Shun the bigots and work together

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Like many other Christians elsewhere in the world, I condemn the plan by a pastor in Florida to burn copies of the Qur’an.

That is nothing but a hate crime and has absolutely nothing to do with Christianity or the values of love, compassion and forgiveness that Jesus promoted.

Similarly, I don’t see anything wrong behind plans for an Islamic centre that is open to inter-religious dialogue in New York. (Lest we forget, Muslims too died at the World Trade Centre on 11 September 2001.)

Why don’t Christians and Muslims work together? There are so many problems in the world today. For starters, churches and mosques could organise joint relief efforts for the flood victims in Pakistan and beyond or even for the homeless and hungry within their own countries. Muslims, Christians, those of other faiths and people of goodwill everywhere should join hands and demand an end to war, arms spending, corruption and the economic exploitation of people and the environment. Wouldn’t that be a better witness to their faiths?

Here is the full text of a memorandum submitted by the Youth Wing of the Christian Council of Churches to the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.

Full text of memorandum of protest on threats by Dr Terry Jones from Dove World Outreach Centre to burn the Qur’an on 11 September

The Youth Wing of the Council of Churches of Malaysia (“CCM Youth”) is deeply concerned with the escalation of tensions in the global community following news of threats by Dr. Terry Jones from The Dove World Outreach Centre in Gainsville, Florida, to burn copies of the Muslim holy text, the Quran, on 11 September 2010.

Through this memorandum, CCM Youth calls on the Government of the United States to put a stop to this disrespectful and provocative act under the guise of raising awareness. We believe that any proposed acts of banning or burning another faith’s holy text is tantamount to a form of hate crime that must be dealt with utmost severity.

We are very disappointed that the call for the International Quran Burning Day was initiated by a Christian pastor, as we see this as incongruent with the message, manner and model of Jesus Christ, namely, His love and wisdom even when speaking out against authorities on matters of principle and justice. We conclude that this call and act by Dr. Terry Jones and the small congregation of about 50 that he is pastoring to be an utter rebellion to the fundamental Christian character to love our neighbours as ourselves and to be peacemakers as exemplified by Jesus Christ.

We fear that the failure to stop this atrocious act will bring catastrophic ramifications not only to the United States but will also adversely impact global communities. CCM Youth wishes to reiterate that burning religious texts of other faiths is a harmful, insulting and irresponsible act of provocation that will severely destabilize plural societies around the world and will bring about serious repercussions not only on Christian communities, but all minority communities worldwide.

In such volatile times, we urge the Government of the United States to protect all American Muslims and Christians alike from any potential hate attacks that may arise from this irresponsible act. We call on the American community to uphold the fundamental rights of those who follow another faith, to respect their rights to their own holy scriptures and to put an immediate end to further instigations which are destructive to world peace, by breeding religious hatred and anger.

Furthermore, in remembrance of the anniversary of September 11, we recommend that all governments diligently protect all communities of all religions from being exploited by any form of extremist and racist behaviour.

We also recommend that all governments immediately stop any situations that threaten to destroy our global unity cord to ensure that things do not unravel out of control.

Undeniably, September 11 has become a day of sadness and grief, marred forever in history, not just for the loved ones of the victims on that dreadful day but also for the entire world community.

Therefore, in the efforts to promote world peace, we urge the Government of the United States and the United Nations to turn September 11 into an international day of reconciliation and just peace, upholding the rights of every single human life created in the image of God Almighty, henceforth building a common place for all under the sun.

Yours sincerely

Chrisanne Chin
Youth Moderator and Exco Member
Council of Churches of Malaysia

8 September 2010

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tunglang

Bigots, Murderers, Terrorists.
If you can still call yourself human, have a heart to feel, have tears to cry…
– Then watch this video: 9/11 The Falling Man

tunglang

While you guys are arguing from different camps, maybe just for a moment, allow me to share the diabolical ways a government can manipulate events to bring about a national hatred against an enemy and thus a ‘timely’ excuse to wage a war against terror.
Let me called it: 911 Bigots & Lies. The Bushy Lies.
You Be The Judge. Ask Questions. Demand Answers.
Enjoy the video:Loose Change 2nd Edition (Full)

semuanya OK kot

Sean, on my comment above and your reply.

Don’t be so quick to apologise. I actually agree with you. I was merely highlighting that in mealy-mouthed Malaysia, we rarely say what we mean, and even more rarely have the guts to say it.

