[Originally posted at Bene Diction Blogs On, May 11, 2010]
Today is the day that Marci McDonald's book on the Christian Right in Canada, "The Armageddon Factor" is released. And we have a de facto confirmation, via the press release for the book, that the book's release was targeted for the same day as the National Prayer Breakfast in Ottawa, where various social conservatives gathered to eat, pray and hang out together.
Smart planning on Random House Canada's part. It makes it easier for news reporters to cover either the book or the prayer breakfast, as the "news peg" to talk about either has been provided for the assignment editors.
I wonder if we'll see or hear, later today, reporters walking up to one of the prayer breakfast participants and asking something like "McDonald's book says such and such about you, do you have anything to say. Oh, and you can clean up the coffee that you just spilled on your lap before we start to film." :)
I'd suggest that you keep you eyes peeled, with TV perhaps choosing to get footage at the prayer breakfast and then, even in a day or two, leading into a story this way, "...but this lady who has just written a book that says...."
CBC Radio's The Current has an interview today with McDonald talking about her book. It's part two of their program.
Antonia Zerbisias also chimes in today with a Toronto Star story on the book. Zerbisias, I can mention, is a bete noire of the Canadian online right. She often makes the right annoyed by her very progressive points of view. (if Zerbisias likes...they probably won't.)
This reminds me of a comment I made a few days ago, to the effect that if a writer or editor had been looking for an excuse to write about Canada's Christian Right, the book gives them a reason to. And those, like Zerbisias, who are themselves inclined to dislike the "fairly radical groups" that McDonald decries, have a newsy reason to express their dislike.
We'll see the right respond, as they have a chance to read. They might touch on some of the things that Deborah Gyapong, the respected conseravtive Christian writer and blogger, writes on her blog to respond to the Toronto Star excerpt from the book. Her argument that not all Christians are theocrats is persuasive, and something that I may agree with when I am finished with the book myself.
Given that all this is out mere hours after the book's release, we can expect other stories too. I'll be keeping my eyes peeled as well.