Goku’s a good guy, but is he as good as Jesus?
Brazilian Dragon Ball Z fans took to the streets to “March for Goku” and share the Good News about their hero.
Marching for Goku?
What is the March for Goku and where did it come from?
It’s a form of satire with a twist.
Turns out there are a lot of evangelical Christians in Brazil, and they have this annual event called the March for Jesus.
It’s an evangelical march that takes place in over 170 countries where believers “express their love for Jesus by serving their communities and worshiping their Lord in the streets of their cities.”
Christian’s in Brazil celebrated their March for Jesus on May 17 alongside Jesus Day, which was signed into law by President Lula in 2009. Over 300,000 attended and it was the largest public event of the year.
In response, some passionate Dragon Ball Z fans decided to spread the Gospel of Goku.
The March for Goku occurred on Sunday, June 1 in the city of Curitiba.
There was a big lead up to the event. Over 27,000 Dragon Ball Z fans on this Facebook event page said that they would attend the march.
Even so, they made a lot of noise by singing the Brazilian opening themes to Dragon Ball Z and GT, titled Cha-la Head Cha-la, We Gotta Power, and Dan Dan Kokoro Hikarateku.
Fans dressed up as Goku, Android 18, and other characters to show their support.
Another fan created a cardboard cutout in Goku’s likeness and carried it on high.
They marched through the streets and then stopped at the Universidade Federal do Paraná school building.
There they fired off a group Kamehameha, did a synchronized Fusion, and performed a huge Genki Dama to give Goku their spiritual energy, wherever he may be.
Seems like they had fun.
There was only one problem.
They made the Christians angry.
The Christian Reaction
Some local Christians were offended.
They responded by saying things on this gospel website such as:
“Goku is a demon that inhabits the astral world. … People do not know they are idolizing a demonic entity. … Dragon Ball is one of the most satanic anime.”
One commenter fired back that it is better to worship the pure hearted Goku than the corrupt pastors of the Brazilian church. He said,
“Goku teaches good lessons to children without asking for money or turning them into pawns to achieve extremist goals.”
Other fans argued that the March for Goku showed the Christians their intolerance, since they were just allowed to have their very own March for Jesus and Jesus Day.
Yet some Christians believe it is morally wrong and disrespectful to their Lord.
Are DBZ fans committing a sin?
A commenter named Ernesto said, “At the time of Moses the people made a golden calf to defy God. Today they make Goku and march to defy the gospel, knowing that the March for Jesus is an ancient practice of the evangelical people.”
Another commenter named Rafa said,
“The hero they love does not exist. Mine overcame death, was resurrected, and ascended to heaven in a cloud and promised to come back for his children.”
Is he talking about Jesus or Goku?
Of course, the DBZ fans chanting “Satan! … Satan! … Satan!” for the world’s savior Mister Satan probably didn’t help the situation.
Why March for Goku?
Why would someone want to take part in the March for Goku.
Marcel Bely is one of the organizers and he took a comparative stance by saying, “The character [of Goku] shows the path of becoming a hero and also has a certain relationship with Jesus Christ after he dies, revives, and saves the earth.”
If Goku and Jesus are similar, then what does the March for Goku mean?
Is it held to mock the idea of such marches in general? Does it praise Goku, or is it blasphemous to Jesus?
That depends on who you ask.
Another organizer said they weren’t holding the March for Goku to offend others or even to necessarily promote their spiritual views.
“This event does not have any connection with religion and does not want to disrespect any religion. This event is only a meeting and March of people who like, and or sympathize with the character that marked the childhood of so many people.”
A third organizer said, “Each had their own reason to be there, but overall this March made us return to our childhood and remember those most beautiful moments.”
Why Goku? She answered,
“He represents a good part of our childhood. That moment when we came home from school to watch another episode with our brother, sister, friends, or even our parents to cheer for Goku’s victory.”
“If you still don’t believe me, then look at this picture and note the expression of happiness on this little boy who won a figure of our favorite character. This happy face represents everyone who supported what we lived in those days: Happiness.”
If these are just anime fans remembering their youth, then it seems harmless.
They didn’t demand anything, ostracize anybody, or give bigoted speeches. They just sang some songs and had fun while enjoying their favorite show.
Where’s the sin?
You may remember my breaking news article on The Church of Goku and Gokuism.
These people believe Goku is their personal lord and savior who offers salvation in heaven. Some Gokuists believe that Goku is equal to or superior to Jesus Christ, and they use him as their spiritual role model.
For example, the Universal Church of the Kingdom of Goku.
Here is a bit of Gokuist beliefs. “The DBZ, which is the word of GOKU, was written by prophets divinely inspired. She is the infallible standard by which human conduct and opinions should be tried. All Scripture is inspired by GOKU and available for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, so that the man of Goku may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Krillin 3:16-17).
As far I can tell from my research there are some people who attended the March for Goku that have this belief.
So for them the March for Goku is a holy gathering just like those who March for Jesus.
Meanwhile others seem to use Gokuism as a way to make fun of Christians. They say things like “Praise be to Goku!” and “Kamen!” instead of “Amen.”
It’s hard to know how seriously some fans take this, but even if it’s taken lightly, for anime fans who want someone they can believe in, Goku may be the one.
Christians, such as those in Brazil, may feel that this is offensive, blasphemous, or a false prophet that will lead these people astray.
The Beginning of a Movement
This is not the first March for Goku. In 2011 there was a March for Goku held in Rio de Janeiro. Then in 2012 it was held in São Paulo and another in 2013 in Florianópolis.
Given that it is spreading around the country, I can’t help but wonder if it will spread around the world just like the March for Jesus.
They’re already planning the next March for Goku to take place on May 31, 2015.
In the meantime an artist plans to sculpt Goku’s statue for Curitiba’s Japan Square.
Would You March for Goku?
Would you March for Goku?
Or is this a blasphemous insult to Jesus and his believers?
Whether real or just for fun, Goku’s fans march for him.