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Gamaliel's Desk
Sunday, July 04, 2004

Normally, I would devote this week's column to promoting every Pharisee's duty to support the biblical and moral position of conservative Americanism but I feel that I have to address one of the greatest threats to patriotic Christian America - Harry Potter. I had determined not to address this topic because I have already covered it in the past but recent events have forced me to wade into the fray once again. The amazing popularity of the new Harry Potter movie threatens to undermine the very moral fabric of our country. We are teetering on the edge of disaster and this movie could push us into the abyss. It threatens the very foundations of what made this Christian nation the great godly country it is. Harry Potter seeks to replace the biblical underpinnings of morality with a belief in the spirit world, something no self-respecting Christian would ever subscribe to.

Let me state first of all that I have not seen the new Harry Potter movie, nor do I intend to. I have heard enough about it from rumors, press releases and television advertisements to know that no spiritual Christian should ever want to view this movie. Harry Potter is the very antithesis of what makes for an American Hero. This week's column will show why Harry Potter makes such a bad champion for children by contrasting him with a truly American role model, John Wayne.

First of all, Harry Potter encourages kids to go to movies. As we all know, movies are godless propaganda machines seeking to undermine the Christian principles taught in our Pharisee churches. The Harry Potter books are nothing more than teasers for the movies. John Wayne movies promote no such thing. Since there are no new John Wayne movies, you can only see them on television. So, unlike Harry Potter, they encourage Christians to stay at home rather than support the liberal Hollywood elite. Not only that, John Wayne movies encourage people to read Zane Grey and Louis L'Amour books instead of encouraging them to see more movies.

Tools of the trade: Harry Potter is a bad role model because he uses magic to solve his problems and fight "evil" in the movies. As everyone knows, magic is evil incarnate so it cannot be used to fight evil. Using evil to fight evil is a fiction that Hollywood loves to promote. John Wayne, by contrast, never resorts to magic or any other wicked means to suppress the forces of evil. Instead, he uses guns, a legitimate means of safeguarding our freedom guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the constitution. We all know that guns, unlike magic wands, are not evil in themselves and are turned to good or evil purposes by the people wielding them. Ask yourself this question: What would you rather see - kids running around pretending to zap one another with magic wands or kids running around playing with toy guns pretending to shoot one another? Clearly, I would rather see children pretending to kill one another with guns than wands.

Violence: Harry Potter movies have turned out to be some of the most violent movies ever made in recent days. Not only that but it is violence of a horrid sort at a place where children should be made to feel safe - their school. John Wayne movies are violent but in a completely different way. The creators of Harry Potter use violence in a purely gratuitous fashion and never justify its use. The creators of John Wayne movies only use violence as a last resort. John Wayne never sought to go to war as a matter of choice or preference. He went to war because it was his duty. He never hit a man for no reason in his movies but only used his fists when he was forced to. Harry Potter turns out to be a mischievous imp who invents all sorts of violent things purely for their own sake.

Respect for Authority: Harry Potter is in every way a rule-breaker. He feels like the rules are for other people and not for him. This rebellious attitude and situational ethics erodes the foundation of compliance that we need for this country to be great. When kids see Harry Potter rebelling against authority, then they are going to feel justified in rebelling against authority. John Wayne epitomized that American virtue of blindly following orders, regardless of the personal consequences to himself and those around him. We would never see John Wayne questioning whether the government was right or wrong in going to war. His duty was clear - to kill as many of the godless, heathen enemy as he could. The Christian virtues of Duty, Honor, Country are sadly missing in our churches today and Harry Potter is one of the leading reasons why they are missing.

Language: I have been told that the Harry Potter books in England contain some bad words. This only serves to highlight the breakdown of morality in this country. Language standards have been declining for years and they only continue to get worse. Harry's use of the occasional four-letter word merely hastens the moral decline of our youth. I admit that on occasion, John Wayne may have said a curse word or two but that is because those words were included in the script. John Wayne was not known for his cursing and his movies, when they are shown on the right television channels, have all the curse words bleeped out, thus making him wholesome fare for the family. Harry Potter is wholly unsuitable for viewing by anyone, and especially young children. The same is true with cigarettes and alcohol. These were only plot devices in the movie. John Wayne's consumption of alcohol and smoking of cigarettes were only to establish character. Real American Christians can easily overlook these peccadilloes because of all the godly virtues the movies promote. It's simply a matter of eating the fish and throwing away the bones.

Americanism: Finally, Harry Potter isn't even American. His books and movies are created by English people. America should not allow itself to be influenced by the very country we rebelled against almost 230 years ago. We all know that England is peopled by liberal heathen who have low standards of morality and conduct. We should only consume American culture that promotes the godly biblical values of Americanism, patriotism, capitalism and rebellion against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men's bones and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness."
MATTHEW 23:27-28 (NIV)

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