Your Commitment To Sparkle Motion
|I don't think that you have a clue what it's like to communicate with these kids. We are losing them to apathy... to this prescribed nonsense. They are slipping away. -- Karen Pommeroy, Donnie Darko|
One of my favourite films has stirred up some trouble. According to a recent article in AgapePress ("Reliable News from a Christian Source"), a Los Angeles pastor and his wife are suing a school "for showing an obscene, sexually explicit, R-rated movie in their daughter's ninth-grade English class last February." In other words, for screening Donnie Darko.
Notes the article (original spelling errors intact):
According to Pastor Brian Lewis and his wife Tara, Animo Venice Charter Public High School, a school serving the city of Venice, California, and the Los Angeles Westside, violated their parental rights when school officials failed to inform the parents that the school would be showing his daughter Alexis and fellow students the R-rated movie, Donnie Darko.A few assorted thoughts on this:
1) This is some of the worst reporting I've ever read. I'm hardly a fan of the mainstream U.S. media, but this makes even its pathetic claptrap look good. The writer of the article, Jim Brown, apparently made no attempt to get the school's side of the story for this piece, which is atrocious by both Christian and journalistic standards. Brown obviously didn't watch the film before writing his story either, or he would have known that there is no "deviant sexual activity" in the movie, except perhaps a frank discussion of the mating habits of Smurfs. That is unless he considers teenagers having sex to be deviance.
2) If these parents, Brian and Tara Lewis, have in fact watched Donnie Darko, they have missed one of its most important themes. The film concerns itself with clueless parents who do not know how to communicate with their children. In other words, it concerns itself with them.
3) If the Lewises are worried about "gross obscenities, various types of deviant sexual activity, and misogynistic fantasy," I hope they haven't left their daughter alone with a copy of the Christian Bible.
4) Many Christians believe that people don't like them because they are Christians. In fact, many people don't like Christians because many Christians are assholes. This is a perfect example of that. It may indeed have been a mistake for a school to show an R-rated film to a group of 15-year olds. But bringing a class action lawsuit against the school six months after the fact is the act of a bully. And most people find great satisfaction in seeing a bully fall on his ass.