Is Disney evil??

A friend of mine emailed me today regarding being worried that her brother in law has gone over the deep end with religion.  This is interesting, since this friend is a fairly new convert to Christianity herself.  Yet, even she see’s there’s something not right here… She said that she came back from a visit with her family for the holidays.  And, that her brother in law is becoming more and more religious.  She said she couldn’t help to think about all the stories I had told her about growing up with my mom.

One of the things she was upset about was that her young neice and nephew were not going to be allowed to play with most of the presents she and her parents had bought them.  She said they are probably all in the garbage by now.  Apparently, Disney is evil…. and they are not allowed to watch Disney movies or play with Disney items because they have witches and evil spells. ? She said they are afraid to watch anything, and my friend thought this was all a bit extreme. She asked if my mother was the same way about stuff like that when I was a kid, etc.

I wrote back:

My first reaction when I read your note was a deep sigh and a sad feeling for the kids.  It’s a terrible thing to live with so much damn fear of everything all the time… and that’s what it is.  Fear.  Fear of hell.  Fear of anything “evil”.  Fear that you are not doing what God wants.  It’s ridiculous.

So, she won’t let their kids watch Disney?  Come on.  Does she know the witches are PRETEND!!?!?.  It’s a freaking STORY people.  And, not for nothing, but do you know how many gory, violent, and sexually deviant stories there are in the bible??  You don’t hear about those ones as much.   I’m sorry.. I know it’s suppose to be “the good book”… but, there’s a lot in there that I don’t particularly want to have to go into detail with my kids anytime soon.  And talk about scary.  ??  What about all the sacrifices, demons and devils, HELL, daughters sleeping with fathers, babies being slaughtered, famine, plagues, wars.  Sheesh!

But, unfortunately, I am not TOO surprised either.  Because, yes  – My mother was like that.  She saw evil in EVERYTHING. I’ve often joked about how we could be watching the old 50’s sitcom “Happy Days”, and she would walk in right when someone kissed or something – and she’d say “THAT’s DISGISTING!!”.

I laugh now… but, it was rather nerve-wrecking when I was a kid.  It’s terrible to always be on the lookout for evil lurking around every corner… to feel like you’re always doing something “bad”, “wrong”, ”disgusting”, or “sinning”.  I always had one finger on the channel changer on the TV and on my radio in case my mother walked in.

When you are really young – you believe everything your parents tell you… and you naturally want to please them.  What happens when you can’t?  I was afraid and worried a lot.  As I got older and more skeptical (thanks to my atheist father and common sense), even though I didn’t believe everything my mother did… I still was always worried about how she would interpret things, or what she would think about something (or me).  It forced me to still see everything as “evil” – knowing how SHE thought.  Talk about living on egg-shells. For young children, this is abusive – if you ask me.  Intentional or not.

Since you asked… if I were you – I would probably try to talk to my brother.  Ask what he thought.  How or why he was “okay” with the things that I thought were pretty “out there”.  Tell him how I felt and saw things… what worried me and why.  Take it from there.

When it comes to something I think is really important – I tend to prefer to speak my mind with the hopes that it MIGHT help… and knowing I at least “tried”… even if there’s a bigger chance that it might just tick someone off.  But, that’s me….  and I have a big mouth.  Actually, that was how my Dad was… and my brother’s are to… so, it probably would make it easier for me to approach them.

Although, I remember having it out with my one brother once –  years ago. They were on the verge of a divorce, and while I didn’t really want to get involved, I felt like I needed to try to help.  It was not easy even for me to talk to him that time because I knew he didn’t like what I had to say… and it didn’t go over well at the time… and we did get in a big fight.  I do think it actually helped in the long run and am glad I did it.  But, yeah… it doesn’t always help… and there probably were times I should have just kept my mouth shut.  Still… never stops me.  😉

Maybe I can call you later…

I am almost afraid to call her.  I doubt highly she will actually try to reason with her brother, and doubt even more that even if she does that it will help.  I almost am afraid to talk to her on such matters, because I figure it’s a matter of time before her family or Christian friends tell her that she shouldn’t even BE talking to me since I’m not Christian and therfore can’t help her.

UGH

I can’t help going back to my initial reaction to her words…”a deep sigh, and feeling sad for the kids”.

~smj

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19 Responses to “Is Disney evil??”

  1. lostrealist Says:

    Thanks for your comment at my place, replied to it there. Read your article above and I feel exactly the same as you. Why is there this irresistable urge in people to surrender to a higher authority and follow, instead of standing up for themselves and realizing that they are the sole agents of change, whether for good or for the bad. I have never been able to explain this.

  2. Rebecca Says:

    I feel for the kids, though they’ll probably see right through it the older they get. I wasn’t allowed to watch anything with witches, faeries, magic or anything else my mother considered to be evil. So, I didn’t see snow white til I was at least 15. Everything ‘Opened the door for evil to enter the house and to enter our lives.’

