A lot of stress has been building up over the past couple of weeks. I’ve been working a lot, but I’ve had little time to decompress. I had feelings of depression and anxiety a ton recently. While it was good seeing some encouraging messages from people for situations irrelevant to my blog for different reasons, I still feel like I’m just a failure. My content on here hasn’t been up to par, I am struggling with material on here, and I think a ton of my projects are just going to be doomed to fail. Sometimes I wonder why I even both with this kind of stuff on here. I’ve also been angry as I realize how much more I’ve been manipulated and gaslighted. Being silenced all this time has enraged me and I realized that not everything was my fault or I wasn’t wrong all the time. It sickens me how people want to cling onto toxic positivity and ignore reality. It was like I wasn’t allowed to have an opinion or to speak truth to others. I wondered if others got or still get uncomfortable when I mention some of these things that aren’t popular or positive. Someone like me doesn’t have the privilege for that kind of convenience. That’s not even getting into the deluge of hypocrisy I’m seeing both offline and online from various people or some random things I managed to catch on TV. It is beyond frustrating seeing people get away with crap that is wrong as well as something I would NEVER get a free pass for if I was a jerk or straight up heinous. I don’t want to pretend that everything is alright because I’m struggling with my mental health. I don’t know how consistent I will be with posting things on this blog. Don’t get it twisted. I’m not asking for sympathy or fishing for compliments. I just had to get some of these emotions out of my chest. God, I feel like damaged goods.
I know I haven’t posted as frequently as I typically do, but I wanted to share some information.
Some of you know about the story of the baby Kyanni Williams who got a massive scar on her face after being born during an emergency C-section which was horrific. It’s healing up more, but it is still visible. Her family has a GoFundMe page to cover legal and medical costs and they just surpassed their goal of $10000. This is good news for them and I hope people can keep donating to that cause because no baby deserves to be born like that. I hope the Williams family can sue the doctors and be able to take any medical steps necessary to make sure that their little baby’s face is fully recovered.
This is something completely different, but I’m happy that my dad is another year older. He’s been a great parent for me and I’m glad to have the opportunity to celebrate his special day. Happy Birthday, Dad! May you have a very blessed day today!
This topic has been on my mind for weeks. I know I wrote a poem based on that subject. Yes, I know there are worse issues going on right now in the world and this isn’t me ignoring them. Something about the concept of fandom shaming has grabbed my attention with how it affected me years ago. I’ve been fandom shamed for liking anime, independent music (sometimes for specific bands or singers), and even superheroes at one point like how I used to play HeroClix during my teens. I had the toughest time making counterarguments to the people who insulted me. Maybe this was me taking the high road or maybe I was so stupid and naive to have a comeback towards those fools. It also frustrated me when other people like other things, but never get insulted. I’m not just talking about “acceptable” fandoms like sports, shoes, cars, etc., but for certain bands/singers, movies, or games out there.
I have some questions for you because I feel like I’m the only person in the world who gets fandom shamed.
Have you ever been fandom shamed? If so, what was it for?
Have you ever fandom shamed someone? If so, what was it that the other person liked?
How do you deal with being fandom shamed if it happened to you?
April has been insanely busy for me, but I’m back here. I hope you’re all doing alright.
This was a productive month for me, but at the same time I was trying to deal with things involving my own mental well-being especially as more revelations came to me unexpectedly after doing some learning that indirectly affected me (it’s a really long story).
I was focused on certain things and the big one is Camp NaNoWriMo which I completed the word count earlier this week which was good. The other creative things I did were on hold because that takes a ton of dedication.
There were some peaks and valleys over the month which I dealt with. Some good things happened and some infuriating things happened. Sometimes it did get a bit isolating, but it’s 2021 so I think people are used to it by now given last year obviously. However, it was good hearing from people I know online as well as some other bloggers I follow. It was also cool getting exposed to new international films, listening to some international music, and even checking out some fun travel vlogs including one from a country I would’ve never expected from despite never traveling at all recently due to COVID-world.
Of course, that’s not going into the real life current events because I would’ve had so much to say and I was trying not to make my blood boil hearing some of these things. I don’t have to go into too much detail with the things that got a ton of attention or the ones more obscured from both a local and an international standpoint. Well, at least I can say that more people are becoming aware and there’s actually some semblance of accountability going on.
