Hysteria and The DaVinci Code

DaVinci Code posterFirst off, let me say one thing. If your faith can be shaken or challenged by the contents of a movie, your faith is weak, to say the least.

I am not one of those people who believe that the average person is a weak-minded sheep who cannot make up his or her own mind about something, and must therefore be protected from anything which might lead them in a direction certain people don’t want them to follow. Simply put, if The DaVinci Code doesn’t appeal to you, don’t go see it.

If you are going to form groups to try to boycott this movie and prevent it from being shown in theaters, then you will certainly have no right to complain when later on someone wants to boycott and shut down a movie that you might want to see out there (such as those terrible movies based on the Left Behind series). The same people who want to shut down The DaVinci Code and prevent people from seeing it would have screamed bloody murder had someone tried to do the same thing to The Passion of the Christ.

Sorry, folks. While I understand that this movie is controversial, to say the least, and will undoubtedly offend some people, this is not a religious issue. This is an issue concerning the very foundations of our democracy. Thomas Jefferson said that freedom of expression “cannot be limited without being lost.” In other words, you cannot limit the freedoms of others without giving up the same liberties for yourself.

But greaters minds that I have had plenty to say on this subject. It would serve the boycotters well to remember some of the ones I’ve listed below.

“You can only protect your liberties in this world by protecting the other man’s freedom. You can only be free if I am free.” – Clarence Darrow

“When liberty is taken away by force it can be restored by force. When it is relinquished voluntarily by default it can never be recovered.” – Dorothy Thompson

“The only way to make sure people you agree with can speak is to support the rights of people you don’t agree with.” – Eleanor Holmes Norton

“If we do not believe in freedom of speech for those we despise we do not believe in it at all.” – Noam Chomsky

Long story short, folks, the point I’m trying to make is that you can’t have it both ways. What’s so difficult to understand about that? If you sell your neighbor into slavery, what gives you the right to complain when they come to enslave you?

I’m certainly not saying that people who disagree with this movie should remain silent. I don’t have a problem with people speaking out about The DaVinci Code (or anything that they disagree with). But when they form groups and try to prevent other people to see it, they have betrayed our Foundating Fathers and the sacrifices of our American ancestors, who spilled their blood and gave their lives defending the freedoms that too many Americans are so eager to just give away.

I understand why Christians would be upset with the premise of The DaVinci Code. But the same people who made fun of Muslims when they were outraged by the depiction of the prophet Mohammad in cartoons are largely acting in the same fashion.

Is The DaVinci Code blasphemous? Yes. To most Christians, it is indeed blasphemous. The problem here is that when Dan Brown wrote the book that this movie is based upon, he never contended that it was factional. It’s been marketed as fiction. It’s been accepted and read by people who understood that it’s fiction. I’ve known many Christians who read the book, thought it was great, and walked away from it without any doubts about their faith. One has to wonder why so many other people simply cannot do that.

I’ll tell you why. The majority of Americans practice what I call a shallow faith. As long as they go to church on occasion, play at being religious, and call themselves Christians, they believe that they are “what they should be.” These are the people who protest the loudest when their shallow faith is challenged by a movie or a book, or are offended by a logo on a bottle of shampoo or a phrase on a can of Pepsi.

These are the people who are potesting the loudest now, because their shallow faith has been challenged by a movie. The reason their faith can be challenged so easily is that Jesus Christ and his teachings has very little to do with how they conduct their daily lives. Somewhere deep in the recesses of their minds, they know that they are not what they should be. They believe that by protesting louder than anyone else, they can somehow prove to God (as well as their neighbors) that they are, indeed, “the real deal.”

In summation, it seems to me that the story of Jesus Christ and the depth of his teachings has survived for two thousand years. I imagine Jesus will weather The DaVinci Code just fine, without the help of these charlatans who are standing on every rooftop and shouting that the world is coming to an end.

I say come down from there. Buy youself a ticket to The DaVinci Code and go sit in that theater and watch this movie. If you then leave that theater doubting your belief in Jesus Christ, then you were never a Christian to begin with. The sooner you accept it and move on with your life, the better off you will be.

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