Clothing that describes Jesus Christ as a 'cunt' has been seized from an Invercargill store by New Zealand police. Police took away the apparel after being asked to do so by Internal Affairs.
The tops will be further examined to decide whether the owners of theImpuls'd store which sells them would be charged with any criminal offences.
The Southland Times outed the store, owned by Warren and Angela Skill after spotting hooded tops with the words Jesus is a cunt emblazoned on the back. The tops advertise an album for British extreme metal group Cradle of Filth.
People have been seen wearing the tops on city streets in the past week, with a 68-year-old visitor to the city saying she was 'horrified' when she saw a man walking with the offending words emblazoned across his back.
In 2008, T-shirts with the same wording were banned by then chief censor Bill Hastings. The ban made any act of possessing, wearing, distributing or selling the T-shirt, or another top with the same wording and imagery, illegal.
Colin Morrison, the pastor of Edendale Presbyterian Church, wrote that he felt sorry for people who needed to express themselves in such a way and he would be praying for them: Also I am sad at the way they find such language acceptable, just
shows how far we have slipped as a caring and loving society.
A New Zealand retailer, who was selling hooded tops with the words Jesus is a cunt emblazoned on the back has been fined in Invercargill District Court.
Warren Skill appeared on one charge of possessing an objectionable publication, namely Cradle of Filth garments (four T-shirts and four hoodies).
He was fined $500 and an order was made for the destruction of the garments.
The charge was laid by the Internal Affairs Department under the Films, Videos and Publications Classification Act.
In 2008, T-shirts with the same wording were banned by then-chief censor Bill Hastings. The ban made any act of possessing, wearing, distributing or selling the T-shirt, or another top with the same wording and imagery, illegal.
The Director of Canterbury Museum in New Zealand has made the news for displaying the iconic Cradle of Fifth t-shirt bearing the slogan: Jesus is a cunt. The front of the t-shirt is titled Vestal Masturbation , which aptly
describes the pictured nun.
The t-shirt is displayed in an adults only area of the T-shirts Unfolding exhibition at the museum.
Director Anthony Wright says they're trying to tell the story of T-shirts within street art culture, without unduly censoring the content.
We've got to balance that up against anyone that might be offended, and we've bent over backwards to make sure that anyone who might be offended won't come into contact with anything offensive. It's a tiny part of the overall exhibition.
Auckland University's senior lecturer Dr Geoff Kemp says though he doesn't like the t-shirt, the way it's presented is acceptable.
Because it's now appearing in an exhibition context, it's trying to tell a story in a more reflective, educational way. It seems a different context to the idea of it just being worn out on the street.
The Anglican Church has inevitably condemned the exhibition. Bishop Victoria Matthews says this should be about common decency. She makes a few leaps of credibility and spouts:
What's the line between art and pornography, and what is the line between communication and inciting violence.
The christian moralist group, Family First said through National director Bob McCoskrie that whether its on display in a museum or worn by a member of the public, it's offensive and shouldn't be allowed.
The public has access to it, and they shouldn't be confronted by this kind of offensive and unnecessary material.