Notoriety given Koran-burning pastor misplaced
For the past few weeks, the media have treated us to live theater of the absurd: The Rev. Terry Jones of Gainesville, Fla., proposed to burn Korans on the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, before backing down Thursday.
Mr. Jones's church has fewer than 50 members. He belongs to no denomination, has held no regional or national office for any church organization and has never held an academic position at a seminary or Bible college. His only book is self-published.
Yet, because of a single posting on Facebook, he is treated as a major spokesman and representative of the Christian faith by every news organization on the planet. Heads of state, military commanders, diplomats and even the Vatican have responded to a man whose credibility is no more than that of a person walking the street with a sign saying "Repent: The world is coming to an end." On second thought, the world of credible sourcing and journalism standards has come to an end.
The Rev. Earl D. Trent Jr., Washington
The writer is pastor of Florida Avenue Baptist Church.