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Hickey Urges Christians to Bail Jaber out of Jail

Steve Hickey asks a great question: what’s the difference between Ehab Jaber and Annette Bosworth?

Annette Bosworth, 2013; Ehab Jaber, 2017
Annette Bosworth, 2013; Ehab Jaber, 2017

Annette Bosworth famously posed for a cheap campaign photo with a gun and a Bible in her hands. Ehab Jaber walked into the anti-Muslim propaganda fest in Sioux Falls with a Koran in his hand and a gun on his hip (and possibly in a sock holster). Hickey isn’t cutting Jaber slack (he labels Jaber a terrorist when the evidence does not support that conclusion), but…

I’m not all that convinced what he did is all that different from what a lot of flag/gun waving Christians do. This meme illustrates the point.

If the book the gal on the left is holding up says don’t kill the other person, why is she holding that gun? Here’s why? Because since Constantine, the Church has embraced a grave heresy to find justifications to do the very opposite of what Jesus taught. The gal on the left believes her book gives her justifications to kill the other JUST LIKE the gal [referring to another meme] on the right believes her book gives her justifications to kill the other [Steve Hickey, “Our Opportunity to Love on Our Local Terrorist,” The Other Cheek, 2017.04.26].

Neither Bosworth nor Jaber actually made any threat to kill anyone. However, Hickey seems to support my basic contention that carrying and displaying a gun is in itself an expression of a willingness to use deadly force. And Hickey and I agree that such an expression does not fit with the teachings of the Nazarene carpenter.

But then Hickey preaches some real radical Christianity and recommends local Christians love Jaber by bailing him out:

Second, I think it is high time Christians start acting like Christians and that means we start acting like Christ. That means we figure out a way to love this enemy. Missionaries do it all the time… they reach out to those who are hostile to them and who have even tried to kill them. That’s when the Gospel is most powerful. That’s when we are most like Christ. As is this guy is sitting in jail thinking hundreds of local Christians at an event hate him. I hope that is not true. He needs to know Christians love Muslims even though they take issue with Islam.

So how do we love on our local (alleged) terrorist? My suggestion is that we post his $2500 bond and I’ll put forth the first $250. He needs to know there are people who care about him and that they are they very people who he views as enemies. This gesture would send this guy a message in a way that sending him a Bible wouldn’t. It would send him am important message that so far we have failed to communicate to him and others like him.

…But I really ONLY want these donations to come from people who are “friends of Jesus” and preferably Conservative Christians only – it needs to come from us. Mr Jaber needs to think about the fact that he was bailed out by friends of Jesus [Hickey, 2017.04.26].

Now I still have a problem with Hickey’s exhortation to love. He’s still stuck in some contractual love—bail Jaber out, and maybe he’ll realize the Christians at the anti-Islam rally are really great people and Christianity is a superior religion. The truest, most radical Christian loves for love’s sake, with no thought of recompense.

But Hickey’s call to spring Jaber is a more coherent and confident expression of Christian love and faith than any of the Trumpy fearmongering offered at the April 9 anti-Islam event that Jaber found so appalling.

Jaber, like Bosworth, isn’t a terrorist. Jaber, like Bosworth, is just a bit nuts. Hickey isn’t perfect, either, but his Christian advice is worth considering.



  1. jerry 2017-04-26 07:11

    True that, looks like Jackley is gonna loose this and rightly so. We cannot have either Jackboot Jackley or NOem as governor of this berg.

  2. Mike Henriksen 2017-04-26 07:40

    If this was a white guy the NRA would have already bailed him out and hired him a lawyer. They also would have had a press conference or 2 and been working the national morning news shows.

  3. David Laughlin 2017-04-26 08:23

    Sorry but the NRA wouldn’t bail anyone out. This is a real call to be Christlike. His skin color doesn’t matter his seeing christians actually acting Christlike does.
    As an NRA follower and former supporter I can tell you there more interested in donations than supporting individuals who do stupid things. Carrying a gun to a group meeting against you is a deathwish in hopes of martyrdom. The gal with a picture of a Bible and a gun is not the same thing. If she went to a mosque while prayers were going on doing that…. Umm that would be a deathwish on her part and stupid as well. And yes that’s terrorism. Either way it is.

