u-b-d judge

U-B-D-Judge is an on-line forum of discussion relating to Franklin Furnace's 20th Anniversary exhibition entitled Voyeur's Delight, and the issue of freedom of expression as it relates to images in general.

Following is the text of the Christian Action Network press release which announced their performance art event on September 12, 1996, which excoriated Franklin Furnace on the steps of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C.:

Funeral March for NEA scheduled
Sept. 12 on Capitol Hill steps

New controversial NEA grant to be revealed during "Funeral March"

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Christian Action Network will stage the largest demonstration against the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) ever held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 2, 1996, on the steps of the U.S. Capitol.

The demonstration will consists of a "Funeral March," in which two coffins - one filled with thousands of "Death Certificates" for the NEA and the other filled with examples of NEA-funded projects - will be carried up the Capitol steps and presented to members of the Congress.

"Our goal is to send a vivid message to our elected representatives, and to the American people, that the National Endowment for the Arts must be terminated immediately," said Martin Mawyer, president of Christian Action Network, a national grassroots lobbying organization based in Forest, Va.

"Even as this demonstration will be held, another NEA-funded exhibit will be adding more pollution to the New York City environment," Mawyer said.

He is referring to an exhibit entitled "Voyeur's Delight," which recently opened at the Franklin Furnace in Manhattan. The museum has received more than $182,000 from the NEA during the past year alone, Mawyer pointed out. "It's simply outrageous, when you view this pornographic exhibit, to consider that the tax dollars of hard-working Americans are actually being wasted on projects that promote such smut."

For months the Christian Action Network has been collecting petitions calling on Congress to end all federal funding to the NEA. Mawyer said thousands of them will fill one of the coffins with examples of NEA-funded projects in the other.

"Anyone who wants to see how their tax money is spent is invited to take a look at some of these disgusting projects," he said. "They will convince everyone, without a doubt, that the NEA does not represent the vast majority of Americans with the outrageous projects that it supports."

The House of Representatives recently voted to continue the NEA's funding at $99.5 million for 1997, with a disclaimer that it will not support future funding. However, the Senate has not yet reached a decision of NEA funding, and has instead indicated it wants to keep the agency alive.

Headed by actress Jane Alexander, the NEA's budget this year is down 36.7 percent, from $167 million in 1995, a cut due to the highly controversial nature of the projects it funds.

"We have been scrutinizing the NEA's activities for several years," Mawyer said, and each year, even as their budget shrinks, they become more arrogant and radical in their activities. The New York exhibit is just another example of how this agency continues to laugh at the American people the more they demand an accounting."

The New York exhibit, which asserts NEA funding, contains such graphic images as a woman shaving her pubic hair, pictures of a couple having sex through a hotel window and two homosexuals having oral sex on a high-rise rooftop.

The exhibit is being displayed at the Franklin Furnace museum in the lower east side of New York City.

In one portion of the exhibit, an interviewer asks lesbians such questions as: "What is your favorite fantasy?" "How do you go down on a woman?" And "What makes you come?"

In the story "Threesome" at the exhibit, a female author writes about her experience with two men: "I went to the bathroom and Pokey followed. I tried to pee but Pokey's d--- was in my mouth (way too distracting).... We rolled onto the bed and Merge??? put his dick in my mouth. It was hard to concentrate on both guys, because I was experiencing immense pleasure, both visually and physically. Pokey had this really long bid d--- planting into my p------, while Merge f------ my mouth..."

"This is not art," Mawyer stated. "What's so artistic about a woman shaving herself, or two men having oral sex? What's so profound about a graphic sex story? Much of this exhibit could have been performed by an adolescent with a disposable camera peeping through a window while writing on a bathroom wall with a magic marker. This is not the art of a Ralph Waldo Emerson or an Ansel Adams. But the NEA is giving this criminal activity the same prestige at these great American artists."

The Christian Action Network is a 250,000 member pro-family organization based in Forest, VA.