Thursday, September 9, 2010

Must-read from PZ Myers on Koran Burning

PZ Myers is probably one of the best-known atheist bloggers. I appreciate his knowledge of biology and debunking of creationist nonsense, but he's well on the left politically. Other than evolution and atheism, I rarely agree with him. Myers gained some notoriety for publicly desecrating communion wafers, an act similar to Koran burning. I looked through his site earlier, and was surprised that he hadn't found the time to post about the ridiculous overreaction to the planned Koran burning. In fact, I was just about to write a post called, "Where are the Atheists"? Most atheists, who have no problem offending Christians, seem to take a much softer approach -- some might even call it spineless -- with regard to Muslims. But before I wrote my post, I went back to Pharyngula to see if I might have missed a post, and found a new one titled, "Setting the Koran on fire, vs. setting personal liberties on fire." Some excerpts:
I'm something of an expert in the public desecration of sacred objects, and I'm seeing the same madness going on right now with Terry Jones and his plan to burn copies of the Koran that I saw in the response to throwing a cracker in the trash — only amplified to a ludicrous degree. People just aren't getting it; they're so blinded by an inappropriate attachment to magic relics that they're missing the real issues.
The problem isn't the desecrators. The problem is the people who have an unwarranted sense of privilege, that their beliefs wil not be questioned or criticized, ever, by anyone.
I'm looking at this recent episode with Terry Jones — a fellow I don't like at all, and I think he's a fanatical goofball — and I see that the serious problem here isn't Jones at all…it's all the lunatics who are insisting that burning the Koran is a major international catastrophe. 

It's just a frackin' book, people.
The whole thing is an outstanding take down of the hysteria over this issue.

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