The Hysteria of Destruction
The case of Rolf Harris has had consequences that reach far beyond his legal conviction. It has been the mass reaction to destroy his life’s work that saddens me for the sake of all humanity. Almost gleefully, the newspapers and media have reported that all evidence of Rolf Harris’s life be immolated, in an hysterical and almost fanatical rush to obliterate any good that may have been a part of his music or art. Regardless of imperfections of the man, his gifts have been wonderful.
Throughout history, the mob has destroyed precious icons of the past in hatred and it is this emotion that has flooded our current world. It seems that for all of our “enlightenment” and laws that sanction life, we really haven’t grown as human beings. We are still the mob. This is the despair I feel within this current climate of hate. Rolf Harris’s work stood as an icon of belief in people and it is this that is being destroyed.
And of course there are now lists of people who feel it is their right to claim the monetary compensation for his gifted career. Ebay traders are advertising their desire to purchase all things Rolf Harris in the knowledge that they will become extremely valuable in the future. While the mob destroys, they yet feel justified in profiting from the very destruction that they cry for. The money grab sickens me.
The conquering conquistadores destroyed Mayan science and art and we now spend millions of dollars trying to resurrect their wisdom and knowledge. Yet, historically the Mayans were a barbaric people by our modern standards sacrificing people and animals in the name of their gods.
is a term used for outbreaks of destruction of religious images that occurred in Europe in the 16th century. During these spates of iconoclasm, Catholic art and many forms of church fittings and decoration were destroyed in unofficial or mob actions by nominally Calvinist Protestant crowds as part of the Protestant Reformation. Most of the destruction was of art in churches and public places. The Dutch term specifically refers to the wave of disorderly attacks in the summer of 1566 that spread rapidly through the Low Countries from south to north, and similar outbreaks of iconoclasm took place in other parts of Europe, especially in Switzerland and the Holy Roman Empire in the period between 1522 and 1566, notably Zürich (in 1523), Copenhagen (1530), Münster (1534), Geneva (1535), and Augsburg (1537). In England there was both government-sponsored removal of images and also spontaneous attacks from 1535 onwards, and in Scotland from 1559. In France there were several outbreaks as part of the French Wars of Religion from 1560 onwards.
Reference : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beeldenstorm
I found it interesting that the art work created to record the destruction of the Church of Our Lady in Antwerp, the "signature event" of the Beeldenstorm, August 20, 1566, by Frans Hogenberg was preserved while the actual art was destroyed.
Hitler destroyed books that might enlighten future generations in an effort to destroy the power of thought and discernment.
Michael Jackson gave us all the magic power of his songs and the profound messages of his lyrics, yet he was a flawed human being. Perhaps it is a gift that he died before the justice system could drag him through the mud. I would hate to become afraid to play his recordings, for I love them and the talent that made them possible.
Regardless of your personal opinion or slant upon this case about the man,
please stop and think about how history will see our reaction to it. What is really behind the hysterical desire to lash out? What are we really trying to “wipe of the face of the earth”? If our hero’s are flawed what hope have we for perfection? Is it right to demand that we are all saints? Do our hero’s have to live up to our expectations of them? Do I have to live up to other’s perceptions of me? Do we truly believe that by destruction we justify fear and hate?