Siege of Damascus (during the Second Crusade)A couple days ago I blogged about several proposed Qur’an burnings around the country. One was planned in Tennessee, and according to the Tennessean of Nashville, it took place (WebCite cached article):

A Florida pastor’s threat to burn Islam’s holy book on the anniversary of 9/11 set off a nationwide furor and incited Muslim anger as far away as Afghanistan, but the incendiary plan ended quietly in the backyard of a home in Springfield. …

On Saturday, despite the national tempest and opposition from conservative Christian leaders including Middle Tennessee pastors, Old carried out his plan.

But for all the controversy and hype, his Quran burning took place in front of just a handful of people, most of them from the media.

Old and the Rev. Danny Allen stood together in [the Rev. Bob] Old’s backyard, answering what they say was a message from God.

Note that the sniveling coward burned his Qur’an in someone’s backyard … far from the public eye. Nothing like taking pride in “answering … a message from God,” eh? Yessirree, that’s the way to show the courage of your convictions, Reverend!

On the other hand, another proposed Qur’an burning, this one in Wyoming, did not take place, at least so far as is known, as reported by the Wyoming Tribune Eagle (cached):

Cheyenne resident Duncan Philp proposed burning a copy of the Quran Saturday on the steps of the State Capitol, but [Mahamed] Salih [secretary of the Cheyenne Interfaith Council] said the plan did not go forward.

[Pro-religious tolerance rally attendee Jason] Bloomberg said he told [Duncan] Philp [of the Wyoming Tyranny Response Team] that burning the Quran is exactly what terrorists want to see happen because it pits Americans against each other.

Of course, one can’t be sure that Philp didn’t burn a Qur’an in a Wyoming backyard, but it simply hasn’t been posted on YouTube yet.

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  • The attempted burning of the Qur'an was stopped when people from Jewish and Christian faith communities went and spoke to Mr. Philip in person. Information about that please see:
    http://www.interfaithcheyenne.org/history-of-the-

    Other interfaith efforts toward "Bringing hope and understanding to our community as we respectfully embrace our diverse sense of sacredness." can be found on the Cheyenne Interfaith Council website:
    http://www.interfaithcheyenne.org/home

    One last thing, and I tell you this not meant as any kind of "cheap shot," it just happens to be the truth in this case, at the time he was threatening to burn the Qur'an on our State House steps Duncan Philip told me he was an atheist, as were/are some of the others in his organization. While that in and of itself is no indictment of atheism, not all religious people are fanatics either.

    Peace, Salaam, Shalom.

    Jason Bloomberg MD – Webmaster for Cheyenne Interfaith Council, and one of the three people who walked up and spoke with Mr. Philip to ask him not to defile his copy of a translation of the Qur'an on our State Capitol's steps.

    P.S. on the anniversary of that day, over 400 people gathered for an interfaith remembrance of 9-11 which included: Jews, Christians, Muslims, Unitarians, and for the record, even some atheists. Here's a link to the new story:
    http://www.wyomingnews.com/articles/2011/09/12/ne

    • I appreciate the response and the fact that others of faith actively interceded with Mr Philp. The country needs a lot more of that, but at least this is a step in the right direction.

      As for him being an atheist … let me put it this way: Think about the kind of person who said this. Then decide, based on an assessment of his character, whether or not it could be true. Personally I doubt it. I think he got unexpected flak and was weaseling out of having to deal with you. I think he's happy to make any number of outrageous claims as long as no one's directly in his face … but he can't tolerate in-person resistance, so he came up with the "I'm an atheist" excuse to use to get you — a group of believers — off his back at that moment.

      Which leads back to the original point about intervening with people like this … most believers say they refuse to intervene because "there's nothing we can do about extremists." But sometimes what these people need is just to be confronted a time or two. Then they cave in because they can't stand any opposition. Your group provides an object lesson in this.

      Would you mind if I create a blog post on opposing extremists, using this as an example? I'll draft it and send it to you privately, then post it. I assume your site has a method of contact I can use?