An on-stage depiction of a presidential assassination on Friday night has drawn an apology from the Polk Theatre and a firestorm of Facebook controversy focused on prudence and taste vs. free expression and the use of art to provoke. People who attended said the skit showed a masked character stabbing President Trump.

A Facebook post from The Rocky Horror Picture Show Experience said that the pre-show skit was unaffiliated with both the Polk Theatre and the Lipstick Players, who produce the on-stage shadow production during the annual screening of “Rocky Horror Picture Show.” Posts from two individuals said the same thing.

“Our event is open and inclusive to everyone no matter their political views and our goal is to provide the best show experience. We do not agree nor condone any actions of violence toward anyone,” the Rocky Horror Picture Show Experience wrote. “The depiction on the stage last evening was distasteful and inappropriate.”

Here’s the Polk Theatre’s post. Click on it to read the many comments it generated:

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Barry Friedman founded in 2015 as the culmination of a career in print and digital journalism. Since 1982, he has used the tools of reporting, editing and content curation to help people in Lakeland understand their community better.

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