Jasin

US should learn from Malaysia. Places of worships of different faith cannot be too close to a mosque.

Then there will be no ‘burning’ issue.

New York should apply this guideline.

FenceSitter

Yes, bigots exist every where. Not doubt about it. There are two categories of bigots. One is the individual bigot that act alone to satisfy their own egos. The other are bigots with political agendas usually protected and sponsored by a ruling regime.
The first are no more than madman and are to treated as such. The second category of bigots can only be gotten rid off at the ballot box.

Pala Richie

Don’t burn the Quran, don’t even burn the extreme followers.

There is no way to fight fanatic with fanatic acts, this only elevate into next level of fanatic.

You can discuss, talk each other out, but there are still extremists. The only way is to lead by example of good deed and good will, an awakening process for others to follow. We have to live together, like it or not; no way to eliminate other by force, but one could die in natural death if they keep practicing bad deeds. I believe in Karma, let Karma runs its course.

wandererAUS

Anil, correctly said. Hav’nt we seen more than enough such … among UMNO muslims promoting “incitement/obvious”
I always allow 3-5 per cent of these racial or religious mud-heads in our society.
hello, Ibrahim Ali!

johanssmKhunPana

I would like to observe from another angle.

The Rev. Terry Jones had been under intense pressure to back off, including a statement from President Barack Obama and a personal call from U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Barack H. Obama and his office are doing their job there. It is the right thing to do.
Now compare with our cow’s head incident.
Did Jibby and his cow’s head supporter home minister cousin namely hishamudin told those cow’s head people to back off?

Aneel David Kannabhiran

While I do not endorse burning religious or any texts for that matter,”Incitement/provocation” is subjective – what may incite/provoke one group may not incite/provoke another – some groups are more self-righteous/sensitive while others take a more laid-back or forgiving attitude. so where do you draw a line on what would incite/provoke? Self censorship based on the lowest common denominator on what may be ‘appropriate’ is not the answer.

Sean

I see a lot of tweets speculating on the non-availability of their website. You can see from a WHOIS check that the site was hosted by a well-known ‘cloud’ hosting company. The DNS servers are still available, and respond quickly to a non-doveworld request, but time out for a doveworld request (also for other domains – it’s not a recursive service). If you can arrange a request to the last-known IP address for the site, you get a response from the hosting company’s HTTP service saying: “This website is temporarily unavailable. Please check back later. Unfortunately there were no suitable… Read more »

Sean

‘incitement’ to what? Incitement is causing someone else to commit a crime. They are not inciting any crimes unless you believe what they’re doing is some sort of secret message to others to burn mosques, or unlawfully obtain copies of the Koran.

Provocation isn’t universally accepted as a defence in law, and rightly so. Even so, unless you are in their compound to be provoked into a reaction, what you’re really talking about is revenge / counter-attack, isn’t it?

Sean

“no ordinary book” Will you say the same thing when you hear of someone dragging their e-book version of the Talmud into their desktop wastebasket? Some desktop wastebaskets have little animations of fire leaping up when you drop an item in, you know. I would be interested to know where you draw the line between an ‘ordinary’ reproduction of a work and a ‘special’ reproduction of a work. The book is the wrong focus, of course. The point here is that this man wants to insult Muslims in a lawful way in the expectation that they will react unlawfully. That… Read more »

tunglang

Sean, Provocation is a legal word to some, subtly as it can be in the name of basic rights to avoid obviousness / condemnation from the undiscerning minds and depending on where the provocation can stand a chance over the already weak and fearful minded eager to avoid troubles. The world is already infested with religious bigots with hidden agendas best known to themselves. In the name of this and that, the calls for religious awakening, burning of another’s country flags or political / religious effigies, public rallies decrying blasphemies, sacrileges and insults, and terrorism are as old as human… Read more »

Sean
Sean

Bloomberg (the New York Mayor) also seems to have done the decent thing:

http://edition.cnn.com/2010/US/09/08/florida.quran.reaction/#fbid=ucmAhZq71YP&wom=false

“you can’t say that we are going to apply the First Amendment to only those cases where we are in agreement”

SamG

When the Taliban blew up the Ancient Buddhists statues, the was deafening silence from the Muslim world including Malaysia.

Huda

When Israel demolished mosques, the silence from the world was deafening too.

