The Perfect Answer to Muslim Protesters

The Perfect Answer to Muslim Protesters April 23, 2012

I definitely wish I’d been able to attend the Global Atheist Conference in Melbourne, Australia last week — if for no other reason than just to witness this perfect answer to the Muslim protesters who showed up to tell everyone there that they’re burning in hell.

Gregory Storer and his partner, Michael Barnett, were attending the convention in Melbourne when they were confronted by a group of Muslim protesters holding signs that that said, “Atheism is the Cancer / Islam is the Answer” and “Christopher Hitchens Final Destination: Hell Fire.”

“My partner Michael and I took advantage of the moment to kiss in front of the group,” Storer wrote on his blog. “We understand that in some Islamic States gay people are persecuted and executed for their sexuality. It was an ideal opportunity to challenge the notion of acceptance and tolerance. As we began kissing, the Muslims began chanting, burn in hell.”

“It’s crazy that in Australia such bigoted homophobia is allowed to exist,” he added. “It amazes me that these men can hide behind their religion and use it as a weapon to victimise and condemn people without being challenged.”

That last part is wrong. It’s not crazy that people are allowed to express bigotry, it’s free speech. The proper answer to that bigotry is not to outlaw it, it’s to counter it with our own messages. And this was a great way to do it.

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  • drivebyposter

    I didn’t read “allowed” as in “legal”, I read it as meaning allowed to continue to exist unchallenged and unstigmatized. People really need to feel ashamed that they are such massive assholes that they can’t sleep if other people are finding joy in something that’s harmless.

  • jba55

    Love it. I remember seeing a similar picture that was taken of a gay couple in front of some of the Phelps clan. I’m pleased and mildly surprised that there was no overheated physical reaction.

  • John Hinkle

    …the Muslims began chanting, burn in hell.

    How nice.

  • lancifer

    Ed,

    You beat me to the punch on the gay gentleman’s remark about “allowing homophobia to exist”. You can’t legislate to stop people from having stupid beliefs, or expressing those believes peacefully, at least in a free society.

    But I did enjoy the looks on the faces of the Muslim protesters as the two gay lovers went for each other’s tonsils.

    I’m not as gentle as those two loving souls. I would have purchased a nice big Qur’an and put down the back of my pants.

    If any of the Muhamedites were to attempt to stop me…

    Well, I wonder if they have anything like the “stand your ground” law in Australia?

  • This is the best thing ever.

    It never ceases to baffle me that religion thinks that having literally nothing at all positive, decent or kind-hearted to promote is a selling point.

  • “It’s crazy that in Australia such bigoted homophobia is allowed to exist,”

    No, it’s actually quite sensible compared to the abhorrent actions that would be required to make it otherwise.

    If you’re a practitioner or advocate of expression that some people dislike (rightly or wrongly) and not also a passionate defender of free speech, you’re doing it wrong.

  • My kingdom for an edit button.

  • bahrfeldt

    According to Muslims, isn’t anyone not practicing (the correct variety of) Islam (to the proper degree of piety) damned anyway. Sounds mighty familiar, like Ayatollah Robertson or that German guy in Rome.

  • cactuswren

    You’d think by now the TrooBeleevers would have realized exactly how useful it is to threaten atheists with punishment in hell.

    “So you’re saying that after I’m dead and NO LONGER EXIST, this NONEXISTENT

  • cactuswren

    Damn, hit “Submit” by mistake. Anyway:

    “So you’re saying that after I’m dead and NO LONGER EXIST, this NONEXISTENT god of yours is going to send me to a WHOLLY INVENTED, MAKE-BELIEVE realm of punishment. And why, exactly, is this supposed to frighten me?”

  • Ysanne

    cactuswren,

    the fact that they’re doing the whole hateful religious protesting thing could be an indicator to somewhat underdeveloped logical reasoning skills…

  • buckeyenonbeliever

    Islam, where two gay men will burn in hellfire, but an adult male who rapes a 9 yr old girl shall have praise upon him. Seem just? No, just religious nonsense.

    Reason not religion, Education not indoctrination.

  • julial

    This is merely a suggestion:

    Where I come from there is a tradition at wedding feasts for the assemblage to repeatedly tap on their glassware as a signal to the newlyweds. After a slight pause they generally reward their audience by giving each other a big smooch.

    How ’bout a modification of this performance? In front of any group of the irrationally prudish, started by atheist or theist, a chant of “BURN IN HELL…BURN IN HELL…BURN IN HELL” serves as motivation/command for any same sex couple to plant one on their significant other.

    I like this because:

    It co-opts the threat into something friendly.

    It shows disdain of everlasting torment for finite transgress.

    It could be irritating to the terminally stupid.

  • I’m not sure where I first heard/read it but my favourite response to the oft repeated refrain that I’m going to “burn in hell” is “You vastly over-estimate the power of your god to intimidate me.”

  • matty1

    If you keep threatening me with supernatural punishment I’ll set my leprechaun on you.

  • sumdum

    It’s not their god that scares me, it’s his followers.

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