Tag Archives: respect

5 Classic Films I’m Going to Force My Kids to Watch

Okay, I realize I don’t have kids yet, but I probably will eventually, so bear with me. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the way watching movies have changed. When I was a kid everything was on VHS. You owned a few (or a lot) of movies and you watched those over and over until you could pretty much recite them by heart. If you were lucky, on nights when a friend came for a sleepover, you might get to go to the video store, where you would get to spend hours perusing the shelves for the most interesting-looking VHS. Unfortunately, my kids probably won’t have that experience.

I’m basically being the millennial version of this right now.

Even if there are a few video stores kept alive purely on nostalgia (like the one in Victoria, B.C.), John and I aren’t the kind of people who would bother buying a VHS or DVD player when we could just hook up our computer to a TV. So my kids will probably never have to watch the same show twice (unless they want to or I make them). Between Netflix and YouTube, there is an endless world of movies available. However, rather than let them just watch the newest flashiest shows around, I’ve officially decided I’m going to make them watch the classics with me. Here are a few movies that will be at the top of my list (for this particular list, I’ve decided to leave out cartoons to focus on the live-action films that have stayed with me through the years).

The Princess Bride

When I was a kid I LOVED The Princess Bride. The only thing was, I did not pick up on any of the sarcasm. In my little kid brain it was just this magical tale full of adventure, passion, and rodents of unusual size.

As an adult, I get to go back and laugh at the dry humour peppered throughout.

Yet somehow, even though I now know it’s a comedy, and I can laugh almost the whole way through the movie, the ending still gets me. In fact, I think it’s still one of the most poignant revenge plots I’ve seen.

You all should know how this line ends.

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Michelle Obama, Cultural Norms, and Making A Statement

You should all know by now that I’m one of the last people to be up to speed on current events in the political sphere. Having said that, I do pay attention to the news in my Facebook sidebar, which is how I found out that three days ago Michelle Obama joined her significant other on his trip to Saudi Arabia to pay respects to the recently deceased King Abdullah.

Oh yeah, and she also didn’t wear a head covering of any kind.

Now look, before we really dive into this I should probably remind everyone that being the spouse of a world leader is no cakewalk. To pick just one example out of many, Michelle Obama [referred to by full name to avoid confusion] announced the Best Picture winner at the 2013 Oscars. This prompted Conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin to share that:

“There is a sense of going too far and too much and becoming so ubiquitous that people don’t consider you something special. She is the first lady for goodness sakes. She’s not just a Hollywood celebrity.”

It’s a statement which . . . okay, it’s ridiculous. I would explore that further, especially the comment about the inherent celebrity within the status of POTUS and all related to the person in that role, but I just wanted to illustrate the fact that Michelle Obama is under a lot of scrutiny all of the time about everything. Continue reading

2014’s Cultural Battleground – Kat’s Account

EDITOR’S NOTE: We end this year by each taking a look back and picking our five best posts, explaining both their importance to us and to the world we currently live in.  Clicking the banner images will link you to each post, so as 2014 comes to a close join us in remembering how far we’ve come, but also how far we still have to go.

jianghomeshibannerThe Jian Ghomeshi scandal was a big deal for most Canadians. Ghomeshi felt like someone we all knew, someone who had been a regular presence in our homes (and cars) as long as he had hosting Q on the CBC.

In October, the CBC put pressure on Jian Ghomeshi to go on a leave of absence. Shortly afterwards, he wrote a post on Facebook accusing the CBC of firing him over his preference for rough (but consensual sex). Many fans believed Ghomeshi when he claimed the women who had accused him were liars who just wanted attention.

Given his popularity, I understood why people jumped to defend him when the first few allegations of sexual violence came out, but there was something about his Facebook post that just felt wrong. It seemed unlikely that anyone, much less more than one person, would make a sexual assault accusation just for attention. As I started to do my own research on the topic, I quickly realized that false rape reports are so rare that they are almost non-existent, and that the tendency to believe Ghomeshi over his (at the time) anonymous victims spoke to a much bigger systemic issue.

injusticesystembannerIt’s really hard to care about how terrible our justice system is unless someone close to you has gone through it. In this post, I discuss some of the things I noticed when I visited someone close to me during his stay in jail. Despite firmly believing that this person deserved to go to jail, that experience opened my eyes to the way prison (and the bureaucracies surrounding it) take damaged people and make them ever worse. As someone who works in special education, it made me even more angry to realize just how many of the adults in prison are individuals with special needs.

problemwithpuritybannerThe conversation around the purity movement tends to be very divisive; feminist websites like Jezebel have called it creepy, while many Christian communities staunchly defend the practice. Since I consider myself both a Christian and a feminist, I wrote this post to point out the really great intentions that are (usually) behind the purity movement, while still drawing attention to the damage it can cause.

duckdynastybannerAfter the Duck Dynasty star spoke out against homosexuality and was kicked off his show, my Facebook wall started to fill up with “I support Phil” memes. This made me really, really angry.

