The noble crusader roared north from Florida last Thursday, a stalwart soul anointed by God himself to fight Islam, its 1.5 billion member army the global Devil incarnate – on Canadian soil, in a prime time, public debate with the enemy leadership. Terry Jones, visceral Christian zealot, boss of the hilariously named ‘Dove Ministries’, and conclusive Qur’an burning evidence of why free speech must be treasured above all other personal liberties, headed to Toronto with his noble posse of true believers to slay the Muslim horde, one monosyllable at a time.
Perhaps between photo ops and Fox News interviews, this fearless Florida band might have taken their own divine run at the godless gays who have transformed ‘Toronto the Good’ into a latter day Sodom and Gomorrah. Pastor Jones is a 21st century version of the Tennessee creationist ‘yokels’ and ‘buffoons’ H.L. Mencken derided with such elegance in his 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial reportage. America, the self-proclaimed greatest of nations, can sure turn them out.
As the good Reverend girded his loins and prepared to sling the stones of God’s truth to smite the evil Muslim before the doubtless adoring Toronto throng, an agent of the Devil appeared, unbidden, at the Windsor / Detroit tunnel just as Terry produced his passport. The Canada Border Services Agency, guardians of the Great White North gates contrived to keep Jones, latter day avenger, from his appointment with Destiny. Denied entry, a trumped up 1980s German charge concerning Jones’ degree mill doctorate their instrument, these Satans laughed, and Brother Terry returned to Gainesville to regroup. Righteously sue some Canuck border guard ass, friend…and never turn the other cheek!
Yes, gentle BNV readership, I don’t care much for Terry Jones. He is a purveyor of hate, and thus offensive on any level. But in the good ol’ USA, call a news conference, burn a holy book, hang a President in effigy, and get your 15 minutes – and then some. Jones must have missed Luke’s Gospel in his mail order theological studies, where Jesus told a more open-minded flock to “Love thy neighbour as thyself”. My esteemed father-in-law, the Very Rev. Lawrence Robertson, pride of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, ordained Anglican minister for over 60 years (Episcopalian in the U.S. parlance), would throw himself over the nearest Lake Superior cliff before risking guilt by association with this bile-spewing, utterly noxious pseudo-priest. It is a remarkable feature of the Great Republic, a nation with many fine academic institutions – and plenty of solid everyday thinking generated by its citizens (when the spirit moves them) – that America spawned such a dim and backward creature.
But – let him speak, dammit! Our federal government (the unseen hand that pinned Jones to the border backboard quicker than Dwight Howard on a soft JJ Reddick layup) became the nanny state writ large…a disturbing result for us meritocrats that value thinking as an important societal attribute. I do not need an anonymous government functionary as my intellectual air filter. Terry Jones and his foul ilk are the greatest advertisement imaginable for the fundamental diversity and tolerant views that make Canada great. Let him speak, let us judge, and next time out, the roving Reverend will sow his poisonous seed on less rocky ground. After all – who’s next? An unsettling proposition….Big Brother looms ever larger, and the border guard cure is worse than any disease ever carried by sad sacks like Terry Jones.