Florida School Censors Madonna and Child; Calls It “Assault on Family Values”

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Neroccio di Bartolomeo de’ Landi, “Madonna and Child with St. John the Baptist and St. Mary Magdalene” (1495), tempera connected wood, 28 x 20 inches (image via Wikimedia Commons)

A precocious schoolhouse main successful Jacksonville, Florida has banned his teachers from showing an Early Renaissance coating of the Madonna and Child, claiming the Virgin Mary “doesn’t look blessed enough” astir experiencing the joyousness of motherhood. Governor Ron DeSantis rapidly voiced his enactment for the principal, adding that Mary Magdalene “looks similar a hooker.”

Randy McRandall, who has served arsenic the main of Jacksonville Central High School since 2021, announced his determination to region Neroccio di Bartolomeo de’ Landi’s “Madonna and Child with St. John the Baptist and St. Mary Magdalene” (1495) from the program successful a school-wide email earlier this week. Citing the Virgin Mary’s “lack of enthusiasm,” helium stated that the coating is “an battle connected household values” that constitutes “a partisan onslaught connected the pro-life movement.”

In a bid of tweets, Governor DeSantis applauded the determination to prohibition the artwork. He specifically took contented with the artist’s practice of Mary Magdalene, who tin beryllium seen successful the inheritance to the close of St. John the Baptist, admitting that though helium has not personally work the Bible, the mode the fig is looking retired astatine the spectator is “inappropriate.” (In 2017, the Vatican issued a press release successful the hopes of clarifying that the Saint is not, arsenic commonly thought, a enactment worker.)

History teacher Eric White had intended to thatch his students astir the Italian Renaissance enactment successful a peculiar lecture dedicated to pre-1800s antheral artists, the lone remaining module successful the school’s creation past curriculum, and wrote astir the incidental connected his Facebook page. In his post, White mocked the principal’s conception of “family values” and his proposition that the enactment contains pro-choice messaging, pointing retired that the Madonna was a joined virgin who not lone carried her gestation to word but gave commencement to Jesus Christ.

“You can’t marque this crap up,” White said successful effect to Hyperallergic’s petition for comment. The teacher has been dismissed from his post.

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Elaine Velie is simply a writer from New Hampshire surviving successful Brooklyn. She studied Art History and Russian astatine Middlebury College and is funny successful art's relation successful history, culture, and politics.

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