Dropping your kiddies off at the Cineplex isn’t as simple as one might think, at least if you pulled the lever for Sen. John McCain just a few short months ago.
Sure, that 90 minutes of peace and quiet might be bliss for a frazzled parent, but you never know what messages are being sent to your young ones.
Today’s kid-friendly features often warn children about global warming or the evils of the U.S. military.
It’s all part of the entertainment industry’s preferred way of getting its message out. Don’t debate. Lecture. And if you can brainwash the kiddies before they can make up their own minds, all the better.
It’s no surprise that actors often talk politics before hefting their trophy du jour at various award shows. What chance do they have of being challenged during that 90-second span?
But the children should be off base for the industry’s thought police. No such luck.
The latest message blast comes courtesy of Battle for Terra, a 3-D animated feature with the kind of science fiction dazzle sure to draw in the kiddies.
The PG film pits a peaceful alien population versus invading Earthlings. The latter used up all the resources on their own planet and destroyed two others with their war-like ways.
The key villain is — what else? — a very American looking general who quotes from the Bible.
Another recent 3-D animated feature, Monsters vs. Aliens, also blasted the military via a character dubbed Gen. W.R. Monger.
That one might go over the kiddies’ heads, but the other military swipe won’t. The general and his military pals cruelly hold the titular monsters in prison until they’re needed to save the day. All the film needs is to name drop Gitmo and the effect would be complete.
But Monsters vs. Aliens, a generally entertaining 90 minutes, is tame compared to other, recent, kiddie productions.
The popular sequel Ice Age: The Meltdown (2006) revolves around — what else? — global warming. Who cares that, according to liberal dogma, man is responsible for global warming, not a friendly mammoth and his furry pals?
Movie critics like Roger Ebert cheered the Al Gore-approved content.
“If kids have been indifferent to global warming up until now, this Ice Age sequel will change that forever.”
Don’t think that escaped the film’s creative team.
Last year’s highly touted Wall*E, Pixar’s latest animated wonder, delivered a heaping helping of anti-consumer claptrap alongside a robot love story.
Our lonely hero, a trash robot named Wall*E, has been left behind on the garbage dump once known as planet Earth. The planet deteriorated thanks to consumerism gone amok, so young viewers got their capitalistic smack down on top of the usual recycling mantra.
Naturally, the folks behind the movie hoped you’d buy every Wall*E T-shirt, toy and coffee mug, but the hypocrisy of the film’s promotional efforts were likely lost on the young viewers.
The folks behind the movie couldn’t explain away said hypocrisy when a British paper nailed them on their confusing motives.
The liberal-infected children’s fare isn’t limited to the big screen.
Perhaps the worst offender is a new DVD collection called School House Rock: Earth. The original “School House Rock” is a beloved series of cartoon shorts teaching students about Congress, adverbs and other educational staples. Just mention the shorts to anyone between the ages of 35 and 45 and you’ll quickly see a grin appear.
Now, the new batch of “School House” songs sing about carbon footprints. Had the videos stuck to recycling efforts and ways to protect the earth, that wouldn’t be a problem. But given the growing skepticism regarding global warming among intellectually honest scientists, it’s hard to see the videos as anything but propaganda. And it‘s all of it aimed at young minds not equipped to discern what’s true, and what’s hogwash.
You don’t wanna be a “Carbon Sasquatch,” do you kids?
The DVD also rails against buying imported food, another burning issue for today’s preteens.
The cable channel Noggin is also working the liberal beat, preparing bite-sized celebrations for President Barack Obama’s ascension to the White House.
What’s patently obvious is that the channel would likely ignore the historical implications had Gov. Sarah Palin become the first female vice president.
Not to be outdone, Nickelodeon recently bestowed Leonardo DiCaprio with its first Big Green Help award during its annual awards presentation.
The most insidious thing about kiddie propaganda is that children routinely watch their favorite shows and movies again … and again. It’s how developing minds work. They often fixate on a story or show and love nothing more than watching it on an endless loop.
That means the messages within the stories they embrace have a better chance of burrowing in.