Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


Advertisement
Email Newsletter

Sign up to receive our email newsletter in your inbox.



Advertisement

Advertisement
Queering The Map shows queer love on campus
‘You know absolutely nothing’: Students frustrated with NU’s handling of academic integrity cases
NU’s Summer Class Schedule offers flexibility, opportunities for academic advancement
Community awards, advocacy headline Evanston’s fifth annual Juneteenth parade
Race Against Hate: Ricky Byrdsong’s Legacy
The Week Ahead, June 17-23: Juneteenth, Summer Solstice and Pride Celebrations in Chicagoland
Evanston Environment Board drops fossil fuels divestment, recommends updates to leaf blower ordinance
Advertisement
Perry: A little humility goes a long way

Brew, Hou, Leung, Pandey: On being scared to tweet and the pressure to market yourself as a student journalist

June 4, 2024

Haner: A love letter to the multimedia room

June 4, 2024

Derrick Gragg appointed as Northwestern’s vice president for athletic strategy, search for new athletic director begins

Lacrosse: Northwestern’s Izzy Scane wins 2024 Honda Sport Award

June 13, 2024

Lacrosse: Northwestern’s Izzy Scane wins 2024 Tewaaraton Award

May 30, 2024

Advertisement

The secret (and short) lives of cicadas on campus

NU Declassified: Prof. Barbara Butts teaches leadership through stage management

Everything Evanston: Behind the boba in downtown Evanston

Passion’ not worthy of all its controversy (Hassan, column)

Anti-Semitism will forever be associated with gas chambers, pencil mustaches and Nuremberg. It should not be associated with Mel Gibson.

Gibson’s movie, “The Passion of the Christ,” in theaters now, simply presents a fundamentalist Christian viewpoint of Christ’s crucifixion. Yet it has generated extreme controversy among some Jewish people, who feel they are being blamed for Jesus’ death. Many Jews, such as Alex Shoyket, refuse to see the movie.

“I will not be watching the movie becuase I don’t want to reward something that is anti-Semitic,” said Shoyket, a McCormick senior.

Many Christian students have reacted differently. They say they are delighted that their faith is finally being taken seriously by Hollywood.

McCormick sophomore Adam Desouza, a Catholic, feels the movie has an important role to play in “reminding us that we are to collectively blame for the death of Jesus.” He finds no hint of anti-Semitism in the movie.

“The Passion of the Christ” made $36 million in its opening weekend, a record for a movie with subtitles. Its immediate success can be attributed to people like Desouza. Sheil Catholic Center tried to arrange a viewing for its congregation but couldn’t get enough tickets.

Catholic and Jewish groups will be debating the movie in an inter-faith discussion today at Norris University Center at 8 p.m. That debate promises to likely regurgitate the same lavish praise and extreme scorn that already has been poured on the film.

The Anti-Defamation League — an organization with a long history of tackling anti-Semitism — has expressed concern that the movie will lead to increased violence against Jews.

“The film unambiguously portrays Jewish authorities and the Jewish mob as the ones responsible for the decision to crucify Christ,” Abraham Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Guardian.

Jews have long suffered discrimination at the hands of many bigots and certainly have legitimate reasons to worry about new outbreaks of anti-Semitism. But they are looking in the wrong place.

According to the film’s fundamentalist Christian point of view, Jesus died not because he was killed by Jews, but because he had to die for the sins of all mankind. Calling this movie anti-Semitic would be akin to saying “Schindler’s List” blames all Germans for the Holocaust.

But even those who feel this movie is the pinnacle of cinematic achievement are engaging in hyperbole.

A morality brigade led by Bill O’Reilly has been supporting the blood ‘n’ guts-soaked movie. These are the same people who launch massive public campaigns against other movies they deem too violent. They seem to have no problem with Gibson ignoring the humanity of Christ’s message in favor of good old fashioned gore. Hypocrisy, anyone?

Those calling “The Passion of the Christ” anti-Semitic are taking their historical victim role too far. And those who need a popular film to tell them what it means to be a Christian need to concentrate on their Bible.

More to Discover
Activate Search
Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881
Passion’ not worthy of all its controversy (Hassan, column)