Pakistani president's outrage over Quran burning is selective

March 25, 2011

A Reuters article in The Sun ( "Pakistani leader condemns Quran burning," March 23) quoted Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari as stating, "I ... strongly condemn, on behalf the people of Pakistan and on my own belief, the deliberate desecration of the Holy Quran by a fanatic in Florida."

He also called on the United Nations to address the matter.

In reaction there was demonstration and the people of Pakistan were permitted to burn American Flags. The president said it was a serious setback to efforts to promote harmony in the world.

I don't believe that the attention grabbing acts of the few should have any effect on world or religious relations. I also disagree with the U.S. ambassador to Pakistan, Cameron Munter, who said, "This is an isolated act done by a small group of people that is contrary to American traditions."

In the United States of America, we are blessed with both religious and speech freedoms, including speaking out, demonstrating and the carrying out of symbolic acts.

Do I agree with the preacher, Terry Jones, and the burning of the Quran? I feel I fall within the sentiments of a majority of American people when I say he's an ignorant jerk.

To address the Muslim sentiments, it's a great think we have printing presses. In many Islamic countries, the Bible and outward practice of Christianity are illegal. Bibles are confiscated and destroyed; Christians are harassed and beaten; not to mention the assassination of priests who conduct Christian services and Mass.

I feel the reactionary nature of the leaders in many Islamic nations causes their countries to suffer further problems. As sentiments get louder, more fanatical people want to step-up as leaders in their countries. I feel the president of Pakistan has every right to stand up and condemn the Quran burning, but should also stand on his beliefs and add, "But us doing these things are also wrong."

Not only what is good for the goose is good for the gander, it will also become a great contribution toward the world's harmony.

Michael W. Kohlman, Baltimore

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