You'll remember a couple weeks ago, Rep. John Boehner was unhappy that some Catholics found the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery's LGBT-themed Hide/Seek exhibit offensive. Boehner threatened increased scrutiny of the museum's funding as a roundabout way of getting the Gallery to pull works that don't jive with his constituency. (Which is about to get a lot bigger once he takes his seat as Speaker of the House.)
Except taxpayer dollars don't pay for the exhibitions or the works themselves, only the museum facilities. (Which are admittedly fairly important for holding an exhibition.) The Andy Warhol Foundation, on the other hand, does provide a great deal of private funding to the museum - over $375,000 in the past three years to be exact - and they're not happy about seeing A Fire in My Belly disappear from the exhibition. In a letter from President Joel Wachs sent to Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough yesterday, the Warhol Foundation spoke out saying:
Such blatant censorship is unconscionable. It is inimical to everything the Smithsonian Institution should stand for, and everything the Andy Warhol Foundation does stand for. ...we cannot stand by and watch the Smithsonian bow to the demands of bigots who have attacked the exhibition out of ignorance, hatred and fear.