The Shotgun Blog
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
That's the banner that flew over downtown Toronto yesterday afternoon: "Jesus Sucks!"
It's a prank. A stunt pulled off by Kenny Holtz from the Canadian television show "Kenny vs. Spenny." The show is about two guys who enter stupid competitions (like who can go the longest without eating, who can go the longest without saying anything, who can win a talent competition, and, in this case, who can piss off the most amount of people).
Spenny thought he would steal a baseball during a baseball game, and tick off a whole crowd of people watching it, and the players who wanted to play. Kenny decided he'd fly a banner with "Heil Hitler" on it. When the plane company said they wouldn't do that, he switched to "Jesus Sucks," with the dumb explanation that "Jesus" was actually a friend of his getting married, and Kenny just wanted to pull a prank on him. The plane company was okay with this sign. At least they have some excuse.
Here's the Post interviewing Kenny about the stunt, and here's Charles Lewis' comment about the whole affair. Lewis raises a few good points, including this: If the banner had read something else (like "Muhammad blows" or something similar), would someone go ahead and level an HRC complaint against the show?
Will someone still level a complaint against them anyways?
I know that this banner will offend Christians, and Christians aren't a "recognized" minority group in Canada. It's okay, as it turns out, to offend Christians, but not okay to offend lesbians or Muslims. In addition, Kenny claims that he didn't really want to offend anyone anyways, even though that's what the competition is about:
"Q Did you see any irate people as the plane flew by?
"A I think people were a little more confused. And awe-struck. Maybe shocked. But listen, I'm doing this to beat Spenny. I don't think Jesus sucks. So I really hope nobody takes offense. Our competitions are very, very important to us."
Of course, it should be okay to offend everyone. And while the competitions are super important to Kenny, freedom of speech is very, very important to us. To all of us. Even if Kenny's and Spenny's competitions are not that important to very many of us (not to me, anyways).
Posted by P.M. Jaworski on July 29, 2008 | Permalink
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"It's okay, as it turns out, to offend Christians, but not okay to offend lesbians or muslims"
Are you lying or just stupid? Show me anywhere in the law it says that offending Christians and offending lesbians or Muslims should be treated differently. Show me anywhere where a court has issued a ruling where they said that offending Christians is more acceptable than offending lesbians or Muslims. Read the law sometime. You will find it says that discrimination based on religion is not allowed and no execption is noted for Christianity.
Poor fucking crybabies! Keep telling your lies long enough and maybe someone will notice. Until then, have fun at the pity party!
Posted by: Carl | 2008-07-29 9:57:41 AM
In Toronto, you say! I knew you greedy racist heathens would pull a stunt like this. First there's the NEP. Then there's reviving Apartheid, now this. For shame.
At least I don't need the army to shovel my snow.
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 10:16:39 AM
Carl: Are you aware of sarcasm?
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2008-07-29 10:16:39 AM
Offending Christians is no challenge. Its been going on in blatant fashion since the days of Monty Python. There are no consequences to doing so. It is no test of free speech. This incident, if intended to demonstrate free speech, is actually an act of moral cowardice because we all know which (1.6 billion member) "minority" he is afraid to offend. There would be consequences, if not from the "offended" then from their left-lib apologists through Kangaroo courts.
Posted by: John Chittick | 2008-07-29 10:26:28 AM
How about we pray to God to punish Toronto like he did Sodom and Gomorrah? It's most of the way there now, with its anything-goes attitude towards sin. It would be nice to see that crappy city burned off the face of the Earth anyway.
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 11:02:52 AM
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 29-Jul-08 11:02:52 AM
you may want to go and see a doctor, that stick of yours seems to continue to travel upwards and may soon hit something vital.
Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-07-29 11:07:14 AM
It would be nice to see that crappy city burned off the face of the Earth anyway.
Posted by: Zebulon Punk | 29-Jul-08 11:02:52 AM
Lets start with Jane Finch.
Posted by: The Stig | 2008-07-29 11:34:08 AM
P.M. Jaworski: So you claim you were just being sarcastic? Yeah. Right.
John Chittick: "Offending Christians is no challenge. Its been going on in blatant fashion since the days of Monty Python. There are no consequences to doing so."
This is a lie. The film Life of Brian has been BANNED in many places, including Aberystwyth Wales even though they elected as mayor the woman who played Brian's girlfriend. Read about it here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/mid/7514423.stm Christians have historically been censors, and still are today. But that never stops them from whining about being so hard done by. Pathetic!
