Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
Response to play launches religious debate
The lead actress of a show about the Virgin Mary at the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival reported being harassed and threatened by protesters. A discussion of the matter on our website developed into a debate between Christians and atheists.
As usual, a whole lot of crazy from the religious segment of society.
I wouldn't characterize this as a religious activity or even religiously motivated. Probably not crazy either. From my perspective, it's hateful and dangerous given the demonstrated stalking and escalation. We all need to be tolerant of different views and keep our behaviour in bounds. This is not vandalism (which is also reprehensible) and should not be taken lightly.
Never ceases to amaze me how religious types impose their value systems on people not of their same ideological views. In my opinion, they are the ones that show intolerance and narrow-minded thinking. Be free to practise whatever you want, but I will decide for myself what is good for me.
If someone's response to their religion being criticized is to do something like this woman is accusing them of, then I would say that person is not secure in their faith.
I do not approve of anyone being stalked and harassed. I also do not approve of people who try to defame/slander the core beliefs of many people.
You are free to believe whatever you like, but people who write so-called plays, and people willing to portray such debased things, are not very "good" people!
-- Vic Timm
I'm going to wager a guess here and say the play is probably awful, so the only way to drum up any press is to try to be as controversial as possible. Whatever.
There doesn't seem to be much outrage about what has happened to this woman. Some seem to think she is deserving of being harassed. I'll bet their opinion would change if one of their family was the victim.
Amazing how people mock what they do not understand. Equally, they ridicule what makes them uncomfortable and even frightened.
At the end of the day, it's a Fringe play. Who cares?
This is scary; it is vandalism and harassment and should be dealt with by the police. It is a matter of free speech in Canada.
Some people like to believe in mythical beings, others do not. But one group should not harass the other group in any way.
One function of art is to challenge beliefs, to make you uncomfortable, to make you question. It wouldn't be much of a Fringe play if the woman just decided to do a scene from the Bible.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 27, 2014 A10
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