The American Values Network’s short animated video “Tea Party Jesus: Sermon on the Mall” has sparked controversy as it attempts to drive home negative perceptions of the conservative Tea Party.
The organization made a parody of Jesus. Instead of the Savior who preached loving thy neighbor, however, AVN’s “Tea Party Jesus” preaches selfishness, avarice, and most importantly, right-wing capitalism.
“Blessed are the mean in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven,” says the white-clad “Jesus.”
However, some have been highly offended by the video.
“Depicting Jesus Christ making unhinged statements,” is not only unfair, but disrespectful, Jeff Poor of News Busters told TheWeek.com.
Meenal Vamburkar of Mediaite felt that Jesus’ depiction was done “somewhat crudely” because of the stark contrast to what Jesus— and to an extent, many Christians— believe. Still, she acknowledged that the quotes from the white-robed cartoon were straight from the mouth of many conservatives: “Really, you can’t make this stuff up,” she said.
AVN believes that Tea Partiers and some Republicans have aligned themselves with concepts and ideals contrary to the Bible, and their satirical savior is proof of it. Only Tea Party opinions, views, and quotes were used in the video, according to the values-based organization.
“Blessed are you when you revile and persecute and utter all kinds of evil falsely. Rejoice and be glad. Great is your reward, for in the same way the prophets Beck and Limbaugh have persecuted others before you,” preaches the long-haired Tea Party Jesus.
Behind Tea Party-aligned Christ stands his disciples, who represent different segments of the conservative movement: Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Paul Ryan, Rush Limbaugh, Michele Bachmann, Ayn Rand, and Mitt Romney are all present for the video.
After the divisive comments by Tea Party Jesus, the video ends with the actual Sermon on the Mount from their depiction of Jesus. The actual words of Christ flatly oppose the inflammatory words of earlier, and viewers are shown what Christ and Christians believe: to love another as you love yourself.
AVN’s goal is to “offer citizens a grassroots avenue to active involvement— engaging the issues they care about and the values that define our nation,” according to their website.
To see the controversial “Tea Party Jesus” video, click below: