Marisa Martin is a Christian, conservative political activist and practicing artist of over 30 years. She uses a pen name because she feels it is terribly rude for an artist to criticize other artists – and it slows the hate mail down.More ↓Less ↑
First Ted Turner came galloping in on his white horse with “Ten Suggestions” to replace those moldy old Mount Sinai versions.
Hot on his heels lopes Michael Keegan with “Ten Questions” for overturning Western civilization and history when in perceived conflict with “gay” rights.
On Jan. 7, 2011, Michael B. Keegan, self appointed keeper, revelator and protector of “the American Way,” opined against the editing of an art exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum. He had every right to do so, and I wouldn’t be mentioning it here if it weren’t for subsequent and ongoing reversals, lies and attacks on religious people and art.
Keegan was irate with the Smithsonian for allegedly bending to wealthy, powerful members of the “religious right” and deciding to “close” an exhibit called “Hide/Seek.” From this supposed injustice, Keegan has launched an ongoing campaign to flush “religious art” from the public eye.
Now, “Hide/Seek,” the controversial show that polarized the U.S. art world was censored – not closed as Mr. Keegan claimed. After a fire and brimstorm over the short video – with an ant-covered crucifix and music by an apparent satanist screaming parts of Leviticus – there was a major reaction by the public, pro and con.
Dripping with sanctimoniousness, Keegan, president of “People for the American Way,” or PFTAW, denounced the heavy hand of the Smithsonian, claiming it sent a “clear signal” that our collective history is “open to politically motivated revision.” Conservatives, he implied, are the revisionists, and left-wing hate groups such as PFTAW are riding to the rescue in Keegan’s universe, which looks something like Peewee Herman’s playhouse. Now something this stupid deserves a response.
In Keegan’s case, he followed his diatribe up in April 2011 with virtual working threats against museums and other purveyors of culture, disguised as his “Ten Questions.” In one he slyly suggests that if museums use any type of censorship geared to the morals of the general public (who are manifestly Christian in the U.S.), there should be a reaction.
Couldn’t atheists then use the Establishment Clause of the Constitution to force removal of virtually all “Christian devotional paintings, including Renaissance masterpieces” from the National Gallery of Art, he asks?
This would denude many museums, as even Keegan must know – although he’d hate to admit that Western culture is Judeo-Christian at heart and soul, to which our art is strong evidence.
Most museums deposit paintings, historical documents and objects directly from the past, unaltered into real time. Renaissance and Medieval art don’t require narratives to illustrate the prominence and elevated place of religion; the paintings and artifacts are wordless revelations in themselves. For decades and centuries, Western art concerned itself almost solely with the church.
To even suggest removing all “religious” art is a type of extortion against civilization and philosophical terrorism. For instance, the Smithsonian Museum categorizes 2,449 items related to religious works in their collections.
Keegan continued his patronizing scold demanding the heads of Smithsonian personnel on a platter in subsequent writings and press releases of PFTAW. They had to be satisfied with breast pounding and contrition of Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough who originally cut the video from the exhibit but claimed he was “now wiser.”
House Minority Whip Eric Cantor asked the Smithsonian to “be prepared for serious questions come budget time,” which has brought him swift and terrible retribution ever since. It’s amusing to see that Keegan’s statements are almost identical to Cantor’s and much more threatening to wayward museum heads, although no one voted for Keegan nor asked his opinion.
For instance, Keegan ponders in Huffington Post how institutions can manage the “outside pressure regarding exhibits that might be considered controversial” … all the while his organization is applying thumb screws to the Smithsonian.
In my experience conservatives don’t generally have problems with untempered historic truth, but many leftists and virtually every member of the oxymoronically named PFTAW do. College students and educators deal with leftist revisions every day as Shakespeare is read as homoerotic literature and the science of fungi withstands Marxist critique. Revisionism is their art form.
The sinister danger to art from the “religious right” is never clearly defined (as jingoist slogans generally aren’t) by the left, but the rhetoric still appeals to the lowest of non-thinking, reactionary masses. Keegan’s version of the “religious right” is sketched out as a wealthy, dangerous force to be reckoned with and simultaneously dismissed as an unimportant “cultural fringe movement.” He’s wrong on both counts, but when have a few factual errors stopped the Huffington Post from publishing and promoting some blogger who hates conservatives?
The magnanimous, freedom-loving members of PFTAW spend a lot of time in court harassing their opponents with lawsuits and stifling their freedom of religious expression as far as their Hollywood-backed money will go. If the evil “religious right” isn’t stopped, rivers will rise, babies will have three heads and people might read the Bible.
Recent actions of PFTAW include monitoring conservative radio, where they were just appalled to hear Linda Harvey warn her audience about the new progressive “revised version” comic books. Now that Archie, X-men and all kinds of super heroes are coming out and getting their girly on, why would some terrible woman want to keep kids from the fun? PFTAW sure doesn’t know.
The far left doesn’t play fair. In fact they won’t play at all, because they won’t tolerate the idea of their being any other teams. Virtually all serious Christian artists have felt the snubs or barriers to their worldviews at some time in the modern gallery and museum scene.
To imply that conservatives and Christians are in some conspiratorial huddle to gain control of museums and media is a ludicrous charge that’s made for convenience and to hone their malicious edge. Christians have been playing a purely defensive role in the culture wars for decades, and PFTAW, Lambda, the ACLU, SPLC and too many action groups to list want it to stay that way.
Take a moment to imagine the great new world of possibilities by an unchecked progression of left-wing ideals: Their shining path of resistance is littered with religions and culture of the past; the concept of “truth” is banned because it requires exclusion, hierarchy and discrimination; half the historical sites in the nation such as the Lincoln Memorial are razed or sand blasted due to pernicious Bible references; popular votes determine who will be god of the month; the Bible is designated a value-free zone purely for literary content, and all books, songs and art must be equally purchased for the sake of justice.
Aren’t we doing some of this already? God save mankind and art from the left.