Arab Christians reportedly threw a firebomb and stones at an art museum in Haifa, Israel, over a display depicting a crucified Ronald McDonald called “McJesus.”
Police reported that the Molotov cocktail was thrown on Thursday and that a crowd of several hundred Arab Christians tried to force their way into the museum during Friday’s violent protest. Those who threw rocks injured three police officers. The protests came amid calls from local Christian leaders to remove the display, but the museum has thus far refused, saying that removing it in response to the outrage would violate free speech. (RELATED: Five Israeli Minors Arrested In Fatal Stoning Of Palestinian Mother Of Five)
גבר בן 32 נעצר ועוד ארבעה גברים עוכבו לחקירה בהפגנה מול מוזיאון חיפה, במחאה על תערוכה פוגענית ברגשות הציבור הנוצרי. המשטרה פיזרה את ההפגנה בכוח, תוך כדי שימוש ברימוני הלם. כמו כן, שלושה שוטרים נפצעו בראשם במהלך ההפגנה ופונו לקבלת טיפול רפואי @10elilevi @samiaah10 pic.twitter.com/1iO1BRjFfL
— חדשות עשר (@news10) January 11, 2019
Some Christian protesters alleged that Israeli authorities and the museum staff did not take their offense into consideration simply because they were Christian.
“If they put up [a sculpture of] Hitler with a Torah scroll they would immediately respond,” one protester said, according to The Times of Israel.
McJesus died for our BigMac Combos. pic.twitter.com/QDsdHBbMtc
— Eran Helbitz???????? (@EranHelbitz) January 14, 2019
Police sent officers from their Special Patrol Unit to guard the museum after the Thursday firebomb, ahead of the protests on Friday. They have also begun an investigation to find the protesters responsible for injuring three of the officers with stones.
The “McJesus,” sculpted by Finnish artist Jani Leinonen, is featured in the “Sacred Goods” exhibit, which also features depictions of Jesus and Mary as Ken and Barbie dolls, and other displays using religious iconography. Haifa Museum director Nissim Tal met with church leaders of Israel after Friday’s protest and agreed to place a sign at the exhibit’s entrance warning museum patrons that it contains potentially offensive material.
Culture Minister Miri Regev, however, said that the art displays are not legitimate art and should be taken down.
“Disrespect of religious symbols sacred to many worshipers in the world as an act of artistic protest is illegitimate and cannot serve as art at a cultural institution supported by state funds,” she wrote to Tal on Thursday.
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact email@example.com.