- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The feeling is so tempting, so intensely pleasurable when indulged — and, as Rod Dreher notes in a thoughtful post, wrong.

Turns out, a German state opera company has cancelled the performance of a Mozart opera for fear of Muslim outrage over a scene featuring Mohammed’s severed head (and that of other religious icons, including Christ and Buddha).

Clearly the goal is to epater le bourgeois.

“So many contemporary artists,” Dreher writes, “think nothing of defecating on the most deeply held religious beliefs of a very great number of people. In fact, it’s seen as a mark of legitimacy in their circles. There is a nasty, spiteful part of me that takes pleasure in the squirming of these artists under such circumstances.”

And yet, Dreher hastens to add, “that sentiment is very wrong, and I reject it.”

Situations like this should remind us of some of the he-had-it-coming talk issuing from some conservatives when Salman Rushdie had a death warrant on his head because of “The Satanic Verse.”

Yet it wasn’t so funny when likeminded jihadists killed 3,000 of us.



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