    A picture is just that ,. Live presence is very different

  4. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-04-26 08:48

    “seeing Christians actually acting Christlike”—I agree that Christians should live up to their teaching. But I hear a little Pharisaism in the emphasis on being seen.

    The terror charge does not appear to focus on the defendant’s “live presence”. The officer who writes the affidavit supporting arrest says Jaber interacted with law enforcement at the event without incident. It focuses on images displayed online.

    “deathwish”? That word suggests that if the Christians at the meeting had turned and attacked Jaber, they would have been justified. That seems to be the opposite of the Christian sentiment to which Hickey exhorts his fellow believers.

  5. Lora 2017-04-26 09:38

    It is no surprise that Hickey is standing with the Muslims rather than the Christians. Both hate women, both think they are holier than thou.

  6. jerry 2017-04-26 11:41

    Where do you stand then Lora? You are neither Christian or Muslim, so pray tell, what are ye?

  7. Randee Huber 2017-04-26 11:59

    There is no difference. They are both way too happy with their guns and hate everybody who isn’t just like themselves. Interesting though, that the gun nuts want anybody and everybody to have guns except the people they’re afraid of. Cowards.

  8. Robert 2017-04-26 12:26

    Many seem to forget the suspect also had Meth. Now if he was really as clean as everyone is making him, have him produce a sample for drug testing. I have had better people covered in tattoos do the right thing while those who state Christian values stab folks in the back.

  9. Don Coyote 2017-04-26 12:40

    What? No points for Bosworth for demonstrating good gun safety by not having her finger on the trigger and having the pistol slide racked into an open position in her video? How about her advocating the teaching of gun safety?

    Contrast that with a p.o.’d individual dropping not only f bombs but what also could be loaded firearms on the seat in his car while declaring that people should be afraid of him because that’s how he travels. Cory’s Moral Equivalence Gang fails again with their rotten logic.

  10. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-04-26 12:53

    Robert, I don’t forget he had meth. I think I’ve mentioned that meth the cops found at his place (not on him, not at the anti-Islam event) every time I’ve posted since that information was released. The $2,500 bail was set for the terrorist threat charge.

  11. Ryan 2017-04-26 13:11

    People who are publicly enthusiastic about their religion make me sad. I admit I know very little about the teachings of Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, or any other religion. I have heard that there are a lot of positive things about religion if you look carefully enough, but the only things that seem to consistently boil to the surface are entitlement, hate, segregation, violence, and then justification for those things.

    It makes me sad that I am made of the same material, or that I evolved from the same place of beginning, or that I was created by the same creator as all these zealots. You believe in a particular god? Good for you. You believe there is no god? Good for you, too. You think your book is great? Good – your neighbor thinks his book is better. Neither of you probably read your book, but that’s beside the point, right?

    Grandma told your daddy something, and then he told you, so that’s how the world works. Perfect. There is your excuse to fill yourself with entitlement and hate. Because your dear old grannie was a good person, so you must be a good person, too.

    Ignore all the stuff in the book that you don’t particularly like, and then ignore the stuff that everybody agrees didn’t happen, and then ignore the stuff that makes life complicated, then ignore the stuff that made sense 2,000 years ago but doesn’t seem to hold water now. Just ignore that stuff. Your book, according to your people, is the friggin’ WORD OF GOD, but there are parts of it that aren’t all that important, right? Your preacher or rabbi or spiritual leader or parent knows better THAN YOUR GOD, right? The stuff in the book that doesn’t fit your shallow self-image must be extra, right? Sure, just skip those hundreds of pages.

    I have a genuine question: people that say they believe in Christ, or in Allah, or in Buddha, or whatever you say you believe…do you ACTUALLY believe this stuff, or do you just WANT to believe it? Sure, I wish I would live forever, but I understand the difference between hope and belief – I wish more people understood that, or admitted it.

