I don’t like to post things that sound political. Everyone has their own beliefs when it comes to things like that. However, I think we can all universally agree when something is just stupid. This is one of those things.
There’s a conservative Christian mom out there who’s kids want to read Harry Potter, but she’s worried about them being corrupted by all the talk of witches and warlocks. Instead of just telling her kids no, a skill that many parents seem to have forgotten, she’s taken up the task of rewriting the book so that it’s safe for their little Christian minds (little as in kids, not as in small minded…)
This is the one semi political thing I’ll say to her endeavor – Nothing says love and respect for a higher power that supposedly gave you free will than censoring a book and not letting your children think for themselves. OK… end soap box.
Here’s how she announced the project to her friends:
Hello, friends! My name is Grace Ann. I’m new to this whole fanfiction thing; but recently, I’ve encountered a problem that I believe this is the solution to. My little ones have been asking to read the Harry Potter books; and of course I’m happy for them to be reading; but I don’t want them turning into witches! So I thought….. why not make some slight changes so these books are family friendly? And then I thought, why not share this with all the other mommies who are facing the same problem? So-Ta da! Here it is! I am SO excited to share this with all of you!
As a special treat, here’s her version of Chapter one:
Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Harry Potter who lived under the stairs in a house on Privet Drive with his aunt and uncle. He was a good, obedient boy who did all his chores; but he felt that there was something missing in his life. Something big and special; but he could not quite name it. He stayed up every night; and wished for this special something; but then one day, there was a knock at his door-and everything changed.
“Answer the door, Harry!” his Aunt Petunia, a career woman, barked from her armchair where she sat with her feet up. She had short, curly blonde hair and never wore any makeup. Uncle Vernon nodded sheepishly from the kitchen; and put a tray of moist, chocolatey brownies in the oven.
Shouldn’t you be doing that? Harry thought; but he was a very obedient young boy, so he answered the door right away. He turned the brass, metal doorknob; and pulled open the heavy, wooden door.
On the porch was standing a huge, muscular man with a big, manly beard; and he was dressed in a plaid, red shirt, blue jeans, and sturdy, leather boots. His chest was covered in a thick, unruly carpet of coarse, brown hair. He wore a necklace that looked to Harry like a lowercase T. Just looking at Harry feel happy, peaceful somehow; but he couldn’t say why!
“Good morning, kiddo,” the man greeted amiably; and smiled at Harry. He had the peaceful, friendly sort of face you just knew you could trust. “My name is Hagrid. Could I speak to your mommy and daddy?”
“I don’t have a mommy or daddy,” Harry replied sadly; and looked at his raggedy, old shoes that were blue. Perhaps that was why he felt so lonely, he thought, not for the first time. Maybe that was what he was missing-a mommy and daddy. But no, that was not quite right.
“I am so sorry to hear that!” Hagrid uttered empathetically.
“You can speak with my auntie and uncle,” Harry retorted politely; and blinked his big, blue, childlike eyes.
“What do you want?” Aunt Petunia peered out the door with her narrow, suspicious eyes; and she was wearing a baggy, unflattering pantsuit.
“Hello, neighbor! I was wondering if you have been saved,” Hagrid exclaimed brightly; and tipped his wide-brimmed, straw cowboy hat.
Aunt Petunia laughed a gravelly laugh; and leaned forward on her sturdy, practical boots. “Saved? Don’t tell me you are you one of those Christians?”
Harry did not know what that word meant; but Hagrid’s smile was the most peaceful smile he had ever seen. It made Harry feel warm and happy inside just seeing the glowing, radiant grin on the kind, friendly stranger’s face. He wondered why Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon did not smile like that…
“Yes, I am,” Hagrid replied kindly. “Are you?”
Aunt Petunia laughed again; and stuck her pointy, sharp nose up in the air. “We are too smart for that. Haven’t you read Dawkins? God is dead! Dawkins proved that. Would you like us to educate you on the Dawkins?”
“What is a Christian?” Harry queried innocently; and scuffed his shoe on the shaggy, yellow carpet which had not been vacuumed in quite some time.
“Christians are people who want to be good,” Hagrid explained wisely; and crouched down so he was on eye level with Harry. “We want to go to heaven after we die. Do you know what heaven is, Harry?”
Harry shook his head; and his big eyes were wide and curious.
“Heaven is a beautiful place where we can be with God.”
Aunt Petunia smacked her hands over Harry’s young ears; and her voice was sickly sweet when she said, “Thank you very much for your concern, sir, but he does not need your religion, he has science and socialism and birthdays. Haven’t you heard of Evolution? I have a very good textbook on Evolution that I could give you on it if you would like to learn things.”
Hagrid laughed wisely. “Evolution is a fairytale. You don’t really believe that, do you?”
“Yes, I do!” Aunt Petunia screeched.
“Well then prove it!”
Aunt Petunia could only stare at him; and her big mouth hung open dumbly. Here she thought she was so educated; and always demanded that Christians prove what they believed in; but she couldn’t even prove her own religion. It was then that Harry knew who the smart one here was!
“Tell me how to get to this heaven place!” Harry cried wistfully, clasping his hands together. Sometimes, the wisdom of little ones is really amazing. We think we grownups know it all; but then God speaks through the mouths of little ones; and shows us how we are all mortals struggling along the path of life. Humility.
“All you have to do is be saved. Do you want to be saved?”
“I do, I do!” Harry squealed, jumping up and down.
“Then pray the sinner’s prayer!”
Aunt Petunia tried to stop him; but she was powerless against Harry’s pure, innocent, holy energy. Soon, Harry had said the prayer. Hagrid beamed happily.
“You’re a Christian now, Harry!” Hagrid cried proudly.
Harry smiled but then interrogated, “But how do I be a Christian? I don’t know how!”
Hagrid grinned widely. “There is only one place to learn that-Hogwarts School of Prayer and Miracles!”