Having grown up Evangelical, I understand how many Christians feel they cannot accept homosexuality as something that honours God. Personally, I no longer accept that dogma, but I can understand it. I didn’t even write this post to argue with that branch of theology. I wrote this post because I was furious that Christians are happy to defend a millionaire because he broke his contract and got kicked off his TV show, but are unwilling to acknowledge that homosexuals are being killed and actually persecuted all around the world.

voluntouristbannerI’ve written many posts that address the Christian community. I do this because I still consider myself a member of that community, and I want to call out the issues that I believe are distracting from the message of love we claim to be sharing. Despite my many critiques of the church, some of the most amazing people I’ve known are Christians. I wrote this post about my experience living in a missionary community in Niger, where I was surrounded by people who I truly respect.

This post also addresses “voluntourism”, since my own selfish motivation to move overseas was something I felt personally convicted about during my stay in Africa. Recently, however, the discussion of the voluntourism trend has made westerners afraid to express interest in foreign aide at all. I believe both extremes can be damaging to international relationships.


Looking back, it’s sometimes scary to think about how much I have shared with you guys. It’s always a vulnerable step to publicize our personal opinions, it’s even more so with details about our personal lives. Intimidating as it can be, I’ve loved how many amazing discussions the blog has opened up in my life. Your comments (in person and online) have helped me reevaluate my own biases, and challenged me to think more deeply about the social, religious, and political issues we love to debate here at Culture War Reporters.

So here’s to a fantastic year. I can’t wait to see what the next one brings.

– Kat

Shame Day: Sexual Harassment, Corruption and Bullying in the RCMP

Before I begin this post, I want to be clear that I have the utmost respect for the individuals who put their lives on the line to protect their fellow Canadians. As we know from the recent Moncton shootings, working for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) can be dangerous and, sometimes, devastating work.

Unfortunately, the RCMP is also a fallible organization. No matter how great intentions may be, things are bound to go wrong when there isn’t enough accountability. Lately the media and the RCMP itself have been looking into just what can and has been going wrong. It’s pretty disconcerting, and I’ve outlined three of the major issues for you below. Continue reading

David Goyer is the Worst, And We’re On A Break

So this post could be the logical continuation of my Shame Day post on Akira, which focused on Hollywood’s complete lack of respect for a film they’re looking to remake. David Goyer, a man I already cared very little for as a screenwriter, said some disparaging things about She-Hulk in a podcast [which from my understanding has since been edited somewhat]. He went on, however, to insult comic book fans everywhere, with the words:

“How many people in the audience have heard of Martian Manhunter?”

<pause>

“How many people that raised their hands have ever been laid?”

I could certainly delve into this much more, but Chris Sims over at ComicsAlliance already has, and done so quite well. Check out what he has to say, because he smartly points out that the one who just said these things has a hand in the future of DC’s cinematic universe. I’ll bring everything concerning that terrible man to a close with the following two panels-

shulkienotimpressed

Anyway, as the title of this post would suggest, I have some blog news for you all. Continue reading

Culture War Correspondence: Are Animals People Too?

GORDON: Ladies, gentlemen, and yes, even dolphins and certain species of ape- we’re considering bestowing upon you honorary personhood, despite the poo flinging.

The topic of the day is animal rights- how far is not enough?

EVAN: This topic was brought up by reader/friend Stew, presumably due to recent happenings regarding legal action taken to protect the rights of animals with higher-order cognitive abilities [great apes, certain cetaceans, elephants, African grey parrots].

Not animal rights, though. Actual human rights.

GORDON: Exactly how that’d work with free speech is kinda lost on me, though we’d be able to apply bear arms in a new sense.

And before everyone jumps on me for using that pun, hear me out-

We’re happy to bestow these rights on animals with high reasoning abilities- but would they do the same for us? I don’t want to play devil’s advocate right out of the gate, but there seems to be a fundamental difference in human understanding of rights and the views of dolphins and monkeys, both of whom not only kill without much thought or grief, but have been recorded performing sexual attacks (ok, not dolphins, it turns out) and flippin’ genocide on members of their own species.

Yep, genocide.

Continue reading

Caring About Staring

At the risk of having my Friday posts sound like pleas for others to drop some of their well-thought-out opinions on me, I’ve recently been struggling with yet another issue.

I’m going to introduce it by letting you watch the video below [you don’t have to see the whole thing], which I shared on the blog’s Facebook page almost exactly a month ago:

The question I posed to fans of the page was what the actual point of it was. I mean, yes, it’s pretty funny witnessing how flustered guys got, but why exactly? Is the humour in that they were caught staring, or in that their expectations were subverted? If it’s the latter then the discussion becomes one of whether or not their collective gaze was not only normal, but logical. Continue reading