The Media’s Role in the Media Circus

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An Imam, a Pastor and Donald Trump walk into a bar.

No, that is not the beginning of a joke. With the exception of the bar part, these three unlikely characters all played a role in what can only be called a media circus this evening. The place to be to see how insane things have become was Twitter where the Tweets flew fast and furious with each revelation more bizarre than the previous one.

“Jones won’t burn Korans on assurance that Ground Zero Mosque will be moved.”

“Mosque developers say no deal.”

“Donald Trump buys mosque site.” (Trump’s offer was summarily dismissed.)

I got as wrapped up emotionally as many other folks in the Twittersphere. I was livid at the notion that some quid pro quo was being suggested between the Koran burning and the location of the NYC Islamic center. Tuning into MSNBC didn’t help as Chris Matthews’ coverage started to hit all my “hot buttons” (as Ed Schultz would say).  But then Mr. Hot Button himself, Ed Schultz came on and set me straight in two ways.

His opening rant concerned our government’s reaction to this threatened Koran bonfire. He felt President Obama was ill-served by his advisers and he was right. We as a nation don’t negotiate with terrorists, whether they be the physically violent kind or the rhetorical kind. The notion that General David Petraeus, Robert Gates, Hillary Clinton and the President himself either directly or indirectly asked Pastor Terry Jones to control himself was akin to negotiating with a terrorist. Jones should have been ignored and if he went through with his ill-advised act, let the consequences speak for themselves. Instead we had the leader of the free world addressing the possible actions of a small-time nutjob who no one ever heard of until this week. But for Terry Jones to be ignored, the media itself would have to ignore him.

That brings me to the second way in which Ed Schultz set me straight, that is in Ed’s own hypocrisy. While he felt that this Pastor was beneath being dignified with a response from our government leaders, Ed didn’t seem to have a problem with the main stream media running this story non-stop all week. What would have happened if every news editor in the country looked at this story and passed on it? Jones is obviously an unbalanced attention whore. The media gave him exactly what he wanted, fifteen minutes of fame plus a bit more. “How will the Muslim world react when they see this on TV?” That was the concerned cry heard all over the dial. Well, how about if they turned on CNN and didn’t see any stories about Jones? How about if they opened the paper and didn’t see any coverage of Jones. What if Jones remained as anonymous as he was at the week’s outset?

The counter argument is that we live in a YouTube age and if the Koran burning proceeded, it would no doubt go viral over the Internet. I’m still not sure that lets the media off the hook for fanning the story. As angry as I am at John Boehner and Sarah Palin for voicing this Koran bonfire/GZ Mosque equivalence, I must admit they had a ready and waiting bullhorn to shout into. After the media reports their ignorant comments, they then play innocent pretending not to be promulgators of the bigotry.

We live in dangerous times my friends. The media should, I think, consider the Hippocratic oath to first do no harm. I am not sure they are doing that this week.

Respectfully,
Rutherford

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66 thoughts on “The Media’s Role in the Media Circus

  1. Eventually, some weirdo will burn a bunch of Korans.

    That kind of goofy shit inevitably happens in a free nation.

    Just go to your local university ” art show” and take in the “edgy” works that depict the crucifix floating in a toilet amongst turds.

    What cracks me up is hippieprof’s reaction. Oh boy. It’s low down freedom’s fault that those poor offended Muslims will have no other choice but to detonate a bomb full of jagged nails and screws in a crowded coffee shop. We’re in for it now.

    The American mob’s response to 3000 murdered in cold blood? A gunned down Sihk at the Quicky Mart by some toothless fool and a red neck cult leader’s threat to burn some Korans. Oh the horror! How can we expect the Muhammadens not to kill us?

  2. Rutherford said: We live in dangerous times my friends. The media should, I think, consider the Hippocratic oath to first do no harm. I am not sure they are doing that this week.

    Oh come on Rutherford – since when has the media acted responsibly? Over at BiW’s yesterday you even suggested that the media were being irresponsible back in the Cronkite era.

