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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Mixed Messages & What Are We Really Trying To Say?

Tonight (Tuesday) was the first night that I had the opportunity to attend the Week of Prayer with the presenter from Battlefield Hollywood. I ended up walking out 15 minutes before the scheduled end because I was uncomfortable with the footage that was being shown on the screen. Ordinarily it will take a lot for me to get up and walk out, as I am more tolerant than most. However, after seeing numerous clips, I was beginning to question why we were being shown what we were being told not to watch. Then a clip from the trailer of the hit movie Legion was presented and that was when I knew I had to leave. I was not the first to walk out, however, as three others had preceded me.

The evening began innocuously enough with a Scripture verse on the screen about wrestling with powers of darkness. I did not realize, however, that we would be required to actually do so in the next 30 minutes or so. After introducing his topic, the presenter began to focus on comic book heroes and to demonstrate how blasphemous they really were, as he compared them to Greek mythology and showed clips of screen writers who talked blatantly about their personal agendas. I did not have a problem with that. I did have a problem, however, with his choice of heroes to focus on, specifically Wonder Woman.

I’ve heard of Superman, Batman, and even Flash, but not of Wonder Woman. However, this evening I saw more than I would like to of Wonder Woman as screen shots flashed up showing her clad in nothing more than a swimsuit-type of armour. I question why it was necessary to show pictures of this scantily-clad female comic hero when we are aiming to create an atmosphere of purity on this campus. If our students come to a Week of Prayer where they are shown images that are not conducive to pure thoughts, I question the necessity of showing these pictures.

If that had been the only thing that evening, I would not have been as upset as I was when a clip from the Legion trailer was shown. The entire atmosphere of the clip, though, brief, was dark, intense, and full of evil. I understand the presenter's intent to convey that Hollywood is steeped in evil, but question why it is necessary that we have to bring that evil into our chapel and watch it on a huge screen.

I am well aware that the media dictates the direction of our morals. You cannot watch a TV show or movie today without violence and immorality pervading the script. It has become commonplace to show things that disturb our moral senses. However, if I’m in Walmart, for example, and I’m in the electronics section and a clip comes on from a movie similar to Legion, I choose to turn and look away. I do not have a taste for the evil and the dark side of Hollywood. While I understand that there may be some of our young people who are still questioning and growing and learning, I think it should be possible to give them adequate food for thought without requiring them to view images of an evil nature that will forever remain burned into their memory.

The argument is presented that the young people are watching these things, or that they have seen it in the past, and I don’t deny that. I recognize that it is necessary to expose and enlighten as to the media’s agenda, hidden and otherwise. I do think, however, that it is possible to do so without blatantly showing the clips being referred to. If everyone has seen Legion, for example, or they are aware of the movie, is it really necessary to show it again?

What about those who have not seen those types of movies? I know of those who have grown up in homes where they did not watch TV, or if they did, they watched documentaries and nature films. If they made a personal decision not to watch movies filled with violence and evil, why are they being required to watch them now, imprinting the images forever on their minds?

We’ve all heard that to truly know the genuine, you must study the genuine and not the counterfeit. I believe that if we want to teach our young people about what is good and right, we should do so by focusing on those things that will uplift the mind. Turning a Week of Prayer into a week of movie clips does not seem to be the way to do it. Why are we asking our students to make the choice not to watch TV and movies and then we require them to watch those very things for an hour every night? A Week of Prayer should be a time of reflection on Christ and not on Hollywood’s gory feasts. This is why tonight, I chose to get up and leave.

1 comment:

  1. Good Choice. I always turned the channel when the Legion trailer came on and also when the Wolfman trailer came on. I don't want Isabella to see that. We have not been watching much TV lately and what we do allow Bella to watch does not show those evil trailers. Those students who may be struggling with evil movies and television should not have to see the trailers. They probably are already familiar with them. A brief verbal description seems good enough. You should not have to convince anyone the satanic influence of Legion.


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