When it comes to pointing out hypocrisy, no one does it better than James Woods.
The conservative actor is well known for his scorching Twitter insights on everything from faux feminist Jimmy Kimmel degrading a woman to the insanity of accepting illegal immigrants into the United States.
But when it came to the liberal mockery of Christianity on blatant display Monday night at the premier fundraiser for New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Woods was at his finest.
In a blistering Twitter post, Woods pointed out how the celebrities who fearlessly made fun of the Catholic Church with outfits that evoked the church’s history would have been terrified to mock Islam in a similar manner.
And with good reason — as they might have been killed for it.
“If this kind of group insult toward a religion were aimed at Islam, for example, we would have another Charlie Hebdo on our hands,” Woods wrote. “Why are these people so eager to blaspheme Catholicism? And why with such glee?”
Woods was referring, of course, to the 2015 massacre in Paris at the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, where eight employees, a guest, a maintenance worker and a police officer were murdered for the newspaper’s cartoon depiction of the Prophet Muhammad, according to CNN.
And lest anyone think the well-known are immune to threats, remember that Dutch politician Geert Wilders has been living under 24-hour police protection since the 2004 assassination of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh, who was killed for making a movie critical of Islam. A note attached to Van Gogh’s body threatened Wilders with death, too. As The Washington Post reported in 2017, there’s no reason to think that threat has disappeared all these years later.
Not having to worry about any similar savagery from Christians, celebrities at Monday night’s Met Gala gleefully took up the event’s theme of “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” by mocking the very church the theme invoked.
According to Fox News, stars like Katy “I Kissed a Girl” Perry showed up in “over-the-top looks that capitalized on familiar imagery from the Catholic Church.”
“Perry … dressed in a golden mini dress accessorized with larger than life angel wings, and posed for photos on the red carpet kneeling in a prayer position,” Fox reported.
Pop star Rihanna, a co-chairwoman of the annual event, appeared in a white mini dress and a headpiece obviously meant to mimic the pope’s miter.
Possibly taking the cake for sheer blasphemy was the bearded actor Jared Leto, who sported a “golden headpiece which emulated Jesus’ crown of thorns,” according to Fox.
They were all besotted with their own daring, of course. Damning the notoriously misogynistic (women can’t be priests!), homophobic (marriage is between man and woman!) and otherwise benighted 2,000-year-old church is how celebrities make their bones.
Woods wasn’t fooled for a minute, though. And neither were his Twitter followers:
But the tweet below summed it up in one word Woods would no doubt appreciate.
What’s really striking about this is that for all the condemnation of the church celebrities engage in, the mockery at the Met was a kind of compliment.
Everyone — including Jared Leto, even — understands that whatever its faults, the church doesn’t persecute heretics in the 21st century (unlike elements of radical Islam that have grown in power since the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran).
The church is also self-confident enough to deal with ankle-biting celebrities thinking they’re making a statement. New York’s own Cardinal Timothy Dolan was at the event Monday (in legitimate cardinal regalia), according to Fox.
Whether or not it was wise for Dolan to make an appearance, the point is that Catholicism has been around long enough that it would take a good deal more than a collection of chuckleheads like Katy Perry and Co. to shake it to its foundations.
The other point is that these false idols can show their “courage” by attacking one institution that will not fight back, because it doesn’t have to.
They wouldn’t dare to the same when it came to Islam, for fear of being called intolerant and for fear of being politically incorrect.
And most of all, they’d be terrified of being murdered for the effrontery.
Woods’ tweet nailed it, as usual. Because when it comes to hypocrisy, nobody’s more shameless than a modern American celebrity, and nobody hits harder than James Woods.
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