Dani Mejia Weighs In On “Cabaret” Controversy

St. Genevieve high school student weighs in on being subjected to “morality” bullying and threats and teaches those who stand in judgment a lesson or two.

By Dani Mejia

Dani CabaretAt my School St. Genevieve High School, a National School Of Character—located in Panorama City, California—we are known for our wonderful performing arts program. Along with being President Jimmy Carter’s favorite school in America. We pride ourselves on teaching the six pillars of Character and Individuality.

Our Fall Spring Musical Cabaret, written by Joe Masteroff, has created quite a controversy mostly because of the play’s sensitive topics, some people have decided to be against our school putting it on. They do not even understand what it is about. Cabaret is a cautionary tale to show the outcome of bad choices. We are trying to show (in an artistic manner) what may happen by living in a somewhat wrong lifestyle.

The people who are coming after us are extremist Catholics and a few radical conservatives—you know the type, the ones who believe they are “holier than thou.”  They have said such negative things to the school officials and to anyone affiliated with our church, school, and of course the musical. At our church masses they come with posters and fliers to try to change peoples minds about the play. Not even letting us share our opinion on how we are portraying this musical. They don’t, nor do they want to understand, what we are trying to show… what the true message we are trying to deliver through our version of Cabaret. They are misinformed about us and have no desire to know the true facts about the making of our high school production.

After today, April 21st, I have not felt so threatened by the fact that people think they can get away with being ignorant. This is why religion gets such a bad wrap. These are the kind of people that change our religion. In the bible, a prostitute woman is brought to Jesus because the people want to stone her.

Jesus says, “If you have never sinned in your life, then throw the first stone, and everyone dropped the stone because they all knew they had sinned. Have these people never sinned before?”

Are they [protestors] so much holier than us that they think they have the right to come to our parish to protest against us? The answer is “no.” Everyone sins. No one is sin free… because whether we notice or like it or not, we all sin to some degree.

If Jesus were to be here, would he be judging us? Would he be 
telling us we are going to hell because we are “glorifying” immortality. I doubt so. The Jesus I love is fair as he shows in the bible. And it would not be the right and just thing to do. Personally, having to swallow down the things I would like to say to these people has been hard.  A favorite Musician of mine Chris Motionless (Ceriulli) from the band Motionless In WHite has stated that these are the kind of people that all they do is judge and judge all day when it isn’t their place for that… like in his song Immaculate Misconception.

These judgmental protestors are “regular” people just like all the rest of us and they give religion a bad wrap. They [protestors], unfortunately, make some of the most common problems in this world we live in.

Coming up to us and saying we have no “Morals” or “Family Values” because we are putting on a Musical trying to caution people about these lifestyles. Excuse me ignorant illiterates, but you have no place to come and tell me that. I myself do not or will not ever drink, smoke, or do drugs because those things can lead to negative things. So the protestors have absolutely no right to judge me or my fellow peers.

Protestors have come to attack us about that we are “glorifying” homosexuality and abortions.

1. It is only implied on these things and never are really told in the musical.

2. Who cares? We live in a world where homosexuality is a reality. They do no harm at all. It is accepted out in the modern world. It’s 2013, for Christ’s sake!

Also, people get abortions all the time, because you should be able to decide whether you want to or not, even though it is a very sad thing. I don’t wish it on anyone.

For protestors to even be coming up to underage teenagers and trying to “fight” with us shows how low and immature these adults are. How dare them? They think we have no minds and that we are “brainwashed” into thinking “immoral” things are okay. But, really they are the brainwashed and brainwashers. Screw them. Even though we may seem “young” to them, we are currently acting more adult-like then they are through their terrible protest attacks.

Another sad reality is that most of these protestors do not even belong to our parish. They need to get a life. These same people have no problem with priests raping and sexually abusing kids? What hypocrites—this is where they should be protesting.

tumblr_inline_mln42y37wo1qz4rgpAnd, it is unconscionable that these protestors bring their young children to protest. How sad. How truly sad that you bring your innocent children and teens to do something like this and protest against us. They have no clue what so ever on to what is happening with this controversy. Some of these children may grow up and discover they are gay… they will have this image of ignorance you have inflicted on them.

No matter what, our production of Cabaret, will go on. We believe and stand by our production and the manner we will present it. By now, protestors have learned we will not back down. The fact the protestors were not able to stop the production has only fueled their anger and determination. But, the fight is over whether they like it or not.

We won. And, we will put on a fantastic musical this weekend. Opening night is April 15th, and runs through the 27th—we urge everyone to come out and see it. We have worked very hard to make it a worthy theatrical experience. If you would like to buy tickets please go to: Valiantspirit.com.

From Editor: Every so often Latinwood publishes commentary from Latinos working or studying in performing arts. Dani Mejia is a brave young woman who has been greatly affected by this experience which has only served to solidify her determination in pursuing a career as a writer, singer and acting. Her opinions and views are her own.

Here are some links to the Controversy:

http://www.dailynews.com/education/ci_22870215/st-genevieve-highs-cabaret-draws-ire-conservative-catholics

http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/los_angeles&id=9042544

http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2013/03/26/parents-call-for-catholic-school-to-bring-curtain-down-on-cabaret/

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/stop-cabaret/

eesparza

Elia Esparza is a leading expert in communications and journalism targeting the burgeoning Hispanic market and has produced and written dozens of articles. President and CEO of Always Evolving PR and a Communications Specialist, Elia, incorporates her 18 years experience in the areas of entertainment and education public relations, and marketing. promotions, market research and translations (Eng/Span).