Forums / Political & Legal / A European View. Frankly, I am embarrassed and pissed off, to put it mildly!

3 years 43 weeks ago, 5:34 PM

Vaquero

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Keep reading, everyone. Especially Builtfordtough.
Yep, shoulda lit the shit!

http://www.city-journal.org/2010/eon0913bb.html
Credit given.

Bruce Bawer
Fear
The only reason anyone cares about Terry Jones’s Koran-burning
13 September 2010
One good thing about living in Europe is that you don’t feel obliged to watch the CBS, NBC, or ABC evening news. But here in Norway, we do get the CBS and NBC broadcasts, one live and the other an hour later, and you can watch them if you’re willing to stay up late enough—given the time difference, they’re both on after midnight. Last Wednesday, I happened to catch both. It didn’t take long for my jaw to drop.

To my astonishment, both broadcasts’ lead story was the plan by Terry Jones, who until recently was a deservedly obscure preacher in Gainesville, Florida, to burn copies of the Koran on September 11. The tone of the reports was grave: how would the Muslim world respond to this unspeakable act? The news had already caused significant unrest in Muslim cities. Fearing the worst, American officials, from the White House on down, had condemned Jones’s plan and called on him to change his mind. Among those who’d weighed in publicly were Hillary Clinton and presidential advisor David Axelrod. Even the Vatican had issued a condemnation. On camera, General David Petraeus warned darkly that if Jones burned the Koran, the lives of GIs would be endangered.

The network reporters speculated about whether anything could be done to stop Jones. Both CBS and NBC interviewed Gainesville officials, who insisted that local ordinances forbade book-burning and promised that if Jones carried out his plan, there would be consequences. But it was also noted that the First Amendment made it difficult to punish the preacher, though the planned burning plainly constituted a terrible provocation. Implicit on both CBS and NBC was that Jones was inviting major international calamity and that it was unfortunate that nothing could be done to stop him.

As if all this weren’t enough, President Obama himself weighed in on Thursday morning. “If he’s listening,” Obama told Good Morning America, “I hope he understands that what he’s proposing to do is completely contrary to our values as Americans.” Obama reminded Jones that America was “built on the notion of freedom and religious tolerance” and that “this stunt . . . could greatly endanger our young men and women who are in uniform.” The president expressed his hope that Jones would listen to his “better angels” and call off his “destructive act.”

It’s clear, of course, that Jones—who at the last minute canceled the bonfire, declaring that “God is telling us to stop”—is a nut. He’s apparently made a career of spewing hate at Jews, gays, and just about everybody else who doesn’t belong to his tiny church, which seems to be some kind of wacky cult.

But that’s neither here nor there. The real story here isn’t about Jones but about the rest of us and what we’ve allowed to happen to our civilization since 9/11. Who would have imagined, on the day the Twin Towers fell, that nine years later we’d be so scared of Muslim reactions that the plan of some crank to burn a few copies of the Koran would become the lead story on the evening news and cause the president himself to plead with the guy to call it off? Imagine a modern-day Rip Van Winkle who’d fallen asleep before 9/11 and awakened to all this nonsense. For such a person, the degree of attention accorded to Jones would have been nothing less than incomprehensible. What in God’s name, Rip would ask, had happened to America? How could we have become so timid, so terrified, so quickly? How could an American president, in the middle of war and economic crisis, give so much as a moment’s notice to such a piddling non-story?

Needless to say, the truly important things went unsaid on those network news reports. Nobody pointed out that we wouldn’t be fretting like this if there weren’t something very special about Islam. You could announce plans to burn a stack of Bibles, or the Bhagavad-Gita, or the Dhammapada, or the Book of Mormon, or Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, or a truckload of copies of The Watchtower, or any other non-Muslim religious text without making the White House and Pentagon call emergency meetings and put embassies around the world on alert. How little time it’s taken for us to get used to paying Islam a unique degree of “respect”!

One of the network news reports—I don’t remember which—showed an anti-American demonstration by Muslims in Kabul reacting to Jones’s planned Koran-burning. The demonstrators were burning an American flag and stomping on it. Neither the reporter nor the anchorperson commented on this fact. Plainly, in their view, the burning of an American flag was not worth remarking upon. After all, in recent years Muslims around the world have burned countless American flags, not to mention the flags of pretty much every other Western democracy. Since 9/11, we’ve grown used to seeing the revered symbols of Western democratic values routinely desecrated in the Muslim world.

And we’ve also grown used to the fact this is most assuredly not a two-way street. American flags can be burned by the hundreds, by huge crowds, in the major squares of Muslim capitals, and that’s apparently hunky-dory with us. But when a guy in Gainesville whom nobody ever heard of decides to burn a few Korans, everybody from the president on down begs him to reconsider. Obama to the contrary, this isn’t about “our values as Americans”; it’s not about “freedom and religious tolerance.” It’s about fear. Nine years after jihadists murdered 2,977 people on American soil, the sight of American leaders quaking in their boots at the thought of some clown’s offending the Muslim world is nothing less than obscene.

Bruce Bawer is the author of Surrender: Appeasing Islam, Sacrificing Freedom. He blogs at brucebawer.com.

