Thursday, September 19, 2013

Movies Aren't History

by H. Linn Murphy

I came home from last night's high school open house greatly disturbed. I'd gone to do battle with an extremely confrontational teacher. I came home from that bout feeling like I needed a shower.

I was concerned that the teacher was taking huge amounts of points away from my son's grade for wretched reasons--which is still the case. She refuses to recant on items which are not in any way my son's fault. Apparently, if she fixed his grade, she'd have to fix all the others' (not a bad idea, actually). I wanted to whack her with a frying pan (especially after she called me scatterbrained).

However, it quickly became apparent that her mercenary grading system was not the main problem. What she actually wanted to talk about was why I wouldn't let my son watch R-rated movies (Shindler's List to name one). I told her that we don't allow our children to watch R-rated movies. I indicated that there were far better movies about the Holocaust.
"Why can't they watch THE HIDING PLACE by Corrie Ten Boom or the Diary of Anne Frank?" I asked.
She smirked at me and said, "Welllllll those movies just don't hold enough punch. I want the movies to punch the kids right in the face."

I had to mentally rein myself in by this time from punching her right in the face.
"What if I don't want my children punched?" I asked. "I've actually been to Dachau. I've smelled the stench that still hangs over the place. I've walked between the barracks foundations. I've felt evil so potent it made me want to barf. And I've described all of this to my children. That's as much face-punching as I ever want them to have."
"Well why don't you watch the movie and let me know." Still that smirk.
Condescending much? I thought. "Nobody at our house watches R-rated movies."
"Then how do you know you don't want your children watching it if you haven't seen it yourself?"
How indeed? I couldn't continue. After a point people are past feeling and there is nothing to do but jump out of the plane and hope your parachute works.
I left her with this: "I hope you understand that I will continue to do battle for my children."
"Oh I wouldn't have it any other way," she said. I'm certain she thinks she won. I, however, know everyone is losing.

So now she's warned. I'm taking it to the school board. This is ridiculous. These teachers think that watching a Hollywood version of some story will accurately show how it was then. I say, "Fie on you! Don't you realize Hollywood sensationalizes everything to sell movies?" Everything is sexier, more violent, raunchier, and more depraved. Smut sells.

How long has it been since they did movies without these hooks? It's lucky that Jane Austen's movies have remained fairly intact. It'll be interesting to see how far Austenland goes without the sex which seems to be the only thing they'll show.

I can't count the number of movies I've seen which completely slanted the story or reported absolute lies. Two different movies can slant things vastly different ways. The other day we watched a Snow White movie. Gone was Disney's cute little princess who needed the prince. Gone was the young girl with such virtue and gentleness that all those around her loved her.
This Snow White version had nothing about goodness in it. The dwarfs found nothing to inspire loyalty in the girl. And the prince was such a side note that people found themselves hoping she'd hook up with the huntsman.


So this is what the movie is really selling:
*Violence is good if you're hot.
*It's okay to be a wretched person because someone did something mean to you when you were little.
*Women don't need guys for anything but to admire them from afar and stand around until they're needed.
*Women can fight better than men even though men had to train their whole lives to prepare.
*Fathers and Mothers are an over-touted nuisance and ineffectual at best.
That is just from one movie. I'm certain there are further nuances I missed.

And those are just the entertainment-oriented movies. What lies are the other movies spinning us? It seems to me that the aim is to pick apart the fabric of history and re-weave it into something a real history buff can't even recognize. That, my friends, is called propaganda. It is the deliberate insertion of lies and half-truths in order to change the mindset of this upcoming generation. Ask anyone from an Iron Curtain country about propaganda.

No. My children will not be watching Shindler's List, or any other package of garbage dressed up and primped and pushed on our children in the name of education. If she insists on showing movies of that sort, I will make such a stench that she will think she hit a skunk on the road.

I'm on my way to the Principal's office to see if I can find a better teacher for my son--one who can actually stand children and wants to teach them real history. I'm thinking I won't find that until he comes home to me.

1 comment:

  1. Bravo Heidi!!!! What an experience. Let me tell you I went through the same thing 10 years ago when the history teacher at my children's high school was showing The Patriot. The ruling at our school was they had to have a signed permission slip to watch it but the teacher skipped that part and went right on to the movie. My two in the class told me what they were watching and I marched down to the teacher to talk to him and he said--"It is such a great movie, there is no swearing, no sex." Yes--but there is violence. I told him that he was so desensitized from violence that he didn't even realize that it was so bad. How can we teach our children to stop being violent to each other if we show violent movies in school. The Principle agreed and in fact told me that he was only to show snippets--not just run the whole thing. So he stopped and I won the battle. Your battle on the other had will be much tougher. I have never watched any "R" rated Holocaust movie for 2 reasons....1-it hits home to me as I have family lost during that time and 2-as you said--it is so evil in watching that it does no good to anyone. Same for Saving Private Ryan and all those other "R" rated movies that even members of the church have told me "I need to watch so I know" It is better that evil not be spread by watching it. Good job in sticking to your guns.