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Dis-Arming The Children for The Future

September 13, 2011

Mickey Mouse Operation
Image via: After The Smoke

YOU WOULDN’T BE entirely off-base to accuse me, Dear Reader, of some form of child abuse, when I confess that, yes, the youngest person in the Montag household watches a fair bit of television. A significant part of that fair bit being programming on the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon.

As if this kids programming wasn’t already dePLORable enough without giving it much thought, I’ve actually put enough study to it to notice that there is a trend on these channels of making light of the increasingly intrusive and violent security measures taking root in Western society. Mad lulz regarding security checks, surveillance, and a sickeningly jokey treatment of Tasers. People getting Tased is HIGH-larious!

Here’s a clip of a recent episode of the Disney Channel show A.N.T. Farm. In this episode we see two people Tased hilariously. Not in this clip though. This clip is an ode to simple old fashion police brutality. To set it up: the young woman main character’s father, a cop, suspects that she may be guilty of shoplifting, so he sends his diminutive partner undercover to her school to spy on his own daughter investigate. (Start at 1:03 or so.)

Functions as propaganda to get young people used to the idea of living in a police state, no? Makes it seem normal, more accessible. You’ll prolly tell me it’s a case of “art” (HA!) imitating life or some such — the writers of these shows making comedy out of the normal experience of everyday life in America. But I have to wonder if orders have been given.

Additional fun fact: the other pervasive theme of almost all of these programs: the characters are famous, or aspiring to some sort of fame. Pop stars, clothing designers, hosts of popular webcasts, students at Performing Arts schools, aspiring reality tv stars, Solid Gold/American Bandstand-type television dancers… Peculiar little facet of the current empire in decline.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. September 13, 2011 9:05 AM

    I prefer the Disney classics myself – the pro-drug message in Alice in Wonderland and the anti-fruit stance in Snow White, for instance.

  2. September 13, 2011 11:03 AM

    Good one. The young person in my house also watches plenty of Disney Channel and Nickelodeon, much to the annoyance of her parents. I’ve seen her watching ANT Farm before but I hadn’t noticed that particular episode. Re your last observation, I’m not sure what it says about the empire in decline, but I know it gives the kiddies a warped sense of the world. I’m pretty sure my daughter thinks “rock star” is a viable job possibility, along the lines of doctor or trash collector. I’ve also gotten the impression on occasion that she thinks I’m a loser for schlepping my ass every day to a job I don’t like. At the very least, it doesn’t compute.

    • September 13, 2011 11:50 AM

      yeah i’m not sure what it says about empire in decline. except maybe they’re just trying to keep the idea of superstardom alive amidst the rise of youtube and a sort of decentralized, homemade mode of producing entertainment.

      sort of related: i was just thinking the other day how absurd it must seem to be a popular artist making a music video now-a-days, when there will be tens of different fan-made videos of the same song floating around online to promote their music anyways. it’s not like MTV shows them anymore.

  3. September 13, 2011 2:35 PM

    “But I have to wonder if orders have been given.”

    The first Saturday after Desert Shield turned into Desert Storm during the first Gulf War, on the Bugs Bunny/Roadrunner Show” on CBS? ABC?, there was a Bugs Bunny short with Yosemite Sam. They were in Baghdad (you knew they were in Baghdad, because it was spelled out in the original cartoon in old scrolly letters), and Yosemite Sam was in the Violent Ugly Arab stereotype role. I’m pretty sure orders had been given.

  4. October 14, 2011 8:47 PM

    Wow. I was beginning to think I was the only one who noticed this. I recently saw a commercial for, of all things, Ritz Crackers. There’s a room full of sharks dressed in power suits, and they’re having a furious debate around a conference table. The debate was over what would taste better. A human being with a box full of ritz crackers in him or not? So one of the sharks asks a secretary to “bring in the guinea pig” ( his exact words). A scrawny, geeky, and quite fearful neckbeard is brought in. He squeeks out “Uuuuhhh, what’s going on?” The shark holds up a box of Ritz’s and says “Get to chewing.” I thought this about sums up life in America at the moment.

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