Thursday, September 9, 2010
Impending November Insanity
(Picture from here.)
I wonder if American elections would be less crazy if we just held them in the summer. I sometimes wonder if we all suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Probably not. We'd probably be just as crazy. Here we are two years after the 2008 election and Sarah Palin is still around, a fair amount of people think Obama's a Muslim and some nutcase (in Florida-- no surprise there) wants to have Burn a Koran Day.
I suppose that if Terry Jones thinks it's okay to burn a pile of Qurans, he would presumably think it's also alright for a Muslim to burn a pile of Bibles, right? After all, free speech is free speech? How much do you want to bet he'd give that great mantra of the offended: There ought to be a law!
As far as I'm concerned people can burn anything they want-- subject to fire codes, etc. Qurans, Bibles, Constitutions, Flags, leaves, buildings. I don't care. That's what free speech is about. I think burning pets is bad. And we fought wars over the burning of people. But paper? Doesn't bother me. Burning a book is merely symbolic of not liking something associated with the book-- in Terry Jones' case it's Muslims. He don't like 'em. And he's a camwhore so I'm not surprised he brought up the idea of burning a Quran.
Terry Jones is Florida's answer to the Fred Phelps.
Banning books-- making them inaccessible-- is a far more serious matter. You can download the Quran, Bible, etc. Unlike the Nazi book burnings, this does nothing to take the content out of circulation. It's just some jackass preacher in a podunk church in Gainesville pissing in the face of a religion he knows nothing about.
Hence, it's an empty symbolic gesture for the sole purpose of boosting the contemptible 50 member congregation church.
But, apparently, there are a lot of these gestures going around.
Acts of this kind are theater and the question for me is always who's the audience? Who's listening?