A controversial play just recently opened in Sydney by the American playwright Terrence McNally called Corpus Christi. The play depicts Jesus as a gay man that is seduced by Judas and also shows Jesus marrying two gay men.
Robert Forsyth, the Anglican Bishop of South Sydney said a few tame things like “It’s historical nonsense and I wouldn’t want to go and see it. Life’s too short.”
While Angela Conway of the Australian Family Association went a little further and said “The ideas are offensive and really border on blasphemous. It’s just completely fanciful and self-obsessive.”
It got me thinking about the reaction of the Muhammad Cartoons and the damage that they caused. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that there were bomb threats and protests in the US when the play was staged, and Terrence McNally also received death threats, but it still seemed like a relatively calm reaction to something that causes people to lose all rational thoughts (an attack on their religion). So I did a Google search..
I found that when it was staged in the UK there was a little more controversy. Terrence McNally (he must be used to controversy by now as this was back in 1999) was sentenced to death by the Shari’ah Court of the UK. He had a “death fatwa” placed on his head as the play was deemed blasphemous by the Al-Muhajiroun (The Defenders of The Messenger Jesus).
Sheik Omar Bakri Muhammad, judge of the Shari’ah Court of the UK said “The fatwa is to express the Islamic point of view that those who are insulting to Allah and the messengers of God, they must understand it is a crime.
The Church of England has neglected the honor of the Virgin Mary and Jesus. It is blasphemy for them not to take action.” BBC News
I wonder what people would fight about if there were no such thing as religion, patriotism or oil..