Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Update on Killing Christians

The Taliban have executed one of the twenty three Korean hostages they've been holding. In so doing they show the world once again the contrast between modern Islam (which is actually pretty primitive) and modern Christianity.

Pastor Bae Hyung-kyu (on the right in the photo below), following Christian tenets to their logical conclusion, traveled to Afghanistan to serve the Afghan people in any way he could. The Taliban, following Islamic tenets to their logical conclusion, show themselves to be blood-thirsty savages, reminiscent of J.R.R.Tolkien's orcs, for whom killing is a pastime. A more pellucid picture of the contrast between good and evil would be hard to imagine.

The next time Muslims go off in a frenzy over cartoons that they say make Muslims look bad someone should ask them how fiercely they protested the murder of Bae Hyung-kyu. My guess is they'll just make excuses for it.


Killing Christians? (Yawn)

Here in the U.S. you may not have heard about these unfortunate people:

They are twenty three Korean Christians who went to Afghanistan to work in hospitals and among the poor who have been kidnapped by the Taliban and threatened with beheading unless the Afghan government releases a bunch of terrorists.

As Bryan at Hot Air says:

It's hard to find a more stark contrast than that between the way members of two of the world's great religions are behaving in this ordeal. The South Koreans left their safe country and traveled to Afghanistan to work in hospitals among the country's outcasts; the Taliban captured them at gunpoint and are threatening to behead them in order to gain concessions from the Afghan government en route to recapturing power in that country.

These Koreans are living out the Christian faith in ways most of us can't and won't live up to. The Talibanis are unfortunately living up to their faith in a way that's become all too common.

Bryan tells us this is the lead story around much of the world, but in the States Muslims threatening Christians with death is apparently not newsworthy. Do you suppose that's because the perpetrators are Muslims behaving as we've come to expect of Muslims or is it because the victims are Christians and therefore not deemed worthy of media concern? I wonder what our media's reaction would be to the story if the hostages were, say, twenty three French physicians from Doctors Without Frontiers.


Do's and Don'ts

P.Z.(Zarathustra) Myers gave a talk to a group of Minnesota atheists last Sunday on the topic of a materialist view of mind and soul - to wit, that there aren't any such things. Michael Engor has some fun with it here. Check it out if you're interested in neuroscience and the mind/matter debate. It's funny stuff.


Immunity for John Doe

Buried deep in a Washington Post article on the Homeland Security bill which a Senate/House conference committee reached tentative agreement on was this piece of very welcome news:

The last obstacle was cleared when negotiators crafted language to satisfy a Republican demand giving immunity from lawsuits to people who report suspicious behavior. The issue grew out of an incident last fall where six Muslim scholars were removed from a flight in Minneapolis after other passengers said they were acting suspiciously. The imams have since filed a lawsuit, saying their civil rights were violated.

Apparently the Democrats realized that by continuing to oppose this provision they were grasping a political high voltage wire. Let's hope the provision makes it into the final draft of the bill, especially in light of this:

Airport security officers around the nation have been alerted by federal officials to look out for terrorists practicing to carry explosive components onto aircraft, based on four curious seizures at airports since last September:

San Diego, July 7. A U.S. person either a citizen or a foreigner legally here checked baggage containing two ice packs covered in duct tape. The ice packs had clay inside them rather than the normal blue gel.

Milwaukee, June 4. A U.S. person's carry-on baggage contained wire coil wrapped around a possible initiator, an electrical switch, batteries, three tubes and two blocks of cheese. The bulletin said block cheese has a consistency similar to some explosives.

Houston, Nov. 8, 2006. A U.S. person's checked baggage contained a plastic bag with a 9-volt battery, wires, a block of brown clay-like minerals and pipes.

Baltimore, Sept. 16, 2006. A couple's checked baggage contained a plastic bag with a block of processed cheese taped to another plastic bag holding a cellular phone charger.

Indeed, this all does sound awfully suspicious, but we wonder: If a passenger had spotted something like this and report it to the authorities, when in fact there was nothing to it, how many Democrats would favor suing the person who reported it?

We also wonder if there was something left out of the above reports. Might there have been another common factor in these episodes? Well, I don't know what, exactly, - maybe ethnicity and religion? Is there some reason why those facts have been omitted? Are they entirely irrelevant?Are we supposed to pretend that terrorists don't fit a profile in order to demonstrate what broad-minded and tolerant people we all are?