Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Mad Mel

By Aussiegirl

This is, as usual, a thoughtful and insightful essay by Thomas Lifson, and for the most part I agree. I would not go so far as to put Mel Gibson in the same category as Richard Wagner though. Wagner was openly anti-semitic and wrote essays and pamphlets of a disgusting nature in which he likened Jews to freaks of nature and declared that their music could never approach that of Christians. Some of his statements could even be interpreted to have advocated an elimination of the Jewish race, whether be the elimination of the Jewish faith, or it's people, is unclear. No wonder he was Hitler's favorite composer.

Mel has never in his professional or personal life ever made any anti-semitic comments or discriminated against Jews in any way. The fact that he has some deep-seated and irrational resentments hidden in his soul is forgiveable, if regrettable. Ultimately, we all have to look within to free ourselves of those things that separate us from one another, and thus from God. Hopefully this experience will impel Mel to purge himself of these relics of his upbringing that are ultimately damaging to his own soul.

The American Thinker

Most guys who made a personal profit well into the hundreds of millions of dollars on their last film might feel pretty happy. If the film triumphed over a generally hostile press and the opposition of industry big-shots, the pot of gold would seem all the sweeter, one would think.

And if you happen to blessed with good looks, apparent good (physical, if not mental) health and the adulation of millions, you might walk around with an attitude of gratitude, particularly if you were given to proclaiming in public the depth of your religious convictions as a follower of Jesus Christ.

But not Mel Gibson. He seems to have been one angry dude late last week, partying in a Malibu bar and getting his picture taken with the sort of ladies who hang out at Malibu bars. That’s rarely a wise move for a married man with lots of kids at home, someone who would have no perceptible reason to question his attractiveness to the opposite sex.

So what’s with Mel?

Maybe his care-givers and fellow inhabitants of the rehab program he has announced he is entering will find out. On the other hand, maybe even Mel himself will never figure out the dark currents of his troubled soul, much less be able to verbalize them to others.

I can still look upon his masterwork, The Passion of the Christ, with the same eyes, but my feelings about the man have changed. I abhor the repulsive things he is reported to have said and I can’t bring myself to like him. Maybe never again. He now falls into the same category as Richard Wagner, a man who composed some glorious music that still can stir my soul, but whose personal beliefs were repellant, and some of whose notable fans are among the most evil people ever to walk the surface of the earth.

But Mel, unlike Wagner, is still breathing, and has a chance to find redemption, spiritually, and maybe even professionally...


At 10:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Being a big fan of Mel Gibson, I was disappointed and sickened by his public, drunken tantrum.

That being said, he *is* just an actor, not an elected or appointed official. And I agree with you that comparing Mel Gibson to Wagner is a bit extreme. Then again, is it really fair to revile Wagner to such an extent? An artist can't control who his or her fans are. Even if Wagner did indeed say what he is reported to have said, a case could be made that it simply reflects the success of Hitler's propaganda machine. How many lesser-known German artists (and ordinary citizens) of that era said the same, or worse? But that's another discussion.

While Mel's rant was reprehensible, he didn't physically harm anyone. Granted, he hurt a lot of feelings and sensibilities. But notwithtstanding what he said, no one's life was or is threatened by Mel Gibson. Ditto Richard Wagner.

There are parallels throughout history and certainly in the Bible about the hypocrisy we are witnessing now over this story. How easy it is to cast stones and insults at Mel Gibson, who possesses envy-inspiring wealth, fame, and good looks, for words he uttered in a drunken rage. How much harder to face and eradicate the hatred embedded within our society ... and indeed within ourselves ... that inevitably and inexorably leads to the deaths of innocents.

Whether influential or not, North Americans and Europeans are in no position to cast stones at the likes of Richard Wagner and Mel Gibson. When it comes to buying into the propaganda of the day, history will not be kind to many of us.


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