Katharina Sri (ex Noor Aza)

Enough with deceitful hypocrisy! So, Muslim fanatics who’re provoking non-Muslim Americans to build a mega-mosque over the dead bodies of 3,000 innocent beings mass murdered … at Ground Zero, is ok? Christ taught us to speak the truths against evilness, not to appease it … and you expect everyone to be like you to appease it… instead of our Christian God’s love of telling the truths about evilness because He hates sin?! And I bet you won’t publish this – in contrary to the freedom of speech and will as taught by our Christ! You are free to submit …… Read more »

Huda

Firstly, I don’t see the relevance of your ramblings.

Secondly, go check the facts. The proposed mosque is to be built a few blocks from ground zero. So no, it won’t be built over the dead bodies of 3000 murdered innocent beings. Also, did you know that everything was moved away from the location of WTC? There are no dead bodies there.

Thirdly, as far as I’m concerned, they can burn whatever they like. What they do is a reflection them.

Jimbo

Remember an Indian temple was not allowed to be sited near muslim-majority residential area in PJ Malaysia?

By the same argument, the proposed mosque near the former WTC site is too sensitive to the New Yorkers?

We should not condemn others if we ourselves are not setting a good example.

Huda
Huda

Also, did you know that Masjid Manhattan is situated not far from ground zero and had been there for years. Should Americans demolish it because it’s “disrespectful”?

Of course this argument would only be valid if it was really some men from the caves of Aghan mountains who did the 9/11 job. Are you aware that independent investigators have been accumulating evidence that it wasn’t Al-Qaeda?

But hey… if you want to believe than Obama & Co did it, that’s your right. Life must be wonderful in Dreamland.

jude

Part of a post in an online paper went like this:

….so as “christians” are they gonna burn something that speaks very very nicely about Jesus, Moses,Abraham,Mary, and so on…….

Dr. Terry Jones should pick up his bible and read Matthew 5:3-10. Maybe then he would understand Jesus’ core message.

wandererAUS

This pastor in Florida has only 50 members in his church, surely he and his members do not represent the Christians. Having said that, UMNO (supporters who are) religious fanatics and hypocrites are the trouble makers to civilized society, correctly, should be put away…if not physically, legally!

Sean

I defend the right of anyone to burn copies of any book which they have lawfully acquired in way that is in accordance with all applicable laws concerning fires and books. The furore over this meaningless, pitiful event is the depths of narrow-minded, short-sighted hypocrisy. The most vocal critics of the event are those people who have invaded and continue to occupy large areas of the Middle East in order to protect the expatriation of those areas’ natural wealth. What causes more deaths, bombing, invading and occupying foreign lands, or a small group of nobodies burning a few books? If… Read more »

Gerakan K

This is a stupid comment. …

Sean

I think you mean ‘that’ – but in case you used ‘this’ deliberately, I applaud your honesty.

Gerakan K

Haha my comment being censored by this blog owner, so you do not the actual message.

You are so extreme in your comment and luckily you are not a MALAYSIAN.

Reject extremist’s idea like Sean….

Peace for all.

cincula

My my!, Cutting a little close to the bone, aren’t we?

Some have more rights to express themselves than others. For e.g. RPK as of today has had his rights curtailed, perhaps with the help of a botnet rented from criminals.

Sean

“close to the bone” I apologise unreservedly for it. It pains me immensely to have to speak like that in front of adults. You’re absolutely right: there are far worse examples of the same kind of thing going on, and far closer to home. We live in appallingly difficult times in which to try to assert personal principles and make a credible attempt to live by those principles rather than just to advertise them as though nobody else will check what’s behind the press release or shiny billboard. Malaysia’s vibrant online opinion ‘scene’ is in my view one of the… Read more »

tunglang

cincula says: Some have more rights to express themselves than others. It depends on where you are (residing). This is especially true in a country where the law of majority rules! But even in the borderless world of online, things can go pretty bad, dirty and ugly like hacking others’ sites. There should be an international law to corner, extradite, prosecute and banish (if not execute) these hackers irrespective of political or religious allegiances or pure ‘pranks’. These hackers are expendable as they cause billions of economic losses thro’ theft, downtime and up-to-no-good mischiefs. Microsoft, don’t tell us they are… Read more »

LBJ

The way i see it, Dr Terry Jones got to be a Republican of the class as Russ Limbaugh.

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