The Petty Priorities of Society

The Amazon is burning, yet the masses care more if Peter Parker can still be in that multi-million cinematic universe.

Domestic terrorists wreak havoc, yet the masses care more about spicy chicken sandwiches.

Artifacts have been stolen for centuries, yet the masses care about the new T-Swizzle (I use that nickname pejoratively) album.

Police brutality remains unfettered, yet the masses care more about geriatrics trying to relive their action movie careers.

Tariffs are upcoming because of trade wars, yet the masses happily shop for trinkets paycheck by paycheck.

Why are people so petty and stupid? I guess they prefer living in comfortable illusions than the morbid reality around their entitled bubbles.

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3 news cases I have to vent about: Mass Shootings, Cultural Appropriation, and Dehumanization

I wish I wasn’t physically sick today. Over the past few days, I’ve been hearing stories and I just get emotionally sick hearing about these. This world is too cruel and bigoted for it’s own good. I couldn’t just have 3 different posts going on.

1: The mass shootings in El Paso, TX and Dayton, OH

This should be quite obvious since this was big news over the weekend. I wasn’t shocked at what happened. So many people died in two different shootings in El Paso and Dayton by Patrick Crusius and Connor Betts respectively. It’s not surprising at all with who the suspects were and I’m frustrated by how well they treated. When I saw the video of Patrick Crusius being arrested, he was taken alive (OF COURSE!) by only 1 single cop. Apparently he wasn’t in fear of his live for someone who gunned down over 20 people and people have been treated worse for less nationwide let alone in Texas. Oh, I’ll get to that reason why I namedropped that state in particular. When I saw a different video from the African Diaspora News Channel (FKA The Advise Show). Phil talked about the El Paso shooting and said something that really hit me in just four words “Mass murderers have privilege”. Think about that for a minute. How many unarmed Black people get gunned down for far less by the police, yet White killers get taken alive and the cops suddenly don’t feel scared even if the suspect is armed? This is the Injustice system on full display.

2: #TrademarkWars Pt. III AKA Be Prepared…because Disney is suing people because of a foreign phrase!

Disney…STOP GIVING ME REASONS TO BASH YOU REGARDING YOUR RIP-OFF MOVIE!

I swear if that company keeps up with this madness, then I might as well call Ospreyshire’s Realm the Lion King Thievery Expose Blog. As you all know, Disney trademarked the phrase “Hakuna Matata” which sparked outrage on and off the African continent. There’s a petition still going on right now. You should already know my thoughts about this issue. I remember some people being in denial that Disney wouldn’t be stupid enough to sue people despite having legal fiat to do so. It was only a matter of time, but those people would be wrong and I was proven right. You see, Disney is suing a Chinese company for trying to trademark that Swahili phrase, but as “HakunaMatata” in their claim. Here’s more information about that story. Let’s break it down. An American company is suing a Chinese company over a phrase they didn’t invent from a language that isn’t spoken in either place. Now, China wants in on stealing African culture, too. For me, this is like America and China’s predatory business practices in Africa in microcosm. Just look at all the people being exploited by companies from both countries in the continent. You even have Chinese people beating up Ugandan politicians or murdering Namibian employees there and that’s the stuff I know about. I’m sure China wouldn’t like it if Disney trademarked a common phrase like “Xie xie” or “Ni hao” if they did something idiotic to promote the upcoming Mulan live-action remake, and everybody knows it. Lion King fans, I dare you to defend this and the other forms of theft.

#3: A leashed Black man…HOW SHAMEFUL!

