Tuesday, May 16, 2006



Every once in a blue moon, a work of art is deemed so provocative, members of the "elitist" fundamentalist groups are lured out of their filthy dens in full force to condemn "secular blasphemy".

And so it was, that the da Vinci code has been at the centre of a minor maelstrom (compared to the Danish cartoon furore, that is), with Christians from all corners of the globe condemning the novel-cum-movie.


Not surprisingly, Christian groups in Singapore have voiced their unhappiness over the Da Vinci mania.

One particular Christian group, National Council of Churches of Singapore (Jeez, sounds like a group in the mould of Opus Dei. Do these loonies practice self-flagellation?), had written to the overwhelming patriachal and conservative media watchdog, Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA), requesting that the movie be banned:

Excerpts from:
THE NEWPAPER, 16th May 2006:

Last month, the National Council of Churches of Singapore (NCCS) wrote a letter to the Media Development Authority (MDA) asking it to ban the movie.

It was the first time that the NCCS had asked for a movie to be banned.

'In our multi-racial and multi-religious society, movies that offend the sensitivities of any religious group should not be allowed,' argued NCCS general secretary Lim K Tham.

Offensive, huh? Why then, did these loonies not voice their disproval when the "Passion of the Christ" was aired? Not to mention the excessive use of fake blood to make that X-rated porn freak-show, there were elements of anti-Semitism plastered all over it. Why didn't the Jews complain?

Clearly, narrow-minded buffoons are attempting to stifle the minds of the masses here by attempting a blanket coup on the movie. Tough luck.

The MDA allowed the movie to pass with an NC-16 rating (Those under the age of 16 not allowed to watch).

Clearly, the MDA has obviously picked potential profitability over religious conservatism. Clearly, money speaks louder than God's fragile ego.

Try harder next time, morons.


In a predominantly Catholic nation of the Philippines, talk of a ban on the controversial movie has received explicit disproval from a politician:

From Malaya News, 11th May 2006
Ban on Da Vinci Code urged BY JOCELYN MONTEMAYOR

EXCUTIVE Secretary Eduardo Ermita yesterday said the controversial film Da Vinci Code should be banned as it is blasphemous and might imprint wrong ideas on Catholics, particularly the young. Ermita urged the Movie Television Regulatory and Classification Board (MTRCB) to take a look at its rules. "They should be able to take a look at their own guidelines on whether such a movie with such a story line should be allowed to be shown in the Philippines, especially as we are a Catholic country," he said. "And if you are to ask me, personally, I think if we know that indeed it will offend the sensibilities of the Filipinos, we being a Catholic country, we should do everything not to allow it to be shown at the least," he added.

Judging by the fact that politicians ought to keep themselves busy with bettering the lives of the common folk, meddling with religious affairs is simply not appropriate for an "executive secretary" (whatever that title means).

In any case, if Mr Eduardo has too much time in his hands, he might as well try and find out, and maybe eradicate the state of corruption and improve the welfare of his people. Trying to rally common gullible folks to ban movies is the job of priests, whose prime occupation of molesting altar boys place them in good stead with such a dastardly, dirty job.


Having read and heard comments from hard-core fundies advocating the voices of censorship,, their arguments, when explored in full view of unbridled logic, becomes as flimsy as a house of cards:

Lame Argument 1: The da Vinci code is full of errors.

The da Vinci code is primarily written as a novel. It basically explores the possibilities of the live of Jesus through a detective-style novel. As such,
it cannot be taken seriously as a historical book.

Critics may judge the contents of the book in the context of story narration, writing style and so on. But to judge the book based on grounds of historical authenticity is certainly a futile exercise, since this is not one of the main criteria for judging novels.

Lame Argument 2: The da Vinci code is a dangerous book, as it might deceive believers of the faith.

Another pathetic argument from the religious right. If this argument is deemed valid, I can scarely imagine the degree of "faith" Christians have misplaced on their supposedly infallable superhero. If, indeed, a mere novel can strike such a non-sensical fear into the hearts of fundies, we atheists ought to write books of this nature, hopefully to scare all of them to death.

Lame Argument 3: The book claims Jesus married Mary Magdalene. This is blasphemous to the Christian deity.

This argument, I suspect, is partly due to the fall-out from the Muhammad cartoon fracas.

By borrowing a leaf out of the standard Muslim fundie, these Christians are placing the unblamable crime of heresy against the author and the film makers of da Vinci.

Blasphemy or no, the movie is a ligitimate work. The tenets of standard, secular law has allowed citizens of free nations to produce such works. However indignant these fundies may be, they must understand that the freedom to allow such "unpleasing" works to be released also guarantees religiously-slanted art the same degree of freedom as well.


Here comes the ultimate bombshell:

By constantly egging and haranguing for the ban of the movie, these extremists may have unwittingly aided the film makers into enticing more audiences.

After all, negative publicity is definitely better than no publicity. By constantly complaining about the contents of the heretic nature of the book, these naysayers have unwittingly given the film-makers of da Vinci code free publicity. No doubt, that ill-meaning comments do have a significant impact on ticket sales, but curiosity generated by negative comments will no doubt compensate for that slight loss of religious audiences.

Well, what if, say, a nation bans from the movie? Wouldn't that mean that no one stands to gain, besides the jubilant fundies?