    For as long as I can remember the media have proudly proclaimed their constitutional freedom while ignoring their responsibility to act ethically. “Media Ethics” has become an oxymoron.

    Hippocratic oath? Try hypocritical oath….

  3. What cracks me up is hippieprof’s reaction. Oh boy. It’s low down freedom’s fault that those poor offended Muslims will have no other choice but to detonate a bomb full of jagged nails and screws in a crowded coffee shop. We’re in for it now.

    Mornin, Rabbit – we haven’t talked in a while….

    Care to tell me where the FUCK I said that?

    Sorry, but I am getting really really tired of people thinking they know what I think and posting any old idea they like with my name attached to it.

  4. Well, you know, HP, asking a question to clarify what you actually think is one of the Great Sins for this crowd. So, it’s better to act with one’s telepathic genius to SAY what the other person thinks on their behalf, rather than wait for them to, you know, actually say it or believe it.

    For my part, while disgusted by this pastor, I’ve done my bit to ignore him, with the possible exception of deciding to go out and buy some Korans to make up for the proposed burned ones.

    Free nation, free press, I guess. Just no accounting for taste.

    Or wisdom.

  5. Dan,

    I won’t direct this to Hippie as I’m usually pretty clear where he’s coming from. We may not agree with each other, but we understand the opposing viewpoint is opposing without reading a dissertation.

    I can read sixteen of your comments and still have no idea what you are trying to say. Perhaps the problem isn’t our requirement for telepathic input, but you’re inability to dictate a clear viewpoint without a book of War & Peace.

    Feel free to expand thereafter, as most of us do that. But you’re continual need for specificity is not only boring, but unnecessary. You really do need to learn the words obtuse, pedantic, tedious, and repetitious before you throw too many stones.

    I knew exactly where Rabbit was coming from. 😉

  6. Tex…

    I can read sixteen of your comments and still have no idea what you are trying to say

    Me? Be confusing and hard to understand? Well, it could happen. I am only human.

    You know what I think a good way to handle a post that I find confusing? To ask questions to clarify the Other’s point(s).

    If I’ve written something that you don’t understand, by all means, ask me. I am entirely capable of being hard to understand, especially if you’re coming from a different point of view (I have yet have a so-called liberal person on the blogoworld say that I was hard to understand or restate my point wrongly – they tend to understand me, which leads me to believe that coming from a slightly different worldview can make it hard for folk to understand one another).

    And so, have at it! Tell me, what in THIS post did you not understand?

    Or, since I have only one comment here, how about my previous comments? Can you cite ONE example of me being confusing to you? Cite it and we’ll see where the misunderstanding lies.

    Or, if you are simply making an empty and unsupported charge (again), well, that’s only worth so much, right?

  7. You know what I think a good way to handle an [irritating tendency] in posting comments is? Point it out and hope the offender tries to correct their approach rather than preach about his own virtuosity.

  8. Dan,

    If I can’t follow your logic, you calling yourself Christian with all the feel good beatitudes but always come to the same conclusions are the irreligious or unbeliever, exactly how do you believe I would find any post of yours understandable?

    There is nothing about you that isn’t contradictory in nature. You seem to be a mishmash of spin, half-truths, disinformation, and obtuseness.

    I would not have guessed you an Anabaptist had you not told us as much. From your posts, I would picture you more as a burned out junkie with flowers in your hair, possibly holding a Hari Krishna sign. Krishna Krishna Dan.

  9. So, you’re going with empty and unsupported charges?

    Go for it. I shall attempt to ignore them, for my part, since they are empty, baseless and unsupported, there’s not anything really to say to them, is there?

    THIS comment, however, is funny…

    If I can’t follow your logic, you calling yourself Christian with all the feel good beatitudes but always come to the same conclusions are the irreligious or unbeliever, exactly how do you believe I would find any post of yours understandable?

    I’m confusing?? What kind of sentence is that??!

    Ha!

  10. Editorial note
    OK … let me be real clear here. I’ve spent the better part of three days reading a bullsh*t thread on BiW’s blog pre-occupied with Dan’s style of commentary vs the substance of what he has to say. I am not putting up with that sh*t on this blog. It is mind-numbing, boring, frustrating and a waste of virtual real estate.

