Lego is a tool of Satan, says priest
Citing research from New Zealand and his own observation of Lego's Zombie characters and Monster Fighters, Poland's Father Slawomir Kostrzewa warns that children are being led into a world of death and darkness by the formerly lovable toy.
We Poles have seen a few things.
Not many of those things are good, but we keep on fighting. We're also quite wary of menace. Poland has been partitioned more often than a pizza for 20.
With Russia on one side, Germany on another, and the Austro-Hungarians getting uppity on occasion, we're very conscious of oncoming trouble.
However, having lived in Poland for five years, I never once heard someone whisper that the biggest menace was Lego.
Yet now there is a priest who gains much publicity in warning the Polish people about the spiritual dangers of toys.
Father Slawomir Kostrzewa has already warned that Hello Kitty is a tool of the porn industry. Now, he's taken one look at Lego and seen the spanner of Satan. Or, indeed, a whole box of spanners.
As the Telegraph reports, the man of the cloth is concerned that Legos were once such friendly things. But times have changed. They've been around the block once too often and taken on a darker hue.
Poland's Super Express (I'll translate) offered that Father Kostrzewa made a presentation titled "Regaining Childrens' Innocence."
In this, he railed against Lego's move to the dark side, with characters such as Zombies and Monster Fighters. He described this as a "necro-aesthetic."
He added: "These toys can have a negative effect on children. They can destroy their souls and lead them to the dark side."
Oh, Father. We're all headed to the dark side sooner or later. Look at us. We're not exactly a pretty picture. We are frail. We are fearful. The winds can blow us with little effort. We are temped to the dark side all the time. We might as well prepare the kids for the worst.
I fear such an argument will not dent Kostrzewa's hardy countenance. For he claims he has science on his side.
He pointed to research by the University of Canterbury in New Zealand that indicated more Lego figures are looking angry.
These researchers closely examined the expressions of all 6,000 Lego figures and worried that there wasn't a balanced range of facial expressions. Lego figures really did look, in their opinion, mad as hell.
Indeed, the university's Dr. Richard Bartneck worried: "Instead of focusing on realistic expressions, it may be worthwhile to increase the variability of expressions. A comic style expression is sufficient to convey a full spectrum of emotions and intensities."
I have contacted Lego to see what the company has to say about corrupting young minds and souls with its dark, devilish characters and will update, should I hear.
In the meantime, might I attempt to reassure Fr. Kostrzewa and his troubled spirit? Lego is from Denmark. It was named last year as the happiest place to live in the world.
I know the Danes' may not be an eternal life. But it's not a Zombie life either.