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Hate Crime Goes Unpunished

Greek Orthodox priest rushed to hospital; found guilty of "looking Arab

Greek Orthodox priest rushed to hospital; found guilty of looking Arab

We reported this in November of last year; Jason D. Bruce, a Marine reservist, physically assaulted a Greek Orthodox priest, mistaking him for an Arab (and thus a terrorist, since we all know that Arab = terrorist).  Bruce hit the Muslim-looking man with a tire iron, chasing him for three blocks.  The Tampa Bay Times had reported:

Tampa police: Marine reservist attacked Greek priest he mistook for terrorist

By Alexandra Zayas and Demorris A. Lee, Times Staff Writers In Print: Wednesday, November 11, 2009

TAMPA — Marine reservist Jasen Bruce was getting clothes out of the trunk of his car Monday evening when a bearded man in a robe approached him.

That man, a Greek Orthodox priest named Father Alexios Marakis, speaks little English and was lost, police said. He wanted directions.

What the priest got instead, police say, was a tire iron to the head. Then he was chased for three blocks and pinned to the ground — as the Marine kept a 911 operator on the phone, saying he had captured a terrorist.

Can you imagine what would have happened if Bruce had done the same thing to a Jewish or black person?  The book would have been thrown at him.  Well, this was just a hate crime against a raghead. (Ok fine, he wasn’t really a raghead…but the point is that Bruce thought he was a raghead.)

Anyways, here’s an unfortunate update: James D. Bruce is getting off scot-free;  the Tampa Bay Times recently wrote:

Charges dropped against Marine reservist accused of attacking priest in Tampa By Colleen Jenkins, Kameel Stanley and Alexandra Zayas, Times Staff Writers In Print: Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Bruce was arrested on a charge of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. The case gained national attention and drew strong reactions from the public, most of it negative toward Bruce.

On Tuesday, the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office announced it will not pursue any criminal charges against him.

Maybe now Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller can honor James D. Bruce like they do other hate-mongers.

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    • Umar

      Of course the DA dropped the charges. He only want convictions on his record, and anyone knows that when the accused shows up in his dress uniform, we will never be convicted.

      Convict a “Hero”???? you must be joking…..

    • george beres

      Why was this Orthodox priest imported from overseas without knowing much English? He did not deserve this attack. But his communicants– if they are serious about communicating with their god surrogate– are cheated by having a monolingual cleric. – George Beres, one-time Greek Orthodox

    • What the @%#$!?!?! They dropped the charges on this steroid-filled ape? That is not good… not good at all. His next victim (and I guarantee he WILL attack again; he has a history of it) will be on the DA’s hands. When you have a rabid dog like Jansen, the only sane choice is to put it down.

      I get a sneaking suspicion that the fact that he was a Marine, and that he beat up on a Greek priest he thought was Muslim, played a big part in getting the charges dropped. Jansen is seen as ‘white,’ ‘American’ and ‘heroic’. His victim… not so much. And it happened shortly after the Fort Hood shootings, which may have earned Jansen some sympathy…

      Disgusting. And its especially disturbing that we are all being lumped together. Muslim, Arab, Indian, Sikh, Greek, Hindus, Latino… apparently we ‘all look alike’ to the bigots. And while this may reveal something about their prejudice, it also puts so many people at risk. You know, I have friends from many cultures. Colombia, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, Mexico, Greece,… I don’t want my friends, Muslim and non-Muslim, getting targeted. Heck, I DON’T want to get targeted by these loons either.

      Maybe those of us with swarthy good looks should form our own mutual support network, haha….

    • Color me unsurprised

      The book thrown at him if he had attacked a Black person? Doubtful, especially in the state of Florida. It is not at all surprising that charges were dropped– in fact, it is typical.

    • Biz

      @ Lawrence

      You got the right idea. We should all act on our fears and not critical thinking. We should attack everything that scares us with tires irons. First thing to go will be clowns, then spiders, and final public speaking. Let’s give into our fears and stop being a country of freedoms. Let’s forget the lessons that our greatest generation taught us and give into the hate and fear they fought against in World War II.

