The irony in censoring the arboretum statue
The Kansas City Star
The Overland Park Arboretum has a statue that has been creating a stir. One statue in particular has been the focus of a lot of criticism and the artist is Yu Chang from China.
Now, I think there is no better way to show China what a great democracy America is then by promoting free speech and expression. The people of the communist country can only imagine a life where they are free to express themselves through art without the government looking over their shoulder. I’m sure the artist Chang was thrilled to be able to have that great taste of the American pie by making such a powerful statement with art and have the accepting American arms embrace this art with our ideals of freedom of expression and speech. Chang must have known that not everyone would like the statue, but everyone would have the freedom to come see the statue and form their own opinion separate from the harsh control of communist China.
What a powerful message this is about such a great country we live in. And to top this all off, the statue is named CHOICE! Amen Chang! America is truly the best country in the world with our glorious freedoms given to us by our Constitution! Chang, you have tasted just how wonderful our country is by expressing yourself through art and now displaying your art in our great land. Can we all give our Founding Fathers an “Amen!”
Oh, wait a minute, a group has decided this art is “obscene” and wants it censored. Joanne Hughes has decided it’s her mission to censor this sculpture and gone out to get signatures on her petition to have this piece of art removed. Now she and the American Family Association of Kansas and Missouri want a grand jury to investigate. At issue is the woman has her breasts exposed. The group has declared these breasts to be in “an aroused state”. Never mind she doesn’t have a head (that’s a blog for another time). They have decided no one should have the right to see the statue and that their opinion of the statue should decide for everyone if the statue is acceptable or not for our arboretum.
Censorship…reminds me of a certain country who has major human rights violations. They are known for controlling media….they are communist. Hum….can’t think of it right now. Starts with a “C”. Maybe it will come to me. I want to say North Korea, but that’s not it.
Maybe I’m thinking of historical references like Nazi Germany. They were known for art censorship. It could be that I am thinking of the US and some past censorship attempts that always failed. We were known for censorship when mail carriers from 1830 until the Civil War were forbidden to carry abolitionist pamphlets to the south. Now we look back on that and think, “That’s crazy!”
Joanne and your association, before you start firing up a Grand Jury, stop and think of the irony here. Freedom of expression is one of our most highly celebrated freedoms in America. Freedom of choice (ironically the name of the statue), expression and speech are what make America great. Censorship makes us just like the country where the artist originated from. Exercise your freedoms Joanne. Use your freedom of choice and don’t go see the statue. Let’s show China what a great country this is. We all know about the statue and the appropriate warning signs for parents and children have been put up. It’s a “choice” if people want to visit it or not and we are so blessed as Americans to have one.