A fundamentalist Christian lunatic in Florida burns a copy of another religion’s holy book for reasons known only to himself and before you know it ten people have been killed half way around the world in Afghanistan1.
I suppose, if I look at it sideways with a squint, I can just about understand why someone might protest about the burning but killing people because of it seems entirely insane. It doesn’t just seem insane it really is insane. What can possibly be the attachment to a paper book with words in it which is worth killing other people for? It’s stark raving bonkers.
I suppose the preacher in the mosque wound up the guys, and the mob were all guys, but quite why they fell for it as they do time and time again is outside of my understanding. It’s almost as if they’re so insecure about their belief in their invisible friend that the only solution is to silence people who might stir the thought in their brains that perhaps they’re deluded. Hang on a minute though — the chap in the States who originally burned the book professes to believe in the same invisible friend, so that can’t be it.
I’m sure the guys in the mob are perfectly decent when they’re not being enraged and are simply yet another example of what Steven Weinberg was talking about when he said —
With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.
Sometimes the world is a perplexing place.
The killings are now said to have risen to at least 23. The crazies, and I can think of no other suitable word, have also burned an effigy of US President Barack Obama although quite what they think he has to do with the burning and what they expect him to do about it remains something of a enigma.
1 This is in addition to the UN workers already killed in Mazar-e Sharif. What on Earth is wrong with these people?
Posted 2 April 2011, 18:48 BST