Got one of those forwarded emails about a movie that Mel Gibson has produced and directed about the Passion of Christ. It's due for release next year I think it says. The article is all about the very bloodiness and horror of the last days of Christ, his crucifixion, etc. It also says that the movie is an incitement to Jew-hating, as the Passion story has been for centuries. The article was written by a Catholic priest by the way....

Every now and then I am circulated bits of anti-Semitism that someone thinks I should be aware of. I also get things that, as a woman, someone thinks I should be aware of. Frankly, I don't choose to live a life of fear. I am realistic about the prejudice, bigotry and hatred out there, but I won't live my life diminished by it.

Also, as K (who is from the Christian tradition herself) pointed out, the anti-Semitic version of the Passion, is less an incitement to hatred than a manifestation of the hatred that already exists. It wouldn't be told in that way unless the hatred or bigotry is already there. There are many ways to tell the Passion. Jesus was born, lived and died Jewish. And most importantly, if you are Christian, you believe it is good that he died. He had to die for Christians' sins to be saved. It was a fait accompli that someone, most likely the people immediately around him, his brothers, the Jews or the colonial presence, the Romans, were the most likely to do the deed. And the act was God's will, if you are a Christian. If you choose to skew the tale, tell it like Jews Vs Christ, it reflects your bias, and that's all... The emphasis is your choice.

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