Going back to Texas, there was a mentally ill Black man who was apprehended by two cops on horseback and leashed him! If it wasn’t for the cars and fashion, I would’ve thought I saw a real life scene from the 1800s, not 2019. The slave catcher imagery was beyond sick and this goes back to the first news story. You get accused of trespassing (allegedly), then you’ll have two cops leashing you up with horses, but if you slaughter people in the double digits, you get to be arrested with dignity by one cop! This is just beyond sick. I don’t want just an apology for their racist actions, I want those cops involved to be punished and for Donald Neely to sue the police department. America is so freaking bigoted. I’ve dealt with being discriminated firsthand here and that’s something some of you will never deal with in your lives. Name one white person in 2019 who was treated like Donald Neely. Exactly. I can’t ignore the mistreatment of others just because of their race and I hate how demonic people get softer treatment. I’m beyond infuriated as I recover from being sick.

I had to get these things off my chest. This dehumanization needs to stop.

Disney and Beyonce need to stop giving me carte blanche to rant about that stupid rip-off movie franchise and how they rip off stuff again (or CAN YOU FEEL THE HEIST TONIIIIIGHT?)

I’m sorry. I seriously didn’t expect to make a rant involving the best-selling piece of plagiarism in movie history. Okay, I did get a smile on my face how that remake has been getting negative reviews, but I still get frustrated with their fans defending the indefensible.

However, recent situations and discoveries are only proving me right more and more!

Let’s recap on what The Lion King has stolen thus far:

1: Kimba the White Lion. ‘Nuff said.

2: Trademarking the phrase “Hakuna Matata” which is totally cultural appropriation.

3: Withholding royalties from the late South African songwriter Solomon Linda for his song “Mbube” which was plagiarized into “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”. He died penniless and his heirs sued a licensing company and Disney for not giving credit to Mr. Linda and for the royalties which they wouldn’t get until 2006.

Then came a 4th reason and this one involves a music video, the most famous Destiny’s Child member, and a lesser-known South African musician of Congolese and Angolan descent.

So, Beyonce came out with the new music video for “Spirit” which is a song for The Lion King remake. It features imagery of a desert and people wearing blue and red traditional African clothing. Wouldn’t it be crazy if the imagery copied a long-form music video that came out last year? Oh…that actually happened.

Petite Noir is the originator in this story. He made a short film/long-form music video for his “La Maison Noir” EP. I’ve checked out his music and it’s really good. I bought his EP on Bandcamp not just because I liked the music video or his music, but to support a real artist who doesn’t steal from others. He even self-directed his own music video. Want to know the subtitle of it? The Gift and the Curse. HAHAHAHA! Get it? Because that Beyonce vanity project…I mean companion soundtrack is called The Lion King: The Gift! Wow, shame on Beyonce, director Jake Nava, and Disney for stealing someone else’s art. I hope Petite Noir lawyers up and sues all those parties involved.

Disney and Nala…I mean, Beyonce are only proving me right even more that this franchise is a legacy built on artistic larceny. First, Japan, then multiple Swahili-speaking countries, and South Africa TWICE now?! They really have no shame.

I really didn’t want to do a post bashing this movie franchise again, but it was deserved.

Now if you excuse me, I’m going to rock out to Petite Noir’s EP at the moment. Dear Beyhive, your so-called goddess isn’t infallible whether she got Mickey Mouse money or not. Disney fans, your favorite company isn’t innocent.

A Short Rant Poem About Crowned Copycats

No, I have no interest in going to the theater
When alleged creators won’t stand by their thievery
That’s not even getting into coded stereotypes
No thank you, I’m just fine staying away
I know you were trying to troll me
And trying to relive your childhood
How shallow do you have to be by defining your childhood
By a multi-million dollar funded lie?


Okay, the poem’s done, but I had to get this off my chest.

So many people in real life are proving me right. Just saying. SMH.

How I Learned to Utterly Despise that Expensive Ripoff, Overrated, and Bigoted Movie Called The Lion King (And the Existence of Kimba the White Lion Isn’t the Only Reason)

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[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.

