Terry Jones Wicked "Pastor" Of Hate

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[Black Star News Editorial]

Terry Jones, the alleged "pastor" in Florida who conducted a "trial" at his "church" on March 20 and found the Holy Quaran "guilty" and condemned the Muslims' Holy book to "death" and had a copy burned must bear responsibility and consequences for the violent reaction he's unleashed.

While Jones may talk about his constitutional right to freedom of expression he knew that violence and even bloodshed would follow. Freedom of speech also comes with serious responsibilities and obligations. If a person yells "fire" falsely in a crowded theater and 20 people are trampled to death should the instigator go scott free?

The United Nations' outpost in an Afghan town was overrun and more than a dozen employees brutally hunted down and murdered by mobs on the orders of Mullahs after Jones had the Quaran burned. The revenge protests have continued in other cities like Jalalabad and more people have been killed.

Jones has claimed he does not "feel responsible for the attack." We doubt the relatives of the murder victims feel the same way. Jones has instead called on the United States to "punish" militarily those who reacted violently in Afghanistan after the Quaran burning.

Jones can't be referred to as a "pastor." He does not preach or teach the message of any of the Gods known to most humanity. He preaches hate. Why did he deliberately provoke Muslims, who number more than 1.5 billion around the world, by burning the Quaran? Muslims often retaliate even against other Muslims accused of profaning the Quaran or the prophet Muhammad.

So Jones knew that the burning of the Quaran in a Christian church would invite violent reaction. Yet he did it anyway. Jones was warned last year when he first threatened to burn the Quaran as part of his opposition to the building of the Islamic Cultural Center near the site of the 911 attacks in New York.

Even defense Secretary Robert Gates last year warned Jones that violent reaction in the Middle East would jeopardize U.S. lives and efforts in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Jones should immediately apologize for what he did even though he is constitutionally protected to exercise his right to freedom expression. Why should the lives of real Christians and other innocent people be put at risk for the actions of this depraved man?

The Afghan president has called on President Obama and the U.S. Congress to also denounce Jones' reckless action. This is not the purview of U.S. officials even though President Obama has denounced the burning as a "bigotted" act.

Now Muslims around the world will be watching the U.S. reaction and Jones'.

In much of the Muslim world a religious leader is bestowed with much esteem and respectability. Many religious leaders are seen as political leaders or the guides and actually superiors to elected political officials. In Iran for example, the Ayatollahs are even more powerful than President Mahmoud Ahmadinejan.

So while many Americans may see Jones as a reckless lunatic, many in the Muslim world actually think he is a respectable minister who has official U.S. government sanction and even approval for his actions.

Jones is reportedly planning a protest march to denounce Islamic extremism for their reaction to his Quaran burning. He is callously inviting more violence against targets in Afghanistan, elsewhere in the Muslim world and perhaps even in the United States.

Members of Jones' "church" should on their own accord denounce what the alleged pastor did. They should either abandon his church or find a new pastor who can spread the words and teachings of God rather than engage in a religious crusade.

They should not follow the alleged "pastor" down the road to further fire and disaster.

"Speaking Truth To Empower."

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