Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Chick Publications is a publishing company run by Jack Chick which produces and markets religious pamphlets, DVDs, VCDs, videos, books, a poster, and (most famously) comic tracts in many languages. The publications promote and seek to win converts to a Christian fundamentalist view. The comics mostly address certain practices, such as Occultism, Freemasonry , Catholicism , Islam , abortion, and homosexuality, which most fundamentalist American Protestant Christians believe are sinful — together with more mundane activities such as role-playing games and popular music. Roman Catholics (especially Jesuits) are used to explain the existence of most religions, and to provide an explanation of modern history. Defenders of the comics assert all his comics carry the same message — that of salvation through Jesus.
The graphics in Chick's tracts are often simple, but striking. Some Christians consider them to be valuable witnessing tools, due to the striking nature of the cartoons and their clear-cut messages. Indeed, many cartoon tracts appear to be designed to appeal mainly to children. Their superficially unsophisticated graphic style, their kitsch nature, scare tactics, and dogmatic messages also make them popular with non-fundamentalists, who find them amusing; the tracts were popularized among this audience through High Weirdness by Mail , a publication of the satiric Church of the SubGenius.
Chick Publications also publishes conventional non-graphical books on these same topics, by authors other than Chick. Many of these are also used as sources for Chick's tracts; notable sources include Alberto Rivera, Rebecca Brown, Jeff Godwin, Kent Hovind, Charles Chiniquy, William Schnoebelen, John Todd, Avro Manhattan, and Alexander Hislop.
The incongruity of using a comic-book format to present a religious message, along with the deliberately shocking approach of Chick's tracts, has caused some who first encounter Chick via his website to take it for deliberate satire similar to that of the Landover Baptist Church. However, Chick's tracts long predate the World Wide Web. While many readers consider the views expressed in his tracts extreme, they are held by many fundamentalist Christians, and are mild compared to those expressed by, for example, Fred Phelps. Its role in selling books by other fundamentalist Christian authors is ample evidence that Chick Publications is serious about promoting its version of Christianity.
While Chick's tracts are handed out directly (for instance, he encourages Christians to give out anti-Halloween tracts along with Halloween candy), they are often distributed by leaving them in places where they will be found and read, an appealing witnessing tool for shy Christians]. This strategy is intended to reach those who are hostile to evangelists and unlikely to accept an offered tract, by appealing instead to their curiosity. . Chick.com claims that many people have been converted by encountering Chick Publication's comic tracts.
The company's web site  lists more than 150 comic tracts; all of them can be viewed online, but other materials can generally only be sampled. The site states that several hundred million tracts have been distributed world wide, with some of them translated into almost 100 languages.
Copies of Chick's tracts are displayed in the Smithsonian Institution as a part of American culture.
Claims by Chick Publications
Chick's tracts and other publications make many controversial claims. Some are typical of conservative Protestant beliefs — for instance, Chick claims that evolution is a fraud , homosexuality is sinful , and abortion is murder . Others are controversial even within conservative Protestantism.
In particular, Chick's tracts make frequent reference to a vast Satanic conspiracy controlling many of the world's organisations and institutions. Religions other than fundamentalist Protestantism are generally presented as instruments of Satanism; Chick claims that the King James Version of the Bible is the only recorded word of God, and all other editions are corrupt. Christian ecumenism is rejected as a ploy to corrupt true Christianity by encouraging acceptance of corrupted beliefs.
For more specific claims, see Claims by Chick Publications.
A recurring theme in Chick's tracts is the role of the Roman Catholic Church, which he presents as one of the most powerful and insidious branches of this conspiracy. According to Chick the Catholic Church is the 'Great Whore' referred to in the Book of Revelations, and will bring about a Satanic New World Order  before it is destroyed by Jesus Christ.
Drawing on the claims of Alberto Rivera, Chick claims that the Catholic Church created Islam as a tool to lure people away from Christianity , that it infiltrates and attempts to destroy or corrupt all other religions and churches , and that it uses various means including seduction, framing, and murder to silence its critics . He accuses Catholicism of supporting ideologies such as Nazism and Communism, and using the Holocaust to persecute opponents of the Catholic Church .
Various forms of occultism are also presented as part of the Satanic conspiracy. Most forms of fantasy and presentations of magic — including Harry Potter , Dungeons and Dragons , and Halloween celebrations  — are portrayed as an attempt to draw children into witchcraft.
Criticisms of Chick Publications
Some people consider the claims made by Chick's publications – and especially the cartoon tracts – to be offensive and even absurd. All of these claims are found in other Christian publications, but the tracts' blunt language and wide distribution make them particularly prominent as targets for criticism.
