A Double Standard on Religion?
In 1987, a vision of Jesus immersed in urine created by artist Andre Serrano became the proud winner of the Visual Arts Competition sponsored by the federal government at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art.
The National Endowment for the Arts even contributed to the $15,000 Serrano was paid for the work.
Government liberals have no problem placing Jesus in wastewater, rewarding the condemnation of Christianity with a prize. But what happens if Mohammed is depicted as something less than holy? As did diplomats in Egypt, the federal government “condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims.”
It was interesting that the National Endowment for the Arts never apologized by “condemning the continuing efforts of misguided artists to hurt the religious feelings of Christians.” In fact, the arts community and the National Endowment questioned the commitment of senators like Jesse Helms to the guarantees of First Amendment freedom when they called these bureaucrats to account for their intolerant behavior.
Yet Jesse never called for the burning of the Museum of Modern Art. In fact, the National Endowment for the Arts remains alive to this day.
On the other hand, on Sept. 11, 2012, terrorists found an obscure anti-Muslim movie that almost no one had seen. It was produced by a fringe looney somewhere in the United States and used as an excuse to murder Americans on the anniversary of our “awakening.” Of course, the first response of the federal government was to apologize to the Muslims and “bring in” the filmmaker for “voluntary” interrogation.
The first words of the First Amendment to our Constitution state, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” A government which awarded prizes for placing the Christian God on Earth into human waste but now apologizes for private citizens who insult the Muslim prophet clearly is “establishing (the) religion” it prefers.
On Sept. 30, 2011, in the Egyptian town of Marinab, Muslims burned a Christian church and rampaged through a Christian village. In March 2012, in the village of Sool, Muslims burned a church as the local imam urged the crowd to “kill all Christians.” Just last year, in the New York Review of Books, Yasmine El Rashidi wrote an article titled “Egypt: Why Are Churches Burning?” The government was silent.
I am not a Christian. But just as a Christian nation defeated my Holocaust in 1945, I will not tolerate a government that clings to the values of Chamberlain as it mocks the resolve of Churchill and ignores the oppression that is always the price of “Peace in Our Time.”
An administration dedicated to religious tolerance would have called the Egyptian government onto our billion-dollar foreign-aid “carpet” regarding the persecution of Christians by Muslims. But this is a government dedicated to appeasement and apology, as are its supporters.
What would the pro-Obama Hollywood elite have done if another president had dragged a filmmaker out in the middle of the night just after a film on the evil of racism had sparked a riot in South Boston? Would the ACLU come to the aid of this filmmaker in the same way it defended the right of Nazis to march among the Holocaust survivors of Skokie, Ill.?
An American government that rewards the desecration of Christianity with prizes, but reflexively atones for the “hurt feelings” of Muslims a quarter-century later, acts no differently than would the most despotic regimes around the world.
And a government that drags its feet as Iranians seek the “Final Solution” for Jewish people in the construction of a nuclear weapon has appeased, if not surrendered to, the jihadi cause.
Recent disturbances around the world must convince us that it is later than we think. It must also convince us that our vote is more important than we think. The upcoming election may not be only about our anemic economy.
It may also be a decision on whether we will accept a pan-Arab world order which excuses the oppression of Christians as it fires nuclear-tipped Iranian missiles at Israelis. It will be a decision on whether or not to surrender our support of free speech to the Muslim Brotherhood, not just in Egypt or Libya, but in America as well.
Robert M. Levy is chairman of the Moore County Republican Party. Contact him at Law52@prodigy.net.
More like this story