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J.K. Rowling’s and the Harry Potter Series’ Unintended Impact on Lord of Columbia

While I’m straight up honest in the fact Harry Potter did a lot of influence Northern Knights, Book I in the Lord of Columbia Series, it’s also clear that the Harry Potter Series instilled Libertarian values in me from a young age.

While I’m one-hundred-percent sure Rowling’s intention was not to instill such values in anyone, with her being a member of England’s Labour Party, identical to the Center-Left ideology here in America, or the American Moderate to Leftist individual, the Harry Potter Series is wrought with Libertarianism, so let’s dig in.

Northern Knights and Harry Potter

So, there’s a lot of Harry Potter influence in Northern Knights and it’s something I want to cover before showing the Libertarian connection within Harry Potter.

What makes Northern Knights so Potter-like, but at the same time takes a course of its own?

Here’s a brief list:

1) Cain Riscattare lost his parents at a young age, however also has an older sister.

2) Cain grew up with his aunt and uncle, but unlike Vernon and Petunia, Ira and Antto treat Cain well and he sees his younger twin cousins, Jed and Asha, as siblings rather than cousins.

3) The main antagonist is after Cain. The difference here is that Cain’s actions dictate Adam Syndari’s hatred for the college kid rather than Syndari simply believing a prophecy and trying to kill him as an infant.

4) The main setting is a school. Summit, unlike Hogwarts, is a four-year university which graduate students also attend. While special abilities exist in Northern Knights, it is not a requirement to attend Summit. Rather, Summit acts as a typical private four-year university.

5) A fictional sport is involved, called shotball. Formerly known as warball before later getting the name thrashball, shotball is the primary sport shown in Northern Knights. There’s only one ball, and zero magic involved here, and the sport is very American football-like and can be played in real-life without modified rules, unlike Muggle Quidditch, though the latter is a fascinating game; if you ever have the chance to watch one, hop on YouTube and do so now.

6) A Draco Malfoy type of rival exists. One major difference, however, is that Scotty Volt and Cain have been rivals since their high school days. Further, Volt’s gang consists of a sidekick named Robby Patterson, but two hulking cronies named O’Day and Magnu exist. Another difference is that O’Day and Magnu are loud and obnoxious, based on two “meathead” wannabe bodybuilders who worked out at my gym during my early personal training days.

7) Randelo Jefferson displays many Albus Dumbledore type of characteristics, including his genius, tenacity, and voice. Jefferson, however, can be more comparable to Obi-Wan Kenobi than Dumbledore.

8) Santos and Leistung Complexes share a Gryffindor-Slytherin kind of rivalry, but this was inspired more by the Cleveland Browns-Pittsburgh Steelers rivalry and the Michigan-Ohio State Football Rivalry than anything else.


Harry Potter and Libertarianism: Open Carry is Encouraged

The given Libertarian connection is set in the Second Amendment of the United States’ Constitution, the right to bear arms shall not be infringed. As a requirement to enter Hogwarts, students are equipped with a weapon that can kill you and are encouraged to carry it around daily, out in the open.

Even though first-year students and most students probably couldn’t conjure a Killing Curse, wands nonetheless can cause serious harm, as is seen in the Sectumsempra curse. But it really shows a lot in Rowling, whether it was her intention: Most people who carry and own guns in any capacity will use them only in self-defense and out of safety.

Most students aren’t going to duel other students and most would never think of using an Unforgivable Curse. I know guys who openly carry and have enough weapons and ammo in their residences to arm a small militia; they have a clean criminal record. I have a 22-caliber, a 20-gauge, and a .410, and have only shot targets; I’d love to add to my arsenal as well; mainly for defense purposes and target practice with friends.

The same goes for wands in Harry Potter.


Libertarian Concepts

I first noticed a strong Libertarian connection in Harry Potter regarding Sirius Black, who was arrested and sent to Azkaban without trial, something that would contradict the Bill of Rights in the United States today.

