The image was so offensive to Megyn Kelly — and, she said, potentially so upsetting to Catholic viewers — she wouldn’t allow it to be shown to her vast Fox News audience on Wednesday night. The image that caused the host of The Kelly File to get so upset was a reproduction of a portrait of Pope Benedict XVI that appeared in The New York Times — a portrait made of condoms — some 17,000 stretched-out, interwoven latex condoms.
Kelly went ballistic at the newspaper’s hypocrisy in being so willing to publish the picture of the controversial portrait of the former leader of the Roman Catholic Church to be displayed at the Milwaukee Art Museum, while having refused to publish images of the Prophet Muhammad that led to the murderous terror attack on the satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo by Islamic gunmen.
At the heart of Kelly’s outrage was the Times’ supposed standards as to whether or not they would print something that could “offend religious sensibilities” of the paper’s readers. The Times’ explanation, said Kelly, was that the level of outrage expressed by Catholics has not been as intense (murderous) as that expressed by Muslims in reacting to the Muhammad images featured by the Paris-based magazine.
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Kelly’s guest, Fox News contributor Marc Thiessen, shared the host’s concern that The New York Times was demonstrating blatant hypocrisy in its apparent willingness to protect the sensibilities of Muslims while being perfectly willing to insult Catholics.
Thiessen recalled that the Times justified the decision on the Muhammad cartoons by saying its policy is not to show images that are “deliberately intended to offend religious sensibilities.”
“Does a picture of the pope made out of condoms deliberately offend religious sensibilities? Of course it does. This is pure hypocrisy,” he said.
CNN notes that the portrait called “Eggs Benedict” has greatly upset Catholic leaders in Wisconsin and elsewhere. The artist who created the work out of condoms reportedly defended it, telling CNN that “she was inspired to create the piece after the Pope’s 2009 visit to Africa, in which he refused to lift the church’s ban on contraception. He even suggested that condoms could worsen the spread of HIV.”
By clicking on the video above, you can watch the provocative segment from The Kelly File in which “Eggs Benedict” is discussed and The New York Times is roundly criticized.