Pastor Charged After Calling Bible a Bomb


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doger5
October 21, 2004, 01:18 PM
First he was stupid for making the comment. Is this the new police state?

Pastor Charged After Calling Bible a Bomb

Wed Oct 20, 7:23 PM ET


NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A pastor says he was "just kidding" when he told airport security he had a bomb, reached into his luggage and pulled out a Bible, declaring, "This is my bomb."



Jose L. Gonzalez, a citizen of Spain living in Deltona, Fla., was arrested and charged Sunday with making a false statement.


Gonzalez was earlier reported to be part of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. However, organization officials said Wednesday he is not a member of their group.


Seventh-day Adventist officials said Gonzalez is part of the Seventh Day Adventist Reform Movement, a group that broke from the denomination in the mid 1860s and headquartered in Roanoke,Va., officials said.


The incident occurred as security screeners at the Nashville International Airport were searching his carry-on bag.


Gonzalez, a passenger on an Orlando, Fla.-bound Delta flight, had already raised suspicion when screeners found a laptop computer that he said at first he didn't have.


An investigation determined that Gonzalez did not pose a threat, but the FBI (news - web sites) still arrested and charged him with making the statement.


"Upon being questioned by airport security officers about the above episode, Gonzalez admitted having said that he had a bomb," a federal criminal complaint states, "but insisted that he was just kidding.


"He claimed he had used the term 'bomb' as a way of referring to the Bible as having the ability to change one's life," the complaint states. "He admitted that it had been stupid and that he had not intended any harm."


U.S. Magistrate Judge Cliff Knowles presided over Gonzalez's initial court appearance Tuesday and advised him that, if convicted, he faces up to five years in prison and a potential fine of $250,000.


___


Information from: The Tennessean, http://www.tennessean.com

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Skunkabilly
October 21, 2004, 01:32 PM
It's his weapon of mass devotion :p

"I'm going to blow you away with my holy spirit machinegun!"

:barf: :rolleyes:

erikm
October 21, 2004, 02:16 PM
Well, I seem to remember reading that maces or morningstars (I forget which) were also perversely known as 'holy water sprinklers'. Probably had to do with its shape or the results of using one, I think.

Weapons of mass Confession anyone? :D

Cheers,
ErikM :evil:

M1911Owner
October 21, 2004, 02:56 PM
In my business, we normally refer to a Bill of Materials as a "BOM", pronounced the same as "bomb". I've often wondered about what might happen if a couple guys, getting ready to fly to the location of an assembly vendor, were to say to each other, "Frank, did you remember to bring the BOM?", while going though security.

It's not their fault that TSAs heard "BOM" as "bomb."

Zundfolge
October 21, 2004, 03:59 PM
I bet if they even spelled it out; "Hey Frank, did you bring the Bee Oh Em?" The TSA thugs would probably think thats how bomb was spelled and arrest them anyway :neener:

jnojr
October 21, 2004, 04:07 PM
In my business, we normally refer to a Bill of Materials as a "BOM", pronounced the same as "bomb". I've often wondered about what might happen if a couple guys, getting ready to fly to the location of an assembly vendor, were to say to each other, "Frank, did you remember to bring the BOM?", while going though security.

My brother told me that did happen at his last job... :) I have no idea if it was a rumour wandering around, or if he got it directly from someone who was there and who didn't embellish. According to the tale, they explained and went on their way.

JohnBT
October 21, 2004, 06:04 PM
"Is this the new police state?"

The guy was an idiot. Go ahead and make a joke about a bomb in an airport and see what happens. It isn't anything new, they've always been a tad touchy about bomb jokes in airports. Police state my butt. The goofball deserved to be arrested for being stupid in public.

John

2nd Amendment
October 22, 2004, 12:46 AM
Yeah, sure. If stupid were a criminal offense there wouldn't be a leftist still on the streets.

jimpeel
October 22, 2004, 02:23 AM
Pursuant to the Constitution and Bill of Rights, we have a right to be stupid as long as noone's life, person, or property is damaged by our stupidity. The government has added hurt feelings to the list and now we can't say anything without having to be guarded lest the local snitch lines light up at the Ministry of Information.

There used to be a sense of right and wrong, a sense of common, and a sense of humor in America. Ah, but for a stroll through the old days when we were truly free.

rbrowning
October 22, 2004, 09:30 AM
The problem with his "joke" is that it wasn't painless. How much time was wasted proving that it was a joke and not real? How many $ wasted due to his stupidity? This is similar to yelling fire in a theater, it does cause damages, even if it isn't true.

