The Little Mermaid Controversy – Freedom Philosophy

Little Mermaid, intellectual property

We have pressing issues in the 21st century. Not only are America and Russia reigniting their arms race, Iran and North Korea are also seeking participation in the society of those who have the power to end all life on Earth. Crippling debt threatens to bankrupt NATO countries, and we are slowly drifting toward Marxism – both culturally and economically. We have shifting pigmentation of an imaginary fish creature in a child’s cartoon. There’s a genocide in Northern Yemen, and we must combat a cascading greenhouse gas effect that threatens to end all life as we know it.

One of these things is not like the others – one of these things doesn’t belong.

That people can be incensed over shifting skin pigmentation, or driven to ebullient joy over it, is deeply suspicious to me.

The politically popular thing to do among the left is to articulate what a marvelous accomplishment this is. The politically popular thing to do among the right is to articulate that this is nothing but ostentatious virtue signaling.

I’ve heard it said that we must remain true to the original story. I have a lingering suspicion that this isn’t even a true story – I believe that Hans Christian Andersen made it up. For that matter, the 1992 cartoon took far more creative liberties with the gruesome ending and gave the mermaids far more modest attire than the original story intended.

Further, I haven’t heard similar criticism of ABC’s Once Upon a Time – a show that took extreme liberties in recreating Disney classics. This didn’t rile the emotions of the right.

I’ve even encountered the absurdity of the scientific argument against a mermaid having a dark complexion. The UV radiation exposure to an underwater creature wouldn’t necessitate additional melanin that leads to darkened skin. These same people say very little about sound effects in science fiction that take place in space, even though sound can’t travel in space, let alone the scientific impossibility of a half-human half-fish person. Only when race is involved, do these people feel the need to speak up.

The only fictional animal that concerns me is the proverbial elephant in the room. People aren’t concerned with adherence to the original story or scientific accuracy. They are concerned that the Little Mermaid is black. They could be concerned for ethical reasons, such as this could fuel the passion of racists, or this could encourage counter-racism.

Conversely, the criticism could derive from unethical motivations – the critics could be racists themselves.

There are legitimate race-based problems: There are people who have been shot by an aggressive state officer due to their race, people losing job interviews, college admittance, and scholarships due to their race, Neo-Nazism and White Nationalism are on the rise, and “You’re a white man,” is casually thrown around as an insult among the left. Racial divides are becoming deeper.

Being pedantic over minor issues is discrediting the left and the right. Nothing causes an individual to dismiss a feminist train of thought more thoroughly than when a feminist protests the concept of toys for girls and toys for boys when there’s actual sexual assault taking place within our communities. The notion that the right is incapable of accepting a black mermaid is equally appalling.

The divides are so deep that the slightest overreach is triggering. Debating the irrelevant minutiae when there are serious issues, both within this issue and among others, is a distinct lack of judgment that only furthers the divide and intensifies problematic sentiments.

A black Little Mermaid doesn’t take food off of your plate, government wars, taxation, inflation, and debts do!

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Brandon Kirby

Brandon Kirby has a philosophy degree with the University of New Brunswick. He works for a Cayman Island hedge fund service firm, owns a real estate company, and has been in the financial industry since 2004. He is the director of Being Libertarian - Canada. He is a member of the People’s Party of Canada and the Libertarian Party of Canada.