Not true. Any ban on the movie in any country will only inspire her citizens to lay their hands on boot-legged DVDs of the film, which only serves to fatten the pockets of pirated vendors of copyrighted films.

In an increasing globalized world, intertwined economies and peoples of many cultures and creeds have created an unprecedented playground for human interaction, so much so that any bans on cultural expression is as good as firing a water gun at a charging bull.

My advice to Christians: Keep quiet. By not giving the movie any criticisms, the film makers will have no grounds to generate any sort of publicity.


Dave Lucas said...

Everybody has forgotten this is all fantasy... it's a NOVEL! I've blogged about this too!

Advocate1 said...

This reminds me of an event which took place in the 1960s.

Does the name Sherwood Schwartz mean anything to you? This was the creator of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. At one point a high ranking official of the United States Coast Guard contacted Mister Schwartz and said something to the effect of: "I have something I want you to see because you won't believe it unless I show it to you."

As it turned out the Coast Guard had been receiving angry letters from viewers of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND who did not understand that the show was ENTERTAINMENT! You literally had people wiritng in, complaining about the Coast Guard budget, asking why their tax dollars couldn't be used to--brace yourselves--"get those poor people off of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND!" Of course they never bothered to ask why they could see these people on their TV screens every week, and why so many of the guest stars looked like old time character actors, but who said Americans were any good at separating fact from fantasy?

This is the level of intelligence we are dealing with today. As Beast pointed out, this movie, THE DA VINCI CODE, is a work of fiction. It is not meant to be taken seriously. It's a thriller action movie. It's fantasy. Anyone who doesn't get this either needs a lobotomy or needs to have the last one corrected.

On the other hand, if these people are this confused about reality verses entertainment then you really have to wonder about their political views and their theology. How messed up are those areas of thought and belief?

Advocate1 said...

One more thing. Back in the mid 1970s another movie produced similar complaints. It was THE EXORCIST. Wow! You literally had spokespersons for the Catholic Church telling American Catholics that they were in danger of demonic possession if they saw the movie. It was a zoo, and in the end the movie made a "few bucks," it went on to become a horror movie classic, and no one was possessed by the devil until 51 percent of the American people voted for George W. Bush in 2004. And yes, the constant warnings from the Catholic Church only served as free publcity for the movie.

Samurai Sam said...

Don't forget The Last Temptation of Christ either. That had Christian fundamentalists tearing their hair out as well.

I swear these people just need something to be unhappy about. It's a novel, for Christ's sake! Some of these people should try reading a few of the gospels not found in the Bible. They might find that their truth is not so certain as they'd like to believe.

Ragnarok said...

Excellent article.

It's hilarious watching Christian groups yelling about errors in a fictional book. Just like they protest about extreme violence and sexual activity on television.

Ironic really, what with the bible (certainly the onld testament) being one of the most sexually depraved and violent books on Earth. Not to mention the huge amount of fiction in it...

BEAST said...


In my opinion, these loonies who call themselves christians are either so stupid that they knoweth not that they have been swelling the pockets of film makers all these while, or that they are making use of this opportunity to make themselves look silly in the eyes of the secular public.

In any case, this is a silly issue. I wouldn't have given second thoughts about the movie had these fools not made such a big fuss. I have read the da Vinci code, and didn't like what I read (boring story narration).

Brandon said...

RE: Ironic really, what with the bible (certainly the onld testament) being one of the most sexually depraved and violent books on Earth

AMEN Ragnarok! So true. So very true. What can you say about a book that considers women unclean because of a natural monthly cycle; which denies people the right to eat pork, shrimp, lobster, and rabbit; which advocates the stoning to death of unruly children, and which establishes the ground rules for slavery. Some of the characters are nothing more than war criminals. I mean really--would anyone in their right mind feel comfortable with the megalomaniacal JOSHUA as a national leader? The man was a bonafide butcher--but he's considered a hero because he a butcher in the Judeo-Christian tradition. And people wonder why we're frightened by the Christian Right--which is neither Christian nor right about anything. With the exception of the occasional passage which talkes about loving your neighbor and turning the other cheek--the Christian Right takes literally every passage which promotes Social Dawrwinism, brutality, repression, sadism, and blodshed. It makes me wonder why these would be maniacs don't follow Ted Bundy or Adolf Hitler as their Savior since Bundy and Hitler are so much more in keeping with their depraved group psychology. What a beautiful world it would be if we loved the King James Bible for its beautiful use of language but recognized its actual content as dangerous to the psychological well-being of the human race.

BEAST said...

Ah, the irrepressible word of Gawk.

Seriously, the bible has hell lot more to say about virgins as well.

According to numbers chapter 30, 32000 women were awarded to the winning christian tribe after a war, of which half was "sacrificed unto the lord".

When I compare the bible to Marquis de Sade's works, the only difference I would deduce is the sheer intellectual qualities of de Sade's works, while brute wise, both are just about as sadistic.

Goes to show you the wonders of the holy babble. De Sade, anyone?

Ragnarok said...

I really appreciate the amount of incest, murder, gang violence and misogyny in the old testament.

It's a testament (Lolz) to the kind of backard thinking Christians we have today.

All this fuss over a pretty average and poorly written novel. It's worse that the Da Vinci Code!