Poisoning minds – scraping history


“Regulating Aversions, Tolerance in the Age of Identity and Empire” by Wendy Brown is an interesting piece of writing about tolerance and intolerance in our time. What struck me was Chapter 5 about the Museum of Tolerance in LA backed by the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Brown describes in detail her experince of entering the eight storey high museum, and all the various media installations which took up the issue of intolerance in our time.

According to Brown the museum took up in detail the Holocaust, and there were almost a whole 70 minutes dedicated to this horrific act. According to Brown none of the readings or stories told were true holocaust victims but only fiction.  The other topics such as Rwanda, Bosnia, Chechnya were not worth more than a few minutes attention.The disturbing issue is that anything to do with Islam was seen as being intolerance. Faces of angry Palestinian children were viewed as uncivilized, intolerant terrorists. These clips were shown parallel with the images of terrorist attacks or images of intolerance.

After reading Browns book I decided to do some researching of my own. Unable to travel to the other side of the world to see the museums’ media installations myself, I opted to do some research on the web about the Simon Wiesenthal Center which the museum encourages everyone to donate to.

I looked up the words Muslims, islamophobia and Islamic in their search motor and lo and behold there were lots of hits on Islam and Muslims, but only in a negative context. Islamophobia was not even mentioned on the website. This is suprising taking into account that the PEW research center and other reliable research organisations in Europe underline repeatedly that Islamophobia is on the rise across the world.

I find it shocking that the Intolerance Center can willingly try and distort reality and history by omitting the context within which Palestinian children are looking angry and aggressive, or omitt the realities of Rwanda or Palestine.

Maybe if they looked past their black hearts and closer to the truth then they would find the time to mention the report Blood on their Hands of child murders by Israeli occupation.

Vetter still maybe they should change the name of the museum to; The Museum of Bigotry, Islamophobia and Hate.




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~ by no2wars on 04/12/2008.

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