The Chicago Sun-Times Media Wire carried this story on Sept. 14th, 2010:
"Burned Quran found in front of Muslim center"
A burned copy of the Quran was found on the sidewalk outside a Muslim community center Monday in the Irving Park neighborhood on the Northwest Side.
At about 5 p.m. Monday, two young people attending services at the center found the burnt holy book on the sidewalk in the 4300 block of North Elston Avenue, police News Affairs Officer Veejay Zala said.
An online search shows the Muslim Community Center is located at 4380 N. Elston.
Grand Central Area detectives are investigating.
Anyone with any information should call the police Civil Rights Section at (312) 745-5827.
This was the first coverage I saw; other news outlets have since weighed in, including stories that lengthily quote CAIR spokesmen who obligingly explain Islamophobia.
Give me a break.
First, Chicagoans are being shot to death left and right. We have a cop shortage to begin with, and then the cops are among those being murdered. Yet apparently the Chicago Police Department has a couple of detectives to spare for this incident. (Hey, did they ever even catch the animals who gunned down the officer on the eve of his retirement? No matter: those detectives would be put to better use solving more pressing cases, like this one.)
Second, is it really illegal to burn the Qur'an? We've been through all this before with the Terry Jones Florida church issue. If burning the Qur'an were illegal, on any level, he would have had law enforcement lined up around his church for weeks, just waiting for the chance to slap the cuffs on him.
Third, how is this a hate crime? And if you can give a general definition of a hate crime which is appropriate to this incident, is this universally applied? Ie., is the same penalty earned for the person who burns a Bible or a flag? If not, why not?
One of the comments posted about this incident mentioned that if the police are pursuing this as a hate crime, they're actually enforcing sharia. That's pretty insightful. If they're spending their time and resources tracking down someone who, while not a member of a certain religion, has nonetheless violated the precepts of said religion, then that's enforcing sharia. Well, why not? The Chicago Public Library is apparently doing so (see my previous post).
Fourth, how do we know this even happened? I have no doubt a Qur'an was found, and that it had been burned. But who put it there? The building is heavily trafficked by Muslim worshippers, yet no one actually witnessed the book being dropped. Teenagers supposedly found it. Hmm. Could the teenagers have planted the Qur'an and then alerted the media?
If you don't think that's likely, you might recall the Muslim student at St. Xavier University a few years ago. Her property was defaced, there was a big brouhaha over this having happened at a Catholic university, there was an investigation, and--if I remember correctly--the student body marched in her support.
Guess what? Under questioning, she admitted she was the person responsible! Wow. How embarrassing for the university, plus all those supportive students. I bet they felt dumb...which they should. Her motive was to call attention to Islamophobia--which, even when it doesn't exist!--is still such a pressing problem.
Earlier this year, a Muslim community center was torched. This was in Tennessee or Kentucky. Same protocol was followed: shock and horror expressed by a supportive community, an investigation, lots of press. Conclusion: it was an inside job by one of the Muslim worshippers. Do we see a pattern yet?
It's the Tawana Brawley Syndrome, used with exceptional finesse by organizations like CAIR. I don't know if CAIR is directly involved in this current case or not, but it sure has CAIR's fingerprints all over it. The publicity junkies at CAIR are already saturating the news media with accusations of Islamophobia.
Newsflash, CAIR: the American public is catching on to your tactics. And we're figuring out that where there's smoke, as with this Qur'an, there may not necessarily be fire.