What Matters? 1

Mimi ON Sep 10, 2010 AT 10:02 am

Burn A Koran Day

Burn A Koran Day

9/11 - The ninth anniversary marked by controversy
 
Saturday marks the ninth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on America. What should have been a poignant and emotional ritual has already been overshadowed by by two controversial events. A Christian pastor in Florida has sparked international outrage after planning to burn copies of the Koran on Saturday. Pastor Terry Jones, is the leader of a tiny Protestant church in Gainesville, Florida, which is attended by only 50 people. The church campaigns against what it calls “radical Islam,” and has defied calls from Hillary Clinton, Ban Ki-moon, the Vatican and even Angelina Jolie to call off the event called Burn A Koran Day.

The attention this has received is simply staggering. This was intended to be a small protest with a couple of hundred people attending. Due to the media attention, I now suspect it will be a far bigger affair with worse impact and consequences than originally intended.

I can’t be too hypocritical about this as I am a journalist and it is a story. However, any journalist or media organisation who claims they haven’t added to the hype and intensified this story is lying. At what point do the media need to step back and stop giving this man more and more attention? I fear we may have gone past this point already.

Before the news broke of Burn A Koran Day, the anniversary of 9/11 was in danger of being overshadowed by plans for a Ground Zero mosque.

It’s reported in the American media that two thirds of Americans are against the construction of the mosque.

I think it’s simply all down to location. To have the mosque built in Lower Manhattan, so close to the site of the Twin Towers was always, always going to be greeted with outrage. I think it’s an insensitive decision, why decide to build in such close proximity to the Twin Towers? Why can’t it be built further away? Also, when it is constructed there could be all sorts of problems with feelings of unrest and divisions between members of the community. I do hope common sense prevails here and the right decision is made.

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