Anyways, sorry for rambling a bit. Sorry I don’t have the typical poems or creative works over here. Hope you’re all safe and well.
Happy blogiversary to me!
I have been dealing with a lot of stuff from work as well as trying deal with negative emotions going on, so this was a good thing that put a smile on my face. I forgot I started this blog this time 4 years ago right before I released my first Ospreyshire EP back then. Of course, everything snowballed into making more blogs with different subjects. I met some fantastic bloggers along the way off all interests, ethnic groups, creeds, and walks of life which has been great. I’ve had powerful conversations, had fun posting comments, providing content on my blogs, and others things. Sure, I’ve had my ups and downs these past 4 years (truth be told, I’m still dealing with some of my own issues), but seeing some constant support did give me some hope. Some of you were friends to me when I didn’t talk to anyone.
Thank you for being a part of this creative journey with blogging, music, poetry, opinions, art, and other things.
I’m almost there to finish this full-length album.
I’m recording the fourth-to-last song on this project and it has been fun. Singing in Swahili and Japanese for that song was really exhilarating (most of that song is in English though). Adding as many musical elements has been a worthy challenge which is the opposite of my more minimalist approach. The other songs I worked on were and acapella track and a bit of a psychedelic spoken word number. I’m really looking forward to completing this gigantic album of sorts. There’s going to be over 40 songs confirmed for it. Just sayin’.
I guess putting in that blogging work on this page has done something right. After almost 3 years of existence, I now have over 6000 views on Ospreyshire’s Realm! This year, I’ve gotten a lot better at posting more consistently and on a schedule most of the time. I can see how that is working. I also feel that people care more about my music which was the main reason why this blog existed to begin with, my poetry has been getting attention, and others have been responding to whatever news story or opinion piece I’ve been posting on here. This year, some of my opinion pieces have been the most honest and hard-hitting. It’s a miracle bloggers want to check out my works.
Thank you for following me on this blogging journey!
[Warning: This post contains a very contrary opinion to most people and will contain controversial content. Read at your own peril]
I’m sure some of you are probably sick of me at this point bashing this Disney movie if you’ve read earlier posts on this blog or saw certain reviews on Iridium Eye. I’m not sorry for what I’m about to say on here. This frustration has been building up for the past couple of weeks and it’s something I need to vent about on this blog of all things regardless if people agree with this post or not.
[sigh] Here we go.
For starters, I didn’t always hate The Lion King. If anything, it used to be one of my favorite Disney movies when I was a kid. This is going to partially give away my age, but I saw that movie during it’s first theatrical run when I was very little. I even saw the stage adaptation in Chicago at the Cadillac Theatre when I was a bit older. One of my favorite soundtracks back then was the “Rhythm of the Pride Lands” which was the companion soundtrack and it was also the first time the song “He Lives In You” was used. Not Lion King II or the Broadway version. I saw the original VHS tape probably a hundred times during my childhood. I used to know the words to most of the songs way back when. However, I stopped paying attention to Disney during my teenage years because I was really into anime. Okay, I still like Japanese animation, but I was nowhere near as much of an otaku as I was when I was in high school.
It was also around this time when I first heard about Kimba the White Lion. I heard that The Lion King ripped it off, but I thought it was shallow with just the main characters. Flash forward to my adult life when I saw a Cracked article involving childhood icons you didn’t know were shameless rip-offs, and the memories came back again. This piqued my interest, did more research and started to rent the DVDs on Netflix after Kimba stopped airing on Hulu (Disney is a partial owner of that site, so I don’t know if it was because of them or not). While it has it’s issues and has aged animation since it was made in the 60s, I enjoyed that anime for it’s usage of subject matter, originality, and seeing how much Disney stole from it. If you don’t believe me, check out this link. I couldn’t believe the scenes of Caesar (AKA Original Mufasa) consoling Kimba from the beyond in the night sky. I couldn’t believe the scene where the villainess Belladonna tried to kill Kimba by pushing him off a cliff. I couldn’t believe one of the major villains (Claw) just happened to be a scarred lion usurper with a black mane, dark fur, and had hyena henchmen with him. Every character not named Timon and Pumbaa in that movie is a copy of someone from Tezuka’s manga/anime series. Seriously, shame on Disney for stealing from this classic anime and for trying to block the Jungle Emperor Leo ’97 movie from North America. Trust me, you won’t be looking at The Lion King the same way again once you see the obvious similarities. I can’t see how any sane person could watch Kimba and not think that no one from Disney saw this. Why does The Lion King get a free pass in plagiarism when other media like Yuki Yuna is a Hero gets lambasted for having similarities to Madoka? You know if the situation was reversed, then all you Lion King fans would scream bloody murder that your favorite movie got plagiarized by a foreign (majority non-White) country if Kimba came afterwards. It would be amazing if Disney admitting to stealing from Tezuka’s creation, paid royalties to them, or got epic backlash for their thievery, but I know that will never happen because wishes never come true.