They Dreamed of Devastation and Deceit (Circle of Lies)

They claimed that continent was so dark
Not only because of the melanin of their majority
They’ll protect the native creatures
Yet laughing at the deceased bodies and mistreatment
Arousing those who inflict the suffering on millions even before that cursed scramble

They project a utopia of either animals only or having those who look like them walk around or live there
Empire and golden states of minds dictate this false narrative
Assuming they’re not projecting and magnifying poverty, corruption, or war-torn areas
How ironic. Their people and certain others have been moving in

Cobalt, tin, oil, copper
Among numerous others are exploited
An unfair trade to make such an understatement of the decade.

They purposefully ignore smart apartments, luxury hotels, and even locales safer than (supposedly) more “civilized” nations.
Funny how they call themselves nations while others are called tribes
The artifice and constructs of foreign tongues beg to warp minds

A continent where genocides have been afflicted on them where their perpetrators walked off without being behind bars could only be ignored for so long
How tragic is it when all that’s being mailed back are whips, severed skulls from the natives, or maybe artwork when it’s not an empty and insincere apology

So many deluge themselves in the circle of lies to feel euphoric
As they don’t want those with melanin to exist (whether they admit it or not)
They want to see a continent full of strangers like them and only those who look like them
Whatever god they believe in or not, all of them should pray every day that those living there or scattered don’t think like them.

These history books have been silent about these matters. Who ever thought that autodidact endeavors would become useful for unlocking truth when some desire it regardless of the learner’s pigmentation?

While there are issues that can’t be ignored, there is also solace that cameras, books, or online channels don’t dare to show.

#TrademarkWars: Have you no shame, Disney?

I know this is an older story, but I just have to talk about it.

I apologize if this issue is getting old especially for those in the aniblogger community, but holy crap…did Disney have to steal something else especially in regards to The Lion King? Ripping off Kimba the White Lion wasn’t enough for them?

Basically, Disney owns a trademark for the words “Hakuna Matata” which is stupid on so many levels for a common phrase in the Swahili-speaking community in Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, DRC, Uganda, etc.). I also didn’t know that there was a popular song in the 70s that used the phrase in it’s chorus.

Sure, some of you are rolling your eyes to me bashing Disney since I am a former fan of The Lion King. Besides the shameless stealing of Kimba, I couldn’t stand some of the plot holes, the protagonist centered morality of Mufasa, and the racist implications of the hyenas (come on, you don’t think they sounded like ethnic stereotypes?). Not to mention the whole Elephant Graveyard situation is much more disturbing in hindsight when you research things like the Congolese genocide, the Namibian genocide, or the genocides against Native Americans to name a few where people where exiled and starved out at punishment. Makes me wonder if Disney fans see the hyenas as proxies for Black people to be punished at all costs while claiming that company isn’t racist for hiring minorities as some rhetorical dodge for it not being racist (strawman defeated). Please, that’s like saying the porn industry can’t be sexist because they hire women.

The thing isn’t just about trademarking a common Swahili phrase or for me ragging on Disney for their business practices. The bigger picture is cultural appropriation. One other example that Dr. Mumbi gave in the video was Louis Vuitton capitalizing on traditional Masai cloth by giving it the luxury treatment which is idiotic and offensive to me. Culture isn’t some free for all object for people to steal. I would bet you money if someone were to steal stuff from Louis Vuitton or any other big company, then lawsuits would be handed like candy on Halloween. Screw that double standard. If you want to incorporate something like someone’s culture then do it respectfully and pay the price for it.

This trademarking is so shameful on many levels. If you want to sign the petition about this matter, then here’s the link: https://www.change.org/p/the-walt-disney-company-get-disney-to-reverse-their-trademark-of-hakuna-matata

Video is property of Dr. Mumbi Seraki.

Thanks, Terrance! My Fandom Hypocrisy Article Got Some Attention!

This was certainly unexpected.

Some of you may have read my Fandom Hypocrisy rant not too long ago. For those of you who haven’t, then you can check it out right here.

There’s a blogger named Terrance the Crow who saw this article and cross-promoted it on his page and Twitter account. Thanks for showing this article and thanks for the kind words. He’s also been great at highlighting so many people in the blogging community.

