I am not sure if any of you have received the emails directing the boycott of "The Golden Compass" or not...I honestly just recently heard of it. I would suggest reading the Snopes.com entry here before continuing on with my blog.
My biggest concern with any kind of boycott is that it usually has the direct opposite effect on the subject of the boycott than the opposing side intended. Here, the movie is gaining TONS of publicity and word of mouth. If you don't want people to know about something...why talk about it? Anyways...
This generated some interesting feelings in me. While I would not say I agree with the author's intent, I really find it fascinating (and not a little bit sad) that the first instinct of Christians is to be afraid of it and to immediately say that their children should be sheltered from it. So many parents expect their 6 year old to make professions of faith in Jesus and get "saved" at a very young age, to me indicating that they have a great amount of confidence in their child's decision making abilities. What 6 year old actually understands what faith, religion, life/death is all about? Maybe that is why the parents don't want the kids to be exposed to something anti-god or anti-religion. They realize that children CAN be influenced by other sources. One of the things that I think is so amazing about personal faith is that it SHOULD be seasoned by all of your life experiences. Anything that resonates as TRUE to you, should be incorporated into your idea of how things work. Now, am I saying that we should send our children to see this movie and hope they all come out as atheists? No, that isn't what I am saying. BUT...I think a parent should have a relationship with their child that allows for discourse about the subject. Only showing someone one side can lead to backlash and misunderstanding (see the Crusades, Spanish Inquisition, etc etc). Assuming that YOUR way is the ONLY way and that there is an absolute truth is not only, in my opinion, naive...but I think it is inherently dangerous.
I go back to my experience in vacation bible school when I was very young. Alot of what many churches sell to the masses involves much "faith like a child". Just believing. Well, in reality...you can't always fall back on that. God (if you choose to believe in Him) gave us these amazing things called brains. They are very functional if you decide to use them in the manner for which they were designed. Well, when I was a kid I asked a question to the assistant pastor to which his response was simply "you can't ask that question." To this day, if he had just said "I don't know", I wouldn't have this nagging feeling that THAT response is what this is all about. "You can't pose that scenario". Don't give kids the OPTION of being exposed to another idea and possibly believing it over what YOU believe.
I have no idea if the movie is any good. I have no idea if the books are good. That isn't the point. Actually, now I am not sure my point (still not clearly outlined) is valid. sigh.
As with anything, people get worked up about stuff. It always amazes me how quickly the "church" can rally against some things and ignore others completely. (lots between the lines there)