The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Coming Soon: ‘International Burn a Koran Day’

By Alexander Zaitchik on July 22, 2010 - 9:05 am, Posted in Anti-LGBT, Anti-Muslim

After years of having the field all to himself, Westboro Baptist Church leader and gay-basher extraordinaire Fred Phelps might finally have some competition for the title of America’s most media-hungry hate-church preacher.

On Sept. 11, Terry Jones’ Dove World Outreach Center will hold the first “International Burn a Koran Day” ceremony on the steps of his church in Gainesville, Fla. According to the church’s website, the event was organized “in remembrance of the fallen victims of 9/11 and to stand against the evil of Islam. Islam is of the devil!”

If you recognize Dove World, it’s likely from the media outcry (including heavy play on CNN) that met their placement of lawn signs earlier this month proclaiming just that: “Islam is of the Devil.” We’ve also written about it frequently on this blog (here and here and here).

As of this writing, nearly 500 people have clicked “like” on the event’s webpage, which also features Photoshop images premised on the nuking of Iran and Mecca. One of these shows Mecca’s Grand Mosque full of pilgrims, with the simple tag: “Nuke It.”

At least some of the page’s supporters seem to have learned much of what they know about Islam from Fox News’ distortive hyping and conspiracy mongering regarding the case of a conservative mole at the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). A person who identified herself as Fran Ingram, for example, posted a video of Fox News’ coverage of the CAIR story with the title, “No Moderate Muslims.”

Like the stunts pulled by Phelps (who runs the infamous website), “International Burn a Koran Day” seems designed to draw heavy fire from editorialists and television news crews. Jones, the Dove World Outreach leader, posts a semi-regular “Braveheart” show on YouTube, and clearly revels in media attention. Dove’s website has collected all of the editorials and television news spots devoted to the lawn sign controversy. The list of links appears just below the description of the church as a “New Testament, Charismatic, Non-Denominational Church that believes in the whole Bible and that we are to act in response to the word of God in order to change the times we are living in.”

Like the more famous Fred Phelps, one of whose rallies this year was joined by Dove congregants, Jones’ theology of hate is streaked with venomous homophobia. “What is homosexuality?” Jones has written. “Detestable, indecent, wicked, offensive, perverted, shameful, unnatural, degrading, impure, futile, foolish, godless, dishonorable, a lie.” On August 2, Jones and his church will be “standing against homosexuality” in a protest in front of the local city hall.

With the announcement of his latest anti-Islam initiative, one gets that sense that Jones and his followers aren’t really satisfied with burning books. Like the old saying goes, it does not take a large leap of imagination to picture them gleefully burning much more besides.

  • the family international locations

    This truly touches my interest deeply. Every church has its open opinion. So whatever it is, its God plan and we must value it.

  • John Neeting

    I had an open mind on all things considered – that is until I obtained the complete history and works by Craig Wynn at ‘Prophet of doom’ [ google it ] After obtaining the REAL and literal translation of the Koran, I verified everything that Craig said. His video’s are frightening, he has spent 20 years of research and collation of works by Mohammad’s so called desciples. A litany of lies, plagiarism, time inconsistencies, contradictions and additions 700 years after Christ [ something the bible never has -no one has added to the bible in it’s original form ] It is the antipathy of the bible. Kill all non believers, rape women and children, slaughter for loot and power. Don’t believe me ? go to Craigs site and download EVERYTHING it’s free. Now get a REAL copy of the koran and check EVERY reference. YOU WILL BE SHOCKED. .

  • Max

    Morons, burn all the bibles & korans. Stop deluding yourselves and listen to someone with a brain. Richard Dawkins for instance. He doesn’t need a crutch to lean on when life gets a bit tough. Denouncing religion for what is truly is, an outdated way to control the masses (public), will be the only path to ever “EVER” have real and lasting peace. Follow what your brain tells you is the proper way to live and forget what some idiot wrote about a fictional character hundreds of years ago. Moderate muslim, who do you think your kidding. Go to a muslim country for a week and then speak about the subject. There’s trouble in the future and I feel for my children and their children. Educate now, say no to all religion. Let’s see if you have the guts to print an honest view.

  • Rahim

    Every person and human being should respect the others Religion and Holy Book.