    Dan … I am asking you henceforth please ignore any comments regarding HOW you say what you have to say. Every time you try to justify your style, you just send the ping pong ball back over the net for Tex or Tigre or some other to return the volley. I want it to stop. I do want your commentary here … I hate being the lone left-leaning person in these conversations. So stick to making your points about the subject matter.

    To the rest of you, debate Dan on the points please and not on the style. I’ve already seen one thread on another blog made nearly unreadable. Please don’t do that stuff here.

    Thank you.

  11. Now back to business. A riveting debate this morning on Morning Joe (on commie MSNBC).

    Question to the “panel”: Donnie Deutsche says that if Obama sent US marshals down to Fla and arrested Pastor Jones, he would be lauded as a hero by the Republican party. I think Donnie (and Pat Buchanan who agrees with him) is off his rocker. The GOP would cite this as another case of the Fed overreaching …. another case of Federal tyranny.

    What say you?

    P.S. I personally LOVE the idea of locking the crackpot up but I don’t believe it will win Obama any points with anyone.

  12. Rutherford, let me be real clear on this. I have enjoyed your use of the blog. While we don’t agree on much in politic, you’ve been usually fair in your access and your tolerance.

    What I will not do for you is for you to alllow you to dictate to me how I will respond to a numbskull and nitwit. You’ve got a problem with that, fine. It’s your blog. You can set limits on how offensive we can be, you can choose the subject material. You’re not going to tell me the “how” and “if” I can respond.

    If the comment is not offensive or vile, you’re not going to set limits on the content of who or the what I respond. You don’t like that, I’ll be glad to remove myself from your midst, and I will attempt to convince every other Conservative here to follow suit. I’ve already decided to do that with one board I frequent where the moderator decided to be stringent with the rules, and can just as easily do it here. It will have no bearing on my life. I will leave you with Dan and Hippie and your new friend Fake to talk to. That way, you can be more comfortable and remain unchallenged.

    Your choice…

  13. Rutherford…good for you on a good post. I agree with you that the media should take an oath but not so much one not to do harm.Just do the job. Report the story,don’t try to be or otherwise alter the story. I think the MSM should just be forced to sit through about a 3 hour loop of Jack Webb ala Joe Friday saying “just the facts….”

    Although I’m not saying HP said anything I will say there has clearly been a stench emanating from the Left that does fit DR’s statement.
    The meme that all we have to fear is fear itself and we damn well better fear it has been part and parcel of the multicultural PC project for some time. Whether it is a cartoon in a newspaper,a cartoon on cable or a book burning somewhere.This is clearly not right.
    As for any law enforcement entity going to arrest Jones I simply don’t think the Right has anyone that would salute that.Ironically liberals who in way too many cases have forsaken liberty would applaud it.
    As for the far right being crazed at the notion of Obama sending the troops to nick the guy. Yeah I get that too. I can even imagine the WND headline. Obama Fuerher sends stormtroopers to crush Christianity. The thing is that really doesn’t mean as much as the blatant double standard Obama has been caught up in re Jones vs Park 51. Bad advice? Perhaps but ultimately the buck still stops on a certain desk that sits on a brand new rug at 1600 Penn.

  14. Rutherford said: I hate being the lone left-leaning person in these conversations. So stick to making your points about the subject matter.

    Hey – I am here too!

    😉

    OK – I do vanish on occasion – but I am probably back for the next few months.

    I do know what you mean – it gets to be quite a burden when everyone is a critic.

  15. Although I’m not saying HP said anything I will say there has clearly been a stench emanating from the Left that does fit DR’s statement.

    Alfie, thank you for not implicating me. This is an issue for me because, contrary to Elric’s continued characterization, I am not a leftist drone. I think for myself and I disagree with the leftist mainstream more often than you would probably guess. It takes quite a bit of work to defend my beliefs here and on other blogs – and I shouldn’t have to defend beliefs that I don’t hold.

