Michaela Bush, Columnist
I’m sure you’ve all heard about the debacle concerning Josh Gad’s character in the new live-action film “Beauty and the Beast,” yes? If not—the director of the film announced a few weeks before the film’s release that Gaston’s sidekick, LeFou, would have an “exclusively gay moment…[Gad] portrayed this deliciously.” As you can imagine, the internet fairly exploded over this.
By the time the film released over St. Patrick’s weekend, everyone—conservatives and liberals alike—were ticked over the film. The “exclusive” moment was only a 2-second shot where LeFou dances off with one of the henchmen of the film. Liberals were upset that it wasn’t long enough and conservatives were upset that it was too long…darned if you do, darned if you don’t, I guess. I haven’t seen the movie, so I can’t confirm or deny how “gay” the subplot was. However, it got me thinking about subtleties in children’s films and TV shows, and wondering just how harmful they can be—if at all.
There have been studies performed that suggest that children are better off raised by heterosexual parents than by homosexual parents—the results suggest that children who are able to relate to one parent of the same sex and one parent of the opposite sex actually helps them and that they are less likely to be confused as to their own sexuality if raised by hetero couples. There’s still a lot of research to continue, long-term studies, etc. to clarify and confirm the theory. However—what I’m talking about is in the social realm, and how children are treated nowadays when it comes to this sensitive subject.
Kids are sponges, right? They learn anything and everything, and like to experiment. However, they are very innocent when it comes to explicit themes—that’s why Disney could fit in so many double-meaning dirty jokes into “Frozen” about ‘size’, etc, and if you didn’t pick up on those jokes, I’m sorry for ruining the film for you. Anyway—we try to protect a child’s innocence, right? It’s the same concept for hetero relations as it is for homo relations, at least it should be.
An article I recently read from Cengage Learning by Trayce Hansen (a licensed psychologist with a clinical and forensic practice and an interest in the areas of marriage, parenting, male/female differences, and homosexuality) states, “Same-sex marriage no doubt will increase sexual confusion [and] experimentation by young people, the implicit and explicit messages of same-sex marriage is that all choices are equally acceptable and desirable.” It goes on to explain that even children from traditional homes will become confused in the same manner when exposed to implicit or explicit same-sex ideas, scenes, etc. The article goes on to state that “The emotional and psychological ramifications of these assorted arrangements on the developing psyches and sexuality of children would be disastrous.”
This is absolutely true. Children who are spoon-fed alternate marriage options at an early age will be confused, just as Hansen mentioned. If homosexual ideas are represented, they should be limited to shows/movies aimed at adults who already have a sense of who they are. When children become confused as to who/what they are, they begin to question more things: like whether or not their behaviors or what they like to do during specific times, phases, or stages of their childhood matches up with their own sex. Gone are the ideas of girls just being tomboys. Over the past several weeks, I’ve seen a lot of news reports—mostly dealing with the Boy Scouts—where little girls were already taking transitional medication to become boys, and vice versa. However, the American College of Pediatrics has an excellent article titled “Gender Ideology Harms Children” (from January 2017, which you can view on acpeds.org) explaining the biological impacts of such as well as the mental impact. Long story short, on this article as well as mine: “Facts—not ideology—determine reality.”
So: let your kids be kids, and keep in mind that they are such. Explicit thematic matter of any kind isn’t presented in children’s media (or at least, it hasn’t for a long time) for a reason: they’re not able to digest it because they are, unless beyond their years, generally quite innocent. They don’t need their innocence stripped away in order to push a new way of living in their face. I know that it hasn’t reached the point of being explicit for all shows/movies yet, but it will. The fact that Disney’s already promoting scenes as such, albeit small, only a couple of years after gay marriage was legalized (and keep in mind that it takes quite some time to bring a film from production to finish, probably about a year for “Beauty and the Beast”) proves it. It will only become more explicit. Finally—if your 4-year-old daughter’s currently playing with trucks and your boy likes to paint for a week, don’t assume that their gender ought to be switched. They don’t even know who or what they are yet, so you don’t either. They also can’t make decisions properly—if you’d let everything up to them, they’d eat candy for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and never go to school! This is why you shouldn’t ask a child whether or not they want to become a boy or a girl, let alone go along with what they say. This is why you shouldn’t push kids into adult territory and believe that it is acceptable and helpful for the child: it is not.
We are raising a new generation of confused little kids who are being pressed towards very adult themes, whether they press gay marriage or transgender ideas, etc. We don’t teach sex education until high school or late middle school for a very logical reason. The idea that “giving them this information early on will help them” is absolutely false and has been proven such through psychological research performed by experts on the topic: I think I’ll agree with them.