Is there any reason on God’s green earth why taxpayers should be on the hook for that?^
Incoming Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor didn’t think so either:
House Speaker-to-be John Boehner (R-Ohio) is telling the Smithsonian Institution to pull an exhibit that features images of an ant-covered Jesus or else face tough scrutiny when the new Republican majority takes control of the House in January. House Majority Leader-to-be Eric Cantor (R.-Va.), meanwhile, is calling on the Smithsonian to pull the exhibit and warning the federally funded institution that it will face serious questions when Congress considers the next budget.
“American families have a right to expect better from recipients of taxpayer funds in a tough economy,” Boehner’s Spokesman Kevin Smith told CNSNews.com. “While the amount of money involved may be small, it’s symbolic of the arrogance Washington routinely applies to thousands of spending decisions involving Americans’ hard-earned money at a time when one in every 10 Americans is out of work and our children’s future is being threatened by debt.
“Smithsonian officials should either acknowledge the mistake and correct it, or be prepared to face tough scrutiny beginning in January when the new majority in the House moves to end the job-killing spending spree in Washington,” Smith said.
When asked to clarify what exactly Boehner meant by calling on the Smithsonian to “correct” their mistake with the exhibit, Smith responded in an email that Boehner wanted the exhibit “cancelled.”
Cantor, meanwhile, said the exhibit should be “pulled.”
“This is an outrageous use of tax payer money and an obvious attempt to offend Christians during the Christmas season,” said Cantor. “When a museum receives taxpayer money, the taxpayers have a right to expect that the museum will uphold common standards of decency. The museum should pull the exhibit and be prepared for serious questions come budget time.”
In just the time it took for me to find the image, I saw an update at Fox News that the offending video was already being pulled. Money talks:
In a statement released on Tuesday, Martin Sullivan, director of The Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery, said a video depicting Jesus on a crucifix covered in ants will be removed from an exhibit at the museum.
“I regret that some reports about the exhibit have created an impression that the video is intentionally sacrilegious,” the statement read. “In fact, the artists’s intention was to depict the suffering of an AIDS victim. It was not the museum’s intention to offend. We are removing the video today. The museum’s statement at the exhibition’s entrance, ‘This exhibition contains mature themes,’ will remain in place.”
Yes, I’m glad it wasn’t anyone’s intention to offend. Really, the first thing I think of when I see an image of Jesus on the cross, covered with ants, is AIDS.
Hat tip: Weasel Zippers