    It seems like it is occurring more and more often these days. In just the last hour or so Tex did it to me again over at BiW’s. I am sorry, but I am losing my patience.

  16. Dude according to him I’m a leftist drone.That should scare people.
    I also want to back up part of my comment. many a real world and blog world entity were all aflutter over the cabbie getting slashed,remember?
    The slasher isn’t anti-GZM unless we’re to believe he is the ultimate sleeper.

  17. No, of course he shouldn’t send marshals to arrest this pastor. That would drive the fringe right off the fringes.

    It should equally drive the nutters off their nut, but then I understand that it isn’t a breathless abuse of power when it happens to someone the Left isn’t in sympathy with. Maybe we can get those Journolist guys to write their fantasies about throwing him through a plate glass window, or dying a really painful death from Cancer?

    Because I was trying NOT to pay attention to this tool this week, I have to confess that I don’t understand what his point was in doing this. If he wanted to point out the hypocrisy of all the usual suspects, the point would have been much better made in having an “art show”. You know, depictions of long lines of women and children, and obvious civilians trailing up and through the pearly gates, casting disapproving stares on their brave murderers starting in on their eternal minstrations by Satan and his minions, or carefully drawn renditions of their prophet, placed in glasses of pig urine, rows of headstones with a panstaking “the religion of peace” detailed above,
    or depictions of women brutally murdered for “Honor”.

    I wouldn’t approve of that either, but at least they might be able to get Federal Underwriting for that “art”. What’s more is that the religion of the perpetually violently offended would still be violently offended, thus illustrating an important point, much in the same way Rutherford illustrating an exercise of a constitutional right, no matter how stupid and untimately poiintless, as an act of terrorism illustrates a similar point.

    I do give you credit, R. The media made this much more than it ever would have been if they simply reported something that actually matters instead. But then they only seem to do that when they cannot ignore a “real” story. Our government also acted stupidly, not because they gave weight to it, but because they weighed in at all.

  18. Good point, BiW. Obama ALSO shouldn’t do it just cuz it’s wrong. We have the freedom to burn stuff (flags, Bibles, Qurans) no matter how stupid that might be, as long as we’re not trying to incite violence.

    Still, it would just cause an orgasm of fury/fun for the Obama-haters out there.

  19. Tex, every now and then you don’t get it. My solution to the problem, knowing full well that you would not desist in attacks on Dan’s style was to ask Dan to ignore such attacks.

    No one is being censored (except perhaps Dan who has concurred). I’ve got no problem with folks calling Dan an assh*le for what he says. What tires the crap out of me is the endless metadiscussion about HOW he debates.

    That’s my last comment on the subject. I’ve got a solution for you Tex. Slam Dan for what he says here and then copy and paste his comment to BiW’s blog and slam him for style over there. 😀 If Dan complies here as promised then your stylistic objections will basically be screaming at the wall. Be my guest.

  20. “as long as we’re not trying to incite violence”

    Please don’t give the perpetually violently offended a pass on this, R. Any honest inquiry should consider whether acting like savages in response is a reasonable reaction, and not just whether it is likely to happen. The former puts some expectations on them, as well, whereas the former simply excuses that reaction because it is “just how they are”.

  21. For my part, when I mentioned trying to incite violence, I was suggesting those who might, for instance, try to incite violence against Muslims or foreigners.

    It appears you, BiW, are speaking about the concern that some Muslims might respond violently. That wasn’t my point, for what it’s worth.

  22. What constitutes yelling fire in a crowded theater?
    Not to oversimplify but actually yelling fire in a theater. I for one don’t think that analogy holds here.I’ll be interested to see if R is preparing to expand on that.

  23. I don’t think a non Muslim burning the Quran is based in a desire to incite others to commit acts of violence against Muslims.In fact I don’t know to what degree the act (or cartoon drawing or teddy bears)can legitimately be viewed as intended primarily for the sadly proven typical response.
    I’d be interested in hearing others thoughts on that.