This kind of moronic action is not funny, can not be tolerated and should be penalized.

Firethorn
October 22, 2004, 09:38 AM
How hard to disprove? flipping through the pages should be sufficient.

JohnBT
October 22, 2004, 09:45 AM
"the old days when we were truly free."

You make it sound as if we never had any laws at all.

John

Edward429451
October 22, 2004, 10:01 AM
Wha? OK so the guy had a brain fart and made a bad anology. Call it idiocy if you will, I'll buy that in this day & age.

Give em 10 minutes to search the guys stuff and scold him for bad judgement, and send him on his way. That would have been reasonable. Charging him and otherwise making it a federal case it what makes it a police state.

Wait'll the arrest some 10 yr old for making a gun with his fingers on a plane, thats next.:rolleyes:

Ewok
October 22, 2004, 11:27 AM
Seventh-day Adventist officials said Gonzalez is part of the Seventh Day Adventist Reform Movement, a group that broke from the denomination in the mid 1860s and headquartered in Roanoke,Va., officials said.

A few seconds of googling shows that this is incorrect. The SDA was formed in the 1860s, the SDARM was formed in the 1920s. Journalists need fact-checkers to go with their spell-checkers and grammar-checkers....

jimpeel
October 22, 2004, 10:16 PM
You make it sound as if we never had any laws at all. And you make yourself sound nonsensical.

I would think a simple reading of what I posted would be sufficient to the needs of those who wish to be informed. Apparently not; so I will elucidate for your edification.

There was a time in this country that one could make offhanded nonsensical remarks in a humorous way without being dragged to the hoosegow. Not so today.

If someone says about their errant child "I'm gonna kill him." are they being serious; or just saying that which people have been saying for ages without seriousness?

If one tells another to "Take a long walk off a short pier." are they saying they wish this person to drown and suffer a horrible death; or are they being facetious?

When one says "Go out and play in the traffic." are they seriously telling someone to kill themselves?

If someone picks up a Bible and says "This is the weapon of God with which He shall smite His enemies just as surely as a nuclear bomb." are they just being metaphorical; or do they actually hold a nuclear bomb in their hand?

You really gotta grow yourself a sense of humor, Guy. A little reading for comprehension wouldn't hurt either. Not to say that not reading for comprehension does hurt. I mean it doesn't hurt in the literal sense just in the virtual sense. Which is not to say that literal and virtual are harmful as they aren't unless you use a literal weapon over a virtual weapon. But that is not to say that I want anyone to be hurt with a weapon, virtual or literal, at all because I don't. Really. I don't. Honest.

Hope that was clear.

Gifted
October 23, 2004, 12:29 AM
They do say, on the signs and stuff all over the place, not to even joke about such things.

c_yeager
October 23, 2004, 04:32 AM
There was a time in this country that one could make offhanded nonsensical remarks in a humorous way without being dragged to the hoosegow. Not so today.

You pretty much have to go to a time BEFOER airports to find a time when it was OK to joke about having a bomb. I remember my mother telling me when i was a kid not to even joke about crap like that and this was a LONG time before the TSA.

JohnBT
October 23, 2004, 08:30 AM
"You really gotta grow yourself a sense of humor, Guy."

My name's not Guy. Had a grandfather named Guy, but he's dead. Go talk down to somebody else. My reading comprehension and ability to think clearly are quite intact thank you.

"You pretty much have to go to a time BEFORE airports to find a time when it was OK to joke about having a bomb."

Exactly.

John

Sergeant Bob
October 23, 2004, 08:46 AM
BA-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A--A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-H

El Tejon
October 23, 2004, 12:27 PM
Now, some of us here may be a little sarcastic.:D However, the airport is a REALLY bad place to be sarcastic.:uhoh:

Everyone Eddie Haskell up!

M1911Owner
October 23, 2004, 01:40 PM
They do say, on the signs and stuff all over the place, not to even joke about such things.

Signs cancel out the Constitution of the United States??

Making on obvious joke about a bomb doesn't rise to the level of crying "fire" in a crowded theater. In the latter case, the act caused a stampede which resulted in a number of deaths, if I remember correctly. Merely annoying a government official is not similar to causing a stampede and deaths.