This segues into my next point. I wasn’t aware of this as a child, but growing up, I realized how racist the implications were with the hyenas. Have you not listened to how they talk? They straight up talk in stereotypical African-American Ebonics (Shenzi) and an exaggerated Mexican accent (Banzai). What ticks me off is when Disney fans don’t call their depiction racist or handwave it because you have Black cast members voicing some of the heroic lions namely James Earl Jones playing Mufasa. No, just because you have Black people playing both sides of the good/evil paradigm, it doesn’t make it bigotry-free. It’s the equivalent of a racist claiming they have a Black best friend or family members to prove they aren’t racist. That or saying slave owners can’t be racist because they have Black people around them. Let’s not forget Disney has a history with using animal characters as POC proxies with racist undertones. Look at the crows in Dumbo and the lead one’s name was JIM! You know, like the same laws in America that involved having enforced segregation, lynchings, or it being legal for White people to rape African-Americans? There’s also Siamese cats talking in broken English in Lady and the Tramp, Aristocats, and even an episode of Chip & Dale: Rescue Rangers for crying out loud. You could even throw in Tito from Oliver & Company as a slap against the Latino community. Coincidentally enough, Cheech Marin would voice both Tito and Banzai in his voice acting career. Is this why so many Americans falsely assume that Black people let alone other ethnic groups act like the hyenas all the time? If you think so, then you need your head examined and we should question if you’re a bigot.
Extending onto that point is how the hyenas were treated with the Elephant Graveyard. Besides the name being a blatant carbon copy of the place in Kimba where the animals had to rescue Roger Ranger in one of the later episodes, I found the place to be disturbing, but not for the same reasons as it was portrayed in the movie. As an adult, I had this realization that this punishment against those animals involved isolating the hyenas in a barren wasteland and they’re forced to starve. It hit me when I researched lesser-known aspects of history: Mufasa was committing genocide against them and I was sickened by it. Scar did bad things, but his big brother is not much better if you really think about it; he’s just applauded for his actions. If you think I’m being crazy, then maybe you should read up on the Congolese Genocide under King Leopold II or the Namibian Genocide by Germany’s 2nd Reich. The former had a body count of 10 MILLION Congolese and Leopold never got punished for it. If you take away the hand chopping, guns, and mass rape, then it would be the same thing. The latter had a concentration camp called Shark Island where the Germans starved out the Herero and Nama tribes and there was a valley of bones left behind. By the way, one of the perpetrators was General Franz Ritter von Epp who would eventually employ Adolf Hitler and Hitler said he was influenced by this general. LET THAT SINK IN! It’s as if the animators were aroused by putting anti-Black racism with that act as they believe melanated people don’t belong in their circle of life. Come on, if those hyenas talked in Yiddish accents instead of stereotypical Black and Latino accents, then the ADL would’ve thrashed Mickey Mouse in a heartbeat and everybody knows this. But because it’s happening to the bad guys and because they talk in a racially-coded way, it’s somehow justified in the animators’ and fans’ eyes. No, that’s protagonist centered morality on Mufasa’s part (saying nothing how that punishment contradicts his circle of life speech), and it’s propaganda in a form of G-rated White Supremacy. In my adulthood, I’ve seriously pondered if White people actually saw me as one of those hyenas in the past before. I’ve been discriminated against, so I wouldn’t put it past them. It’s hard to watch that knowing about the genocides against Black people, the 1994 crime bill which overloaded the prison-industrial complex (while being soft on Caucasian offenders, let’s be honest), Apartheid South Africa, and gentrification to name a few things to punish them. Do you enjoy Black people or any other POC group getting punished or afflicted at all costs and is The Lion King your film of choice of vicariously having that joy in a supposedly “innocent” way? Are you more offended by me pointing out the racist implications of this Disney movie than the millions of dead bodies from those aforementioned genocides let alone other atrocities?