Posted by: Carl | 2008-07-29 11:37:59 AM
On second thought, the Lord God Almighty has already cursed Toronto by populating it with Toronto people. They elected, and re-elected, their current mayor and city council, who now bedevil the city with their collective incompetence. Racial segregation is only the least of their sins. I'm not one to doubt the power of the Almighty, but he did a lot on this one.
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 11:41:23 AM
Hay Zeb. I see you're in fine fettle and high dudgeon today.
I see you've been restricting your venemous comments to Toronto only and not Ontario lately.
Hope that trend continues.
Posted by: atric | 2008-07-29 11:48:52 AM
On second thought, the Lord God Almighty has already cursed Toronto by populating it with Toronto people.
Posted by: Zebulon Punk | 29-Jul-08 11:41:23 AM
It could be a lot worse, the Punk could be living in Toronto. Fortunately, he lives in backwoods Alabama, raising chickens and eating chitlins with his brotha's and sista's.
Posted by: The Stig | 2008-07-29 11:53:53 AM
Stig: even for an Ontarian, you are poorly informed about the world.
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 12:21:55 PM
I laughed. I thought it was funny.
I also laughed at the Mohammad cartoons.
If anyone was offended by this all I can say is so much the better.
Posted by: Epsilon | 2008-07-29 12:24:13 PM
Stig: even for an Ontarian, you are poorly informed about the world.
Posted by: Zebulon Punk | 29-Jul-08 12:21:55 PM
How do you know I'm an Ontarian Punk?
Posted by: The Stig | 2008-07-29 1:06:26 PM
I am a Christian. And I say, Jesus is Who He is.
Kenny is who he is. Carl is who he is, Zebulon is who he is, and so is Osama bin laden [who he is].
And, it will all, eventually come "out in the wash", at a time when all people will find out for themselves through personal experience[by their physical death]who Jesus is, without being able to hide behind anybody's aprons.
Posted by: DCM | 2008-07-29 1:18:17 PM
This really shouldn't be a surprise. Ontarians don't believe in a higher power. Instead, they believe that THEY are the higher power and non-Ontarians should obey them like good little serfs. Well F that!
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 1:23:04 PM
I think the banner should have read "Jesus sucks Mohammad's penis". God would have a good chuckle about that. We are, after all, His experiment.
Posted by: Epsilon | 2008-07-29 1:50:01 PM
If you insult Christians, nothing happens. In fact you will likely be cheered on by the progressives hoards.
If you insult Lesbians you will wind up in a Human Rights torture chamber.
If you insult Muslims you may be killed.
That's the break down.
Posted by: John West | 2008-07-29 3:23:08 PM
A friend of mine theorized that there is a god for every planet and their job is make a success of it.
Apparently we have a loser god. All you have to do is take a look at his planet and tell me this is a success.
That is if you think his theory is worth commenting on.
So maybe the son of this loser god does suck after all. The apple doesn't fall too far from the tree.
Posted by: John West | 2008-07-29 3:29:12 PM
>"A friend of mine theorized that there is a god for every planet and their job is make a success of it."
John West | 29-Jul-08 3:29:12 PM
A conman named Joseph Smith Jr. started a very successful cult in the 1820s with that premise as a central feature.
Posted by: Speller | 2008-07-29 3:51:25 PM
Hey, why did my jokey comment get deleted? I thought we were all free speechers here?
Gosh, you libertarians sure are thin skinned. Don't be so easily offended! I was just kidding! Ha!
Oh, and I see our old friend Liberal John West has joined us. Liberal John West has admitted *right here at the Shotgun* that he is voting for the Liberal Party of Canada next election, because of the income trust thing, isn't that right John?
He may hate Christians, and therefore western civilization, but at least he's one Liberal atheist who admits he's a Liberal, as opposed to the rest of the crypto-Liberals here.
Posted by: Mocker | 2008-07-29 4:23:41 PM
I don't think it's right to piss of Christians more so than any other ridiculous make-believe-friend-in-the-sky myths from thousands of years ago.
Christians, Jews, and Muslims should be uniting against the common "evil" that is science (since they all believe in Yahweh), but they would prefer to fight each other. It's fantastic.
Posted by: Phil Bear | 2008-07-29 5:33:33 PM
You must have me confused with someone else. I would rather stick pins in my eyes than vote for a liberal.
I am indeed angry with Harper on the trust thing since he lied about it and promptly robbed me.
I am atheist, but I an objectivist atheist. Also a catholic atheist if my basic religious torture cult is of interest to you.
The fact is, there is nothing in Canada but leftist big control freak governments who live for their own power and not to work our behalf. They take ever more of our money and with it they create more and bigger problems.
