Liberal Grace

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Obvious Warning Signs about Mel Gibson

In my recent blog entry Next Time Listen to the Jews I argued that the Jews were probably right and we were probably wrong about Gibson. Next time, when a minority speaks up about bigotry, we in the majority should listen.

Tim Rutten writes a similar article for the LA Times. Clues Dismissed in Time of 'Passion'

Given all that's been written and broadcast about the anti-Semitic tirade Mel Gibson delivered when he was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving, it's interesting that the story's most significant implication barely has been touched.
[W]hy hasn't the press reopened the discussion of Gibson's financially successful but controversial movie, "The Passion of the Christ"? When it was released two years ago, there were some who argued that, apart from its lurid sadomasochistic aura — critic Leon Wieseltier called it "a sacred snuff film" — Gibson's narrative was studded with the kinds of anti-Semitic caricatures once associated with medieval passion plays.

A much larger number of commentators and clergymen, particularly those hand-selected by the filmmaker and his people for private screenings, solemnly assured their readers, audiences and congregations that this was all a lot of anti-religious nonsense. More important, many of them personally vouched that Gibson is not an anti-Semite.

Looking back, it's hard to see how so many people could have so completely overlooked the obvious warning signs.

I might add, again, that when you are in the majority it is very easy to overlook "obvious warning signs" and that is why you should not dismiss the complaints of minorities as "victim culture" or whatever mean-spirited term the conservatives are using these days.

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