The Books of My Numberless Dreams

Oh, save me

Posted on: November 26, 2007


So I’m in the library mugging about, trying to ignore the fact that I have first year final exam marking to look forward to. I do my morning browsing of WordPress tag surfing and The Globe & Mail, both of which seem to be in sync this morning. One blogger points to an e-mail posting making the rounds on MySpace in which terribly worried Christian parents are trying to get the word out about the DANGER, the MORAL PERIL in which a trimmed, waterdown, film adaptation of Philip Pullman’s The Golden Compass places their children. I sighed, looked over to the newspaper site only to see an article in which Daniel Craig insists that the film isn’t anti-Christian but more about the mis-use of power. That’s neither here nor there to me, what caught my attention was this paragraph.

The Halton Catholic District School Board has pulled the novel and is reviewing Mr. Pullman’s entire trilogy, known as His Dark Materials, to decide if the books are suitable for its young readers. Other boards in Ontario are also reconsidering the placement of The Golden Compass on their shelves. The cinematic version opens in Canada on Dec. 7.

Oi! You’ve had the books in your respectable, God-fearing halls all these years but it took a MOVIE to get you to reconsider whether they’re appropriate reading material for your younglings? What about the celestial positioning of all the other children who passed through? You didn’t notice any devilish side-effects until now — when the MOVIE was about to come out? Are you people even pretending to be educators or are you all about multiple choice papers and junk food sponsorship deals?

Toronto bookseller Ben McNally said he finds the review of a book that has already been sitting on shelves for more than a decade, more than a little odd. “I mean where have these people been? I wonder whether anything is served by taking a book off the shelves while [a review] is happening, especially when the book has been out there as long as that one has.”

Well, at least they interviewed one literate person, even if he wasn’t institutional. I wonder why they didn’t get anything from the school librarians who probably have headaches from all the eye-rolling. Take heart from a Christian who has actually read the books and doesn’t have to depend on biased second sources:

Waiting for “The Golden Compass”. Rereading it again for about the fourth time. I really like it but I thinks people are seriously in trouble when they try to equate every book that comes out with Christianity. I love my God and have faith in his works but some people seem to go to extremes. It is a very good book and yes it does deal with good and evil and the struggles people have in deciding which are which sometimes. But if you set your mind to it, you could do that with anything.

I must have been daft when I read them, because I finished the first two books with no inkling that I was supposed to have closed them hating the Vatican, God, His Heavenly Host etc. (I haven’t read the third yet.) Christian critics I read bemoan the fact that the religion doesn’t get a fair, balanced shake, but I don’t see anyone rising up in arms because The Chronicles of Narnia is an imbalanced, skirt-flipping cheerleader for Jesus and anyone who isn’t on her team is demon-worshipping riff raff and/or gets turned into a pig during town parades.


17 Responses to "Oh, save me"

Man, you caught my post fast. I hadn’t so much as finished it before you’d posted and linked to it.

I’m quick that way. 😉 (Or, rather, tag surfer is.)

Thanks, too bad so many people try so hard to find an excuse not to actually read a book.

Right on! People get their panties in a twist too easily. And I do find it hilarious that no one has made a hoo-ha until the movie hits the screen. Proof positive that these “leaders” don’t read what their kids are reading. They simply catch wind of some questionable tidbit and run wild with it.

loopy, you’re welcome and it really is too bad. No matter Pullman said his intentions were in various interviews the book isn’t a horrible screed.

Andi yes, Andi, that’s the funniest bit, that it took a movie to get any of these “educators” worried. No doubt they’re the same ones moaning about “kids today”, telling them to read an exercise, while they chow down on Harveys and catch the latest episode of “So You Think You Can Dance”.

“I don’t see anyone rising up in arms because The Chronicles of Narnia is an imbalanced, skirt-flipping cheerleader for Jesus” oh how you make me laugh Imani! I love your sense of humor.

I was going to quote the same line Stefanie did — you made me laugh too. Funny, those double standards.

Thanks, Stef and Dorothy! I figure reading a rant should be fun rather than tedious. 😀

And I’ll bet the same thing happened with Harry Potter. Noone raised a stink about those books being “anti-christian” until the first movie came out. By then the first 3 or 4 books were already published…I think.


Still laughing my head off at this one. Great points. How ridiculous can some people be…

Historia that would explain it. I didn’t get on to that bandwagon until after the fourth book came out, and it was around then that I noticed the religious warnings. Thanks for commenting.

Verbivore, the situation was ripe for humorous derision. 😀

THANK YOU. You are the only person I’ve seen discussing this who brought up that these people are only complaining now that there’s a movie. Yes, the books have been challenged before, but this new rash of challenges is definitely movie-inspired. My guess? They’re illiterate and didn’t know of these satanic books o’ evil until they saw the movies.

LOL! Oh how I love when you rant Imani. It’s people like you who fortify my faith that the world hasn’t gone mad. Well, not completely anyway. I’m half-way through THE GOLDEN COMPASS, and I haven’t come across anything anti-Christian yet. But maybe I haven’t gotten to the good bits yet. Needless to say, I’m looking forward to it.

dew it’s particularly egregious here since the Catholic schools run on taxpayer funds. I’m with you on the illiterate bit.

Peyton, I like ranting too. 😀 Good to know you’re reading through the trilogy now. You can tell me if the “anti-Christian” theme gets overpowering at any point and you feel the urge to stab a Bible or something.

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