Sarah Palin: Burning Quran 'Antithetical To American Ideals'
Sarah Palin is speaking out against a plan put forth by a Florida-based church to burn Qurans on the ninth anniversary of the September 11 attacks.
The former Alaska governor outlined her position on the contentious issue in a message posted to her Facebook page Wednesday evening.
"Book burning is antithetical to American ideals," she wrote. "People have a constitutional right to burn a Koran if they want to, but doing so is insensitive and an unnecessary provocation -- much like building a mosque at Ground Zero."
Even in the wake of criticism, Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center -- who is organizing the demonstration -- signaled that he has no intention of backing down on his controversial plan earlier this week.
Palin directly addressed Jones in the statement she issued on the matter:
I would hope that Pastor Terry Jones and his supporters will consider the ramifications of their planned book-burning event. It will feed the fire of caustic rhetoric and appear as nothing more than mean-spirited religious intolerance. Don't feed that fire. If your ultimate point is to prove that the Christian teachings of mercy, justice, freedom, and equality provide the foundation on which our country stands, then your tactic to prove this point is totally counter-productive.
In an unusual twist, Palin's stance aligns with that of many prominent figures in the Obama administration -- from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Senior White House Advisor David Axelrod and Attorney General Eric Holder.
Gen. David Petraeus sounded the alarm over the national security threat that Quran burning may pose earlier this week:
Petraeus took the rare step of a military leader taking a position on a domestic matter when he warned in an e-mail to The Associated Press that "images of the burning of a Quran would undoubtedly be used by extremists in Afghanistan -- and around the world -- to inflame public opinion and incite violence."
At the end of her statement, Palin wrote:
Our nation was founded in part by those fleeing religious persecution. Freedom of religion is integral to our charters of liberty. We don't need to agree with each other on theological matters, but tolerating each other without unnecessarily provoking strife is how we ensure a civil society. In this as in all things, we should remember the Golden Rule. Isn't that what the Ground Zero mosque debate has been about?
Palin recently made known her strong opposition to plans to develop a mosque and Islamic community center in New York City's Financial District.