Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Book burning but no fatwas

The last group of people one associates with book burning per say is Jews; although, it can happen. The Jerusalem Post:
Orthodox Jews set fire to hundreds of copies of the New Testament in a religious Israeli town. Or Yehuda Deputy Mayor Uzi Aharon said missionaries recently entered a neighborhood in the predominantly religious town of 34,000 in central Israel, distributing hundreds of New Testaments and missionary material.

After receiving complaints, Aharon said, he got into a loudspeaker car last Thursday and drove through the neighborhood, urging people to turn over the material to Jewish religious students who went door to door to collect it. The books were dumped into a pile and set afire in a lot near a synagogue, he said.

The Israeli Maariv daily reported Tuesday that hundreds of Jewish religious school students took part in the book-burning. But Aharon told The Associated Press that only a few students were present, and that he was not there when the books were torched. Not all of the New Testaments that were collected were burned, but hundreds were, he said. He said he regretted the burning of the books, but called it a "commandment" to burn materials that urge Jews to convert.

I really am rather tolerant and overall good natured to all kinds of various and sundry religious groups out on the prowl for converts, but there is just something about the Jews for Jesus crowd which makes my skin crawl whenever I run into them on the streets trolling for converts. I have often wished there was like a Chabad or Aish hotline number to call to report these people….and yet, I am fine with the born-again Christians, or the Muslims, or the Hari Krishnas…go figure. Anyway, it is near the end of the JPost article when the lawyer for the J4J crowd asserts his inner fascist and reminds me of somebody else.
Calev Myers, an attorney who represents Messianic Jews, or Jews who accept Jesus as their savior, demanded in an interview with Army Radio that all those involved be put on trial. He estimated there were 10,000 Messianic Jews, who are also known as Jews for Jesus, in Israel.

You have to put this into perspective. The mayor of a Israeli town gets numerous complaints from citizens about Christian missionaries knocking on doors and leaving missionary material behind. So the mayor gets in his car and drives around with a bullhorn telling people they can turn over all any religious 'offensive' material to 'students' which the mayor will be sending to knock on their doors to collect it. The students collect the books, and then, burn most of them….but the lawyer for J4J acts like he is the wrong partied and demands criminal charges be laid for burning his allegedly holy books….holy books which just happen to offend the religious sensibilities of those in the community he was trolling for converts in.

Good grief.


shlemazl said...

I am no fan of proselising morons in general and the lying bunch of non-"Jews for Jesus" in particular.

IMHO "his inner fascist" was too harsh.

Kateland, aka TZH said...

Shlemazl, how about 'outer' fascist then? Look, I can understand (sort of) the j4j distress that the new testament was not greeted with reverance in an religious orthodox town but to call for criminal charges...that's crossing all my red lines.