At times, though, Muggles blossom into full-blown bigots and bullies. Harry's relatives are depicted in this way. His Uncle Vernon Dursley is a "big, beefy man with hardly any neck" (page1, "Sorcerer's Stone") who "didn't approve of imagination" (page 5). Because he is so ferociously "anti-magic," Uncle Vernon's worst fear is that someone will find out Harry's a wizard.
In fact, Uncle Vernon's attitude toward Harry is classic bigotry:
"Now, you listen here, boy," he snarled. "I accept there's something strange about you, probably nothing a good beating wouldn't have cured. ..." (page 56, "Sorcerer's Stone")
The message that screams from these pages for children to absorb is that these despicable people who object to "magic" are worthy of the worst scorn. And that's mostly what they receive throughout the Potter books.
Our children quickly figure out that Muggles equate to traditional conservatives. And who are the most fervently "anti-magic" in real-world America? Christians. If kids don't get this right off, the mainstream media's frequent, negative caricatures of Christians will connect the dots for them. Might this be one more clue to explain the rise in virulent anti-Christian sentiment in recent years?
In the Potter books, it's OK to hold such people in thorough contempt and sometimes openly mock them. Harry's school nemesis, wizard Draco Malfoy, shows undisguised bias against Muggles or those with mixed Muggle and wizard "blood," and his nasty attitude is politically incorrect by the school's standards. But Malfoy just expresses what the others secretly think.
You really have to wonder if the people who complain so much about the Potter books have actually read them. The Potter books are a classic morality tale, and even renowned Christian literary giant C. S. Lewis had no problem with using mythological symbolism to make a moral point.
And these same folks often treat Neo from the Matrix trilogy as a Jesus figure. And if Harry dies in the final book, he'll be Jesus, too, but since he is a wizard, I doubt the religiously-insane will recognize it.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!