Vinci Code. I think it's a safe bet that many of those screaming bloody murder about "the religion of peace" going nuts over a cartoon are pretty much the same group of individuals that think Brown's work of fiction is a direct frontal assault on Christianity that has to be stopped at all costs.
I was flipping through the channels last week and wound up listening to a Christian Rock station for a minute and was fascinated by an ad for a seminar regarding the movie that would be taking place at a large local megachurch. "You may not be seeing the movie," the ad warned ominously, "but your friends and neighbors will and you'll need to know how to deal with their misconceptions about the book and movie."
As a reformed-Catholic the current political alliance between the Catholic church and our own protestant Evangelicals is fascinating. As I was growing up the idea that Evangelical Protestantism and Catholicism would mesh was insane. That little that the two movements shared in comment paled next to the vast differences in coda.
So I still find it odd that Protestants are so quickly willing to take up what, for all intensive purposes is the call for holy war against the movie. One explanation could be the shared self-martyrdom so much a part of the psychological make-up of Christian Conservatives today. There's little difference between the whining of a protestant James Dobson or a Catholic Cardinal Arinze when they blather about being under attack:
"Christians must not just sit back and say it is enough for us to forgive and to forget," Arinze said in the documentary made by Rome film maker Mario Biasetti for Rome Reports, a Catholic film agency specializing in religious affairs.
There is a tradition of sacrifice for the better of social good in Christianity. But protesting a movie just isn't in the same league as the actions of an Archbishop Romero of El Salvador standing up to a corrupt and evil regime that ultimately claimed his life. Nor does fighting to keep a brain-dead woman hooked up to life support equate to fighting to free slaves, sometimes at risk to life and liberty. Christian leaders devalue the true, just sacrifices made in the name of Christianity when they equate the trivial with the necessary. They aren't fighting demons, they're fighting shadows.