BIGOTRY MUST BE EXPERIENCED?
Catalyst December 1997
It is not everyday that the New York Times publishes a lengthy story on a piece of art that is being displayed in a Los Angeles museum. It is even more unusual to publish a color photo of it. But then again this is no ordinary work of art—it’s an explicitly anti-Catholic contribution.
In last month’s Catalyst, we did a story on the Gober exhibition that defiles Our Blessed Mother. This was the subject of the New York Times spread. The article proved to be as revealing in its rationalizations as the work it describes. William Donohue sent the Times his thoughts on the matter:
“The promotional literature of Gober’s work says that the artist ‘pierced his Virgin Mary with a phallic culver pipe,’ the purpose of which was to deprive ‘the Virgin Mary of the womb from which Christ was born.’ Yet the article says that objections should not be raised on the basis of a photo because the Gober is profoundly experiential and even interactive, a journey that must be traveled before an informed opinion can be arrived at.’
“This suggests that suffering must be experienced before an informed opinion can be made. But if this is true, then it would be irrational to oppose famine, disease and genocide without first experiencing it. Such a claim would be irrational because it would effectively end all future experiential journeys. In short, those who want to justify anti-Catholic art should simply do so without recourse to tortured logic.”