JerryM
October 23, 2004, 01:56 PM
If by this time one is not aware that jokes about bombs at airports are not funny, but will land you in jail, then he is too dumb to fly.

Free speech? It is too near "Fire in a crowded theater." You do the crime, you do the time.

Jerry

M1911Owner
October 23, 2004, 02:35 PM
Publicizing that someone doesn't recognize your rights does not make those rights go away.

Being unfunny is not a crime. 'Else we would have locked up certain "comedians" a long time ago.

Screaming "BOMB!" at the top of your lungs and diving behind a counter for cover would be similar to "yelling fire in a crowded theater"; a poorly-chosen metaphore is not. If saying something that comes out differently than it was intended were a crime deserving of five years in a federal prision, then every male who has ever had a relationship with a woman would be serving a life sentence.

For that matter, when I was forced to sit through all those coma-inducing "English Literature" classes in high school that dissected all the "symbolism" that isn't there, a metaphore was certainly not considered to be a "false statement"--it was merely a sophisticated, poetic way to convey a deeper truth than a more prosaic direct statement.

What that pastor did is worthy of a stern lecture at the time he did it, not of being arrested and facing a five-year federal prison sentence.

Bemidjiblade
October 23, 2004, 04:48 PM
I can just see it now.

The libs will have a legal precedent. In my imagination it goes something like this:

Airport Nazi: Is that the Sword of the Spirit?
Traveller *pleasantly surprised*: Why yes, I do believe it says that.
Airprort Nazi blows his whistle and has a the man arrested.

:scrutiny: :barf:

Just sitting back and waiting. At this rate, taking your kids to sunday school will be labeled as spirtual abuse for imposing your morals on them.

Derby FALs
October 23, 2004, 06:13 PM
I wonder if he was answering a TSA question of whether he was carrying explosives in his baggage...

c_yeager
October 23, 2004, 06:55 PM
Gonzalez, a passenger on an Orlando, Fla.-bound Delta flight, had already raised suspicion when screeners found a laptop computer that he said at first he didn't have.

I think that people are kinda forgetting this part. It's not as if our heroic pastor simply made a little comment and got the book thrown at him. He already established himself as a liar before any of this happened. It sounds to me like he was trying REALLY hard to martyr himself here...

Evil_Ed
October 25, 2004, 02:03 AM
Two words...

Stupid Hurts.

jimpeel
October 25, 2004, 03:39 AM
I didn't say that was your name. Your name is obviously John. I'm sure your name is not Bub, Buddy, Homey, Dude, Mister, or Sir either.

The reading for comprehension comment was just that, a comment. You took what I posted and turned it into something it was not; even though what I posted was unambiguously clear. While I am sure that you read it; I am equally sure, by your response, that you did not "get it".

Art Eatman
October 25, 2004, 12:17 PM
jimpeel and JohnBT: Enuf!

:), Art

JerryM
October 25, 2004, 01:08 PM
I am a little suprised that it is not obvious to some that this is not a victimless crime.
The airline and security had to spend time sorting it out, and all other passengers suffered a great deal of inconvenience.

A pastor should have sense enough to realize that the consequences of his statement could have results that were damaging.
It has nothing to do with freedom or free speech. How one arrives at a conclusion that it does is beyond me, and makes no sense.

He, his family, and others, including passengers on the flight, have been caused some degree of harm.

Being stupid in itself is not a crime, but the manifestations of that stupidy may in fact be a crime. So it was with that pastor. He is not intelligent enough to be a pastor and lead a church in wisdom and righteousness. Maybe he thinks that pastors are exempt from common sense, and the rules that others must observe. Now he knows different.

Jerry

The_Antibubba
October 26, 2004, 02:37 AM
I'll bet shortly after he was taken away, "The other cheek" was turned for him! :evil:

Sorry, but if you abandon the responsibilities that go with your rights, you have no standing to complain when they are removed. Saying "bomb" in an airport is like shouting "fire" in a crowded theater. I've worked in a few airports, and I'm stunned everytime some a**hole thinks this is funny, and that he's the very first person to ever think this up, and that we'll all somehow get a big laugh out of it.

Well, if you're waiting for my laughter, it'll come during your "cavity" exam.

:fire: :cuss:

Zach S
October 26, 2004, 08:10 AM
I suddenly have an urge to watch Meet the Parents...

Saying he had a bomb was beyond stupid IMNSHO.

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