    I am as a Muslim Request you to not waste their times on non-sense issues, just every person should think of their own religion and Book, we still have to do alot about our owns no need to give ideas and suggestions to others HOLY BOOK.


  • Tom Misiag

    The Bible tells us to hate that which is evil.

  • jim

    American is so poorly on the defensive. The undeniable truth is that there are Muslims out there bent on destroying America whether or not Korans are burnt. Perhaps the Imams should tell those terrorists to stop killing Muslims and non-muslims with their acts of terror. The reason they confront the puny little church instead of those really destructive terrorist Muslims is that they are scared of being killed by these terrorist. There is something really and badly wrong with Islam, but fingers are just pointing the wrong way. I do not agree with Koran burning, but I hope that people in America, especially the muslims would start looking at their religion and start asking “Is the something wrong with Islam” MUslims are so sensitive and people outside the religion are afraid to ask the question. America….you are motivated by fear.

    We in Asia are astounded by how “blind” you are to the situation.

  • Justice

    Ohhh come on people. If Islam can burn effiges of US presidents, Burn bibles, US flags and murder christians and get away with it…why not burn a few qu’rans? Why don’t more people stand up and buy a qu’ran to burn. Maybe it will inspire others to stand up and not be intimidated by the powers of Islam. Come on people, wake up. And Yes, Jesus would probably do the same. Does anyone remember when Jesus drove out all who were buying and selling at the temple? Or when he was so upset that he over turned the tables? I don’t remember him walking by and blessing the money changers in the temple. So burn those qu’rans!!!!!

  • Dawoodi Morkas

    The burning of Quran, and of desecrating the human body by the USA troops, are issues which needs you to write a comprehensive assessment into the horrors of war, and the implication of the war on the nation such as the UAE, Pakistan and others who support the USA forces.

    It is obvious that the consequences for the supporters of the so called war on terror are terrorized by events that bring shame to the word and meaning of a Muslim. The majority of Muslims are against the war that is taking place in Iraq and Afghanistan, yet the Islamic States under the USA threat of retaliation against these small states that cannot withstand the USA wrath, have to support the USA though how unwilling they may be consciously, and though how it may be against the popular public opinion of that nation.

    USA has a much better analysis of the situation in the countries which are on the face of their Foreign Policy support the war on terror, but inside have heavy grudge for such a support. The case of Pakistan is becoming evident where the ISI the all powerful wing of the Army Intelligence does all in its power to first secure its own country interest and then toe the USA line. Karzai is also doing some what that is not in the USA interest. The people of Iraq have voted out Malaki, you may like it or not.

    Quran and human body parts matter will go a long way, in the minds of the Muslim Ummah, as such it would be wise for your newspaper to draw a barrier before the flood of hatred mail starts gushing in your news rooms.

  • H. Komiya

    This person is so dangerous to this world. He has no idea how much damange, death and bad Karma he is going to create. How would he feel if Bible was burned in large numbers? I guess he will not get it even if that happens, because, in his mind ‘he is right’. I hope the Muslims realise that this guy is not a representative of Christians, as much as Osama Bin Laden is not a representative of Muslims. Eevery decent religeous organization should denounce his behavior.

  • Lisa

    Seriously? Is this what you think Jesus would do? Wow, I am appalled. I serve a God of Love. This is an act of hate. I will be praying for God’s love to overcome this event and keep it from happening… You can’t make others see God’s love for them by showing them complete disrespect. So disappointed in your choice.

  • alex

    Good morning :

    First please remember the name of the holy book of Islam is
    Ghoran (Gh and not K or Q: Koran/Quarn).

    The idiot who allowed the pilots to be get trained to run the towers and kill 4000 of our people did not stop and think …….
    is the holy pastor who wants to burn the Ghoran pausing to think were he is going with his mission? Just because you have the law on your side it does not mean it is the right action. i visited florida in 2008 and loved it. I will boycott any further travel. Can the other Moslems follow the same action? So, to protest the pastor’s action?

    I am sure someone will discuss this matter with him and coach him as his mind is on vacation and is just trying to get some free attention. The publicity will eventually brings him grief because his irrational actions are not logical.

    My prayers are with our troops so God to keep them safe,
    and my prayers are for the pastor to have God direct him to the right path.