    I remember my neighbour gave me a tooth fairy figurine to keep my baby teeth in and my mother instructed my father to clip its wings off with a pair of pliers. I was too young at the time to know better, and was led to agree with the decision. I still felt guilty for even owning it, fearing that demons would enter the house because of me. Absolutely ridiculous.

  3. Sue Ann Edwards Says:

    Most of us are unaware of it on a conscious level. However, EVERYONE on the planet right now, KNOWS…can sense…the great changes that are here. Most often, like these parents, they are so unaware that they are responding to inner senses without understanding.

    How do we normally re-act to change? With fear, that’s what. And that’s what I see this is all about. For those of us like you mention here, the world is very much coming to an end. ‘the world as we know it’. It’s no longer going to be considered ‘rude’ to notice lacks of character. And that’s what most zealots have in common. No inner substance where it counts.

  4. Sue Ann Edwards Says:

    p.s. Maybe you’re too young to remember…but there was much ado about the phallic symbols used in Neptune’s Kingdom when “The Little Mermaid” came out. Notice any tones of fear and then recognize neurosis when you see it. {{hugs}}

  5. samanthamj Says:

    Lost –
    thanks… it’s good to know I’m not the only ones who feels that way… and, I also commented back on your poetry page. =)

    Rebecca –
    yes… that is how my mother was also… and not just my mother, but many paretnts at the church I grew up in. I now actually feel more sorry for my mother, and people like her, who whole-heartedly still live in fear of so much “evil” every day.

    Sue,
    Thanks for your feedback. =) I don’t remember the Little Mermaid ordeal, but so many like it. I guess, if you look hard enough for “evil”, and are fearful rnough, it presents itself everywhere.

    Your other comment about “EVERYONE on the planet right now, KNOWS…can sense…the great changes that are here” sounded somewhat familiar… but, in an entirely different concept. I JUST made a post elsewhere, where a young Chrstian man was proclaiming that “EVERYONE KNOWS deep down that God is real”… and there is no such thing as atheism. I disagreed. Here’s the post:
    http://smithadam.wordpress.com/2008/01/04/why-atheism-does-not-exist/

    Can you tell more about the kinds of “changes” or things you are talking about that “everyone knows” deep down?

    ~smj

  6. KnotKeats Says:

    People’s perceptions tend to be a reflection of themselves. People who are neurotically obsessed with evil are probably afraid of succumbing to it themselves. If you look for evil everywhere, you will find it everywhere.

    And, yet again, the children suffer for the failings of the parents.

    Yes, at a certain age children cannot distinguish between fantasy and reality. I tied a cape around my neck and was going to jump off the roof of a 4 story building when I was 3 years old, saying “Look Daddy, I’m Superman!” Daddy proved to be superman by flying up 4 stories and pulling me off of the railing:)

    By the time I was 5 I had no difficulty understanding that the evil witch in Sleeping Beauty was a cartoon character. This didn’t keep me from believing in Santa Claus.

    Learning the difference between fantasy and reality is a part of growing up. I would go so far as to say it is a necessary part, and that it is important for the child to figure it out for themselves.

    What’s the right way to do this? I have no idea. I’m sure there are plenty of right ways. I’m equally certain that labeling all fantasy as evil is one of the wrong ways.

  7. Sue Ann Edwards Says:

    (smiling) I checked out the link. When I saw the phrase “the Bible says” used twice in the same paragraph, up front in the article, is when I stopped reading.

    That told me, quite honestly, that there was no one home at this residence. You know the one about the lights are on but nobody is there.

    “so and so says” is for PARROTS, not People. If I’m in one of my devilsh moods my usual response to such comments is something along the lines of “Too lazy to do your own thinking, huh? Too utterly selfish to be accountable for your own freewill and choices in life, huh?”

    Then I go on to say that I do NOT grant any licenses with my life. And explain that they are not at liberty to choose any belief system where in order to feel good about themselves they condemn those not like them. A ‘chosen’ based on there being a ‘them that’s not’. I call them ticks and leeches. To their faces.

    And remain totally unmoved by any of their looks of pure horror.

    In order for any one of us to call something we see ‘evil’, that ‘evil’, has to be in our mind, first, before we can project it.

    The more ignorant we are raised, the more cut off from diversity, the easier we are to control. It’s the way human fodder is created.

  8. John Shore Says:

    Wow. Serious business. Your friend is lucky to have you in your life.

  9. John Shore Says:

    Um. Make that in HER life. Duh.

  10. Wyrd\'s little sister Says:

    Have to admit I feel bad for the kids.

    I grew up with two atheist parents, but in the middle of our country’s bible belt. I remember being alone at home and receiving visitors – that left behind a bible and a terrified eight year old when they left as they informed me that I would burn in hell and gave me a colouring book with “suitable” illustrations.

