Two Cents In: The Mideo Cruz Hullabaloo

“This speaks about objects that we worship, how we create these gods and idols, and how we in turn are created by our gods and idols.” – Mideo Cruz

After all that has been said, done and thrown, I personally think Mideo Cruz had every right to showcase his installation aptly titled “Poleteismo” or “Polytheism”.  While I’m adamant that CCP was the right venue for such radical pieces, no one had the right to persecute him for the way he perceives and harnesses his art.

I know a lot of artists who, in essence, share similar values with Mideo. These are the people who neither paint nor draw to fatten up their wallets. These are individuals who do not wish to see their works displayed on some millionaire’s wall. In fact, they’d probably choke at the idea that their art is being treated as an object that can be easily bought by someone with the ka-ching. Instead, these are people who want their works to jolt wide awake our thinking. These are people who, just by sitting in front of a canvass, can create a revolution.

Being an individual who is all for freedom of expression, I can’t help but feel infuriated with how someone can easily shut down an exhibit with a simple telephone call. If anything, it just goes to show that they don’t want to be challenged. They don’t want to lose their hold on people. I wonder how long they can meddle into matters like this. Just because many were offended doesn’t mean the rest of the populace felt the same way. Give the others the opportunity to get slap wide awake by Mideo’s versions of truth. Sure, the pieces aren’t for everybody, but similar to how we go about our daily lives, there are things we have to learn to live with and adapt to.

In Article 3 Section 5 of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, it says: “No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.” What law did Mideo Cruz break? Their sanctimoniousness is laughable.

Whatever happened to the age-old phrase, “enter at your own risk”? If you didn’t want to see such art, why come in? If what you saw what such an eyesore, what’s wrong with your neck that you can’t just turn them away? If you hated it so much, move the exhibit elsewhere. Sheesh. Why is the Senate even getting involved? Can’t you, like Mideo Cruz, make your talents (if any) useful and rid the country of its most pressing problems? Can you, for the love of all things holy, bring good to the nation for a change?

Neither the Church nor the Senate is the population’s voice. Funny how they cry foul when people in their lot have commited/is committing crimes graver than these measly objects that they can just easily burn down to satisfy their fear of democracy. What they do on a daily basis is worthy of reclusion perpetua.

Now, who is the real “demon” here?

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