Though Harry’s adventures are obviously not religious instruction books, they employ heavy use of Wicca symbolism, language and themes. Wicca is now granted IRS status as a religion and the Department of Defense supplies chaplains for Wiccan folks serving in the U.S. military forces. "Harry Potter" is to Wicca what "Adventures in Odyssey" or "McGee and Me" (fanciful Focus on the Family videos and books) are to the Christian religion. "Harry" on the school library shelf and in the halls after school reflects a legally tolerable situation; promotion of Harry through school day book sales and teacher oral reading sessions is something else entirely.
To paraphrase, Harry Potter is not a religious text, but it has religious content and shouldn't be part of public school activities. I appreciate that these folks are a little less extreme in this matter -- not seeking to bar Harry from the library bookshelves. However, I have a feeling they're just reining in their true feelings. My evidence is this quote:
The drug message in this book is clear. To reach your goals in life like Harry Potter you need to know how to make drugs and take drugs in just the right way or else you are a "dunderhead" and will never succeed.
(that from this page.) We're basing out opinion on one quote from Prof. Snape in the first Potter book.
This claim ignores the following:
Snape is a minor villain. No one in the book wants to be like Snape. (Though, to tell the truth, I suspect that Snape may not be very villainous by the end of the series)
Potions class is not their favorite. It involves being poisoned at times.
No one in the books, so far as I have read, is on any sort of "potion" on a regular basis.
Potions could also be thought of as medicines.
Bleh. These people are really reaching.
Posted by James at June 24, 2003 3:55 PM