It’s disappointing to report that three of five candidates for city council failed to return answers to this week’s questions. Voters expect to learn what candidates think about city government, the issues and answers. I hope we hear from all candidates next week. There are two new candidates who, if elected, in my opinion, would cripple effective government in Fillmore. These two are easily manipulated by outsiders.


The Rev. Terry Jones, pastor of a small Florida church professing hostility towards Islam threatens to burn the Quran on September 11, the ninth anniversary of the Muslim attack on the World Trade Center towers which killed nearly 3,000 people.

Churches of every denomination world-wide have attempted to discourage the reverend’s intentions. As any perceived disrespect, real or imagined against Islam, usually sparks immediate counter-attacks, and disproportionate bloodshed, common sense militates against this idea.

Rev. Jones’ anger and frustration are, no doubt, shared by billions of non-Muslim people throughout the world, as Islam’s utter contempt for the lives and religious beliefs of 5 billion non-Muslim people are evident everywhere and everyday.

Any Muslim person claiming to be a true believer, who denies that violence and deadly action against non-Muslims (particularly Jews and Christians) are commanded by the Quran and Hadith, towards the subjugation of the world, is ignorant, a liar, or, by their own sacred books, heretics and blasphemers subject to the death penalty.

This is so because the established word of those ancient, sacred books cannot be “interpreted” or changed in any way, by anyone, for any reason. Also, all peaceful passages of Muslim sacred scripture have been abrogated, they no longer apply. Here I strongly recommend the excellent works of Robert Spencer especially The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the crusades). This book is based exclusively upon the teachings of the Quran and Hadith. But the truth can hurt. What do true believing Muslims think of Spencer: “praise for the author on” “May Allah rip out his spine from his back and split his brains in two, and then put them both back, and then do it all over and over again. Amen.” Doesn’t sound very peaceful to me.

However, the Rev. Jones is wrong to announce the burning of the Quran. While Islam approves the murder of a non-Muslim when he perceives what he believes to be a slight insult to his religion, Christianity absolutely condemns this sort of violence. While the Christian is commanded to turn the other cheek, the Muslim believes he is entitled to cut the throats of perceived offenders. Here I’m reminded of one particularly outrageous (but not uncommon) example, that of the Indonesian man who took it upon himself to behead two young Christian girls returning from church one Sunday a year or so ago. But, again, Christians are commanded to love and forgive their enemies.

While Rev. Jones is clearly within his constitutional rights to burn the Quran, his Biblical duty is to avoid unjustified bloodshed and turmoil. Even as a practical matter, prudence dictates that he not do this. For the Christian, prayer is the best response, absent conditions where self defense is required. Rev. Jones, your intentions are neither prudent nor Christian. Think of the thousands of others your conduct will certainly effect.