Jones and Rauf are within their constitutional bounds to build and burn as their resources allow. Rauf has the same rights accorded to the pornographer, pawnbroker or payday loan purveyor to hang a shingle and open up for business. Jones too, has the same rights given to the militant atheist and the islamic extremists who burn Bibles, crosses and crucifixes with routine regularity.
These two creepy men are textbook cases in the "rights vs. responsibilities" continuum. Rauf fails to understand that what he calls a "bridge", a majority of others would call a "siege- work". The imam claims that his intentions are as pure as the driven snow, yet history's report concerning islam's penchant for triumphal "mosques as monuments" stands in stark contradiction. And for the love of all that's holy, he doesn't help his case a wit by tossing out a thinly veiled threat on CNN in front of all 417 of her nightly viewers.
Jones, clearly a graduate of Jack Chick Theological Seminary, has missed the bus. The pastor considers this koran barbeque to be an act of faith or obedience to Holy Scripture. Yet his "auto de fe" is understood to be, at its very best, sub-christian by reasserter and revisionist alike. At its worst, its an act of benighted ignorance that gives absolutely no thought to its unintended consequences.
What's the Deacon's take on this on this solemn morning?
I believe that Rauf's decision to build Dar al Cordoba in the shadow of a symbolic mass grave is tantamount to the same "colonialism" decried by so many on the left (and I wish they'd get their heads around that!) "Right" says he may build his missionary enterprise wherever the market will bear. "Rectitude" demands that he should consider another location.
I don't recognize the koran to be divinely inspired any more that I consider the Book of Mormon, the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures, the writings of Ellen G. White or Mary Baker Eddy to be divinely inspired. The koranic doctrine of abrogation serves only to invalidate the work as the words of an indecisive deity.
Yet, because one fifth of the global population DOES consider the koran to be inspired, I believe that it should be handled respectfully. It shouldn't be placed on the level of The Holy Bible, but it shouldn't be handled as any common book.
It would be far more beneficial if rather than burning the koran, it would be better open and read. This way, its errors could be engaged prayerfully, intelligently and thoughtfully.