The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery has pulled the video, “A Fire in My Belly,” that the Catholic League objected to earlier today; it shows large ants eating away at Jesus on a crucifix. Commenting on this development is Catholic League president Bill Donohue:
Our immediate concerns have been relieved, though it is a sad commentary on the judgment exercised by Smithsonian officials that it took a pressure group like the Catholic League to send them a wake-up call. Quite frankly, had common decency prevailed from the beginning, they would never have insulted Christians with this vile display.
The larger issue is still on the table: why should the federal government underwrite an institution that uses money to bash Christians, when it is unconstitutional for the federal government to underwrite the promotion of it? That is why the letter I sent today to the members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees stands—they need to reconsider the propriety of funding the Smithsonian Institution.
One more thing. To say that it was the artist’s intention to show the suffering of AIDS victims—and not to offend Christians—is unpersuasive. Let them next invite an artist to put their bugs on an image of Muhammad and then explain to Muslims that they never meant to offend them.