I’m an artist. I work in the world of religious cartoons. Sometimes sarcastic religious cartoons. I don’t do anything obscene or intentionally offensive, yet I still try to make valid criticisms of religions, religious doctrines, and/or religious founders, albeit with a dash of twisted humor. Indeed, cartoons are still powerful tools of social commentary and sugar makes the medicine go down easier. And there’s nothing quite like cartoons to bring out the double standard that the media operates under. The sometimes obscene and intentionally offensive images drawn by the French cartoonists are being censored in news articles featuring photos of the slain cartoonists holding the images that caused their death.
The odd thing is: Sarcastic or obscene images and movies of Jesus are often paraded across the television and praised the media at any time.
Who can forget “Piss Christ”, an image of Jesus being crucified and placed in a bottle of the artist’s urine that actually won an award from the National Endowment for the Arts (a US government organization)? (Until a few days ago, the Associated Press was still selling images of “Piss Christ” and a picture of Mary [Note: I ain’t Catholic, but…] decorated with elephant feces. Odd for an organization that claimed that “[i]t’s been our policy for years that we refrain from moving deliberately provocative images.”)
And what about Scorsese’s ridiculous film “The Last Temptation of Christ” where Jesus was portrayed as depressed, confused, and psychologically disturbed man with erotic and even homosexual tendencies? (I barely made it through to the factless and ahistorical Scorsese’s sermon in the final scene.) How much praise did it receive from critics?
Since most of the major media outlets (not all) are censoring the images, we shouldn’t be afraid to ask why. Is it worry about offending people? If so, why is no such care taken with deplorable imagery of One Who is arguably history’s greatest Teacher, Jesus and the very Son of God to those of us who believe in the evidence of His claims?
(Well, people have done and will do what they want with an images of Jesus. Speaking as once, hard-core Zappa fan, I’m not easily offended. Besides, it’s not to me to Whom they will be answering.)
So if the media is intentionally censoring / refusing to show the images, you have to ask why.
Which brings up two additional and final questions: Is Islam “a religion of peace”? Are the people these news organizations are afraid of extremists or are they the real Muslims?
Those are my thoughts.
Joshua / NAA
content © 2014 Joshua Warren
2015/01/15 UPDATE: MSNBC’s Maddow Shows ‘Piss Christ’ But Not Latest ‘Charlie Hebdo’