Burning Need: A Counter-Protest

UPDATE: It’s now breaking that the nutjobs in Florida have agreed to cancel their book-burning — with some language about an apparent quid-pro-quo with the group behind the Park 51 Center agreeing to move their location, despite denials of that claim from Imam Rauf — but I’m still leaving this open. I feel that the donation to Islamic Relief USA is still merited, not just to send a message about our true values, but also because of the need for aid in Pakistan. Please feel free to join me.

By now, you’re all familiar with the story. Terry Jones, the pastor of a tiny Florida church, has garnered worldwide attention for his plan to burn more than 200 copies of the Qur’an on September 11th, 2010.

Despite universal calls for these extremists to cancel their event, Jones says that his hateful display will go on. Opposition to this event among US politicians is absolutely united and bi-partisan, with everyone from Sarah Palin to President Obama agreeing that it is counter to American ideals. Yet these small-minded fanatics are bound and determined to go ahead with their disgusting display of hatred.

So I’ve decided to do something about it.

Taking a page from the outdoor clothing company Patagonia, who in 1990 fended off anti-abortion protesters by donating money to Planned Parenthood for every person who picketed, I’ve decided to turn the extremists’ own actions against their goal.

They plan to burn 200 copies of the Qur’an. So I’ve decided that I will donate 1 dollar for each book they burn to Islamic Relief USA, to aid (among other things) relief for the flooding in Pakistan. I will make this donation on Friday, October 1st.

If you would like to add your voice to mine, please feel free to donate in any amount, no matter how small, via the button below. I will update this page regularly with the total raised to date, and on October 1st will deliver the total to Islamic Relief USA, in the name of all of us actually believe in the ideals of brotherhood and respect.

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