The culture warriors have decided: Disney’s Frozen is queer. Elsa hiding her ice-powers could be read as a metaphor for the closet, the Oscar-winning “Let it Go” plays like a coming-out anthem, and a character in the film evokes the question of whether homosexuality is a choice by inquiring of Elsa’s powers, “born with it or cursed?” Some liberals have praised the film for its subtext; some conservatives have denounced it.
But the most remarkable thing about queer readings of the film may be how unremarkable they really are. Through both its corporate practices and the content of its films, Disney for decades has implemented the so-called “gay agenda”—which is to say, helping make the world a more accepting place.
To start in the most obvious place: As a business, Disney has long held a progressive attitude toward LGBT people. Gay pride events have been hosted at Disney World since 1991, and the company started offered its gay employees health insurance benefits for their partners since 1995, a decision that wasn’t entirely popular back then.
One of the most poignant examples of the company’s tolerant atmosphere is the case of lyricist Howard Ashman, who was openly gay and died of AIDS in 1991. Not only did Ashman write songs for The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, he was also closely involved in those films’ productions, casting actors and holding story meetings with animators. At the end of Beauty and the Beast, Disney acknowledged his contributions with this tribute: “To our friend Howard Ashman who gave a mermaid her voice and a beast his soul, we will be forever grateful.”
But Ashman’s story also offers an example of how the substance of Disney’s films reflect an interest in LGBT peoples’ struggles.
Read more. [Image: Disney]
“Many of you know that I officially came out on Valentine’s Day. One of the best things about it was the way it enabled me to publicly show support for the people who inspire me and give me courage, and I’m here to do just that tonight for one of my heroes, Laverne Cox.”
Does anybody else think it could be a problem to put the question of minority rights to a majority vote in state initiatives?
Six justices of the Court don’t—and three of them actually think we’d all be better off if we got courts out of this whole race business and let majority vote settle the whole thing.
The three-justice plurality—Justice Anthony Kennedy, Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justice Samuel Alito—made this strange suggestion Tuesday in their opinion on Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration and Immigration Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary. Schuette should have been an easy case, and I very much fear it will soon make very bad law.
Read more. [Image: Molly Riley/Reuters]
I was just joking with him, but the look he gave me was complete betrayal
Oh my god the face
Rizzoli & Isles - behind the scenes of episode 5x06
"R&I in miniature", "for tiny, tiny crimes"
1) I have a baby face (forever young).
2) I busted my ass this semester in my Statistics class and managed to get an A. Which means I’m exempt from the final.
3) I’m a lot better at paleopathology than most of the kids in my anthropology class.
4) I’m half a semester away from graduating.
5) (If I get accepted) I’ll be starting at FSU in January.
None taken, but no, it’s not a message to particular people at all. (I do prefer to directly address people I need to communicate with.)
I suppose I did wrongly assume a mostly anthropological audience and therefore an understood Maussian paradigm. (That sounds pretentious but it’s actually material from the first month of an intro cultural class, I’m not trying to be fancy, but it’s not something you read outside of anthropology.)
But basically, in my experience, a statement like “I’d die for you” is not one of devotion, but expectation and desire. It inherently obligates the person it’s directed to and requests equal devotion with no regard for that person’s needs. Suppose that person doesn’t actually need a blood sacrifice, as those are actually quite rare in modern society. Suppose they need support or space? Or they need to make a hard decision about their career that might temporarily prioritize their need for self-actualization above the relationship, but still requires discussion and contemplation with their loved one? In that case, “but I’d die for you” is hardly an admirable statement of ultimate sacrifice, it’s saying “my need to have you supersedes your need to live your life.” It’s often more about the ego of the person saying it than the well-being of the one hearing it.
Not always, of course. But hearing a statement like that is a good time to take stock of the motivation behind it and evaluate if you’re being controlled.
Photographer Mattias Klum from National Geographic gets close and personal with a lion.
"and all of a sudden you feel very small" damn right
I like how the guy doing this presentation went the extra mile to act the whole scene out