North Carolina’s Lt. Governor Dan Forest is no longer on the board of the group he helped found a few years back known as Faith Driven Consumer, but the group remains enmeshed in controversial issues with important political implications.
The group’s most recent crusade is to make sure that that the bosses at Paramount Studios, which is producing a multimillion dollar movie based on the Biblical figure Noah and the mythological story in which he saves all the creatures of the world from a flood, doesn’t allow the film to include any deviation from the what the group considers to be the literal truth. As Fox News reports, the group, which claims to speak for 46 million Christian consumers, released survey results showing that that “98 percent of faith-driven consumers are ‘unsatisfied with (the) Bible-themed movie which strays from Biblical message.’ The report suggested that ‘Noah’ could thus face ‘commercial challenges.’”
Such a scenario is in keeping with the past efforts of the Faith Driven Consumer to inject a conservative Christian worldview into modern American commerce. As reported here previously, the group has gone so far in past years as to dispense low marks to retailers (like the department store chain Sears) that feature lingerie models in their catalogs.
In the “Noah” example, the Faith Driven Consumer group has made it plain to Paramount that it doesn’t care for the notion that the film might attempt to superimpose modern, non-literal interpretations on the flood story. This is from an appeal on the group’s website:
“Have you heard about the controversy swirling around the upcoming blockbuster movie, Noah, soon to be released in theaters on March 28? The $125 million Noah epic starring Russell Crowe and Anthony Hopkins has hit rough seas with many key faith-based test audiences.
By answering one simple question here, you can let Hollywood know what’s important to you!
Hollywood execs increasingly understand the economic importance of the $1.75 trillion Faith Driven Consumer market, and are actively producing movies based on biblical themes.
Yet word out this week confirms previous reports that have many Faith Driven Consumers concerned. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Noah has been criticized for depicting Noah as a “crazy, irrational, religious nut…fixated on modern-day problems like overpopulation and environmental degradation.”
Importantly, the movie’s director appears to have replaced the Bible’s central point of God’s judgment on man’s inherent sin with a story focused on a contemporary environmental theme.”
The group’s efforts seem especially relevant in light of today’s court ruling in Raleigh enjoining a public school voucher plan passed by the General Assembly last year and strongly endorsed by Forest. One of the most objectionable aspects of the voucher plan, of course, is the fact that it proposed to dispense public dollars to religious schools — some of which use a curriculum published by Bob Jones University Press which teaches that dinosaurs and humans co-existed on Earth at one time.
All of which leads a body to wonder: 1) Does North Carolina’s Lt. Governor endorse the use of curricula based on such a worldview? and 2) If so, would he mind explaining how Noah managed to get those brontosauruses onto the ark?