1933 May 10 Berlin book burning, taken from the U.S. National ArchivesThe fires just keep getting hotter … although they have yet even to be lit! While Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville continues to waffle over whether or not he plans to burn copies of the Qur’an to celebrate the 9th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks, other folks have come out of the woodwork, around the country, stating that they plan to do the same.

First, a congregation that rivals Jones’s for its psychotic nature, the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, KS, says it will do so; the Christian Science Monitor reports on the latest from these asylum escapees (WebCite cached article):

Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Fla., may have “suspended” plans to burn copies of the Quran on the anniversary of 9/11. But the controversial Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., says it will burn the Quran. In fact, it already has. …

Although the church burned a Quran in Washington in 2008, it did not get much media attention. On its web site Friday, the church called Pastor Jones in Gainesville a “false prophet … bullied by sissy, intolerant rebels worldwide into cancelling plans to burn that blasphemous idol called the Koran.”

Westboro also declared that it “will burn the Koran and the doomed American flag at 12:00 p.m. on September 11, 2010 at Westboro Baptist Church.”

I blogged about this insane crew a year and a half ago when they came here to Connecticut to spread their vicious hatred. Back then I called them “the Lunatic Church of Hate.” I now believe the same moniker applies to Pastor Jones and his pathetic rabble.

Also, not to be outdone, some crank out in Wyoming plans to match the Westboro Baptist Church stunt, as the Wyoming Tribune Eagle reports (cached article):

The founder of the Wyoming Tyranny Response Team plans to burn a copy of the Quran on the steps of the State Capitol on Saturday.

Duncan Philp said he will protest the location of a proposed Islamic Center near Ground Zero in New York City. He also will protest President Barack Obama’s support for the location.

Philp is quite the crank, actually. His group’s Web site is a mixture of zany pseudo-militia fascism and conspiratorialism, and it includes this revealing little screed (cached):

We are compelled to post a list of what we are NOT due to the outrageous claims made by left wing organizations like the Anti-Defamation League aka Amerikan Defecation League, in which the ADL has in the past publicly implied that the TRT holds anti-semitic beliefs and is a front organization for covert militias and right wing fringe organizations. The ADL only gets one chance to get away with a lie and the next time it will cost you Foxman (The ADL Dictator of political correctness). We will drop a dime on the ADL to Aaron Zelman (JPFO Founder) who will in turn will place us in contact with an attorney to discuss civil litigation.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, like the ADL is another left wing front group for the Amerikan Communist Party and its founder Morris “Sleaze” Dees has tried his to discredit our proud organization with his own set of lies. Dees even went so far as to accuse one our TRT founders of being anti-semitic, a man by the name of Bob Glass, who is in fact Jewish.

I don’t know about you, but I smell a whiff of “But some of our best friends are Jewish, so we CAN’T be anti-Semitic!” in here. Sorry, but I’m not stupid enough to buy it.

And there’s a third entry in the insanity sweepstakes … a pastor in Springfield TN plans to burn a Qur’an too. WTVF-TV in Nashville TN reports on this nutjob (cached article):

Springfield Pastor Bob Old said his decision to burn the Islamic holy book on September 11 has nothing to do with the agenda of the pastor in Florida or the controversy surrounding the mosque in New York.

He has his own reasons behind the demonstrations and no intentions of backing down.

“My plans for Saturday are to take a copy of the Quran and burn it,” said Old.

He’s planning to go forward with the demonstration on 9/11 to be able to make his point and have it heard.

I do not for one moment believe that Old’s plan has nothing to do with the current controversy. He claims he has other reasons for it:

“To the Muslim church I would say the reason I am doing on Saturday because I believe they worship a false god. They have a false text, a false prophet and a false scripture,” said Old.

He said the other two reasons are to teach Americans about their constitutional rights and to make them better Christians.

First, Pastor Old … let me clue you in: Muslims don’t have any “church.” Only Christians have a “church.” Muslims pray in “mosques” and comprise an ummah. Second, I’m trying to figure how watching a Qur’an burn can educate anyone about the Constitution or magically make them “better Christians,” but … for some strange reason … it’s just not coming to me. Perhaps you could demonstrate the connection, Pastor?

Anyway … it looks like the Neocrusade against Islam in the United States is continuing without letup. A lot of this seems to be predicated on a desire for attention, and a (false) assumption that no one knows that there are folks in the US who dislike Islam. There is no way, however, that anyone could possibly fail to be aware that the Religious Right opposes Islam and wants Muslims gone. This is not a secret which needs to be revealed to a world that has no idea it’s true. The Neocrusade has been underway for several weeks now, and really is no longer news to anyone. At least not to me.

What these people really are, of course, are Christofascists, acting like fascists because they believe they possess a special entitlement to be able to do fascist things. The childishness just rolls on …

Photo credit: US National Archives / Wikimedia Commons.

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