  24. Maybe it’s been answered here- I’m too lazy to look- but I asked this question at my place: what’s the difference between the GZ Mosque and burning the Koran? Why hasn’t the President come out and supported this Pastor’s Constitutional right to burn the Koran?

    I guess Bibles, flags and effigys are ok, but Korans, hey now, lets think this through, being tolerant and all that.

    How ’bout it boys, what’s the difference?

  25. One is a positive expression of religious freedom and the other is a negative? Seems the most plausible reason to me.

    Obama may support the KKK’s right to hold revival meetings, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to cheerlead for them.

  26. That way, you can be more comfortable and remain unchallenged.

    Oh no he didn’t! Tex …. I don’t know how I missed that gem. Has nothing to do with being challenged and you know it.

    Editor’s note: like a total doofus I just accidentally posted this comment to BiW’s blog not noticing what Firefox tab I had open. 🙄

  27. BiW … I like the shot at “the arts”. I guess it is deserved since sometimes (like the cross immersed in pee), it does go over the line. But it also illustrates just how many things get you guys angry.

    I wonder if there are any stats on blood pressure in conservatives vs liberals?

  28. Please don’t give the perpetually violently offended a pass on this, R.

    Well this raises an interesting point. I got into a bit of a tiff with my wife about this today.

    During today’s press conference Obama said (I’m paraphrasing but I’m real close) “burning the Koran will inflame millions of Muslims”. So I said to my wife, “uh oh, Obama just called millions of Muslims crazy.” My wife said “what do you mean?” And I replied “Millions of Muslims might get their feelings hurt and think the guy is a jackass but only a few thousand will be ‘inflamed’ which to me implies moved to violence.” Suffice it to say my wife felt Obama said the right thing.

    BiW this is by way of saying, we have applied an interesting accepted standard of behavior … or at least an accepted standard of consequences as it concerns proper Muslim reaction to an insult. There is absolutely no doubt that murdering a man over a cartoon or burned book is an out-sized reaction. Your point is valid.

    But

    Since we DO know the consequences, isn’t it more practical to avoid unnecessary behaviors (like Koran toasting) that will lead to those consequences?

    By the way, has anyone noticed how much religious folk like burning sh*t up? Radical Christians burned witches. Then when Lennon cracked wise about Jesus, they burned Beatles albums. And of course, radical Muslims have a great time burning the American flag. What’s with the fire fetish? Can one of the resident believers help me with this?

  29. I was suggesting those who might, for instance, try to incite violence against Muslims or foreigners.

    Well Dan (and Alfie) there are a couple of ways to skin this cat.

    First, the fact that we know there are crazy-ass Muslims who will start killing people based on a burned up book. If Pastor Jones knows that this reaction is a consequence of his exercise of free expression and he goes ahead with it, then essentially he meets the standard for yelling fire in a crowded theater. Now Alfie, I will readily admit this is one tough judgment call.The theater metaphor is hard to apply to other situations because you have to prove that the “yeller” knows in advance the consequences of his behavior AND you have to be able to establish a direct link between the “yell” and the consequences of that yell. In the Paster Jones case, this causal relationship is not a slam-dunk but then again, Petraeus and Gates, neither one politicians, say it is.

    Dan, your alternative meaning is also at play here. When we burn a Koran do we not show a profound disrespect for believers in that Koran? Does this disrespect not have the potential to snowball into violence against actual Muslims? It’s called creating a hostile environment, much like burning a cross on someone’s front yard.

  30. Alfie, cartoons, teddy bears and book burnings are to my mind matters of degree. In the radical nutjob mind, they are all one and the same.

    I have another question I’d like to toss out there. Our more ignorant brethren want to burn Korans but what do ignorant Muslims do? They burn the American flag. So I ask you, isn’t this religious war unilateral? Don’t radical Muslims hate us for our secularism and our capitalism? I’m not sure they hate us for our preponderance of Christianity. So why do we define the target as their holy text? They aren’t burning Bibles are they?

  31. G, just saw your comment and I guess my question signifies that I don’t see them burning Bibles.

    G, I was actually hoping, based on your military experience that you could weigh in on whether it was appropriate for Petraeus to sound the warning bell on this. Should Gates have called the Pastor?

