There has been an outburst of violence in Afghanistan in response to Pastor Terry Jones' burning of a copy of the Qur'an on the 20th March of this year. To be honest, I didn't even know the idiot had followed through with his threat to do this, originally scheduled to be done on the last anniversary of 9/11. But, to be clear, the violence in Afghanistan, which has lead to the death of "at least seven U.N workers" is not his fault.
The Qur'an is a book, just a fucking book. The book he burned was his book, bought and paid for, one of millions printed every year, containing the same words that can be found on the internet (if you can be arsed to read the turgid thing) and no matter how sacred some fanatical muslims want to consider it they have no right to insist that the rest of us consider it anything more than it is. In my opinion it is the lunatic ravings of a deluded and deranged paedophilic despot. You may think otherwise, so what?
Terry Jones is despicable, stupid and I wouldn't give him the time of day but he is not the villain here.
"Religion is a hypothesis about the world: the hypothesis that things are the way they are, at least in part, because of supernatural entities or forces acting on the natural world. And there's no good reason to treat it any differently from any other hypothesis. Which includes pointing out its flaws and inconsistencies, asking its adherents to back it up with solid evidence, making jokes about it when it's just being silly, offering arguments and evidence for our own competing hypotheses...and trying to persuade people out of it if we think it's mistaken. It's persuasion. It's the marketplace of ideas. Why should religion get a free ride"