Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on a December 3 statement by the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD) on the video that was pulled from the Smithsonian last week:
AAMD calls it “extremely regrettable” that the Smithsonian pulled the vile video. Nowhere does it even imply that Christians might rightly be offended by the sight of large ants crawling all over Jesus on the Cross. As such, AAMD has made the case for withdrawing all public support for the arts. If this is what they call art—never mind the pornographic images of gay men—and if this is how they treat Christians, then let them find private sources for their work.
AAMD is also guilty of rank hypocrisy. In 2006, it released a report on sacred objects, maintaining that “art museums should strive to accord equal treatment and respect to all religions in the interpretation of religious works of art.” Does AAMD not regard a crucifix as a “sacred object”? Christians would love to know. Or is their interest in “sacred objects” limited to those found in “indigenous societies,” as their policy seems to indicate?
In a large survey of museum-going households released in April, it was found that they are significantly better educated and affluent than the U.S. population; they are also overwhelmingly white. The time has come, then, to stop funding the leisure of rich white people: all public monies for the arts should cease. Quite frankly, to make the working class pay for the leisure of the rich amounts to class discrimination. In the spirit of social justice, a better case could be made to fund professional wrestling—it’s what the working class enjoy.
Contact Janet Landay at the AAMD: firstname.lastname@example.org