This last week has been crazy. Continuing to work full-time, interviewing for my placement internship this coming year, going back to Cincy for the weekend for TJ’s sister’s bridal shower-oh then casually came to KC. So while my free time has been spent mostly on crafting, and some behind the scenes stuff with the blog [yeah-you know you saw all the new cohesive pictures], I’m finally getting to sit down and actually write a post. But the drafts I had planned wouldn’t do…because something so much better came along.
Last night, I spent the evening with my parents. We saw a local museum exhibit from the Natural Museum of History that included the ACTUAL T-REX FROM NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM, and then saw Zootopia. For those of you who don’t know this, I am OBSESSED with bunnies. They are just so sweet and precious. [I’ll even admit on here that I have a stuffed bunny, Pete, who is pretty soft and cuddly so fills the void in my heart – somewhat- until I can get a cat.]
But, let’s not get off track here…
For those of you who haven’t seen Zootopia, I don’t want to ruin anything, but you should know the premise better than just the previews show. So here’s a general catch up:
Back in the day, predator animals ate prey animals. Until they came together, and decided to live in harmony in the city of Zootopia. Now, many years later, Judy Hops (a small town rabbit born to carrot farmers, expected to be a carrot farmer herself), wants to become the first rabbit (and ultimately the first ‘prey’ animal to become a police officer for the Zootopia law enforcement). Despite the discouragement from her friends, family, and neighbors, Hops is so determined to do whatever it takes to reach her dream, that she graduates top of her class at the Police Academy. Feeling that she had proved herself by becoming a police officer, Hops then had to step into a workplace filled with predators who felt she still was not worthy of her position, landing her with the mediocre job of ‘meter maid’ – a far cry from the chasing of criminals she hoped to be doing.
After crossing paths with a small-time hustling fox named Nick, Hops finds herself on a chase to find a missing otter to save her job. With the help of Nick, the sloths at the DMV, and her supportive family, she finds out about a government conspiracy she never thought Zootopia was even capable of.
there are dozens and dozens of humanitarian and political analogies throughout the film.
makes us think pretty deeply about our world, the humans inhabiting it, and how nature vs. nurture combined with stereotypes slowly tear communities apart.
Look past stereotypes, don’t assume or use insulting language.
“Only a bunny can call another bunny ‘cute,'” – Hopps
Have a BIG mind, not a small one.
“It may seem impossible to small minds, but…” -Hopps
Judy was always thinking big. She knew what she wanted, and knew what she needed to do to get there. She was open to all possibilities, while the animals around her has small minds, that thought of easy solutions.
It’s hard when loved ones and friends tell you to tame your dreams, but it’s your choice on whether or not to pursue them. – If you don’t believe in yourself, who can?
People will talk you out of your dreams. Judy was a small bunny who wanted to be an officer along side water buffalo and rhino. She wanted to make a difference, and help her community, even though no one believed in her. She believed in herself, and made her dreams happen.
There will be people who doubt you – EVEN AFTER you have proven yourself. Prove them wrong, work hard, get things done & lead well.
“Awww…that poor little bunny is going to get eaten alive,” -Predator Officer on Hops’ first day.
Judy was getting picked on even after she graduated top of her class at the academy. Even after she had given out twice as many parking tickets as required of her by the end of the day – before lunch time. But she kept going. She put her job on the line, and went out to solve not only the largest crime going on in Zootopia, but saved Zootopia from itself.
People will misrepresent situations, or themselves. Make the best of every situation, figure out how to resolve pressing issues, and get to the job at hand.
After moving to the big city, Judy was shown a ‘luxury’ apartment that was pretty much a rat trap with bare-minimum conditions. Does she let this stop her? No. She’s so excited to have a place of her own, and can’t wait to start her job. When she is given the meter maid position, does she let this get her down? No. She decided to do a bang up job at the job she’s been given.
People won’t agree, and that’s okay. Don’t try to force agreement, but instead learn from these tense situations to better help the next one.
“Whoopsie! We don’t all get along,” -Nick Wilde
Our hopes and aspirations will differ from our parents.
Judy’s parents thought she should settle down and become a carrot farmer, seeing leadership and entrepreneurship as dangerous. For some of us, the safe life is perfectly suitable, but for game-changers-it’s not. When you’re a game-changer, you have to go out and change the game. You want what you want, and that is okay. You have to be your own person, and live your own life….Fulfill your own destiny.
Hard work makes the dream work.
“Life isn’t some cartoon musical where you sing a little song and your insipid dreams magically come true,” -Police Chief
Do good, it will come back to you.
Judy saves a rodent from a giant, runaway donut, which ends up to be the daughter of a powerful man who at one point is seconds away from killing Hops.
Early in the movie, Judy saves a rodent from a giant, runaway donut. This good deed comes back to help her later in the movie. We don’t do good deeds to have them reciprocated later on, though that may happen. We do good deeds because it is the right thing to do.
Discrimination causes destructive self-hatred.
