Thursday, June 03, 2004

KABBALAH NOT AS KEEN ON MADONNA AS SHE IS ON IT: Rabbi Shmuley Boteach isn't very impressed by Madonna's "embracing" of Kabblah, railing that no good will come of it all in an article "Perverted priorities", no less, for

You know your religion is up a creek when [...] the most famous representative of your mystical tradition is simulating lesbian sex with scantily clad pregnant dancers.
Earth to Phillip Berg: Do us all a favor and dump Madonna as your principal spokesperson. Sorry to be so crass, but Madonna is a slut. Yes, she may sing, and she may dance. But she is famous for being a slut. And no religion dare have a slut as its principal representative [...] I realize that Madonna has brought the Kabbalah Center great notoriety and is, according to reports, a contributor to the tune of millions of dollars. But is the Kabbalah Center really so desperate that it is prepared to promote itself through a vulgarian whose main contribution to the culture is porn rock?

Added to which, you know, she's not done a decent album for over half a decade...

Then, her PR steps in, issuing a counter-statement:

"I find Rabbi Boteach’s comments regarding Madonna frightening. His vile attacks on her character and as an artist are staggering for someone who professes to be a religious person. . . . I suggest this man take a look at his own character and what problems he may have that would make him feel that he should make statements about a truly beautiful human being that he does not know in the slightest. . . . Madonna’s relationship with the Kabbalah and her commitment to (their) teachings has been a beautiful experience for her and the fact that Madonna wants to share her lessons . . . is yet another example of her truly generous and loving spirit."

Which, is all nice and everything, but sort of misses the point of what the Rabbi was getting at - which seemed to be "What sort of religion associates itself with a woman whose image is one of a shaggarama on legs?", which would mean that Madonna being a lovely lady he doesn't know in real life would be kind of beside the point. We're just astonished that someone working in PR is suggesting that a Rabbi might have some character flaws.

The Rabbi, of course, strikes back:

"For Madonna to put herself forward as a spiritual spokesperson while continuing to degrade women by simulating sex acts at music concerts, portray full nudity in her movies, and to ridicule lesbians by performing same-sex kisses merely for TV ratings, is a mockery of her claims to a life of spiritual renewal based on the teachings of the Kabbalah. Women like Liz Rosenberg especially, who heave [sic] greatly distinguished themselves professionally through their brains rather than their busts, should be at the forefront of criticizing Madonna’s assault on feminine dignity."

Yeah, wouldn't be holding my breath for Madonna's PR woman to launch an attack on Madonna's behaviour. Now, let's just leave them to it...

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