Personally, I wasn’t too sure about making that rant at first. I don’t do that many rant posts on my blogs, but there was so much internalized pressure stemming from years of being bullied for what I liked in the past and some stupidity I’ve been seeing online, that I just had to talk about it. I thought I would get bashed a lot, so I was surprised that people actually liked and respected my views on the situation at hand.

Check out Terrance the Crow, everyone!

Fandom Hypocrisy (A Rant)

This has been on my mind for a while, and I need to get this off my chest. I can’t stand various fandoms at times. Whether they are gamers, sports fans, otaku, music buffs, movie fans, comic nerds, bookworms, or whatever, they can get on my nerves.

It’s no wonder why I haven’t been getting into some of my own interests outside of non-fiction or my own creative projects and it’s not just because of how crazy busy my work schedule has been for months now.

I know not all fans are like this and I do support some bloggers who touch on some of those topics, so let me make that clear. However, I’m just frustrated and disillusioned by so many people and how shallow they can be. You have all these major issues going on like racism, the economy, politics, police brutality, homelessness, and other social ills going on, yet people complain about just trivial things with what they like/or don’t like in what they watch/play/listen to.

It also bugs me how people have freaking civil wars over movies, TV shows, or albums as if their whole identity is tied into whatever is to their liking, and that needs to stop. On one hand, you have people who think what they like is immaculate and the creators can do no wrong while freaking out that anyone would DARE dislike or mention some flaws. On the flipside, those same people will bash anything and everything from one creator as if they’re always in the wrong. Whenever someone does mention something like an unfortunate implication or having bad messages, some fans freak out and say “They [the creators] didn’t mean it!” as they try to hand-wave something away. It doesn’t change the fact that those actions were still done and/or could easily be interpreted in that fashion.

I do apologize if I get a bit theological here, but I think some fandoms could be intense enough to be a form of idolatry. Regardless whether you believe in a deity or not, it really becomes ironic. Instead of some Baals or Molochs, you could have someone like a theist replacing their god(s) with let’s say…superheroes, video games, or whatever’s on HBO. For those who aren’t sure about any higher powers out there or believe that said higher powers are fictional, then wouldn’t it be ironic to follow something involving fictional characters like most movies or TV shows and be obsessed with them? I’m not bashing anyone’s worldviews, so let me make that clear. I’m just wondering why and how people do these things or why they can excuse they’re own behaviors.

The level of stupidity and pettiness from these rapid and hypocritical fans has been getting on my nerves. You’re entitled to your opinions, but this self-righteousness needs to stop now. I can’t stand the double standards whether it involves anything revolving around “nerdy stuff” or to something as severe as racism or politics. I suggest to re-examine your thoughts and beliefs to what you like or dislike and figure out why you’re so willing to attack or defend depending on your positions.

Seriously, I can name a few examples of some fandom hypocrisy online and in real life. Allow me to call out some of this facepalm-worthy behavior…

Don’t say that something has too many people dying when you like Game of Thrones, Evangelion, or watch a lot of war movies.

Don’t tell me that such-and-such is a rip-off of so-and-so when you like The Lion King, Inception, or even some of Led Zeppelin’s music.

Don’t tell me that something is too biased politically when you like Last Man Standing, Glee, or you get your news from either MSNBC or Fox News depending on where you stand with your partisan beliefs.

Don’t tell me that something is too violent and bloody while you like Attack on Titan, Mortal Kombat, or a majority of Tarantino flicks.

Don’t bark at me when you think something’s too mainstream when you like St. Vincent (the singer), Bon Iver, or Juno.

Don’t tell me something is childish when you watch anything from Disney or Dreamworks. Actually, one could make a case that adult cartoons like South Park, Family Guy, or Bojack Horseman are juvenile in their own rights.

This needs to end. I know this blog was mainly for my music and spoken word project even though I haven’t recorded a lot lately, but I’m still willing to share my opinions about various things going on. People really need to check their priorities when it comes to what they like and how they live. Thanks for reading and dealing with my frustration.