    If you already answered this at your blog …. I’ll go check out your answer there.

  32. Since we DO know the consequences, isn’t it more practical to avoid unnecessary behaviors (like Koran toasting) that will lead to those consequences?

    Well, is practical to curb the exercise of your freedoms because the exercise grants license to the neigborhood bullies to act like asshats? Does doing so make it a surrender of your freedoms…making them something they never had to fight you for to take away?

    Rutherford, one constant in life is that appeasment does not work. If you are willing to give up something of value simply to avoid a show of bad behavior from others, they will know what you have done, and next time they will want something more, and that will continue until they finally demand something you will not part with, or you have given everything up, and the only power they don’t have over you is your submission from your own lips.

    What makes it worse is that they didn’t need an excuse to act this way, R. While it certainly provides them in their own minds for some justification, the fact is that they have been threatening and killing for sometime now, with narry an insignificant individual burning a Koran or drawing Mohammed, let alone an insignificant person with a great deal of media attention. I believe it was Chuck D who said “Don’t Believe the Hype.”

    By the way, has anyone noticed how much religious folk like burning sh*t up? Radical Christians burned witches. Then when Lennon cracked wise about Jesus, they burned Beatles albums. And of course, radical Muslims have a great time burning the American flag. What’s with the fire fetish? Can one of the resident believers help me with this?

    What’s a “Radical Christian” and what’s with the lefties like feminists burning bras, hippies burning draft cards/selective service registrations, and socicomumarxists and malcontents burning flags? Can one of the resident leftests help me with this?

  33. If you are willing to give up something of value simply to avoid …

    Burning a Koran is something of value? This argument comes from the same man who is willing to toss our freedom of religion standards out the window to pressure the NYC Imam to relocate. How is THAT not giving the terrorists what they want?

    What’s a “Radical Christian” and what’s with the lefties like feminists burning bras, hippies burning draft cards/selective service registrations, and socicomumarxists and malcontents burning flags? Can one of the resident leftests help me with this?

    LOL Touche!

  34. Burning a Koran is something of value? This argument comes from the same man who is willing to toss our freedom of religion standards out the window to pressure the NYC Imam to relocate. How is THAT not giving the terrorists what they want?

    The freedom of expression is something of value, R. If we can’t burn something because we might offend, and we can’t draw something because we might offend, then not saying something because we might offend isn’t too far off.

    As for your lame attempt at equivocation, burning a book is not the same thing as them building a momument to their act of violence on the bones of thousands of people killed in their religion’s name. I know you don’t want to see it that way, but seeing as they weren’t exactly honest about their ownership of the property when they gained the approvals necessary, and preach tolerance when doing something that only the willfullly blind wouldn’t see as a provocation, you really are comparing apples and oranges.

  35. You got to give the murderous, savage, Muhammadens their due.

    This lot of barbarians evoke so much fear that they can make the President of the United States get down on his knees and beg a small town cult leader not to play with matches.

  36. G, just saw your comment and I guess my question signifies that I don’t see them burning Bibles.” – R

    Father Manuel Musallem, head of Gaza’s Latin church, told the AP that Muslims have ransacked, burned and looted a school and convent that are part of the Gaza Strip’s small Romany Catholic community. He told the AP that crosses were broken, damage was done to a statue of Jesus, and at the Rosary Sister School and nearby convent, prayer books were burned.

    Gunmen used the roof of the school during the fighting, and the convent was “desecrated,” Mussalem told the AP.

    “Nothing happens by mistake these days,” he said.

    Father Musalam additionally told The Jerusalem Post that the Muslim gunmen used rocket-propeled grenades (RPGs) to blow through the doors of the church and school, before burning Bibles and destroying every cross they could get their hands on.

    Really? Is that because it isn’t served on a platter for your pleasure?

    G, I was actually hoping, based on your military experience that you could weigh in on whether it was appropriate for Petraeus to sound the warning bell on this. Should Gates have called the Pastor?” – R

    Appropriate? Yeah, they have vested interests. Unfortunately, this elevates the Pastor, but maybe the pressure works.

