Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Who to blame, the bullies or the provocateur?

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Pastor Terry Jones
Pastor Terry Jones
[source: NY Daily News]

As you may have heard, Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center, a small church based in Gainesville, Florida, has decided to hold an “International Burn a Koran Day” this Saturday, which marks the 9th anniversary of 9/11. As you may also be able to tell, I am very much against this sort of sensationally bigoted stunt, and seeing Pastor Jones try to rationalize the likely negative consequences of this event only further demonstrates why this is a really fucking stupid idea:

"We think it's time to turn the tables, and instead of possibly blaming us for what could happen, we put the blame where it belongs — on the people who would do it," [Pastor Jones] said. "And maybe instead of addressing us, we should address radical Islam and send a very clear warning that they are not to retaliate in any form."

So, basically, Jones wants to be able to bully them without them bullying him back.

That’s exactly what the logic (or lack thereof) of his statement implies. This is the sort of idiotic reasoning constantly used by bigots to defend their vile acts – “Oh, but they deserved it!” – whilst simultaneously painting themselves as victims if they face retaliation. It’s stupid, it’s mindless, it’s pointlessly offensive, and worst of all, in cases such as this, it’s downright dangerous. The climate is already tense enough as it is. The last thing anyone needs is some dimwitted cowboy jumping in and deliberately pissing off millions and millions of Muslims out of sheer irrational hatred. Yeah, Islamist extremists are violent. But, I fail to see how giving them yet more fuel will help anything.