12 September 2009

What's common between swastika, genitalia and Sweden?

No, it's not a trick question, judge yourself:

Swedish Foreign Ministry requested this week to temporarily remove two paintings containing swastikas from the museum of modern art in Stockholm.
And the reason is:
The Swedish foreign ministry said this week that the paintings might spark discomfort at the conference for the European Union Foreign Ministers to be held in the city at the end of the week.
But not only swastika:
The museum spokesman confirmed the request and added that a painting containing female genitalia was also removed from the exhibition.
The action raises an interesting question: are people supposed to be riled by both swastika and genitalia? Or, perhaps, the act addresses comfort of guests from different countries? For instance, Brits may feel OK with genitalia and be discombobulated by swastikas, Italians may feel at home with swastika and not... etc., you see what I mean?

But that's all in the realm of guesswork, only one thing is certain: the unmistakable message from Foreign Ministry - it's OK for fellow Swedes to enjoy both swastika and genitalia (maybe even at the same time), but only out of the limelight.

Leave it in the family, so to speak.