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Warhol Foundation To Pull Funding From Smithsonian Over Video Controversy

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In the continuing fallout from the Smithsonian's decision to remove a controversial video from an exhibit, the Andy Warhol Foundation is threatening to withhold funding from the institution.

The video, which shows ants crawling on a crucifix, was part of an exhibit tracing how gender and sexual identity have shaped American art. It was removed from the National Portrait Gallery two weeks ago, after complaints from the Catholic League President. Bill Donohue called it "hate speech" designed to insult Christians.

The Andy Warhol Foundation says unless the video is returned, it will withhold funding from the Smithsonian.

In a letter sent to Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough on Monday, the foundation's board described the removal of the video as "blatant censorship" -- which it called "unconscionable."

The foundation says it has given $375,000 over the past three years to Smithsonian museums, including $100,000 to help fund the exhibit that originally included the controversial video.

Clough says he regrets the foundation's decision, but says the Smithsonian stands by its decision.

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