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Teapot Tornado Strikes Again

The Harry Potter series has concluded, so it’s time to find a new target in children’s literature.

The BBC reports on the controversy:Golden Compass author hits back [They note “Warning: This story contains plot spoilers”]

The author of the book on which the new film The Golden Compass is based has hit back at critics who accuse him of peddling “candy-coated atheism”.

Phillip Pullman dismissed as “absolute rubbish” accusations by the US-based Catholic League that the film promotes atheism and denigrates Christianity.

“I am a story teller,” he said. ” If I wanted to send a message I would have written a sermon.”

…But the Catholic League, which bills itself as America’s largest Catholic civil rights organisation, have nevertheless launched a nationwide boycott campaign.

The League says that parents might be taken in by the toned-down film – but will then be fooled into buying the “overtly atheistic and anti-Christian” books.

But Mr Pullman – who is attending Tuesday’s premier in London’s Leicester Square – dismissed the Catholic League as “a tiny, unrepresentative organisation.”

He told the BBC: “The only person Bill Donohue represents is himself.

Whether the Catholic League’s campaign against the Golden Compass will succeed is open to question.

It previously spoke out against the Da Vinci Code – a fictional film that alleged Jesus married and had a child.

The film went on to become one of the highest-grossing movies of 2006.

This is a work of fiction. It would be silly not to recognize that there can be parallels drawn to the real world and that the author probably intended that those parallels be drawn. [He doesn’t “candy-coat” his intent in the books.] See it or not, as is your wont, but people really should refrain from having a hissy fit every time something that is clearly labeled as fiction comes out and doesn’t accord with their world view.

If Mr. DonoWho want to find real world, non-fiction, anti-Catholic rhetoric, he would be hard-pressed to beat several reports from the Southern Baptist Convention, the actions of the Chinese leadership, several Latin American dictators, the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, a number of ultra-Orthodox rabbis, and most of the imams in Saudi Arabia. Anyone who believes they have found the one, true faith is not apt to think highly of those who haven’t accepted that faith. The Golden Compass is pretty thin gruel by comparison.


1 Michael { 11.27.07 at 4:19 pm }

The Catholic League is anti-Christian.

That is all.

2 hipparchia { 11.27.07 at 6:37 pm }

my daemon: ocelot a few months ago, lion now. if the movie is half as cool as the website, i may have to break my longstanding boycott against movies.

3 Fallenmonk { 11.27.07 at 7:09 pm }

Being from Georgia…I am completely fatigued by people trying to tell me what to read and what books should be available to children. Harry Potter, Beatrix Potter, and a half dozen other excellent books or series of books have or are targets of the bible thumpers here in Georgia. Wouldn’t you think that these people have something better to do with their time? I’ll take bets that old Donahue hasn’t read it.

4 Bryan { 11.27.07 at 7:30 pm }

Frankly, Michael, I’m surprised that his bishop hasn’t had DonoWho in for a chat. He paints a false picture of the Catholic Church and just annoys people.

I haven’t read the books, but my understanding is that the third and final volume is the best, but you need the background from the first two to understand what’s going on. The books are almost always better than the movies, especially fantasy books.

Beatrix Potter‽ What could anyone have against Peter Rabbit? That’s just beyond the pale and around the bend, FM.

5 Fallenmonk { 11.28.07 at 5:13 am }

The argument against the Beatrix Potter books is that they instill “classism” or something like that. They were, in fact, removed from the Gwinnett county libraries for a while. The county is the same one where the suits against Harry Potter were brought.

6 Bryan { 11.28.07 at 10:48 am }

When the adults can’t tell the differences between fairy tales and reality what chance do the children have?

7 hipparchia { 11.29.07 at 1:57 am }

When the adults can’t tell the differences between fairy tales and reality what chance do the children have?