one is obliged to buy his used furniture. He does not have a right to the media attention he craves.

    I'm finding a lot of things funny lately. But I don't think they are. -- Ripley

    by tytalus on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 09:39:52 AM PDT

  •  Jones tried to start World War to hasten EndTimes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cliss

    and he may keep trying.

    Plutocracy too long tolerated leaves democracy on the auction block, subject to the highest bidder ~ Bill Moyers

    by Lefty Coaster on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 10:05:36 AM PDT

  •  The people that were killed - (0+ / 0-)

    I believe they were NATO troops, 1 Swede, I believe 1 Belgian and others.

    If I were NATO, I would pull all the NATO troops out of Afghanistan until the US can control its fanatics at home.  

    And tell the Pentagon we're not coming back until you do.  

  •  When people can be held legally responsible (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cliss

    for putting on freak shows that are calculated to push people over the edge of sanity, then we can go after this troglodyte. And after that, Limbaugh and Beck.  But as of today, they can't be held legally responsible. Now holding them up as pariahs, shunning them, boycotting them, or otherwise calling them out on their evil pantomimes is perfectly fine.

    Unfortunately these cretins seem to thrive on the negative attention... It just becomes more grist for their mills, in the end.

    People just have to have the individual common sense to turn away from the spectacle, once in a while, and the media needs to stop rewarding them with the exposure they crave.

  •  We have jailed folks for worse...Wikileaks!! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cliss

    This guy really deserves solitary confinement.
    If our government wants to lock up people,
    here's a guy that they should pick up.

  •  They are both nutjobs..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happy camper

    Terry Jones is a deviant insane man. Nobody in their right mind would waste their time doing something so stupid in the first place.....a mock trial of the Koran! Only a nutjob comes up with the idea! Then to carry it out! AND to video it with the express intention of inciting anger and upset overseas. That's just evil and rotten. Pure nutjobbery.

    However, the nutjobs overseas who would kill people over this....ain't no better. Nutjobbery and the highest, most expreme, insane, and unwarranted level.

    We need to get out of Afghanistan. This is a losing battle and it's not our job to drag them into the 21st century. I love the idea of this historic country being terrorist free, and women being able to go out of the house safely on their own, and the children...ah, the children...wouldn't it be nice if they were all going to school and the girls didn't have to worry about being attacked on the way there. They are beautiful, proud, and ancient people. I would love to see them gracefully come into a slightly more modern form of existence with justice and equality...and lights and running water.  But it's time for us to leave. We can't cure all the woes of the world, and we can't kill every terrorist in the world.

    I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. Thomas Jefferson

    by Lucy2009 on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 12:06:03 PM PDT

  •  This is a real dilemma (0+ / 0-)

    I don't know if Jones can be charged with reckless endangerment, and if an American dies as a direct consequence of this action, then he could be civilly sued I would imagine. Remember, free speech is one thing, but what caused the mayhem in Afghanistan was the production and distribution of a video. In the internet age it's like having a global soap box.

    However, I also feel ambivalent about that tactic since it basically provides some legitimacy to the murderous response of a mob in Afghanistan. I am atheist, and would rather we all just got rid of this idiocy altogether, but I don't think this should even be understood as a solely religious issue.
    Afghanistan is a very tribal society, and what often goes with that territory is an exaggerated sense of honour and dishonour. What Jones intentionally did was to deeply dishonour Muslims, and a subset has obligingly responded. When I hear American troops talk about "ragheads", I am not only disgusted, I'm also thinking - that's the attitude that get's you or your buddy killed.
    Right now there's not much we can do to change attitudes in a society where some would agree with individuals throwing acid in the face of girls trying to go to school.
    But there's a lot I think we can do to get fundamentalist "Christians" to begin to understand what they are doing. Whatever the Koran was found "guilty" of - the same could surely be said in a corresponding trial of the Bible. Of course it would have to be a liberal trial, but I would want Chris Hitchens as the judge - and the punishment would need to be suitably liberal and tolerant - like requiring a national program of religious education - where all major religions and their "holy" books are studied. That's what I had in high school in the UK, and I can't think of a better way to produce atheists in America.

    •  Really? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pasadena beggar
      I don't know if Jones can be charged with reckless endangerment,

      He can't.

      and if an American dies as a direct consequence of this action, then he could be civilly sued I would imagine.

      Only in the sense that anyone can be civilly sued for anything.

      "The first rule of pillow fight club is do not talk about pillow fight club." --Keith Olbermann

      by Julie Waters on Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 02:07:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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