A Note On Halloween Costumes: Let It Go.

If your child says “I want to be a Disney Princess”, and you tell him or her they can’t because of their race, you are the problem. You are a broken, sad, possibly confused person, who has utterly lost the plot. 

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Bless their hearts, some people are just born to suck the fun out of everything. I don’t know if God didn’t give them a sense of humor, or if they feel so guilty about something they’ve done in the past that they left their sense of humor behind, but oh goodness. These people are like black holes of emotion, sucking in everything innocent, happy, and joyous.

Like this poor dear, Sachi Feris, who wrote a piece about why her five year old daughter can’t be Moana. (spoiler alert, it’s because the little girl is white.). It’s on the blog  “Raising Race Conscious Children”. I tend to hate things like this, because they ultimately boil down to overly complicating race issues for children, shoving the horribleness of the world down their throats way too young, and/or possibly teaching little white children to be ashamed of their skin. Bravo, you joyless harpies.

If your child says “I want to be a Disney Princess”, and you tell him or her they can’t because of their race, you are the problem. You are a broken, sad, possibly confused person who has utterly lost the plot. Your crappy opinion makes the world a worse place for children.


You’re also – inadvertently or not – teaching your children that there are limits on what they can do, and enjoy, because of their race. You’re literally teaching them to put people in boxes based on race. Shame on you.

In the same way that Evangelical Purity Culture teaches women their value is in sex as much as Cosmo and Hollywood do, this particular brand of “Racial Awareness” teaches racism.

I understand that “race consciousness” is your gig, but your child is innocent, and her mother, of all people, should respect that. She’s a baby. She gets one Halloween to be 5 (or 6, since she wanted to be Moana next year) and you’re just teaching her she can’t, because of her skin color and your personal online branding. She doesn’t need to have her head filled with this crap. Are you going to tell her to go up to non white Rapunzel and complain about cultural appropriation of Germanic Fairy Tales? No, because that’s awful. Are you going to tell the mother of that non white child to consider not having her be Rapunzel? No, because that makes you a twat.

Why on earth would you do it to your own child then? You’re her mother. You’re her natural “safe space”, her defender and protector, and you’re talking down to her, limiting her, telling her to dream smaller, because of her race?

You probably give out Dental Floss on Halloween, too.

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Let me pause here to say I read the author’s entire post. I read a few of her other posts. I completely understand where she’s coming from, to the point that in a conversation with my Republican Husband I can argue her point of view.

I just think she’s wrong, unintentionally (?) mean spirited, and laying her daughter’s happiness at the alter of progressive political correctness.  But the more I look through her posts, the less surprised I am by that.

If you read the article she wanted her kid to be Moana’s sister, which makes no kind of sense when you break it down, because Moana’s sister would still be…wait for it.. Polynesian. The poor girl who wanted to be Moana isn’t even completely white, her dad is from Argentina. Oiy.

She also wrote a blog post with this title: Telling My White Four Year Old About Alton Sterling and Philando Castil (“But they (the police) don’t hurt White people,” my daughter digested and confirmed.” Statistics argue otherwise, but what are facts in the land of feels?) Other posts about how she dragged her children to anti Trump protests (I don’t believe in using children as a political prop, which is why my kid won’t go to political outings with me until she has an opinion of her own), and teaching her child about dissent on the 4th of July, instead of, you know, teaching her about how kickass this country is and how awesome it’s various cultures are, regardless of who’s president.

SHE’S FOUR. Why are you telling her about murder? Why on Earth?! My kid is almost three and I won’t let her watch the movie where Ariel’s mom doesn’t come back because she’ll have nightmares. Have you no respect for childhood? Good Grief. Sweet Baby Jesus, what is wrong with you? Are your children people, or props for your branding and tools to achieve your version of social justice?

YES these things matter. YES raising aware children and having the conversations with them to help them processes these big, awful things, matters. But at four? Really? The line is like ten feet behind you, lady.

Since the child’s father is from Argentina, she suggested her being Che Guevara. This Che Guevara:

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Alright, being honest here, I probably wouldn’t let my kid be Che Guevara.


Guys, there’s a line. We can have conversations about culture costumes (and yes, there are two sides to that conversation. One of them has a sense of humor), but there’s a hard line that most sane, kind, reasonable human beings from all political parties agree on, and that line is Disney.

There will be Black Elsas and Annas this year. There will be Asian Belles. There will be White Tianas and Moanas, and somewhere, a little boy is probably going to be Cinderella. I know of at least one adult Hispanic Marry Poppins happening this year and she’s gonna be cute as anything (I’m so excited to see her costume) Disney characters are all about being brave enough to be who you really are, working for what you really want, making your dreams happen. Wearing an awesome dress. 

