When I worked at the big name bookstore there were two things that happened which I think relate directly to the big flap over the new movie, “The Davinci Code.”
One of the things we were supposed to do while we were there was to make sure we were familiar with the books that the store was currently pushing. These choices were interesting of themselves. Walk through a big-name bookstore, Borders might be one. I love to go there and get a latte and wander through the aisles. When you do, see what they have faced outward and displayed prominently. You will find over a period of time, that there are specific themes that they push and they are generally not conservative or Christian themes. As an employee you might have ten calls for “Dereliction of Duty,” a book which shows the incompetence of the Clinton administration through the eyes of the man who carried the “Nuclear Football” and find that it’s backordered; you will have stacks and stacks of Al and Tipper’s book, even though no one is interested in it and the few people who have read it cannot tell you how boring it really was. This is because the bestseller lists are made up, not of what people are reading or want to read or even actually buying, but by the number of books ordered by bookstores.
One day our boss held a meeting and said that the “powers that be” wanted everyone to read this book, “The Davinci Code” by Dan Brown. “While they can’t force you to read it, you will be recommending it to the customers and they really want you to read it.” I am pretty open-minded about books, but I have strong opinions about being told what to read. Besides, I am not a big mystery/suspense/thriller fan and had several other reading projects at the time. I know almost nothing about art so any references in that area would be lost on me as well. My friend read it and she said it was okay, but it was clear that it fit in with the apparent agenda of the bookstore. She said she was not all that impressed, but if big-name chains pushed it hard enough it was a good enough read to make it.
An unrelated fiasco happened while I worked there. There is a guy who thinks he is the funniest man who ever lived, Al Franken. My first exposure to him was when he was on Saturday Night Live. I hated him. I thought he was stupid and boring, but those were SNL’s “slump times” when they didn’t have any real writing or acting talent anyway, so he fit right in. I cannot tell you how stupid I thought he was, or how surprised I was to learn this guy had actually had books published, the newest of which was called “Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them.” On the cover was a little ticker tape that said, “A Fair and Balanced View” which was also the trademark tag-line for what people have told me is a conservative news show, who got upset about the infringement of their trademark/copyright. You have to jealously and agressively protect your trademarks and copyrights or you will wind up with little “Calvin and Hobbes” look-alike stickers doing everything from praying to urinating on cars all over. But they should have seen it coming. Their court battle immediately became the darling story of the liberal, drive-by media.
“Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them” was 248th in the top selling books lists one day and a number one best-seller the next.
Now “The Davinci Code” is a movie. No more exciting, from the reviews I’ve seen, than the stilted dialogue of the book. A regular dud bomb. So why are people spending money to see it? Because they are being told not to. Something that would not be interesting to the average person has taken on new meaning because it is bad. It attacks the Christian faith and beliefs. But let’s step back a moment and remember one thing. The book was fiction. The movie is fiction. All these claims of an attack on Christianity are just so much hype which I believe is artificially generated and pumped up to sell the movie. When one of the actors was interviewed they asked him if he thought the film should have a disclaimer saying it was fiction at the beginning (what a ridiculous idea) and he replied that he thought the Bible should be required to have such a disclaimer There you have the heart and soul of Hollyweird. The same Hollyweird that would not fund “The Passion Of The Christ” (Didn’t go see that one either. I don’t support Hollyweird if I can help it) and Mr. Gibson had to put up his own money is the same bunch that would fund a poorly written, boring, anti-Christian movie.
This movie attacks on the same basis that all of Hollyweird attacks. Hollyweird andMad Ave are driven (ultimately) by greed. Should we all go out and behave like the 12th century Islamo-Fascists did when a critical cartoon was published? What if the Catholics were to behave themselves that way? Rioting, looting, burning Hollyweird to the ground and killing all the actors and directors is not the way civilized people, especially in Christian nations, behave.
The best way to fight the Davinci code is to not watch it. Not an organized boycott that will make the news and make undecided people feel sorry for the movie makers or mad that someone is trying to stifle their freedom of speech (which no one is), but rather, just don’t go. Don’t buy the book or watch the flick, but the more of a fuss you make the more unnecessary attention you draw to it. Just as with TV and Radio, if you don’t listen, if you turn the set off, that is the loudest voice of all. Of course you could chose my path and not have any sort of TV equipment in your house and make it your own rule that you won’t support Hollyweird by never going to any movies, which is the best way.
Another way to fight it is to know what you believe. I know that Jesus was born by Immaculate Conception to the virgin, Mary. He lived a sinless and blameless life which allowed him to be a sacrifice for our sins. His blood was shed in a cruel beating called a “scourging” so we could be healed and in crucifixion, nailing our sins to His cross, so those sins could be washed away. He was buried, but since he had committed no sin, the grave couldn’t hold him and on the third day he rose again. This is the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know these things to be true because I have met God and have a relationship with Him and an experience in Him that some actor isn’t going to change. I know that the King James Version of the Bible is THE Word of God to the English speaking world in our times. Everything must be judged according to it. If it doesn’t fit in with the KJV, then there is something wrong with it, not the Bible. These are a few things I KNOW and even the threat of death couldn’t make me disbelieve. There is no threat that can take away the experience that God gave me, because I know it happened. It happened to me. I was there. So, why would I care about this movie?
Remember, the Good Book says, “If something is wicked, don’t look at it.”
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