Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Quote of the Day

"We know this is not just the decision of a church. It is the decision of the president and the entire United States."

-- 18-year-old Abdul Shakoor, who took part in a protest in Kabul over the weekend in response to the Dove World Outreach Church's plan to burn copies of the Koran on September 11th

General David Petraeus warns that moving ahead with this giant Bonfire of the Inanities will potentially put the lives of American troops at risk overseas, seeing as how most people in staunchly Muslim countries don't take too kindly to their holy book being barbecued. The idea that something done by a bunch of dumb-ass rednecks in Gainesville, Florida can resonate around the globe is just shocking in and of itself. But make no mistake, this is exactly what the psychotic, hyper-Christian Muslim-bashers are hoping to accomplish: some kind of holy war pitting Blue-Eyed NASCAR Jesus against that false-prophet, Muhammed. And people wonder why I despise faith-based religion across the board. Substitute two groups of people shrieking at each other over whether Zeus can beat up Apollo and you start to realize how bloody fucking ridiculous the entire thing is.

The first thing I thought of, however, when reading the above quote was a piece that ran recently on 60 Minutes which detailed something called "The Narrative" -- basically the story that many in Islamic countries have come to hold tightly to which states that there is an organized effort in the West to destroy Islam and anyone who tells you differently isn't to be trusted. Gosh, people who refuse to allow their iron-clad beliefs about and preconceptions of others to be shaken by logic, reason and facts. Why does that sound so familiar these days?


Busayo said...

I do wish we could put both sides of this fundamentalist asshats on a island with clubs and watch them beat each other to death on pay per view. Winner (if they can be called that) gets devoured by the fuck-off komodo dragons, end of 'holy war.'

toastie said...

Do any of the "good Christians" who condemn the Koran-burning see the parallel between how these Afghans are viewing the entire U.S. and how many in the U.S. view all of Islam?

Anyway, let me know where the Left Behind book-burning is happening.

Deacon Blue said...

Yes, yes, yes. Insert Communism vs. the West throughout the '70s and '80s and you get same effect. I bet you would too if you look at any number of ethnic-oriented conflicts in Eastern Europe or in many parts of the Middle East, where religion is actually of little or no consequence in the lingering beef between the groups.

We have a group of idiots in the United States doing something dangerous, useless and ultimately stupid.

In the Middle East we have a bunch of areas where religious folks are allowed to wield direct power over people and/or the government sanctions the religious stuff.

It seems to me less an argument about removing religion than trying to get more governments to keep religion out of the governing.

But that's going to take a whole lot of economic, cultural and educational effort. But it's the core answer to the problem. Eliminating religion is not.

Anonymous said...

not clubs... forks and knives.

VOTAR said...

Right on cue. Didn't take long at all this time.

Anonymous said...

Slacktivist wrote a great post about this, with more eloquence than I am able.


Anonymous said...

I've always thought it's incredibly ironic how these two groups who hate each other so passionately have failed to see how similar they are.

Deacon Blue said...

Are you talking about me, VOTAR? I suspect you are.

If so, am I wrong?


Communist USSR (and allies) vs. the West (and allies) brought us closer to the destruction of civilization itself than any other era in history.

And it was all based on ideological/political/economic differences.

And the legacy of that Cold War continues to haunt and threaten us today.

And the Communist governments, especially the USSR, arguably more insane than even the U.S. under Reagan, were AGAINST religion.

Terrorism, particularly based on religion, is visceral and scary. But terrorists even getting their hands on a dirty bomb or two...or a Muslim controlled nation with crazies in charge who have a few nukes, STILL pose less danger than a world power that was mad at us for everything BUT religion pretty much.

Doesn't make religious extremist good. Doesn't make it less scary. But it doesn't make religion the enemy.

Just a convenient target. Visible and easily mocked.

Rivalen said...

Chez, where did the quote from Abdul come from?

I want to use this with some students and, apparently, the board of ed considers you a tad inappropriate in the language department. What the fuck do they know?

Anonymous said...

"Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together and burned them before all men and they counted the price of them and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver. So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed." Acts 19:19-2012
These people have read their Bible and are acting accordingly. The problem is not "extremists," the problem is Christianity, and faith, itself. People don't twist Christianity and Islam: Christianity and Islam are twisted. Read more Sam Harris.

Deacon Blue said...

With all due respect, Anon...they weren't burning random books first of all. The context of the passage was that they were books related to sorcery and such. Rather specific, and the people were burning their OWN books on sorcery as part of declaring that they were choosing God's path and changing their OWN ways.

That's pretty specific...not a general sign off on burning books.

Besides, even if it were, the apostles were known to go off on a few tangents that didn't have much to do with what Jesus had taught.

Part of the process of establishing the early church was a lot of seat of their pants administrative decision-making, sometimes ill advised or more appropriate to that society and time than our own.