Dangerous ideas in wizard movie

 

Our children have fallen under the corrupting influence of an extraordinarily popular movie.

 

The story is very appealing to jaded children who yearn for adventure: An orphan trapped in a dismal lifestyle is whisked away to a magical place ruled by a wizard, where witches fly around on broomsticks and cast spells in pursuit of dubious goals.

 

Not surprisingly, this world is filled with perversions of natural order, such as characters with inhuman traits and animals that have been mutated into frightening monsters. Gemstones are bestowed with strange powers, which is typical of occultist practice since medieval times.

 

This film supports the dangerous and seductive idea that witchcraft is fine, as long as you differentiate between "good" and "evil" magic. This moral ambiguity results in violence begetting violence; not surprisingly, the antagonists meet their demise in rather gruesome fashion.

 

Children who fall prey to this film will undoubtedly become aware that an entire series of books by the same author exists, which will further serve to indoctrinate young minds into this cauldron of evil temptation.

 

This travesty of film making to which I refer is, of course, "The Wizard Of Oz." As good Christian parents, we must ensure that our children are never exposed to the inherent dangers of this film, and that these tools of Satanic learning are eliminated from our homes and our school libraries. The time has come to take your side in this righteous crusade.

 

Geoff Trowbridge The Elkhart Truth, 12/7/2001

 

 

[Ed. Note:  Some of the responses to the above editorial were so hilarious, I just had to share them.]

 

Brief comment

 

I would like to address this brief comment to the article by Geoff Trowbridge about the wicked movie, "Wizard of Oz," and some kind of crusade.

 

What?

 

Paul Hampel The Elkhart Truth, 12/13/2001

 

 

Offended by 'Wizard' letter

 

This is in response to the article Dec. 7, "Dangerous ideas in wizard movie." That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard.

 

When I first began to read the article, I assumed it was referring to the Harry Potter movie. I didn't agree with the article then, but then when I got to the end and realized he was talking about "The Wizard of Oz," I was shocked.

 

I am very offended that he has referred to all the children who like that movie (including mine) as being jaded. My children do not believe in witchcraft and do not think that people can fly on broomsticks just because it's in a movie.

 

I would like to know what "frightening monsters" are in that movie.[*] I can't even begin to respond to the "satanic learning" aspect. That is just preposterous.

 

I have liked that movie since I was a child, and not once have I ever tried to perform witchcraft. I was not a "jaded child who yearned for adventure."

 

I do believe that people are entitled to their own opinions, but when you are going to insult people and their parenting skills, you need to keep them to yourself.

 

Kathy Rossi The Elkhart Truth, 12/13/2001

 

 

Analogy to Potter-bashers

 

This is with regard to the letters by Kathy Rossi and Paul Hampel, responding to Geoff Trowbridge's "Wizard of Oz" letter.

 

Mr. Trowbridge's letter was satire. Quite rightly, you were supposed to think it was, initially, about the Harry Potter movie. He used the "Oz" film to make a beautiful analogy about the absurdity of protestations we're reading from the Potter-bashers.

 

The same kind of outcries from the fanatic few who denounced "Oz," no doubt, when it was scaring the be-jeebers out of kids on the big screen 62 years ago.

 

Leslie Torok The Elkhart Truth, 12/16/2001

 

 

Classic tale of good and evil

 

For those readers who didn't realize that Geoff Trowbridge had his tongue firmly in his cheek while writing about "The Wizard of Oz," Mr. Trowbridge was only trying to say in a clever way that we Baby Boomers were raised on "The Wizard of Oz," complete with evil witches, broomsticks, frightening flying monkeys, spells and a message underneath that friendship and reaching for your goals are very, very important.

 

I think we turned out pretty well as a whole, despite the fact that most of us saw "The Wizard of Oz" at least once a year -- and that was before videos and DVDs!

 

Today's Harry Potter franchise is the "The Wizard of Oz" of this generation. We didn't become jaded from the wizardry and witchcraft in Oz any more than this generation will from Harry Potter. This new generation will find the movie's message of the importance of friendship and perseverance that once again comes wrapped in within a classic tale of good and evil.

 

B.J. Wilson The Elkhart Truth, 12/16/2001

 

 

'Wizard' point came stealthily

 

I would like to thank Geoff Trowbridge for his tongue-in-cheek letter ("Dangerous ideas in wizard movie," Dec. 7) which so stealthily leads us down a path, only to surprise us in the last paragraph. Unfortunately, a few of my neighbors were unable to read between the lines.

 

Of course "The Wizard of Oz" was not an evil, satanic movie! Neither is "Harry Potter" -- exactly the point Mr. Trowbridge so wittily got across to some of us with his dry, quite amusing writing style.

 

Barbara J. Luter The Elkhart Truth, 12/16/2001

 

 

What harm in Potter occultism?

 

I read with interest Geoff Trowbridge's article "Dangerous ideas in wizard movie" (Dec. 7). "Christian parents" are obviously overreacting to this Harry Potter craze. They think it a big deal that the "good" hero, Harry, tells lies, steals, breaks the rules and is rewarded for it, and cheats by copying others' homework. You can tell they are ignorant of the fact that cheating is OK in wizard ethics.

 

Then there are the absurd accusations that J.K. Rowling is a witch or a Satanist. If they had been listening to the Diane Rehm Show they would have heard her state that only one-third of what she has written is based on actual occultism (National Public Radio, Oct. 20, 1999). The remainder came from her own imagination!

 

Others have made a big deal out of the Sept. 20, 1999 Time Magazine article which states that the remaining Harry Potter books will be darker than the first ones. They fail to see this as a harmless literary device to keep our children's attention.

 

One would think that parents should be thankful for our children's interest in reading due to the popularity of these books. But no, there are those who complain about the content of public school study guides such as "Beacham's Sourcebook: Exploring Harry Potter." They object that this book references actual occult books and Internet sites dedicated to witchcraft. I dread to think of what will happen when they find out that Wicca (witchcraft) has been determined by the courts to be a federally recognized religion (Dettmer v. Landon). Next thing you know someone will be suing the school districts over church-state issues!

 

Yes, I do agree with Mr. Trowbridge's concluding remark, "The time has come to take your side on this righteous crusade."

 

Jim Bontrager The Elkhart Truth, 12/18/2001

 

 

[* - Like, flying monkeys?!?!?! AAAIIIIYYYYY!!!]