Thursday, May 9, 2013
Ending Ender's Game
So I had planned to write something about the cross over between the Fet Community and Fandom (The sci-fi Fantasy community) but I've decided to hold off on that for now. I figure I've got two more convention to go so let’s see if that connection holds true through the rest of them as well.
Instead I'm going to write about something that really had me feeling torn up over. That is until I did some research. One of my favorite books of all time is Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. So a few years ago I was both excited and terrified to learn that it was being made in to a movie. Would they get it right? would it be the Ender's Game I've seen in my head all these year? Could I justify spending money to go and see the movie knowing Orson Scott Card Political views on homosexuality and that some of that money I spend to see the movie would end up in his pocket?
Let’s start with some quick things about the movie. The first trailer is out and it looks great. I'm happy with the adult actors who were picked for the important roles. I also agree with the decision that was made to age up the characters, sure it does lessen the impact by not having a 6 year old do some of the things Ender does but most of the audience couldn't accept the concept I don't think. If you haven't seen the trailer yet here is a link to it.
Now for the politics of the whole situation. Orson Scott Card is at the forefront of the Anti-gay marriage movement. He is a board member of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM). He has be quoted as saying;
That if the U.S. government in any way allows states to legalize gay marriage, then the government will become his “mortal enemy,” and he will “act to destroy that government and bring it down.”
He also advocates that sodomy laws remain in place to “to send a clear message that those who flagrantly violate society’s regulation of sexual behavior cannot be permitted to remain as acceptable, equal citizens within that society.”
To be clear about this Ender's Game doesn't touch on any of these issues. There are no gay characters in the novel and with Orson Scott Card as a producer I think it is safe to say that none have been added. Some people use this fact as an argument that it is ok to be excited by the movie, and that since it doesn't promote his views that they shouldn't matter. Basically separating the artist from his art. I think that idea is ok to a point, but I'm not sure how much we can separate one from the other.
I highly doubt we Will we have some commitment that the money he makes from the movie won't go to promote his personal views. So giving money to this movie could be like money to an anti-gay marriage movement. Sure it might be less than a percent of each penny made, but that still my money going into that type of organization and I'm not going to let that happen.
If an artist had a strong feeling towards a given faith or most other strong believes I could handle that. I wouldn't object to something like that. People can still just say no in most of those situations. In this case I've decided it just goes too far. Orson Scott Card actively lobbies and commits both money and time to achieve end that go against things I believe in. That if he had his way would criminalize any entire way of life.
I just can't bring myself to support him or this movie. I hope after reading this that you won't either.