Zondervan Issues Apology for Publishing 'Deadly Viper'

President and CEO Moe Gerkins says the book's contents, which used Chinese characters and illustrations, 'are offensive to many people despite its otherwise solid message.'

Zondervan President and CEO Moe Gerkins apologized on behalf of the company for publishing Deadly Viper: A Kung Fu Survival Guide for Life and Leadership, a book that uses Chinese characters and images for illustrations.

Gerkins said the company will remove the book and curriculum from stores permanently, according to an email to North Park Theological Seminary professor Soong-Chan Rah.

Rah called for an apology on November 3 on his blog because of what he perceived as insensitivity to Asian culture and to the Asian-American community.

Deadly Viper authors Mike Foster and Jud Wilhite have removed materials from their website, but their Facebook fan page is still up and Zondervan still has two chapters of the book on its website.

Rah cited the following examples as problematic:

This video clip is extremely offensive and portraying Asians in a cartoonish manner in order market your merchandise. Particularly offensive is the voiceover of a white person doing a faux Asian accent: http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=35881373178&ref=mfThis ...
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