2.1 Million People Petition To Remove Netflix Comedy Depicting Jesus As Gay
Ardent Christians have condemned Netflix for a Brazilian comedy special in which Jesus Christ is gay.
Coming from Brazilian YouTube comedy group Porta dos Fundos, The First Temptation of Christ has been riling up religious viewers.
Following its release on the streaming platform on December 3, an online petition has been launched looking to hold the group responsible ‘for the crime of villainous faith’.
Check out the trailer for The First Temptation of Christ:
Netflix’s description for the episode reads: ‘Jesus, who’s hitting the big 3-0, brings a surprise guest to meet the family. A Christmas special so wrong, it must be from the comedians Porta dos Fundos.’
Over the course of the 46-minute special, Jesus (Gregório Duvivier) brings his presumed boyfriend home to meet the holy family.
It has struck a furious chord with Brazil’s Christian population, sparking a Change.org petition calling for it to be removed from Netflix – so far, it already has more than two million signatures.
The petition explains:
In favor of the removal of the film from the Netflix catalog and for the Porta dos Fundos to be held responsible for the crime of villainous faith. We also want public retraction, as they have seriously offended Christians.
While Netflix have yet to comment on the backlash, Porta dos Fundos themselves have released a statement.
The statement reads, as per Business Insider:
Porta dos Fundos values artistic freedom and humor through satire on the most diverse cultural themes of our society and believes that freedom of expression is an essential construction for a democratic country.
The First Temptation of Christ star and Porta Dos Fundos co-founder Fábio Porchat called the backlash ‘homophobic’, telling Variety on Monday, December 16, that Netflix and Viacom supported the show.
‘It doesn’t incite violence, we’re not saying people shouldn’t believe in God,’ he said in a statement. ‘[Netflix] haven’t said anything to us like, ‘Maybe we should stop making the special available’. They support freedom of speech.’
Another petition has also launched on CitizenGo, a conservative campaign site, similarly calling for Netflix to cancel the film – it has already reached more than 430,000 signatures.
The petition states a film ‘which depicts Jesus Christ as a homosexual’ is a ‘clear attack to Christianity as Christmas approaches’.
The petition adds:
It is an absolutely unacceptable provocation. No one has the right to attack the faith of millions of people around the world. This type of supposed ‘show’ only causes one thing: numbing the population to attacks against Christians. That is why we are asking Netflix to remove this brutal attack on religious freedom.
The National Conference of Bishops in Brazil also released a statement, saying: ‘Nothing allows anyone the right to vilify people’s deeply held beliefs. The right to freedom of expression does not nullify respect for people and their values.’
By definition, to vilify involves speaking or writing about someone or something in an abusively disparaging manner. In this case, it sounds a bit like homophobia – but hey, that’s just me.
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