    Burning a Koran is something of value?” – R

    Is this not a freedom of expression? What differentiates this from this?

  37. I believe it was the Chin who constantly rambled on about the second coming of the youth vote and how that was the saving grace of the Dems.

    Really…

  38. G, I was actually hoping, based on your military experience that you could weigh in on whether it was appropriate for Petraeus to sound the warning bell on this. Should Gates have called the Pastor?” – R

    This changes things a bit.

    As commander in chief, Obama said he asked Defense Secretary Robert Gates to call Florida pastor Terry Jones, whom Obama did not name, and ask that he not go forward with the Quran burning.

    Appropriate? Sounds like it was an order…

  39. One is a positive expression of religious freedom and the other is a negative? Seems the most plausible reason to me.

    Obama may support the KKK’s right to hold revival meetings, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to cheerlead for them.” – Dan

    How subjective of you. Some might consider the building of a Mosque at Ground Zero not so much of a positive expression.

    Most plausible? Here’s what’s likely the most plausible reason- the Constitution need only apply when it is intellectually favorable to Obama and the left. We see this regularly, the selective application of our founding documents, when it is convenient. So an artist wants to put a cross in a jar of piss? Hey, that’s Constitutionally protected Freedom of Expression. Want to light the American flag on fire, by golly have at it as you exercise your Constitutionally protected Freedom of Expression. And let’s be honest here, about a month ago, if there was some obscure group who was planning on burning a stack of bibles, little to nothing would have been said about it.

    But a Koran, well, that’s an entirely different story. Freedom of Expression? Have you lost your mind? This could get people killed!

    Oh? Why’s that? Muslims I tell you!, They’ll fly off the handle and recruit radicals and oh-my-God you have no idea how this will inflame Muslim anger!!! But, but, but, Islam is a religion of Peace!!!

    Sure, provided they’re outnumbered…

  40. Gorilla you haven’t really answered my question. Let me rephrase. If you were General Petraeus, would you have publicly called for Jones restraint? Do you feel our troops were at risk?

  41. One, as I mentioned earlier, if Obama ordered Gates to call him, then it isn’t much of a stretch to order Petreaus to do the same. Who knows at this point.

    What’s interesting is that by all these big wigs making the calls, they elevated some back-wood hick with a smidgling of a following to superstar/villain status. Question is, did this pressure him to stop, or did achieving massive amounts of media attention achieve his goal?

    What’s interesting is that this hasn’t helped Obama, since it appears that Clinton was ahead of the curve on this. Not to mention his inconsistency in wielding the Constitutional right argument, I just don’t think this have been a good situation regardless.

  42. Gorilla provided some support for my answer to his question (he asked why would Obama support the mosque and yet oppose the Quran burning – I answered because one is a positive practice of one’s religion and the other is a negative attack on someone else’s religion). To this, Gorilla noted…

    about a month ago, if there was some obscure group who was planning on burning a stack of bibles, little to nothing would have been said about it.

    But a Koran, well, that’s an entirely different story. Freedom of Expression? Have you lost your mind? This could get people killed!

    Burning Bibles would be an example of a negative attack on someone else’s religion. IF someone were to do that, you can be sure that Obama nor anyone else would stand behind that as a good use of free speech. They might say they have a legal right to do so (as they have with these wannabe Quran burners), but Obama nor anyone else would stand behind that as a positive example of the practice of free speech. They/we would say “How ugly!How counterproductive!”

    Building a building with the intent of being an ecumenical outreach, that is a POSITIVE example of free speech and practicing one’s religion. Why wouldn’t we be in favor of such behavior?

    IF the stated purpose of building a building, on the other hand, was to preach how evil one group of people is (if Bin Laden were wanting to build a building to promote hatred for “the Great Satan”), no one would stand behind that as a good thing.

    It’s the difference between positive examples of free speech and practice of one’s religion and negative examples of the same. Your example of the Bible burning helps clarify that. Thanks!