His critics also accuse Chick of misrepresentation — for instance, Chick's tract Big Daddy accuses evolutionary scientists of circular reasoning in dating geological strata by the fossils they contain, with nothing in the tract to inform its readers that the usual technique is in fact radiometric dating, although this technique is mentioned elsewhere on his site.
Chick's claims about Catholic, Masonic, Satanic, etc., conspiracies are based in large part on the testimony of people who claim to have been members of these groups before converting to Evangelical Christianity, most prominently Rivera and Schnoebelen. Many of Chick's critics consider these sources to be frauds or fantasists, yet many Christian supporters acknowledge these claims as legitimate. Further discussion of these controversies may be found in the articles on Alberto Rivera, William Schnoebelen, and John Todd.
Response to criticisms of Chick Publications
Many fundamentalist Christians, both past  and present, hold at least some of Chick Publications's views . Whilst current mainstream Western thinking may believe Chick Publication's claims to be ridiculous, there is a sizeable minority that agree with them . Those looking for anti-cult material may view Chick's website as a valuable resource in 'the fight' . Chick Publications are used by apologetics ministries  and for witnessing. Jack Chick claims that cartoons are a more effective medium for witnessing than conventional text based tracts.
Some people reject Chick Publications' Roman Catholic conspiracy theories but accept the 'turn or burn' assertion, and so support Chick Publications regardless. There seems to be an interest in reading Chick Publications's cartoon tracts among those who would never hold his views, making them an effective medium for transmitting the Gospel. Indeed some tracts might be accepted by popular Christianity due to the lack of controversial claims. Some Christians see Jack Chick as persecuted, and claim that persecution is a sign of legitimacy.
Some claim that Chick's controversial books and publications have never been debunked or proved false. Many of Chick's claims are accompanied by supporting references to other books, the Bible, and historical facts, although critics claim these sources are misrepresented or are themselves unreliable. In particular, the Bible is regarded as a reliable reference almost only by Christians and thus non-Christians are likely to consider works based on the Bible to be baseless. Chick claims that many threats have been made on his life because of the revealing nature of his writings. Some Christians have suggested that several of his theories have been substantiated by United Nations world policies and current political and social climates in this new millennium. This is motivated by their religious right views and adherence to dispensationalism, leading them to view the UN as part of a conspiracy leading to one-world government under an anti-Christ, based on a literal interpretation of Revelation 13.
It should be noted that many Protestants, including many of the more mainstream evangelical Christians, find the views of Chick Publications offensive or embarrassing, and consider them to be misrepresentations or distortions of general Christian or evangelical views and values.
One of Chick's most famous and most-satirized tracts is "Dark Dungeons" , which depicts a group of teenagers playing Dungeons & Dragons. When one player's character dies, the other player tells her: "Marcie, get out of here! YOU'RE DEAD! You don't exist anymore." The game master then tells the surviving player that she will teach her how to cast real spells; meanwhile, Marcie commits suicide. The game master tells Debbie that the game and her character are more important than real life, and then an evangelical confronts Debbie and tells her that Jesus is more important than everything else. She eagerly converts and burns her books.
Another famous tract is "This Was Your Life" , a tract about a man who dies and is judged by God. The man had lived a good life, but claimed that he didn't need Christ. On Judgment Day, the man watches his life being revealed before Jesus Christ. The man is shown scenes of himself leering at women, telling dirty jokes, not listening to the pastor's message and committing other sins. God then sends the man to Hell in dramatic style.
The King of Kings tells major Bible stories in comic form while The Big Betrayal is the biography of another ex-Catholic priest named Charles Chiniquy who claimed that the Vatican was behind the American Civil War and Lincoln's assassination. The Big Betrayal is the comic version of Charles Chiniquy's autobiography 50 Years In The Church of Rome.
- Catholic Answers a serious and detailed attempt to respond to the claims of Chick Publications against Roman Catholics
- Muslim Response To Jack Chick
- Don't Be Fooled By Chick Tracts Page by page analysis of Chick's tracts with respect to criticisms of Catholicism,
- Is Jack Chick Satirizing His Own Followers?
- Trick Tracts
- Category at Open Directory Project
- A report that suggests that Chick Publications spreads misinformation about Holloween
- Jack Chick a testimony from someone saved by Jack Chick's cartoon tracts
- Jack T. Chick Museum of Fine Art
- World Christian Tract Ministry a ministry that supports distribution of Jack Chick's tracts
- Born Again Christian Info positive summaries of the cartoon tracts
- Faith Defenders books are offered for sale from Chick Publications and an anti-muslim point of view is expressed
- Christian Comics Pioneer a positive discussion of the comics is offered
- review of Light of the World review of one of Chick publication's most popular DVDs
- Cutting Edge
- Decades of Battle Cry Newpaper headlines
- explains Jack Chick's motivations
- Chick Generation
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