I know this is a provocative question but it has to be asked.  What would happen if a group of people went out in the street and burned a Bible and a Torah?  How would people feel.  Burning the Koran was stupid, but its a stretch to say that nut in Florida needs to share the blame for what happened in Afghanistan today. 
What do you think the reaction be to the burning of Christian and Jewish holy books in this country would be?

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to perform what act?  Burning a book in general to protest something? Or burning a book for the sole and specific reason of inciting people to act out violently and possibly kill other people?


Because that is the difference we are talking about here.

People will act violently and possibly kill other people no matter the intent of the person who burns it. Therefore, any intent of the person burning must take into concideration as the highly likely outcome, and thus must inentionally cross this boundry.

If I justify to myself it as acceptable on a subject which clearly is more important than the well being of one mass produced book and fanatics going off in a frenzy, i.e. previous example, I will not have the right to do so because I will intentionally incite people to violence on a subject which must have more coverage, following your own logic.

People will act violently and possibly kill other people no matter the intent of the person who burns it.

That is not what I asked, though. Of course other people could react in any number of ways to what Terry Jones did. The ideal reaction would have been if other people did exactly nothing in response to Terry Jones.


But I am talking about what Terry Jones' intent was. Or to use you as you did in your example. If YOUR intent is to incite imminent violence with your speech, then your speech is not protected by the first amendment.


There is nothing that says that you must try to imagine all of the possible ways that others *might* react to your words/actions, but if YOUR PURPOSE is to get them to act out violently, then it is not protected free speech.


I seem to recall that you are Norwegian living Denmark (?), so perhaps the laws are different where you are. Terry Jones is an American citizen acting on American soil, so American laws would govern. And I maintain that under our laws, his act is not protected free speech.


So if I incite to violence against neo-nazism while burning Mein kampf in front of the gates of Auswitch, I should not be legally allowed to do so?

I think the point of departure is that I wish to reserve my right to hate certain things and incite to violence if I believe it to be a danger grave enough to warrant it. If other people choose, by their own free will, to follow my recommendation, it is their choice and responsibility.

This was the whole point of the Nurnburg trials, even if those who hold power over you asks you to committ a crime, you are morally obliged not to do so. Those who ordered atrocities are judged because they held the power to see their orders fulfilled.

Terry does not hold any power to order muslims anything, they are fully and wholle responsible for their own actions because they choose to do them. Their leaders are responsible because they do not do nearly enough to curtail the violence.

You act as if his anti-islam protests were limited to Quran burning. He's done far more but who cares? What if burning the book was his sole act of defiance against Islam, why would that matter? Book burning has for centuries been a form of protest. Again, he had to be trying to promote violence for this to be illegal.

He's protesting against Islam, that should be obvious; there's plenty about Islam deserving of protest. Ultimately he doesn't have to be right when he protests and he doesn't have to be nice; but he does have to be afforded the right to protest against what he considers evil...as do we all.


You mentioned that he admitted that his goal was to incite violence. If true I think that would potentially make what he did a crime; however I would have to read his remarks before I came to such a conclusion. Would you, if possible, direct me to those remarks?


BTW-I do feel that I should apologize for my previous racism remark, it was total BS and I'm embarrassed by it in hind site.

Terry Jones next stunt is going to be to put Mohammed on (mock) trial and burn him in effigy too.

Haha, oh no, I missed that juicy story.

Ok, how about if we ask Terry if he would consider burning a cross with a bloody (but dead) Jesus nailed to it, as a way to advertise the wonderful Christian version of martyrdom, and then mock up a resurrection!


excellent post

More Detail about Pastor Jones 


"Broadcasting live on a Coptic satellite channel, available throughout the Middle East, Jones and his followers put the Koran on mock trial, and eventually convicted it on murder, rape, and terrorism charges. Visitors to the church website got to vote for the appropriate penalty and overwhelmingly chose incineration. The Arabic channel broke off its live stream for the incendiary portion of the proceedings, but Jones made sure the scene was available on his website. Assistant pastor Wayne Sapp doused the book in gasoline and set it on fire with a stove lighter."

You are right - it is a stretch to say that he shares any blame for his incendiary actions.
Sparks From A Book Burning
02 APR 2011 11:41 AM
On March 20th, Pastor Terry Jones held a Koran burning in Florida. On Thursday Afghanistan's President, Hamid Karzai, condemned the burning and called for the arrest of Jones. Yesterday, Afghans protested the Koran burning by killing UN workers. And today the deadly protests have spread to Kandahar. Una Moore, located in Kabul, Afghanistan, puts to the killings in context:

This is not the beginning of the end for the international community in Afghanistan. This is the end. Terry Jones and others will continue to pull anti-Islam stunts and opportunistic extremists here will use those actions to incite attacks against foreigners. Unless we, the internationals, want our guards to fire on unarmed protesters from now on, the day has come for us to leave Afghanistan.

I agree. Terry Jones does not need to take any of the blame for what happened in Afghanistan. Those people who stormed the UN and killed the staff members deserve the blame, and that's it.

Terry Jones putting the Qur'an "on trial" is like Gary Glitter putting Michael Jackson "on trial." I say, as long as we're giving holy books trials, The Bible is long overdue for its day in court. He's basically just opened the door for us to burn Bibles. Thanks Terry!


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