  11. samanthamj Says:

    KnotKeats –
    I appreciate your comments and thoughts. Makes perfect sense. I can picture the superman story. Your poor father… and lucky you! LOL I liked your final thoughts about letting kids learn to decipher reality from fiction… and, that “I’m equally certain that labeling all fantasy as evil is one of the wrong ways.”. Amen! =)

    SueAnd –
    Thanks for your thoughts, and the laughs.. because I just had to LOL at several of your comments. I could picture their faces (“And remain totally unmoved by any of their looks of pure horror”.) I bet you’d be fun at some of my mom’s parties. 😉 LOL… or when a Holy Roler comes knocking at the door.

    Hey John =)
    – I knew what you meant. I’m not always so serious around here.. honest. But, thanks for the kind words, and for stopping by. I know you’re a busy man, planning your world take-over plan and all… 😉

    Wyrd’s little sister –
    UGH. Stories like these make me ill. I can relate… and they still make me ill. You just have to love folks that want to scare the piss out of perfectly happy people (let alone an EIGHT year old), so that they can then “save” them from the terror they just created. Pretty sad. I’m curious what happened after that… how much their one visit impacted you.??

    ~smj

  12. Sue Ann Edwards Says:

    {{{smj}}} Some people are just plain fun to mess with, especially when they ask for it…Like people who knock on my door.

    I happen to appreciate the fine skill of artisans. My letter opener is one of these. Made in Germany, with the blade etched in forest figures, and with a goat’s horn for a handle.

    I invited some thumpers who knocked at my door to preach at me inside. Then asked if they’d like to see my sacrificial knife. (All mail is sacrificed to this blade.) They couldn’t get out of my house fast enough. I just roared. It was their own fears and neurosis that scared them, not me.

    As for your Mom, no, I don’t think I would be much fun. She wouldn’t have a chance. I’d obliderate her from the inside out without even trying or meaning to, since everything about the reality she’s living in her head, is based on people like me not even existing.

    I read long ago, that in order to reveal the hypocrisy of any code, requires someone who is actually living the code. And now you know one of the reasons why I do. Doubt cannot exist in the Presence of Assurance.

    When I do choose to ‘battle’ I pick my ‘battles’ well. Basically, it’s no fun having a battle of wits with unarmed opponents. No fun at all, like taking candy away from a baby.

  13. KnotKeats Says:

    I had to add this. Forgive me for being too lazy to do a google search and get all of the facts correct.

    C.S. Lewis was dismissed by some critics as a mere writer of escapism. When he was asked to comment about this he said something to the effect of, “What class of people are most opposed to escape? Jailers.”

  14. samanthamj Says:

    SueAnd – Ha! Too funny about the knife… but, I don’t know? I once witnissed my mother scare off some Jehovah Witnesses. She let them come in, and then she wound up preaching at them and they were the ones that were like… “uh… yeah… gotta go!” LOL My mother has read the entire bible many many times. She spews verses like as if she wrote them herself. Very annyoying. But your comments about some folks not being able to think for themselves is fitting here..

    KnotKeats –
    Interesting… I wasn’t sure if you mean that in support of Lewis or not?
    “What class of people are most opposed to escape? Jailers.”
    Who the “jailers” are could be very debatable… depending on your outlook.

    ~smj

  15. KnotKeats Says:

    I meant it in support of escapism, as did CS Lewis.

  16. samanthamj Says:

    Knotkeats –
    I support escapisnm too. Every time I get out with “the girls”, shoot pool, tip a few, dance, and laugh my butt off all night. 😉 The funny thing about being in favor of religion as an escape.. is that I needed an escape from their version of escape! =) Not such a good escape when it takes you from one set of problems, and throws you into a bigger one that involves firey pits of demons and the likes. Ya know? I mean, I realize it’s not like that for everyone.. and really DOES help some cope… I just wonder if it’s really the best formm of escape out there…
    ~smj

  17. GG Says:

    I will never stop talking to you no matter what you believe just as I hope you will never stop talking to me regardless of our differences in belief’s, you will always be a friend.

  18. samanthamj Says:

    GG- Thanks…and, of course that means a lot to me, and I feel the same way.

    I appreciate the fact that you ARE trying to help your family out… and, that you want to learn what you can to do so. I’m glad I shared this blog with you so you could get more on my background, and about my Mom.

    You might find this post interesting too: https://savemenot.wordpress.com/2007/03/08/could-mom-be-wrong/

    Also, read #4 on this post I wrote – which was suppose to about “Things I would tell myself when I was 13 if I could go back in time”:

    https://savemenot.wordpress.com/2008/01/20/to-me%e2%80%a6-when-i-was-13%e2%80%a6-a-lengthy-cross-post-from-my-other-blog/


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