Tony Costa Sent Me to the Hospital
What a headline. Those are words I never thought I’d one day have to write. I’ve been interacting with Dr. Tony Costa for some time, most people would know I recently debated him last year on the topic of, Was Jesus the Son of God or Only the Prophet of God? For sometime now I’ve been ill with a severe chronic illness, this is public knowledge and people generally know that I’m quite frail most of the time. As such, any mildly strenuous physical activity leads to hospital trips where I am given pain medication and observed for some time.
Over the course of last night and this morning, I had the unfortunate experience of seeing Dr. Costa pretend to know the Arabic language. After having pointed out why he was wrong on the morphology of the term آله (Ilah), and that he was confusing it with a completely different word لت (Lat), while using three lexicons: Lane’s, Hans-Wehr and Lisan al Arab, and the Arabic Bible used by the Coptic Church: Smith & Van Dyke Arabic Bible, Dr. Costa decided he was correct despite all of these evidences proving him to be incorrect. To settle the matter, I simply asked Dr. Tony if he could kindly give me the morphology of the term آله. For anyone who has done more than one week of Arabic, you’d know how to derive the female from this root word. He was unable to do so, in fact, he outright refused to do so. Tony insisted that his finding the female of آله had nothing to do with using the root of the word.
Does that sound incredulous? I’m not kidding. Apparently Tony studied sarf (morphology) to the point where he does not use the root of words to derive their sexes and numerical forms. Considering you need to use root words to derive any other form of the word, I’m not sure what planet he believed he was on. In trying to help him and to save him from further embarrassment, I simply indicated that he was trying to get the feminine of word A (آله) using the word B (لت). I gave him a simple explanation, it’s as if he was trying to get the plural of orange, which is oranges, by using the word range. Orange has nothing to do with range. Unfortunately, without showing his morphology, or how it was possible to get the form of one noun, using a completely different noun, Tony decided he was correct. Regrettable as it was for him, several people, including myself who were included in the exchange have knowledge of the Arabic language.
This led to an endless fit of laughter lasting several hours. It’s akin to seeing a child get their ABCs wrong, and insisting they’re correct because their friends in kindergarten also recite their ABCs this way. So basic was his error, everyone knew that he was pretending to know the Arabic language. Yet he couldn’t get the female derivative of a noun. Knowing that he was pretending, we waited to see what his other replies would be. His last reply insisted that he was correct, no morphology, no explanation, nothing. To put it diplomatically, it was cringe-worthy. Due to laughing excessively, it led to me having a coughing fit, which triggered my other symptoms, thus landing me in the hospital. I’ve now been released and am back home and resting, Alhamdulillah.
This is the first time that someone’s ignorance has actually, physically hurt me. Dr. Tony Costa pretending to know Arabic and failing at it, sent me to the hospital. Thank you Tony, thank you.
and Allah knows best,