Pastor ( Terry Jones ) wins car for canceling Quran burning

Pastor ( Terry Jones ) wins car for canceling Quran burning – With the passage of time, the antics of Terry Jones — the grandly mustachioed Christian fundamentalist preacher who threatened to hold a Quran-burning on 9/11 — are beginning to look more and more like a real-life episode of “Let’s Make a Deal.”

Back in the days leading up to the 9/11 anniversary, a New Jersey car dealer named Brad Benson made Jones a peculiar offer: call off the Quran-burning in exchange for a new car. Even though Jones did eventually cancel the universally condemned plan, Benson didn’t actually expect Jones to take him up on the offer. Benson is something of a specialist in putting together outlandish publicity stunts in order to get people chattering about his dealership–for example, he’d previously offered Saddam Hussein a new car if the dictator would flee Iraq.

Jones’ representative “said unless I was doing false advertising, they would like to arrange to pick up the car,” Benson told the AP’s Brad DeFalco. Thinking that the whole thing might be a hoax, Benson asked to see a copy of Jones’ driver’s license. Sure enough, the regionally renowned publicity stunt artist was indeed being contacted by the world-famous publicity stunt artist, seeking to take ownership of a new car.

After some deliberation, Benson–a former lineman for the New York Giants–resolved to stay true to his word and hand over a 2011 Hyundai Accent, which retails for $14,200. The Islam-baiting pastor will have to travel to South Brunswick, N.J., to claim it at the dealership. Since all Benson promised Jones was a new car, some of the locals are suggesting he prank the wacky preacher by painting something on the car that’d get under his skin–something like, say, a few passages from the Quran.

Jones told the Associated Press that he’s not taking the car as a personal gift, and instead plans to donate it to an organization that helps abused Muslim women.

He may want to rethink that plan, though. After all, officials in Jones’ home city of Gainesville, Fla., are seeking to collect more than $200,000 in expenses associated with the increased security efforts sparked by Jones’ antics. If nothing else, Jones might be able to use a spacious new car to beat a hasty retreat when city auditors come to collect. ( Associated Press )

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