The American Christian pastor who recently proposed to burn multiple copies of the Koran on 11 September has inspired a Brisbane-based atheist lawyer to take things even further.
According to The Courier Mail, 29 year old lawyer Alex Stewart has posted a 12-minute video on YouTube showing him burning pages from the Koran and the Bible - aptly dressed in a t-shirt saying: "I'm an atheist (thank god)".
In the video, Stewart - who is an employee at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) - is shown tearing pages from both books and using the paper to roll what appear to be marijuana cigarettes.
The audacious lawyer then smokes the cigarettes giving each a mark out of 10, rating the Bible better than the Koran, and telling people to "get over" the burning of books like the Koran and the Bible.
"I guess that's the point with all this crap," Stewart says in the video. "It's just a f-ing book. Who cares? It's your beliefs that matter. Quite frankly, if you are going to get upset about a book, you're taking like way too seriously."
Stewart told The Courier-Mail that he expected people to be offended by the video but was not worried about reprisals. And although it looked like he was smoking marijuana, Stewart admitted it was actually lawn clippings.
"The video was a joke video of course. I never actually do drugs. People do this stuff all the time and if people get really upset about this then they're taking it far too seriously," he said.
Luckily for Stewart, his actions do not contravene the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act and penalties for blasphemy have been removed from the Criminal Code.
A QUT spokesperson said the university would seek an urgent meeting with Stewart.
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