Don't get me wrong. Drama can be a good thing. Plays, a good story, a moving book, or movie, can help us see things from new perspectives. But the drama that is going on now with this church in Florida is a sad commentary on serious issues that are facing our world.
The media knows that we like drama or why bother to cover a story several weeks ago about a small church wanting to burn Korans on the 9/11 anniversary. To add to the drama, now we have troops in danger, the inciting of violence, and dirty laundry being aired of a pastor's miscommunication with a Muslim leader.
And all of this on the eve of the 9th anniversary of 9/11. I honestly thought this was the kind of drama we were going to have next year on the 10th anniversary. But remember, we like drama so why not start early.
I don't think we would have this level of drama on the eve of 9/11 if this one basic truth would be embraced: "Extreme Muslim terrorists were responsible for the acts of 9/11, not the Islamic faith in general." When a peace loving and observant Muslim reads about extreme Muslim terrorists hijacking his/her faith through terrorist acts, this doesn't mean that the peace loving and observant Muslim is a terrorist as well or that Islam is a terrorist based religion.
Or if a dishonest used car salesperson continually cheats his/her customers, this does not mean that all car salespeople are dishonest or that all car dealerships are unethical.
Or if a professed Christian abuses family members in the name of his/her religion, this does not mean that all Christians are abusers or that Christianity promotes abuse.
Or if a small church in Kansas protests at military funerals by spewing hate language at those who are grieving and those who have a particular sexual orientation, this does not mean that all churches have a propensity toward this kind of behavior.
Quietly and with no fanfare, a dear friend sends me an e-mail this morning which I receive while I'm watching this Florida pastor being interviewed on the Today Show. The e-mail says that she will be attending a Christian/Muslim gathering at a nearby mosque today as a display of how different faiths can coexist in peace and promote peace throughout our communities and world.
This peace gathering won't make CNN or Fox News. No, today we'll get a steady diet of segments about a certain church in Florida that has not embraced the basic truth mentioned earlier in this post, that "extreme Muslim terrorists were responsible for the acts of 9/11, NOT the Islamic faith in general."
Why won't we hear anything about my friend's inter-faith gathering today?
It's sad, but true. We like drama.