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Hasta La Vista, Baby: The Passion of Neo-Pharisees

Posted by Rick · December 8th, 2005 · 1 Comment

Two stories about Mel Gibson caught my attention this week. I think it’s wholly appropriate that I was standing at a urinal when I saw the news about one of them…

Word is that Mel has a new TV mini-series in the works involving the Holocaust. Critics are concerned because Gibson’s father has indicated that most of the Holocaust was fiction. “It’s all — maybe not all fiction — but most of it is.”

In one story I read about the proposed mini-series, Hier — who, if I remember correctly is a rabbi — suggested that before anyone untidy their whities, they consider waiting for the mini-series to come out. Unfortunately, attempts to link the story fail because a Los Angeles Times subscription is required, but I read it after a Google search on “gibson movie holocaust,” so you could try that.

I remember when several Jewish organizations were saying we should wait until The Passion of Christ came out before criticizing it — the stories that ran after that indicated that Jews were pre-judging the movie and up in arms and excerpted pieces of comments that had been made about potential concerns, but left off the statements saying “we should wait to see the movie.” In the story I did manage to link, a similar thing seems to have happened. The comment Hier made which was reported in the LA Times did not make it in, but comments that indicated Gibson had “an opportunity to redeem himself” are reported.

The second story indicates that a big-time gladiatorial battle may be shaping up — and not just for the governatorship, if you ask me — the Pharisee Phaction of the California Republican Party is apparently riled that the Gropinator appointed a female lesbian Democrat as his chief of staff. I’m not sure which part bothered them most, but it appears to be the fact that she is a Democrat.

So the newly-invigorated Pharisee Phaction is hoping that running Mel Gibson against Ahnuld will mobilize the neo-conservative neo-Pharisaical vote. After all, not only did Mel show himself a survivor with toughness that would make the Terminator proud, he also produced a surprise hit movie called The Passion of Christ. And, besides that, the GOP is God’s Own Party. Heck, the short form of their name is even spelled almost the same! (So you know who’s side the Dems have to be on.)

Personally, I don’t get it. I mean seems like the Gropinator is doing everything right with this choice.

First, he gets to show that he’s a moderate by appointing a woman to the position, potentially expanding the reach of the Republican Party to include the majority of Americans — moderates. Second, he protects himself, because he’s unlikely to get into any grope sessions with a lesbian — although you never know, since the groping issue is really related to taking what one wants and not to receiving what someone else wants to give. But thirdly, have we really devolved into the kind of society where trying to build an inclusive government is grounds for getting forced out of office? Shouldn’t we be pleased with leaders who are capable of building a government that includes people from disparate parties? Isn’t that more likely to ensure that every citizen’s viewpoint might get a hearing in the upper echelons, rather than just the bare majority that often gives a party power?

Seems to me it might be a good idea to put a copy of Doris Kearns Goodwin’s book about Abraham Lincoln on every coffee table in California — if not every table in the United States.

Categories: California


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