I think I have made it clear that voting in Canada is not worth the cost of the gas to get to the poll.
All governments will steal our money, lie to us and take away more and more of our freedoms.
Aaaaand ... I don't hate Christians at all. I share nearly all of their values except I cannot get myself stupid enough to believe in the magic of an almighty, eternal, loving, merciful, wise being whom no one has ever seen and there is not a shred of evidence that he has ever existed.
Got that Mocker?
Posted by: John West | 2008-07-29 5:51:21 PM
Please look up the meaning of "free speech," Mocker. Because you're still confused about how private property fits into the whole free speech thing.
Or do you think that I should also have to provide you with a printing press at my expense?
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2008-07-29 7:10:24 PM
John West is funny.
Posted by: Marc | 2008-07-29 8:21:30 PM
...one good thought. After this stunt, Toronto can only look up.
Posted by: tomax7 | 2008-07-29 9:50:06 PM
Were it not for the common sense extraordinaire of Liz J and Mocker, I would have left these Llibertarian clowns here long ago.
Posted by: epsilon | 2008-07-29 10:02:56 PM
In Vancouver, would someone fly a sign that says "Emery Sucks"? :)
Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2008-07-29 10:16:18 PM
"Turn the other cheek."
Posted by: Agha Ali Arkahn | 2008-07-29 10:38:15 PM
He has the freedom to say it, and the freedom to publish it. That doesn't mean he should. No law is broken, although the boy won't win many accolades for good taste.
Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2008-07-30 7:16:47 AM
Zebulon Pike wrote: "In Vancouver, would someone fly a sign that says "Emery Sucks"?"
Better not, Zebulon...former city councillor Tim Louis, he of Che Guevera T-shirt fame, might just have a SAM-7 or RPG stashed in his basement.
Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2008-07-30 8:10:27 AM
"Please look up the meaning of "free speech," Mocker. "
LOL, schoolboy, this is the fourth time you've suggested I don't know the meaning of a term, in lieu of actually debating me; not a very intelligent, or mature, or creative debate tactic, now is it? Pretending you were joking when you get called on your narrative is even more childish.
Looks like I am getting under your skin. I thought you were mentally stronger than that.
John West: you watch your mouth old man. You admitted your anger and hatred toward the CPC here:
Your generation didn't pay its taxes and left mine with a half trillion dollar debt - of which Stephen Harper has paid down ~$35 billion in a short time, thus saving taxpayers billions in interest charges. Don't be surprised if my generation or the millenials seize your assets to pay for the damage you have caused, and govern yourself accordingly.
Posted by: Mocker | 2008-07-30 8:33:19 AM
They have no assets. This site is living on borrowed time and momey.
Posted by: epsilon | 2008-07-30 8:45:07 AM
Actually, Mocker, I'm happy to debate you. Make an argument, and I'm there.
But you don't debate in good faith, or act with civility.
So, just exactly what was your argument?
I wasn't pretending I was joking, I said I was being sarcastic. Which I was. That's why I had "of course" preceding the line.
Epsi: You're wrong.
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2008-07-30 9:06:07 AM
A person can only be offended if they see any truth in it, otherwise, why bother being offended? Being offended is just an act of insecurity and nothing more.
Religion, in my opinion, is an unhealthy and immoral act simply because it forces people not to think for themselves. Same applies to the ivory tower. And methamphetamines.
And as far as "Jesus suck"ing, historical records say that Jesus wasn't big into cigarettes or lollipops, he did, however, hang out with a lot of dudes.
Posted by: Eugena Farnsworth | 2008-07-30 10:22:53 AM
Children shouldn't play with religion.
The comment about turning the other cheek pretty well sums it up. If words can't affect you, you've already won the war (of words).
Posted by: dp | 2008-07-30 10:50:59 AM
Prove it, Jaws.
Posted by: epsilon | 2008-07-30 10:51:17 AM
Sure, epsi. You have two options: One, just wait a few years, and you'll see.
Two: Join our board of investors. Then you get to look at our numbers.
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2008-07-30 11:05:44 AM
"I wasn't pretending I was joking, I said I was being sarcastic. Which I was. That's why I had 'of course' preceding the line."
1. The line you previously claimed was sarcastic was this: "It's okay, as it turns out, to offend Christians, but not okay to offend lesbians or muslims." If you check, you will see it is not preceded with "of course".