Let’s also talk about the depiction of Africa. There are no humans in it! Was there some extinction of Africans before the beginning of the story? Disney sucks at this fact and Tarzan is another example of this when that continent is shown without Black people. So people who look like me and darker shouldn’t be seen? Is this a wish fulfillment about depopulating Africa in animated form? Think about it. They wouldn’t try it with Europe or America. Even if they do have furry characters (don’t lie. furries love The Lion King and you all know this. Also, how come that movie doesn’t get called a furry film with all the anthropomorphic stuff in it?), they make them upright, clothed and human-like in attitude like Zootopia or DuckTales for example. Are they insinuating that Africa should just be one giant savanna or natural utopia without the humans who would live in that part of the world? If not, then they’ll show it as one big piece of poverty porn and/or a giant war zone. It’s as if the animals are treated with dignity if something happens to them than the humans who live there. Cecil the lion? I rest my case. Screw stereotypes. Those furries and their sick fantasies can go away.
Those are some of my main points that have angered me. Disney needs a moral overhaul. Was it enough to steal from a 60s Japanese anime and from millions of Swahili-speaking Africans by trademarking “Hakuna Matata”? I could go on about the plot holes such as the Nala incest theory, how much that movie ripped off Kimba, how heredity monarchy is not always a good thing, how that movie isn’t that deep/meaningful, or how The Lion King or it’s fanbase avoids being called furries when other movies get labeled as such, but I think you get the point. Even I’ve had enough from defenders of this movie franchise and for people trying to shame me not liking that film, let alone bullying me for my ethnic background or even what media I like. You’re only proving me right that way. It sickens me how there’s that remake coming out (it’s not live action, people. it’s just realistic looking CGI) and for people making fun of me for not liking it anymore. You all have no right to moralize to me especially with all the things that have happened in American history let alone what happened to the African diaspora. I’m not saying you’re automatically evil if you’re White since that would be very stupid of me to insinuate that of one’s skin color. Spare me from your attempts of putting words in my mouth or for strawmanning my arguments. What I am saying is that you shouldn’t take movies at face value and assume everything is innocent just because it’s family-friendly from a content standpoint. For one, I’ve become offended the more I’ve learned about history, part of my culture, and with storytelling techniques. I’m sick and tired of being a scapegoat because of the color of my skin and my heritage. I would never even imagine doing the things done to my ancestors to anyone regardless of race. Not everyone is going to like what I typed, nor am I begging people to like it.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to listen to real artists from the continent instead of that artificial crap from Hans Zimmer and Elton John.
All images and videos are property of their respective owners and used under US “Fair Use” laws.
The fan art is property of WhiteLionWarrior at DeviantArt.
Kimba is property of Kimba the White Lion and Tezuka Productions.
Simba is property of The Lion King and Disney.
I reblogged this post from Dr. Y’s Afro Legends blog which is so true that I just had to post it on here. Dr. Y is an awesome blogger and person who taught me a lot about African history and cultures that they NEVER teach you in school (at least here in America or the West as a whole.
That quote from Miriam Makeba is inarguable with how Western mainstream media treats the continent. At best it takes place in a fictional country that no one will ever visit (see: Wakanda in Black Panther). At worst, the whole continent is either war-torn, super poor, and uncivilized.
The Tarzan example is spot on. Granted, I’m more familiar with the Disney version, but it only proves my point since that company was too cowardly to put any Black characters in that film. That and having a certain other movie which has no humans at all also proves Makeba’s point (**cough** The Lion King **cough**). It’s as if Hollywood sees Africa as either a giant zoo, some conflict-torn continent, or a place where they can get their rocks off by exterminating Black people offscreen in their movies much like aforementioned Disney movie examples.
Thank for sharing, Dr. Y!
“People in the United States [the West] still have a ‘Tarzan’ movie view of Africa. That’s because in the movies all you see are jungles and animals . . . We [too] watch television and listen to the radio and go to dances and fall in love.” Miriam Makeba