    I’m sad that I grew up to be an adult and I realized all the adults who tried to teach me things when I was a child were all just scared, lonely, confused people. I’m sad that more of you didn’t learn this lesson. I’m sad that the potential of the human race is going to be shortchanged by our fear of death and the finality that may come with it. We all want to believe that we are eternal, so we collectively tell ourselves fairy tales about one god or several gods saving us from the sad possibility of a finite existence. Then if somebody else tells a fairy tale that is very similar, yet slightly different, we want to kill them. Great job, humanity.

    We are a big group of crying, scared, gullible, confused, and bitter creatures. Those emotions are difficult to deal with, so we try to bring other people down because that will make us feel less scared, gullible, confused, and lonely. If we get enough people to back us up in our fairy tale, it might start to feel like it’s true, so we won’t be mortal and we won’t face death and we will have eternal love and peace and we can live forever in a garden with angels and clouds. Just keep saying it, it will be true if we say it enough.

    I’m sad that which fairy tale somebody pretends to believe in is seen as one of their most important and defining characteristics.

    If there is a god, I hope he’s sad for us, too. What a bunch of snot-nosed children in grown-up costumes we all are.

  12. o 2017-04-26 14:35

    I agree with the heart of Cory’s argument; I also have issues with people who have guns and a book telling them who to point those guns at. Gun toting never seems to be as clearly in-line with “pro-life” to me as it seems to be for so many others (with guns and books telling them who to point them at).

  13. Troy 2017-04-26 15:22


    For a person who admits knowing very little about religion, you sure have some rather specific opinions about religion and those who adhere to religion. I might be wrong but it might be prudent to reserve judgement about something until you have studied the matter. Just so you know, I know literally thousands of believers and I don’t recall meeting anyone who fits your description. While Cory believes as you do, I doubt he would characterize the people he has met at his wife’s church as you do. If you live in Sioux Falls, I’d be happy to have you join me and my family at St. Lamberts. If it works, a Sunday we also have a pancake breakfast would allow you to meet some people outside of the Mass. Cory knows how you can get in touch with me.

    By the way, I really believe “it.”

  14. Roger Cornelius 2017-04-26 16:22

    Careful Ryan, Troy is setting you up for his GOP/Christian indoctrination.

  15. mike from iowa 2017-04-26 16:30

    It is all for naught. Adam. After yer indoctrinated into Troy’s flock and then you die. Willard Romney will convert you to Mormonism whether you want it or not. Just don’t let anyone know you died and you’ll be safe. :)

  16. bearcreekbat 2017-04-26 17:00

    Roger, I agree that Troy meant to address Ryan, not Adam.

    My suggestion to Ryan is to spend the time to read the Bible from cover to cover and study the passages you find interesting. I attended a debate between atheist David Silverman and a Christian apologist (I can’t recall his name) at BHSU in Spearfish a few years ago. At the conclusion of the debate, both of them urged the audience read the Bible from cover to cover. I followed that advice and learned a great deal. The Bible describes many atrocities and horrors purportedly committed by God and his followers. I decided that if these stories were true, then the God of the Bible is a tyrant not worthy of respect, let alone worship. The stories were so fantastic, however, they were obviously fiction, but they convinced me that atheism was the correct moral and factual choice of viewpoints.

    That said, I would still urge you to take up Troy’s offer and decide for yourself. You don’t have to be a believer to recognize that most of the people who believe in God and that book are decent fellow human beings not out to intentionally hurt anyone. I believe the same is true of Islam and the Koran, which I also read from cover to cover to help me understand that religion a little better. Like Christians, most Muslims likely care about family, neighbors and their fellow human beings, despite some questionable passages in the Koran.

    Christians and Muslims that preach hatred based on the Bible and the Koran, and commit or advocate violent acts against others, strike me as the kind of people who would preach hatred and advocate violence regardless of religious teachings. The Bible and Koran are simply their excuses for bad behavior that such folks feel a need to commit to satisfy whatever troubles their minds, or to make money.

  17. Troy 2017-04-26 18:59


    Obviously I don’t agree with what you gleaned by your reading of the Bible* but I do agree with your assessment most people of faith (and non-faith) are in my opinion good people desiring good. I also agree some (but not all) of the people who pursue non-good using religion/Scripture as a justification would do so without such justification.