2. The place where you do use the phrase "of course" was here: "Of course, it should be okay to offend [i]everyone[/i]. And while the competitions are super important to Kenny, freedom of speech is very, very important to us." There it does not seem that you used "of course" to indicate sarcasm, but to indicate that it should be obvious that free speech allows us to offend everyone.
3. In Maclean's Mark Steyn wrote: "[i]of course[/i], not all Muslims are terrorists.... [i]Of course[/i], not all Muslims support terrorists...." In June at the hearings in Victoria the lawyers for the CIC claimed that the use of the words "of course" were a clear indication he was being sarcastic, and thus he really was claiming that all Muslims are terrorists and that all Muslims support terrorists. Steyn, his supporters, and other opponents of hate speech laws said that the CIC were being ridiculous. So either you don't really believe that in your case using "of course" marks your words (or would have marked them, had you actually used that phrase) as sarcastic or you agree with the CIC that the words "of course" are a clear indicator of sarcasm, thus Steyn really was claiming that all Muslims are terrorists.
Posted by: Fact Check | 2008-07-30 11:17:13 AM
I meant it sarcastically. That should be the end of that conversation.
I do think that the phrase "of course" is, depending on context, a clear indicator of sarcasm. At other times, it's meant as a clear indicator of something that doesn't need to be mentioned, but has to because of sticklers and other people who argue in bad faith.
I think Steyn's comment was meant in the second sense, because it is ridiculous to think that Steyn thinks all Muslims are terrorists.
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2008-07-30 11:35:57 AM
Wait a few years as in, "we are losing money now but in a few years we are profitable".
Join our board of investors as in, "we are losing money so let's suck in some saps who will give us more cash to burn."
I don't think so.
Posted by: epsilon | 2008-07-30 12:01:52 PM
Wasn't Steyn's book about the selfish, childless Europeans whose unwillingness to reproduce puts their entitlement programs in Jeopardy?
And to pay for the retirement programs, some immigrants from undesirable philosophical backgrounds have been taken in?
That's the way I read it.
Guess we must have read two different versions of the same book.
Posted by: set you free | 2008-07-30 12:55:39 PM
Posted by: tomax7 | 2008-07-30 7:19:50 PM
Eugena F: "Religion, in my opinion, is an unhealthy and immoral act simply because it forces people not to think for themselves."
I guess I'm not thinking for myself when I go to my local church this afternoon to volunteer my time in the kitchen for the meal which will feed over 100 homeless people who will come in from the heat.
I guess helping the homeless is "unhealthy" and "immoral."
Where will you be this afternoon?
Posted by: batb | 2008-08-01 7:06:20 AM
Eugena F: "Religion, in my opinion, is an unhealthy and immoral act simply because it forces people not to think for themselves."
I guess that's one of the stupidest things I've ever heard.
IMHO, YOU suck! ;-)
Posted by: batb | 2008-08-01 7:07:59 AM
Easy batb: Eugena F's quote is true if you apply it to gov't or Jesus. People want some kind of saviour to fall back on. I view gov't (Harper, Dion, whoever) worshippers in a dimmer light than "following" christians. At least christianity is voluntary.
Posted by: Opinion | 2008-08-01 10:11:47 AM
Apparently this gag was floated out to see who would get most offended.
Wonder what the reaction of the head-hackers would be?
Posted by: set you free | 2008-08-01 12:21:42 PM
Freedom of speech is there to protect unpopular speech. Nobody needs the Charter to say, "Puppies are cute." They need it to say stuff like "Jesus sucks," and "God hates fags."
If you aren't free to say stuff that deeply offends a shitload of people, you aren't free at all.
If you think that your desire to not be offended somehow trumps my right to free expression, go fuck yourself. If you're so heavily into censorship, you might find China to be more appealing to you.
Posted by: Paul R. Welke | 2008-08-03 10:48:08 AM
Opinion: Government and Jesus are two completely different categories.
Jesus, in the Christian faith, is GOD, the true and living God. He is the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, the Son part of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Those of us who worship the Christian God do so not because we're forced to, as Eugena F. states, but for as many reasons as there are believing and practising Christians. God speaks to each one of us very individually--and we choose to respond or not.
How a religion like Christianity, whose adherents, for instance, are in almost every case the first-responders to natural (and man-made) disasters around the world, can be called "unhealthy" and "immoral" is beyond me. BTW, Christians don't blow people up in buses, in trains, or in market squares, using women and children as booby traps, either.
It's pretty clear that there's ONE religion--at least they call themselves a religion--that is "unhealthy" and "immoral" and it's clearly not Christianity.
Posted by: batb | 2008-08-04 9:19:46 AM
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