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Art intolerance

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Wednesday, November 10th, 2004 — [letter to the editor]


I had read in the national media about Stanford's rejection of the inverted church sculpture and I therefore read with pleasure Nancy McGaraghan's commentary (Weekly, Nov. 3) on the "Root of All Evil."

Thanks to the Weekly and Ms. McGaraghan for voicing these libertarian sentiments in a time of increasing "moral" pressures. Even those of us living in the Republican Palouse of Eastern Washington, just across the border from the bastion of Idaho's right-wing home base, are struck by Stanford's censorship of a work of art.

As a history student and prospective secondary teacher, it is hard to ignore the lengthy legacy of universal intolerance addressed to artists and politicians who dare to question or criticize or parody or even attack churches and religions of any stripe.

The latest election, in which "morals" were apparently a deciding factor, highlights the reported fact that more than 70 million Americans self-identify as fundamentalist Christians; the same electorate decries fundamentalist Islam and cannot understand why people of other cultures and religious persuasions hate Americans.

Bob Russell
Colfax, Washington