Even if you’re _________.

My little white kid wanted to be Princess Tiana. Because Tiana “makes doughnuts and soup and does her chores and sings”. Quite frankly, these are amazing qualities to emulate, and good reasons reason to be Princess Tiana.

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Your flipping five year old is not trying to “appropriate” Polynesian culture or assert the “power of her Whiteness”. She’s a little girl, who thinks Moana is cool. LET HER BE INNOCENT WHILE SHE CAN. Let her not blink at whatever race being whatever Disney character. There are some things that our children don’t need to be aware of RIGHT NOW. I would go so far as to argue that it’s our job as parents to protect them from some of the ugliness of the world until they’re mature enough to process it. Racism is one of the biggest uglies in the world. Telling your child “You can’t do X because of your race” is a wholly inappropriate way to go about helping them process the ugliness in the world.

A conversation of “You can’t do this because your skin is X and your culture is Y” is not an innocent conversation to have with a child that just wants to be her favorite flipping princess. Limits because of race are not okay. Limiting a child’s imagination and super important pretend play because of their race is just wrong.

The world would be an awful place if we all stayed within our own culture. How much art would we miss out on without appropriation, how much beauty? How much personal growth would we lose if we didn’t poke our nose into other people’s ways of doing things, and let it teach us?

Let kids be innocent. Black Elsa isn’t “Black Elsa” on Halloween, she’s just…ELSA. Let it go, guys. Let it go.

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This is President Barack Obama about to give candy to a Black Princess Belle. He’s doing the right thing. Be like Barack.

Kathy Griffin Has A Right To Be Gross.

 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

 

Yeah, she does. I don’t like the image of her holding a very realistic looking severed head of Donald Trump. I find it abhorrent, disgusting, and question her motives since it’s Ramadan. What message, exactly, is she trying to send?

The reality is that it doesn’t matter what message she’s trying to send. Or that it’s offensive. Or that Barron Trump didn’t realize at first that it wasn’t really his father’s severed head (good job MSM, an 11 year old thinks it’s possible for his father’s head to cut off and used in a photoshoot. We’re just running away from “civilized”, aren’t we?). It doesn’t even matter that it’s Ramadan, and Muslims/ISIS are currently actually beheading people overseas and blowing up children.

It doesn’t matter. She didn’t actually hurt anyone, she didn’t directly tell others to go commit violent acts. It’s her right to be a twatwaffle.

 


Your feelings about her art, her words, her expression of self, simply do not matter when it comes to the legality of the matter, and if she “can”. My feelings, your feelings, the feelings of college students everywhere, do not next to the right free speech. Freedom of thought and expression. It is absolute. It is important we understand this is a fundamental right. None of our other rights matter if this one isn’t upheld. When this topples, the rest follow. It’s why we have the Second Amendment in the United States. The Second protects The First.

You, by the way, have the same right to be a twatwaffle. Or jerk, or asshole. Independent Fundamental Baptist preachers have the right to spew vile lies, call people faggots, and generally warp the gospel of Christ into the gospel of bullies, college students without one foot in reality have the right to call white milk racist.

From sea to shining sea, we all have the right to be complete idiots and blowhards, if we so choose. ‘Merica.

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With Great Freedom comes Great Responsibility. This is why people hate big government, by the way. The Bigger your Government, the smaller your freedom. There’s no perfect balance of the two.  People who want bigger government want less personal responsibility – like paying for their own, um, life. The cost of the government covering your basic life needs that you yourself should cover, is that you have less freedom. They spy on you, they tell you want you can and cannot do.

Big government is like living with your parents – as long as you live under my roof and eat my food, you’ll obey my rules. As someone who is thankful and proud to be an American, I say: Fuck that noise.

Freedom is not easy. It’s not for the faint of heart. It requires character and self policing, and dealing with the fallout of your own actions and words, because you are responsible for yourself. This is how we should raise our children. This is how we should live ourselves.

We are blessed here in the United States to have Freedom of Speech, and if we wish to keep it, to uphold this precious right for which blood has been shed, we have to defend “icky” speech like Kathy Griffin’s as much as we defend speech we agree with.

I will leave you with the words of the great Neil Gaiman, who puts it far more eloquently than I should ever hope to. I strongly suggest you go read the post in it’s entirety, as it’s well worth the time to not only read, but muse over as well.

“If you accept — and I do — that freedom of speech is important, then you are going to have to defend the indefensible. That means you are going to be defending the right of people to read, or to write, or to say, what you don’t say or like or want said.

The Law is a huge blunt weapon that does not and will not make distinctions between what you find acceptable and what you don’t. This is how the Law is made.

People making art find out where the limits of free expression are by going beyond them and getting into trouble.”

– Neil Gaiman