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The Feather

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Letter to the Editor
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Cynicism for Disney movies ridiculous

I can understand the worry most parents experience as they fear that their children watch too much television, but Dave Barry’s Jan. 27 Miami Herald syndicated column, entitled “Go Away, Disney Prince”, is just ludicrous! If I had to choose a television program for a two-year-old, I certainly would not mock a fantasy world of creativity and dreaming for the harshness of professional football.

In his opening lines, he expresses an opinion seeped in cynicism. Clearly, he shows a disdain for a mere two hours of entertainment and escape from the pressures of life that …yes ?even a two year-old girl can face.

He professes to “try to distract a little girl from these shallow, gender-stereotyping, indecorously romanticized, girlish fantasy movies” by forcing a two-year-old to watch football. He is forcing her to watch a “character building activity” (as he calls it) where points are scored for physical violence and shallow attention is given to cheerleaders in provocative outfits.

The earlier Disney films tell stories of independent women who look forward to true love. I don’t understand how this philosophy is dismissed as some utopian view of the world. A degree of realism is healthy to a child’s development, but to call a Disney movie “gender stereotyping” and then to be anxious to inform a child about how “men, especially handsome men, are vermin scum” reflects the cynicism that Walt Disney himself tried to provide a constructive alternative to for children.

What kind of message does this father’s opinion of his young daughters girlish tendencies send? It tells her she needs to look at life with negativism and be less girlish because dad doesn’t like her the way she is.

When the dauntingly sarcastic and cynical views of this little girl’s father begin to destroy her sense of happiness then I will gladly jump at the chance to sit and watch The Little Mermaid or The Lady and the Tramp with her in an effort to salvage a child’s uncomplicated and innocently optimistic view of such pessimistic and shallow world.

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