My initial reaction was that this was a mistake by Americans United. Attacking a book because one doesn't like the message reminded me too much of what the Christian right has done with Harry Potter. If reading such a book will encourage children to read, shouldn't we promote it?After reading the story, I have to say this sounds more sensible than it seems at first. The contest is taking place over the entire state of Florida, and the book is the only one being used. All AU has asked for is a more diverse selection, something that would seem like a no-brainier for kids all over the state. Unfortunately, if they win now, it will be viewed less as giving simple variety and more as concession to those damned atheists. Oh well.
After continued reflection, I'm not so sure that this case really parallels the Harry Potter situation. It is well known that the Narnia books have a powerfully Christian message and intent by the author. While Harry Potter is sometimes interpreted as demonic in nature, I found no trace of this when I read the first book in the series.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
Narnia reading contest
Via Atheist Revolution, I've discovered Americans United is attacking a reading contest that uses The Chronicles of Narnia. Here's Vjack: