Five Questionable Moments in “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”
Since I previously examined the questionable moments in the first four books, today I look at the dubious moments in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
Dumbledore Keeping the Truth from Harry
‘I cared about you too much,’ said Dumbledore simply. ‘I cared more for your happiness than your knowing the truth, more for your peace of mind than my plan, more for your life than the lives that might be lost if the plan failed.’” (OotP 838)
While there might have been a good reason for protecting Harry from the truth when he was younger, after everything that he went through in the first few books, he really demonstrated that he was old and mature enough to handle the truth about the prophecy. What’s even worse is that Dumbledore constantly ignored Harry. With Dumbledore’s help, Harry would have been better able to handle Voldemort’s return and everything that came with it.
He let out a gasp of pain. The words had appeared on the parchment in what appeared to be shining red ink. At the same time, the words had appeared on the back of Harry’s right hand, cut into his skin as though traced there by a scalpel — yet even as he stared at the shining cut, the skin healed over again, leaving the place where it had been slightly redder than before but quite smooth.” (OotP 267)
Umbridge is the worst. In many ways, she’s even worse than Voldemort. The punishments she gave were incredibly cruel. While I understand that the Hogwarts professors did what they could to protect the students, how did Fudge allow her to inflict the punishments she did? He wasn’t originally this terrible a person prior to Voldemort’s return.
The Marauders’ Treatment of Snape
‘Impedimenta!’ he said, pointing his wand at Snape, who was knocked off his feet, halfway through a dive toward his own fallen wand.
Students all around had turned to watch. Some of them had gotten to their feet and were edging nearer to watch. Some looked apprehensive, others entertained.” (OotP 646)
In spite of Snape’s behavior, there was no good reason for James and Sirius to bully Snape. Lupin, too, should have stepped up and stopped his friends from hurting Snape.
‘There you go,’ he said, as Snape struggled to his feet again, ‘you’re lucky Evans was here, Snivellus —‘
‘I don’t need help from filthy little Mudbloods like her!’” (OotP 648)
The Marauders’ actions indirectly led to Snape calling Lily a Mudblood, something that should not have happened. Although Snape apologized, he could never take back the hurt he caused by saying it.
The Ministry’s Smear Campaign
‘Well,’ said Seamus again, still avoiding Harry’s eyes, ‘she . . . er . . . well, it’s not just you, it’s Dumbledore too . . .’
‘She believes the Daily Prophet?’ said Harry. ‘She thinks I’m a liar and Dumbledore’s an old fool?’” (OotP 217)
Fudge’s fear of Voldemort coming back to life led to some poor decisions. In addition to appointing Umbridge as Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, he also used the Daily Prophet to smear both Harry and Dumbledore. These actions were pretty reprehensible given that Harry was only 15 at the time.