      I do not agree with people that blame the victim for somehow in sighting the attack. That is equivalent of blaming a rape victim for dressing to provocatively.

      Do not try to mask your hate by calling it fear. That is the same thing Bruce tried to do and no one here is following for it.

      Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

    • Rachael

      I know several Russian and Greek Orthodox priests. Only a BLIND, xenophobic moron could mistake a traditional priest’s cassock for Afghani clothing. Besides, according to the Marines, Bruce has never been deployed to Afghanistan.

      Fr. Makaris is 5’4″ and a vowed pacifistic celibate. Jasen Bruce is 6’2″ and a bodybuilder. WTF is wrong with this picture?

    • Les

      “Very convenient of you to leave out the fact that the ‘priest’ made a homosexual pass at the Marine. Too bad he didn’t kill the faggot.”

      LOLOL. Who else do you hate? Don’t use the term ‘faggot’ here.

      And that was the excuse this marine used after he realized what he did. He’s a liar.

    • Juan P

      @ BarenakedIslam. You are a moron, and a massive one at that. Lets have a look at what really happened shall we?

      “Police say Bruce offered several reasons to explain his actions:

      1.The man tried to rob him. 2.The man grabbed Bruce’s crotch and made an overt sexual advance in perfect English. 3.The man yelled “Allahu Akbar,” Arabic for “God is great,” the same words some witnesses said the Fort Hood shooting suspect uttered last week. “That’s what they tell you right before they blow you up,” police say Bruce told them.”

      It’s a bit weird of Bruce to have used the ‘he was gay and coming onto me’, given his own questionable sexual preferences….

      (I hope you don’t take that as some sort of insult to the gay community Danios. It sounds kinda harsh when you read it back but I don’t mean to insult anybody :-S ).

    • Imad

      @ barenakedislan:

      great. So ur not only an islamophobe (u don’t deserve being called a critic), but also a homophobe?

    • barenakedislam

      Very convenient of you to leave out the fact that the ‘priest’ made a homosexual pass at the Marine. Too bad he didn’t kill the faggot.

    • What a tragedy that a person can be so brainwashed with bigotry and hatred, that he automatically assumes that a man with a beard and a turban (or what looks like a turban) must be a terrorist with a bomb strapped to his chest – apparently thought to be asking directions to the target he intended to blow up! And of course, being a ‘good’ marine, he just naturally aggressively attacked and injured the supposed terrorist. May the All Merciful, All Powerful One open the eyes of the spiritually and morally blind, and lead us all to the path of true justice and righteousness. Grant both repentance and forgiveness!

    • What a great story by paranoid Danious.It shows how much fear the Muslims have created among the Non-Muslims who also react out of fear and anger.You live in America where the tide is turning against the Muslims.One more attack like 9/11 will open the flood gates of hatred against the Muslims in America and they will be interned before being expelled.Some Muslims and Muslim looking could be killed. Non-Muslims can never win the loyalty of a Muslim. Comment by Danios: How hard are you praying for this one more 9/11 type attack so that this happens?

    • Mahmoud

      This reminds of how Sikhs are being perscuted in New York because they are mistaken for Arabs/Muslims. What got people worried wasn’t that there were people who would randomly attack Muslims on the street, but Sikhs were being mistaken for Arabs. So rather than campaign against hatred of Arabs/Muslims, They started campaign for icreased Sikh-awareness, and how you shouldn’t confuse a Sikh with an Arab. Some even pointed that the way to tell the difference is by the moustache, since Muslims shave it but Sikhs don’t.

  • Sir David

    Sorry I dont understand. Did the priest slip on a bar of soap ? WTF is going on here ? Land of the free , Free to beat up lost strangers? Anyone know a blogger with an orthodox back ground who may have a view on this

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