Thursday, April 11, 2019

Burning Harry Potter Books

Earlier today, I read about some priests in Poland burning some of the Harry Potter books written by J. K. Rowling.  At first, I thought it was just another ridiculous news story, but I soon discovered that people in fact were taking this burning of the Harry Potter books very seriously.
I’m a moderator for a Facebook page dedicated to Polish-American issues, and someone posted a piece about the burning there.  The discussion that ensued got very very hot (no pun intended).
The people who are for the burning of the Harry Potter books are basically opposed to what they see as the tendency toward cultural paganism in Harry Potter, an attack against the Catholic Church not that different from what they see as the Muslim attack on western religion and civilization.  The people who are against the burning see the burning of books as an assault on civilization reminiscent of the kinds of book burnings that characterized the rise of Nazism.  Hitlerism, this group feels, is coming back to haunt us. As I said, the argument got very very hot. One woman, in fact, — who felt the priests were justified in burning the books because she felt the books advocated a totally anti-Christian view –eventually told another woman to go have sexual intercourse with herself.  
The woman who opposed the burning told the other woman to do the same.
The discussion became so heated that the person who runs the Facebook page asked me finally to delete the discussion.  It was all arguing and ugliness — nothing else.
Is Harry Potter’s magic wand a symbol of the end of civilization as we know it?
Or is burning Harry’s magic wand a symbol of the end of civilization?
Who knows?
If we are headed toward the apocalypse, we are probably going to get there in more ways than one.  The arguments between Catholic priests and Pagans, between the alt right and the left, and between the Muslims and the Christians, all of these suggest divisions that are just going to get more and more divisive.
And then on top of that I also read this morning that an enormous glacier (the size of Florida) was going to break off from Antarctica, and once it melted there would be 4 feet more of sea water in all the world’s oceans.  And if this isn’t bad enough, this glacier breaking off is going to cause other glaciers near it to break off. And all of this will raise the level of the sea by about 13 feet.
Imagine the world’s oceans rising 17 feet and what that will do!
Whatever fires are burning Harry Potter books will surely be extinguished along with life as we know it.
All I can say is holy smokes!  (Really, I think that the proper response is „We are fucked” — but even though the world is coming to an end, it’s still not considered correct or polite to say that.)