Nick has a flashback to when he was a young boy, and his mother saved up to get him a ‘boy scouts’ uniform, even though there had never been a predator in the boy scouts before. The prey children hazed him by putting him in a mussel, stating they would never be around a fox without one, and continuing to play with the fact that foxes were predators and he was young and scared. Nick then realized that even though he had never hurt a fly, he had to deal with the fact that this was what his species was looked upon as.
But Here’s The Problem…
Predators are the minority. The mother bunny pulled her child closer to her on the bus, away from the tiger. We all know that was a middle class white lady, pulling her kid away from a man of Muslim faith, quietly sitting on the bus, or a young African American boy, who’s pants were too big. At one point, Judy talks about how predators are biologically given to violent behavior…and she’s right.
PREDATORS EAT PREY. That is a fact.
But black kids growing up in the ghetto AREN’T BORN VIOLENT. They are born with as much natural violence as Princess Charlotte was when Princess Kate presented her to the world. Brown babies born in this country are born WITH AS MANY TERRORIST BONES in their body as your next door neighbor was. And see, our stereotypes come from concentrated situations that we then apply to entire demographics. NEWS FLASH- the stereotype for you, if you believe that blacks are drug dealing, shooting, gang members, and Indians are all terrorist muslims, is that you are a racist bigot. You’re a redneck, America loving, God-fearing, racist bigot.
And I know that isn’t true for all of you who happen to fail to deny stereotypes of others, so why are you stereotyping entire other classes of people, when you got so mad reading that sentence about your stereotype? You know you don’t fit your stereotype. So now imagine if you couldn’t get a job, or a loan, or married….all because someone else ASSUMED you were something you weren’t.
In the 90s, Hillary Clinton spoke on the crack epidemic after the president stepped in with a crime bill that would create decades of misery for black communities. In her speech, she talks about ‘super predators,’ and then describes these as heartless black kids walking the streets and killing people without remorse, or humanity.
Zootopia made the predators the minority…they made predators the African Americans.
Well, Here Is A NEWS FLASH
African Americans are people. They have been since the beginning of time, and will be till the end of time. So stop thinking that for some reason you are better because your skin is white.
Not all Muslims are terrorists. Muslim is a religion. Terrorists are psychopaths. There are Christian psychopaths…just like the ones that came to my sisters school and started chanting that God hates gays.
Same sex marriage is happening, whether you believe people are born gay or not, it really doesn’t matter. You’re fighting an uphill battle. The LGBT community of today is the African American community of the 60’s. I’d rather go down in history as someone who was a Freedom Writer, on the bus, than someone who was waiting at a bus stop ready to start fire to the bus. If you’re against same sex marriage today, you’re waiting at the bus stop. GET ON THE DAMN BUS.
I didn’t want to admit that this movie was anything other than adorably sweet with a promising message…because I felt such a connection to Judy. She was a dreamer, with insane passion, who tended to forget the limits reality set in her way…all just like me.
While I have seen how messy the world can be, and how hard life is, I still surround myself with bumper sticker slogans – trying to push myself to continue to aim for the stars, and see every situation as a “glass half full.”
I try so hard to understand everyone, and think that the more I experience in life, the easier that gets.
But, I struggle with understanding people who don’t try to understand others, or who haven’t experiences as much of the open minded world as I have, failing to see all humans with love and compassion.
I get so angry at humanity, wanting us all to get along. Wanting us all to live in harmony and peace, like the Zootopia I want to know and love.
I know that getting angry isn’t the answer, and I know that I must continue to work to understand those who do not understand others.
However, I implore you: Try. Please, for the love of God, try.
Try to make the world a better place.
Try to love every man, regardless of what he has done.
Try to stop fighting, using your religion as your sword or shield.
Try to stop tearing people apart because of their political views.
Try to see past the show that our modern ‘publicized’ world puts on for us.
Live life with all of its challenges and joys and struggles and happiness and pain that it encompasses, remembering that EVERY SINGLE PERSON has their own story. Their own challenges and struggles.
We don’t walk around with a billboard on our foreheads telling everyone what we are dealing with…so you don’t know what everyone is struggling with.
So how can we avoid fighting, killing, harming, torturing, demeaning, and judging one another? EASY. It’s the safe thing to do. The loving thing to do. THE HUMAN THING TO DO.
Be kind. Be understanding. Be non-judgmental towards each of your human brothers and sisters. We are all here together, living in this crazy, messed up world. The sooner we stop fighting with each other, and start FINALLY living out peace, humanity has a chance.
If you’re Catholic, Hindu, Judaist, Muslim, Methodist, Jewish, Agostic, Spritualistic, Islamic, Buddhist, Sikh, Jain, Shiv, Hare Krishna, Vaishnav, Ghandist, Scientific, Swaminarayan – WHATEVER…You are a person.
If you’re Black, White, Indian, Native American, German, Irish, Polish, Australian, Canadian, Mexican, Russian – WHATEVER…You are a person.
If you’re rich, poor, living paycheck to paycheck, waiting till you get your trust fund, or living comfortably – WHATEVER…You are a person.
YOU ARE A PERSON. I AM A PERSON. YOU ARE MY BROTHER. I AM YOUR SISTER. PLEASE, CAN WE TRY? IT’S THE ONLY WAY HUMANITY HAS A CHANCE.