- The Washington Times - Monday, March 8, 2004

Che chic

“Grow a lousy beard; don’t cut your hair; commit mass murder; wreck an economy, and you, too, can be on the silver screen.

“Leftists worldwide mourned the Argentine Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara after his execution in October 1967 following a failed attempt to communize Bolivia….

“It was just a matter of time before [Guevara was celebrated by] Hollywood, … which already has a long history of affection for Fidel Castro.

“Benicio Del Toro will play Guevara in Terrence Malick’s ‘Che,’ set to begin production in July. …

“Robert Redford’s production, ‘The Motorcycle Diaries,’ adapts Guevara’s journal of his travels through Latin America in his 20s and stars Gael Garcia Bernal, a popular Mexican actor who also played Guevara in the Showtime miniseries ‘Fidel.’”

Myles Kantor, writing on “Killer Chic,” Friday in Front Page at www.frontpagemag.com

‘Farce’ weddings

“Up until the late 19th century, the state had nothing to do with marriage. People got married in the church. When the state government started to get involved in marriage, they actually put strange and stringent restrictions on it and forgot its initial purpose — which was a union that only existed in the eyes of God. Now, the state is trying to rewrite this God-ordained institution with a plethora of perverse marriages, which will soon open the door to polygamy and more extreme perversity.

“No matter what the state does, however, real marriage is only within the church. Other cultures embrace homosexuality, polygamy, and even child marriages, but marriage, as most people think about it in the United States today, is ordained by Christ.

“As C.S. Lewis pointed out, for these other people it doesn’t matter if they’re married because true marriage is a covenant ordained by God. Whether the state issues a piece of paper or not, this does not effect the sacrament of marriage — only God does that as an outward and visible sign of an inner and spiritual grace. Without that grace, state-ordained unions are doomed to emptiness and despair, and are a farce.”

Ted Baehr, writing on “Hallowed Ground,” Friday in Assist News at www.assistnews.net

Conservative Oscars

“The 76th Academy Awards took place in a time of culture war. A movie about the crucifixion of Christ that Hollywood wanted nothing to do with was breaking records at the box office. … A stirred-up FCC was holding hearings to rein in television indecency. The awards show itself was put on a five-second delay to prevent any Janet Jackson/Justin Timberlake-style embarrassments. And the movies up for the biggest awards — such as ‘The Return of the King,’ ‘Master and Commander,’ ‘Seabiscuit,’ and ‘Finding Nemo’ — were culturally conservative.

“The Hollywood elite was certainly on its best behavior. Compared to past years, last week’s Oscars were sedate and restrained. …

“There were no casual obscenities in the acceptance speeches. Even the stars’ dresses were relatively modest and demure, stopping the trend over the last few years of starlets trying to outdo each other in revealing gowns. …

“Unlike recent years, the Oscars this time were not embarrassing and did not make the viewer despair of American culture. Hollywood still has a long way to go, to be sure, but this year the Oscars could make an ordinary American feel that, yes, that’s my culture, and maybe there is hope for it after all.”

Gene Edward Veith, writing on “Lord of the Oscars,” in the March 13 issue of World

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