Now this is religion getting a “free lunch”, David Robertson.
Further to my recent post on 59-year-old Harry Taylor receiving a 6 month suspended jail sentence, 100 hours unpaid work and ordered to pay £250 in legal costs for leaving “offensive” and “obscene” religious images in the multi-faith room at Liverpool John Lennon Airport, I am appalled to read this story in The Daily Mail:
A Muslim protester who daubed a war memorial with graffiti glorifying Osama Bin Laden and proclaiming ‘Islam will dominate the world’ walked free from court after prosecutors ruled his actions were not motivated by religion.
Tohseef Shah, 21, could have faced a tougher sentence if the court had accepted that the insults – which included a threat to kill the Prime Minister – were inspired by religious hatred.
But – citing a loophole in the law – the Crown Prosecution Service chose not to charge him with that offence and he escaped with only a two-year conditional discharge and an order to pay the council £500 compensation after admitting causing criminal damage.
Yesterday the decision was attacked by politicians and veterans who were shocked by the desecration of the memorial in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire…
Shah sprayed the words ‘Islam will dominate the world – Osama is on his way’ and ‘Kill Gordon Brown’ on the plinth of the memorial in December.
He was arrested after his DNA was found on the discarded spray-can but refused to give an explanation for his actions or show any remorse, a court heard.
The story has also been posted on website of The Freethinker.
What really beggars belief is that the Counter Terrorism Division of the Crown Prosecution Service in London decided that the incident was not racially or religiously motivated saying, “While it was appreciated that what was sprayed on the memorial may have been perceived by some to be part of a racial or religious incident, no racial or religious group can be shown to have been targeted.”
Does not all 4.5 billion non-Muslims in the world today not count as a racial and / or religiously defined group?
Shah, who reportedly lives with his parents in a £200,000 detached house, has a picture of a flaming lion’s head superimposed on crossed Kalashnikov rifles on his Facebook profile.
This latest legal debacle angers me in particular since during my first debate Premier Christian Radio’s Unbelievable?, against Scottish Presbyterian Pastor David Robertson, author of The Dawkins Letters, a “flea” response to The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, scoffed that I was “living in a fantasy world” for claiming that the New Atheists were attempting to break the taboo of criticising religion our in social discourse, which I remarked had been receiving “a free lunch”.
Following his most recent appearance on Unbelievable?, Robertson is now pushing the myth on Premier Christian Community’s online debate forum that Joseph Stalin was converted to atheism after reading Charles Darwin’s On The Origin of The Species and it influenced his brutal politics, despite being corrected on an earlier occasion by yours truly that the Russian dictator rejected Darwinism in favour of Lamarckism that lead to Lysenko’s insane “miraculous” agricultural programme which was responsible for the starvation of millions.
Robertson is also insisting that evolution leads to immorality, refusing to accept that the human species’ survival depends on co-operation and altruism even though his answer was “I don’t know and I don’t care” when I asked him whether he actually believed in the scientific truth of evolution during our second debate.
After comparing my report on the heavy-handed treatment of atheist Harry Taylor – who never threatened anyone with violence – with this latest episode of religious beliefs receiving special treatment, I hope Robertson will revise his views. But then again, I think that our good Pastor has a preconceived notion of the World and picks and chooses arguments, facts and authorities to back that up while ignoring a wealth of contradictory evidence and even contradicting his own reasoning.
As with his preconception of Darwinism being inherently immoral, it is part of Robertson’s worldview that Christians are persecuted for their faith. In a similar way that the pseudo-fact of Jesus’ disciples dying for their faith, this is held out as evidence for the truth of doctrine. And no evidence or argument is going to change his mind any time soon.
Tags: Al Qaeda, altruism, Burton-upon-Trent, charles darwin, christianity, cooperation, david robertson, Evolution, graffiti, islam, jesus christ, jihad, joseph stalin, Osama bin Laden, Premier Christian Community, premier christian radio, richard dawkins, richard morgan, Staffordshire, the dawkins letters, the god delusion, Tohseef Shah, unbelievable, War Memorial