There's nothing like a sense of perspective is there? A loony Christian in a church in a Florida swamp threatens to burn the koran and a loony on the other side of the world claims, or maybe threatens, that it could finish world peace if it happens. So who is the loony who made the claim? Not some semi-educated tribesman in the Hindu Kush, or a loony Imam in Iran. No, it was the President of Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim country. There's nothing like proving your detractors, otherwise known as Islamophobes right is there?
I regard myself as a pretty tolerant person and was instinctively appalled at the church in the USA when it was announced that it intended to burn the koran on September 11th. But then I saw the reaction, yet again by, muslims throughout the world and began, yet again, to wonder whether christianity and islam will ever be able to live side by side. Do we want to see people ripping each other apart in acts of religious terrorism while we sit back in the warm glow of self righteousness at our nice liberal tolerance? It seems ever more apparent to me that that scenario is a distinct possibility.
Those in the west who are full of politically correct self-loathing of our culture love to attack christianity, especialy the likes of Dawkins as the Pope's visit approaches. But I can't bring easily to mind a christian state that forbids women to drive. Or a christian state that chops off the right hand of thieves. Or a christian state that stones to death an adulterer, then kindly changes the sentence to ninety lashes.
The best the strident atheists in this country can do is to criticise Ireland for not allowing abortion and the Catholic church for failing to approve and encourage homosexual activity. In many islamic countries homosexuality is punishable by death. I wonder when the likes of Dawkins and Tatchell will be demonstrating outside mosques and trying a citizens arrest of an imam? No, a bit too risky that for them I suspect, or perhaps it is about not having the courage of their convictions.
Throughout the muslim world christians are oppressed and many are murdered. I know of no christian country that systematically oppresses people of other faiths. Saudi Arabia doesn't even allow people to take the bible into that country, or crucifixes or any religious texts other than those of islam. What is worse, banning a bible or burning a koran? What is worse, a tiny church of 50 people burning a koran or a state banning the bible?