Libertarians despise government interference and indoctrination in public schools, and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix shows how disastrous government interference is. When Dolores Umbridge took the Defense Against the Dark Arts post, she literally stated in her opening speech that the Ministry of Magic is interfering at Hogwarts.

This becomes apparent, as she perceived wand usage in a classroom to be dangerous, instead opting for her students to read during class, that there would be no need to talk (or think critically), and that if one challenged her views, as corrupt as they were, they were forced to literally scar the back of their hands with the message ‘I must not tell lies.’

Umbridge also implies that students should trust their government and their government’s side of every issue, even if such issues being taught were lies, such as Cedric Diggory’s death being a “tragic accident” rather than a murder. Umbridge further states that neither she nor the Ministry believe anyone outside Hogwarts is out to hurt them, where Harry replies with ‘Lord Voldemort.’

But the Ministry’s interference at Hogwarts went further; with Educational Decree after Educational Decree, implementing tighter Ministry control on Hogwarts while Dumbledore was consistently at odds with Minister Cornelius Fudge.

Umbridge was then appointed the High Inquisitor, now grading teachers and if they didn’t perform to “Ministry standards,” they were cut loose only to be saved by Dumbledore from being banished from the grounds.

When Dumbledore’s Army begins as a form of rebellion (reminds me of the good old American Revolution and subsequent War of Independence from government), what happens? Students are going against government policy, using wands to practice spells.

Order of the Phoenix also shows how wrong government propaganda is, especially when the Daily Prophet chastises Harry and Dumbledore, making the two out to be madmen and trying to invoke fear in the public of Lord Voldemort’s return.

Instead of finding the truth, the Ministry and Daily Prophet make up the truth, which of course leads to the disastrous consequences toward the end of the book and the Second Wizarding War, which may’ve gone far smoother had the Ministry sought the truth, rather than make up their own truth, even if such truth was a lie.


A Libertarian Manifesto

In Northern Knights, the reader will see the stark differences between North and South Columbia, with North Columbia leading a Libertarian society with zero government intervention while government intervenes in everything in occupied South Columbia.

The reader’s mood will likely shift from tense to peaceful once the setting shifts to North Columbia, despite the threat of war on the horizon.

Northern Knights never would’ve been possible without prior influence, and Harry Potter is just one of many books and book series that helped manifest both it and the Lord of Columbia Series.

Thanks for reading.

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  1. Aly Aly

    The Harry Potter series has been a worldwide sensation for many reasons. Each book provides fantastic story telling with themes that relate to a large audience. I hadn’t given much thought to political views that might have been furthered in the series, as they seemed to take a back seat to the archetypical themes of good versus evil, underdog versus favorite, and youth versus age. However, now that you point it out, I can see where there are the libertarian-leaning themes throughout. Very interesting take on a favorite! 

    • Todd Matthews Todd Matthews

      Definitely for a plethora of reasons. I don’t think politics was Rowling’s goal, and I don’t really see her as a Libertarian, but either way, the works definitely have an anti-government approach to them, Book V shows it, but even Book VI shows the Ministry’s failure in the war against Lord Voldemort. Wands literally stand for an open carry society, as well; something I found very interesting especially coming from a place like the UK. But again, the books were written between 1990 and 2006, so there’s a different time period as well. 

  2. Henry Henry

    Hi! It’s nice to read how a World wide phenomenon as Harry Potter impacted your books. The influence I liked the most is the fictional sport called shotball. I find it interesting that sports like Muggle Quidditch and others have started to spring up after being first mentioned in books.

    It may not be stretching our imagination to believe that shotball will have in the coming years it’s World Cup too such as Quidditch began to have since 2007.

    • Todd Matthews Todd Matthews

      Lots of Harry Potter influence in Northern Knights, but I will say the influence kind of goes by the wayside in subsequent books, where the series itself takes on a life of its own. I don’t know if shotball (also known as warball and thrashball lol) will reach global phenomena, but I can see it being at least a recreational game. Or a modified version, anyway. 

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