The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
3 years 43 weeks ago, 7:18 PM

luckybychoice

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yep

yep

i tried being reasonable,i didn't like it, NRA LIFE MEMBER,USMC VETERAN
3 years 43 weeks ago, 9:14 AM

LLE

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I must criticize his use of the phrase, "needless to say". His whole premise was that what he was saying was IMPORTANT to say. That phrase means, " it is not necessary to say this".
So, I must say that the phrase, "needless to say" is [almost] always needless to say. LMAO

PS: I must thank Schuyler for my 2010 prize for "Pedantic of the Year". I am trying to live up to the title.

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 43 weeks ago, 9:54 AM

ivantank

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the most well read and thought out individual on this site. that being stated I look forward to reading his opinions on politics and policy. And needless to say gunning issues...

I have reasons for the things I do, just don't expect them to be reasonable
3 years 43 weeks ago, 10:42 AM

LLE

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even though you stated that it did NOT need to be said, I believe it did need to be said, so that everyone understands the importance of your opinion and what you said you were going to do.
It must be said that you are a brilliantly perspicacious member of our community, and that needed to be said, too.

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 43 weeks ago, 10:50 AM

Schuyler

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Striving for perfection makes for a perfect omelette--or something. My next project is to discover the best single-word oxymoron. My current favorite: "standards"

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
3 years 42 weeks ago, 1:31 PM

LLE

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Therefore in the operational sense, a single-word oxymoron "cannot" exist. On the other hand, if you spoke with the modern day Quality Process gurus, they would absolutely agree with the word "standard(s)" as a perfect example.

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 43 weeks ago, 11:06 AM

Vaquero

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Needless to say,

It goes without saying, LLE and Schuyler are the articulate ones here.

The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
3 years 42 weeks ago, 11:21 AM

Reaper308

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what?

Vaquero wrote:
It goes without saying, LLE and Schuyler are the articulate ones here.

I thought LBC's "yep" was pretty articulate

"Proelium Comminus Auctoritate" "Sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel is a muzzle flash."
3 years 42 weeks ago, 1:33 PM

LLE

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how would anyone know??

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 42 weeks ago, 11:26 AM

HampsterW

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Yep!

+2 for the rednecks....lol

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 2:14 PM

Schuyler

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It means "sharp dull" so I find it odd that someone would insist an operational definition must include two words when the word itself is a perfect example of a single-word oxymoron.. Perhaps we could call single-word oxymorons "dependent morphemes" instead. In any case, I present you with other single-word oxymorons:

sophomore: "wise fool"
pianoforte: "soft loud"
preposterous: "before after" (pre-post)
superette: "big small"

And now for some independent morphemes, actually two words put together, but they are still considered one word"

bridegroom like, make up your mind!
spendthrift I've never understood this one
bittersweet Well, it still tastes good in a cheesecake
ballpoint Hmm, they have a point
speechwriting (Snicker!)
firewater Does it for me
someone
wholesome
semiboneless

But I do like regular good-old-boy oxymorons as well. My favorite:

United Nations.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:22 PM

LLE

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of syllables that one worders give us. "United Nations", however, probably does not meet the common definition(s) of [an] oxymoron, no matter how incongruous the real thing may be.

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:27 PM

Schuyler

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The United Nations aren't. Like airline food or "express line"

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
3 years 42 weeks ago, 2:30 PM

HampsterW

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Oxymoron,

I should copy and paste this to an email to clintlebo as I know he so enjoys these stimulating intellectual exchanges.

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 3:26 PM

luckybychoice

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ah

yep

i tried being reasonable,i didn't like it, NRA LIFE MEMBER,USMC VETERAN
3 years 42 weeks ago, 4:11 PM

Vaquero

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Politically correct.

The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
3 years 42 weeks ago, 4:14 PM

HampsterW

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I disagree Vaq,

'Honest lawyer'..........Not that is the Mac Daddy of oxymoron's!

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:25 PM

LLE

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"macdaddy" means.

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:30 PM

Schuyler

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It means a pimp

N/T

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:35 PM

HampsterW

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Or pimp,

I will except that.....Lawyers are pimps...LOL!

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 5:33 PM

HampsterW

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used by the 20 something's which simply means "the bee's knee's", "the cat's ass" or "the bomb" depending on your generation. I spend some time around the 20 something's at Subaru meets so I am familiar with their lexicon, the only thing we have in common is our love for high performance Subaru's but that is enough......Kind'a like Gunslot face to face.

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 7:46 PM

HampsterW

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Oxymoron,

"Lucky by choice" is an oxymoron, it just can't be.....Sorry LBC, just pointing it out..lol

Change you can truly believe in comes from the barrel of a gun---------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ron Paul 2012----Vote the bastards out!---------------------------------
3 years 42 weeks ago, 11:24 AM

LLE

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I could choose loaded dice!!!!

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 42 weeks ago, 11:12 AM

LLE

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educating an old fart like me. I must now go study, some more.

I am pondering the ancient Arab/Islamic curse:

" May the fleas of your camel, have fleas"

Too old to fight, Too old to run, guess that's why I carry a gun! "would someone show this asshole the way out of town".[Rabbi Avram Belinski-aka "The Frisco Kid"]
3 years 42 weeks ago, 11:53 AM

CharlesW

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invade Obama's bed.

May crab lice tie his balls together
by the hair

A little rebellion is good medicine for the government Thomas Jefferson

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