People, it’s just a book and a movie!

I was just going to leave my plug for the Skeptics’ Circle this week stand as my only post today–until I became aware of some serious lunacy:

MUMBAI (AFP) – A Catholic group called on Christians to starve themselves to death in protest at the release of “The Da Vinci Code” at cinemas in India as others burned copies of the novel.

The Catholic Secular Forum said it hoped thousand of people would attend a protest Wednesday in Mumbai to burn effigies of Dan Brown, the author of the best-selling novel.

“It’s to show the extent that our feelings have been hurt,” said the group’s general secretary Joseph Dias, speaking of the “fast unto death” call if the government fails to take action.

He denied the hunger strike was irresponsible. “It’s a more Christian way of doing things rather than pulling down things and tearing them up,” he said.

The “Catholic Secular Forum”? Truly, that’s a misnamed group. And, really, I don’t see much of an improvement in starving oneself to death over a movie as compared to Muslims rioting over cartoons a few months ago. True, you don’t hurt anyone else by starving yourself to death, but what a waste to kill yourself over a summer popcorn movie that’s not meant to do anything other than entertain with a thrilling murder and conspiracy mystery.

I’d have to ask these guys: As Catholics, don’t you think that, if you’re going to sacrifice your life, God would want you to do it over something that really matters, rather than trying to pressure your government to ban an inconsequential movie? Besides, having been raised Catholic, I know that the Catholic Church considers suicide to be a mortal sin. I could be wrong, but I don’t think that there is an exception for something like a hunger strike. Aren’t you worried about ending up in hell for your sacrifice? I doubt that the Catholic Church supports such extreme protests.