  43. Building the mosque at GZ over the ojections and pleas of a vast majority of the US claiming reason for its location is to honor the victims is not positive. Refusing to simply move its location to prevent the anxiety and pain it causes many in the community is not positive. Its a kick in the gut and is intended as such. Period. Thank you for playing.

  44. Wow this thread makes me want to spark up something.
    First there were some Bibles set alight in Afghanistan back in 2009. The US Army gathered up a bunch of unsolicited Bibles and burned them before any got out and possibly offended our hosts.

    Sadly the thing that is always lost on the 51 Park story is that many folks find the location,proposed opening date and the like a problem NOT because of those building it,but because of the chances of who will come.
    The controversial Mosque in Boston is a great example of this.Even if one is to give 100% props to its opening it is a fact that it has served some negative purposes.(hate literature,speech and divisiveness) When this happens people that love Islam say “What ? How could we have known”? Those that hate Islam say “See we told you so,they are all alike”!!!!
    As for anything else on the freedoms,burning etc,well I’ve been pretty clear on that in my own posts

  45. But, over at BiW’s blog entry on Honor, many of your comrades have been arguing that doing the right thing EVEN WHEN “everyone” tells you not to is HONORABLE, so which is it? Is it honorable to do the right thing even if folk are opposed to it or not?

    It sounds like the entire argument about this building being a bad idea is that people are opposed to it.

    “It’s a bad thing!”

    Why?

    “Because everyone hates the idea!”

    But what if “everyone” (or 70% of everyone) is wrong? You’re not saying that the majority makes right, are you?

    From what I see, they wish to build an ecumenical outreach center where folk can learn about one another. That, to me, seems to be a good thing. On the other hand, opposition to it is because “SOME Muslims killed people there and therefore, ANY Muslims building here is ‘insensitive.'” Blaming the whole for the actions of the few seems to me to be a bad thing.

    I don’t agree with the notion of abandoning what appears to be a good thing for bad reasons.

  46. First I stand where I stand,whether people stand with,behind or against me is no matter. I have always stated that the almost certain potential that Rauf and Daisy will lose control of the place is why it is a bad idea. The proximity is a double edged sword,that will cut for sure.
    I for one am not going to revisit the all for some loop.If the group really can’t see how moving it is a windfall I have to say they are insensitive,insolent and insane.
    I do have to finally say this since it can’t wait for me to publish the post I drafted. Why is Cordoba so offensive? Yeah the Muslims built an awesome Mosque…big deal its the freakin diocese building now.Who’s victory?

  47. Burning Bibles would be an example of a negative attack on someone else’s religion. IF someone were to do that, you can be sure that Obama nor anyone else would stand behind that as a good use of free speech. They might say they have a legal right to do so (as they have with these wannabe Quran burners), but Obama nor anyone else would stand behind that as a positive example of the practice of free speech. They/we would say “How ugly!How counterproductive!”” – Dan

    “We” would have never heard about it. And even if we had, do you think Obama would have had Secretary Gates call on it?

    IF the stated purpose of building a building, on the other hand, was to preach how evil one group of people is (if Bin Laden were wanting to build a building to promote hatred for “the Great Satan”), no one would stand behind that as a good thing.” – Dan

    *As I take a deep breath, sip on my coffee, and ponder Zen thoughts for a couple seconds.*

    You have no idea what will be taught in the Mosque. Period. Rauf is an Islamist. He is a proponent of Shariah law. He is sympathetic to Hamas, which last I checked was a terrorist organization. He’s extremely sympathetic, if not a closet member, of the Muslim Brotherhood.

    Just because he hasn’t openly called for violent jihad, he’s a proponent of the same Islamic jurisprudence that radical jihadists support.

    Having the right doesn’t make it right. You would piss on the graves of the victims of 9/11- who vastly don’t support this- to support this guys right to build a Mosque on the site of their death. On top of all this, now we have Rauf saying that he can’t move the Mosque because if he does, then Islamic radicals will get violent. Wow, that says a lot about your own damn religion.

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