January 10, 2015 by Michael F. Haverluck
After leaving the highly offensive photo titled “Piss Christ” posted for 26 years — despite decades of public Christian outcry over the image panned as art — The Associated Press finally removed the controversial and denigrating image, but only after a journalist called out its double standard brought to light when it touted its policy of not publishing potentially offensive Charlie Hebdo satirical cartoons of Muhammad, such as the ones that incited the deadly Paris attack.
AP’s hypocrisy screamed out shortly afterThe Daily Beast interviewed one of the news giant’s spokesmen on Wednesday about its policy of not showing images of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad — such as the one that incited Muslim terrorists to rampage theCharlie Hebdo magazine headquarters in Paris, France, where 12 were brutally murdered, including four senior editors.
“None of the images distributed by AP showed cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad,” insisted AP Spokesman Paul Colford.
Colford then explained that a number of photos satirically depicting Muhammad were automatically sent by Sipa Press (an independent French agency representing 2,000 photographers worldwide) to AP’s commercial photo unit, but he assured that they were quickly removed once received.
The spokesman of the largest news collective on the planet then mentioned how its protocol for handling problematic images was streamlined and unbiased.
“It’s been our policy for years that we refrain from moving deliberately provocative images,” Colford added, giving this as an indication as to why AP has cropped or refrained from publishing images of Charlie Hebdo cartoons.
Other news outlets, such as The London Telegraph and The New York Daily News, also censor magazine covers and images depicting Muhammad on a routine basis.
Shortly after the interview, The Washington Examiner Senior Political Columnist Timothy P. Carney accused AP of its hypocrisy — demonstrated by selling the photo for years or decades on its website — while steadfastly holding to its practice of banning or cropping any satirical or remotely offensive cartoons of Muhammad.
In his brief post titled, “Associated Press censored Muhammad cartoons while selling ‘P—Christ,'” Carney quoted Colford’s aforementioned statements that proudly reflected how AP refrains from publishing Muhammad cartoons and other “deliberately provocative images.”
He then had this to say:
“But in case you want to admire the ‘work of art’ from three decades ago that consisted of a photograph of a crucifix in a vat of the photographer’s urine, the AP will sell it to you,” Carney expressed sarcastically, providing a screenshot of the AP page from where viewers could purchase the photo from AP.
Not long after publishing, Carney had to update his post with this line:
“UPDATE: It appears AP pulled their copy of P— Christ this afternoon, around the time I published,” Carney added.
Currently, site visitors will see the following on their screen on the page where the controversial photo once existed, “Oops! This image is not part of your portfolio. Please contact customer support.”
The offensive photo Carney describes is of a crucifix of Jesus Christ hanging on the cross immersed in a jar of the photographer’s urine. The photo taken by American “artist” Andres Serrano in 1987 has caused an uproar in Christian circles for decades. The overtly offensive photo was vandalized by Catholic activists in Avignon, France, on April 17, 2011, when it was displayed as part of the Yvon Lambert Collection.
Evidently, the AP was found to not extend the same respect for the sacred nature of Christianity and its symbolism as it has for Islam over the years.
Following the removal of Serrano’s photo, Politico interviewed an AP spokesperson for an explanation as to why it has decided to pull Serrano’s controversial image from its website after appearing there for 26 years.
“It’s been our policy for years that we refrain from moving deliberately provocative images,” AP Spokesperson Erin Madigan explained to Politico. “It is fair to say we have revised and reviewed our policies since 1989.”
The year 1989 was the first year that AP posted Serrano’s photo.
No explanation was given as to why it took 26 years for AP to remove a photo that it clearly knew was a “deliberately provocative image” to 2 billion Christians across the globe.
original article: It took Paris attack for AP to remove anti-Christian photo after 26 yrs
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