Hello, yes, I am “back from the dead”… of homework and classes, that is. (Hey, being a college kid is tougher than it looks!)
First off, don’t get me wrong on this post: I really like Disney’s “Zootopia”. I love the breathtaking scenery, the beautiful animation, the lively and engaging characters, and the at least fairly decent story. It draws you in, calls to you… (“The Call of the Wild…” )
But one thing that worries me, I mean, really worries me, is the subtle, subliminal messages and themes the story line makers may be sending both to us and to future, younger generations of Disney-magnets. Some themes are fine and perfectly acceptable, and should in fact be encouraged: racial prejudice is wrong, you shouldn’t give up on your dreams (provided said dreams don’t interfere with God’s plans for you or for others), etc. But others can be damaging emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and even physically.
In one scene, one of the protagonists, a hopeful new bunny cop named Judy Hopps, sees an incident between another protag, Nick the fox, accompanied by his underhanded companion Finnick, and some elephant owners of an ice cream parlor; the clerk refuses to sell ice cream to Nick or Finnick because they are foxes (Finnick is technically a Fennec fox.). While this is clearly stating a kind of racial prejudice theme, an even more deadly underlying theme is displayed when Nick explains that Finnick, his “kid”, wants to become an elephant someday (something clearly genetically impossible to do, although secular society continually tells us otherwise), even dressing up as an elephant to try and do so. Judy, naively believing that in Zootopia, anyone CAN truly be ANYTHING, steps up and argues their case, essentially almost threatening to close them for “discrimination.”
While I do agree with being against racial prejudice, the movie walks between that and a terribly fine line of transgenderism. Judy even says, after Finnick succeeds in getting his elephant-sized Popsicle, that if he wants to be an elephant, he can– because anything’s possible. Not only does this remind me of that, but it also reminds me of numerous cases and lawsuits that people in the LGBT community and pro-choicers have made against Christian businesses who will not, for instance, sell a gay “couple” a wedding cake, or provide abortion-inducing drugs for their employees, allow grown men to change/ relieve themselves in the same area as our sisters, girlfriends, wives, daughters, you (if you’re a girl), and myself. And in that context, the theme of “Try everything, be anything you want,” is truly terrifying. These businesses are not out to “discriminate,” as many claim; in fact, many owners of Christian-owned bakeries have directed gay “couples” to a different bakery, to state one instance of many. It is, if anything, discriminatory against US, as Christians, not just the racial thing.
I’ve lately been reading John Milton’s “Paradise Lost,” which discusses partly from Satan’s own point of view what happened shortly after he got kicked outta heaven, and decided, as his ultimate revenge on God, to corrupt mankind, to dig that spear a little deeper into His side. What did Satan try? He tried pride. Arrogance. He had it nice; why want anything else? But, alas, in short, he basically thought, “You know what? I’m better than y’all, even You, God.” He knew he lived the good life in heaven; God literally gave him everything and was really, really good to him– Satan got nearly everything he wanted. Save for the thing he coveted, and wanted to “try” out the most– God’s throne seat. So he very selfishly tried rebellion. Tried and succeeded in corrupting a third of heaven to go down with him, all through usage of manipulative rhetoric and charismatic scheming. Tried to overthrow God (an epic fail), and plummeted down into the depths of hell. Schemed some more, then tried a different approach:
If he couldn’t get at God directly, he would try to jab at Him through His most beloved Creation: Mankind, the earth, and all that roamed in it– but specifically mankind.
According to Milton, he tried lust. Got Eve to try it too, after she had tried the deviously delectable fruit, as well as rebellion, corruption, and even vanity.
All this from trying EVERYTHING. Not just the good in life God WANTS us to experience, but all the sin, all the evil and corruption. The sin that comes from questioning the goodness of God and His laws, the natural ordinances He put into play. All the rebellion you get from disobeying Him. The irony is, Satan tries to accuse God of being the monarchical tyrant, when he himself sits squarely on hell’s throne seat, playing king (no joke, he is literally called the “sultan” of hell), causing havoc, and basically making everyone but himself miserable(OK, scratch that– if he isn’t making himself miserable in one way, shape, or form by now, he will be when Judgement Day comes… or at least, his choices in literally “trying everything” but God’s grace will be.).
If the song and the movie had simply encouraged the characters not to give up in their goals of finding the bad guy and solving the mystery, I wouldn’t have had a problem with it; or if it had proclaimed trying everything good, I wouldn’t have bothered to write a post like this, only if in praise of the movie.
So no, ” Zootopia” producers, I will NOT be trying EVERYTHING, no matter how tempting it might be. I know the effects that sin, corruption, rebellion and chaos has had in both my life and in others’ as well. I prefer to stick to my guns– and my God– even if it kills me.
Some of you may roll your eyes, or even chuckle a bit. “You’re one writer, and that’s just your opinion,” some of you may be saying. Others, “You’re reading into that movie waaaayyyy too much. It’s just a kid’s movie, not a conspiracy-theory political agenda. Geez, you religious fanatics…”
You may think that now, and while I respect your right to have opinions different from my own, I do still disagree, and implore you to at least consider the possibility, and not to “try EVERYTHING,” least of all stray from God.
After all, what would YOU do if they (meaning Disney, bowing to public, politically correct pressure) gave Elsa a “girlfriend”?
” “I have the right to do anything,” you say– but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”–but I will not be mastered by anything.”
1 Corinthians 6:12, NIV
Image Credit: http://redcarpetrefs.com/disney-zootopia-shakira-try-everything-music-video/