A collection of blogs and musings from the people that work at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum - Florida's Finest Lightstation.

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History or grave-robbery?

Posted by: Kathleen McCormick in Shine

So James Cameron, not content with picking the bones of the Titanic victims, has decided to move on to grave-robbing and exploitation at a higher level. This time, according to carefully-timed news reports and interviews, he's found the tomb of Jesus. How convenient that it also contained the bones of Mary Magdalen, Mary the Mother, and a son of Jesus...and Jimmy Hoffa, for all I know. Now Cameron can cover all the bases: "History", Religion and a "Da Vinci Code" connection. That guy sure does know how to make money. If only he'd admit he's just a money-grubbing film maker instead of pretending to be a producer of "Historical documentaries", I'd be less disdainful. Having one archaeologist make headline-grabbing claims does not constitute historical accuracy.

This is what separates historians from treasure-hunters. If Mr. Cameron is intersted in anything beyond cash flow why would he : (a) Remove the artifacts from secure storage, risking loss or damage to supposedly important information, (b) Cart the artifacts around to press conferences, exposing them to damage from lights, movement, etc and (c) make PT Barnum-style claims before proper studies have been conducted to substantiate them.
If these artifacts are what Cameron claims, the subject of proper respect has to be addressed, as well. Who owns the ossuary of the Son of God? An entertainer? A museum? The country of origin?
What do you think?

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