    * My Church teaches that reading Scripture without either the eyes of faith, the desire for faith or a heart open to faith is like trying to appreciate good wine drank from a glass filled with dirt (my analogy)- Because one has built so many impediments before you started, it will take a miracle.

  18. Don Coyote 2017-04-26 23:10

    @ryan:”I have a genuine question: people that say they believe in Christ, or in Allah, or in Buddha, or whatever you say you believe…do you ACTUALLY believe this stuff, or do you just WANT to believe it? Sure, I wish I would live forever, but I understand the difference between hope and belief – I wish more people understood that, or admitted it.”

    FWIW, Buddhists don’t believe in Buddha or god(s). Buddha is not god, nor was he divine. The path to enlightenment each adherent to Buddhism follows is his own. An old Zen koan states “If you meet the Buddha, kill him.” meaning your path to enlightenment is your’s alone. A Buddhist isn’t concerned about eternal life instead reaching enlightenment will free him from the endless cycles of life, death and rebirth. Om.

  19. monica kalacinski 2017-04-27 09:25

    The true God of the Bible isn’t into bailing people out ,he sent his son Jesus to pay the awful death sentence we had earned,bailing people out for their crimes paints the wrong picture of God and what His dear Son did for us! God does not ever look at our sin and excuse it,NO He always punishes it justly,BUT because of his mercy and love he put the punishment on his son instead of us if we will repent and put our faith in what Christ did for us on the cross.This writers mindset is completely backwards!!!! This is a Jesus she has made up in her head.I have personally met a missionary wife whos husband was killed by several terrorists these men were imprissioned and got saved!!!! Much because of letters her and her family sent to them telling them the glorious gospel.Those men are still in prison born again and are leading many others to the truth!!!SO I AM PRAYING FOR THE SALVATION OF THIS MAN!!! I was at the conference and if He would have shot me I would want my family to share the gospel with him!!!! But bailing him out NO.That would show my kids God is an unjust judge.People need to understand forgiveness is not a bailout ticket it actually just the opposite!!!

  20. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-04-27 09:33

    Reminder: there is no sign that Jaber was any more likely to shoot anyone at the event than anyone else who was there carrying a firearm.

  21. bearcreekbat 2017-04-28 10:01

    Troy, when you say your church teaches that we should read the scriptures with “the eyes of faith, the desire for faith or a heart open to faith,” that raises the question of faith in what? Faith that the stories in the bible are true? Faith that the Biblical God is real?

    Assuming one has faith that the Biblical God is real or that the Bible stories are true, what in those stories indicates a God worthy of respect or worship? I can have all the faith in the world, but that doesn’t make me feel any better about a God that kills innocent children to get an advantage for his chosen people. Frankly, if slaughtering innocent Egyptian kids, Midianite women and little boys, and raping little Midianite girls was necessary to insure my eternal happiness so long as I worship the killers, I would rather be remain miserable.

  22. Jenny 2017-04-28 10:13

    Exactly, bear, the Christian god sounds mean and that’s not the kind of God I would want to have faith in. I want a nice god that doesn’t kill, ever.

  23. Jenny 2017-04-28 10:16

    Bear, oh the stories I could tell you about the Catholic Church I was brought up in. Being in a confessional with a priest I discovered years later that had been raping boys. The meanest kids that bullied were the Catholic ones. A priest that stole money from our small town church. It just goes on and on.

  24. Shelly 2017-04-28 15:11

    He was bonded out by a Christian. This article was a day too late for that suggestion.

  25. leslie 2017-04-29 15:25

    Trump continues to stumble on his red tie. “It may be Pocahontas, remember that” he said before the NRA and in response Elizabeth Warren’s challenge and others’, to anti-gun voices:

    that “NRA leaders are hoping their investment in the election will help them 1.) pass dangerous legislation that would enrich gun manufacturers while endangering Americans. This includes 2.)dismantling the criminal background check system, 3.) making gun silencers more accessible, and 4.) — their ultimate goal — passing ‘Concealed Carry Reciprocity’.”

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