Caution! Strong opinions ahead! I’m not one to stand on my soap box and rant for very long. And, I hate to give more space to a topic that doesn’t deserve it. But, the recent BS involving the burning of a particular religious tome has me fuming.
Let me make something clear right off the bat; I proscribe to no church/religion of this Earth. I believe that it’s a foolish endeavor to even attempt to perceive the wants and desires of a potential deity. That being said, I hold nothing against those who do follow in the ways of a particular creed. If that works for you, all the power to you. I was raised Roman Catholic and still feel that living a Christian lifestyle (note the subtle difference) has its merits. However, don’t try to sell me on your beliefs or tell me that what I’m doing is wrong in the eyes of God/Allah/Yahweh/etc. You don’t intrude on me, I don’t intrude on you…we all live happily ever after. Right?
Yeah…so, anyway…there’s this pastor (love the handlebar mustache by the way) in Florida who’s threatening to burn a bunch of Qurans in a protest against Islam, which they claim to be the Devil. Now, there are several points of irony here, not the least of which is that all this hubbub is coming from a pastor with a congregation of 50 in Gainesville, FL. Hmmm…let me think about this…WHO CARES!? If the media had simply ignored this nitwit, nobody would have noticed a little extra smoke in the woods off of I-75. Instead, the media have turned a molehill into a mountain. What should have been a nonevent is suddenly going to have international ramifications. To think, that people might actually die because of this idiot boggles my mind!
But, it comes down to the vicious cycle of that darned free speech again, doesn’t it? He has a right to burn whatever text he wants in the eyes of the law (so long as he has a permit…which he doesn’t). And, unfortunately, the media has the freedom to dig up any backwoods, right-wing, squeaky wheel they want. And, boy can they find them. Maybe we need to establish a filter system…hmm…then it wouldn’t exactly be free speech would it. Crap. How about an intelligence cap? Nah, I’ve met just as many educated nitwits as I’ve met uneducated geniuses.
I guess we’ve just got to let the nitwits speak and keep oiling the squeaky wheels. With the ninth anniversary of 9/11 upon us, you would have thought that setting fire to something as a form of protest in this country would have lost its lure. It harkens to darker days that I’m glad to have not lived through (yeah...remember the Nazis? They had a thing for burning books too). It isn’t about the books or the words within them. It never has been. It’s about those who are interpreting what’s written. That’s the trouble with the written language; there’s no interpretive guide for the uneducated or close-minded. Can the Quran be interpreted as promoting violence against Christians? Perhaps. Read the nursery rhyme Baa Baa Black Sheep a certain way and it’s racist (which it isn’t…though the Brits thought it might be back in the ‘80s). Read the Bible a certain way and you’ve got a license to hate homosexuals. Hmmm...maybe we should all just stop this whole reading nonsense. Right...and while I'm at it, I'll just stop all involuntary muscle movement in my body.
So, what’s the crux? Don’t give too much oil to the squeaky wheel. Don’t burn books. Don’t buy into someone else’s interpretation of something before you’ve seen/read it for yourself. Oh, and try to avoid the handlebar mustache. It worked for Hulk Hogan…and that’s about it.
Okay…the soap box is starting to creak. I’m stepping off. Hopefully, I haven't insulted anyone...too badly. If everything started with peace, then we wouldn't have to keep wishing that it would end that way. Peace.
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