The following is a paragraph from a Salt Lake Tribune article entitled “The fake uproar over Harry Potter’s ‘nude’ scene”
And why would parents be upset now over a 3-second bit of sensuality (which, in context, is integral to the story and to the development of Ron’s character) when they weren’t upset about the PG-13 bloodshed and violence that has already been seen in two of the previous six movies? Particularly when the MPAA is notorious for being much harsher in its ratings regarding sexual content than regarding violence?
After reading this article, I told my wife to not worry about all the hoopla and we took our older kids to go see Harry Potter.
But there was something about this article and it’s tone that bothers me and I wish to express it.
First, it uses what we might call a ‘standard defense of sexuality.’ The idea is that violence is universally worse than sex so anyone that is more worried about sex (of any kind, apparently, since this argument never mentions level of gratuitousness of either sex or violence) is therefore a hypocrite.
This argument, even if it wasn’t as worn out as it is, is really very offensive. The heart of this argument is that there is no room whatsoever for differing personal and family values.
Isn’t there room in this author’s mind for parents making choices for their children? Is he really better qualified to decide for my family (and apparently every family) what is or isn’t the most age appropriate for our kids?
Might not one family be more worried about sex than certain levels of violence precisely because we live in a culture where violence in movies rarely turns into violence in real life, but sex outside of marriage is increasingly common? Why can’t the author make room for this cultural point of view? Why the need to launch into claims of hypocrisy just because you happen to have differing values than him? Shouldn’t we be looking out for each other on this and, at a minimum, celebrating diversity?
Or what about the fact that one might be worried about ‘the ‘gratuitous nature’ of the violence vs. the sex? You probably couldn’t have the story of Harry Potter without the violence (non-gory as it is) in tact. (By the way, we have to edit out parts of some of the movies for our kids and tell the what happened.) But despite what this reviewer says, the ‘scene’ in question was just outright gratuitous since it’s not even in the original source material.
I’m not trying to suggest that there is anything wrong with taking yours kids to this movie. I am trying to suggest that this article is offensive because it basically says that if you don’t hold to his point of view about the right sex to violence level for your kids than there is something wrong with you.
Oh, and by the way, it’s a lot longer than a 3-seconds bit, and my wife is still upset that I talked her into taking the kids. And you know what, for my family at this age, she happens to be right.