Everyone’s a Critic

July 18, 2005

The curtain did not fall silently on the Devil. But rather to a chorus of “I am offended.”

In fact, the shouts by a group of Washington State University students pervaded the final performance in April of The Passion of the Musical — a show that has become the subject of a free speech dispute months after its short run.

The protesters, angry at the satire depicting the last of two days of the life of Jesus, forced the show to stop several times. At the behest of campus security guards concerned about a potential riot, Chris Lee, a theater major who wrote, directed, and portrayed the cross-dressing Lucifer in the play, self-censored one of the show’s songs. Instead of singing “I would do anything for God, but I won’t act black,” a parody of Meat Loaf’s “I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that,” the “black” was changed to “blank...

Schools: Washington State University Cases: Washington State University: Administrative Support for Heckler’s Veto of Student Play