Friday, September 10, 2010
September 19, 2010
The doltish pastor of a small Florida church--congregation of about 50--now says he's reconsidered his decision to burn Korans to celebrate,commemorate, whatever, the ninth anniversary of the September 11th attacks. He adds that he may reconsider his reconsideration. Sure, Rev, anything to make the front page again or the evening news.
Gail Collins, in the New York Times, writes that this proves 5% of us are crazy--not in a medical sense but in the sense that we think locking the cat in the oven and then turning it on is good fun. Or the poet W H Auden may be right that evil is simply part of our lives: "Evil is every day and always human/and shares our bed and sits with us at table." The doltish Rev says he promised to cancel his Koran burning after being misled by an imam about the issue.
Whether he could tell an imam from a loaf of bread is of course a fair question. Whether he falls fairly into Ms Collins' 5% need not be asked.
How do we remember September 11th? With grief, of course; we honor the dead. With anger at the killers, remembering that they did not represent one religion or one country just a group of angry, murderous men. Evil is every day...Mr. Auden again.
And one more quote. I remember Robert Kennedy during his 1968 presidential campaign, breaking the news of Martin Luther King's murder to a mostly black crowd in Indianapolis. "My favorite poet is Aeschylus," Kennedy said, "And he wrote 'Pain, which cannot forget, falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in the end, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.'"
Wisdom? I hope so. You have to hope.