Published on May 3rd, 2016 | by Zoe Simmons1
Disney, ignore the bigots: #GiveElsaAGirlfriend already
Disclaimer: the views expressed in this post are of the author’s alone and do not reflect the views of the Tertangala or the University of Wollongong.
Thousands have been campaigning for Disney to #GiveElsaAGirlfriend for the second instalment of Frozen, which would make Queen Elsa the first openly gay female character in Disney’s history. Why is this important? You may ask—an excellent question. Let me first assure you that it is exceptionally important.
Consider our society, and the notion that being straight is the norm. Therefore, anything that differs from the norm—like homosexuality—is against the norm; it is other. This classification renders homosexuality instantly as lesser, and justifies the norm in oppressing the so called “lesser”.
Homosexuals are therefore rendered as second-class citizens. We can see this view clearly through the lack of legal recognition for same-sex marriage in Australia, yet we like to think of ourselves as a just and fair society. So, the LGBTQIA+ society is equal, but not quite. Having a major company like Disney normalise homosexuality would be a massive step in the right direction towards equality, as well as encourage society to not see being gay as being different or wrong.
Think of the hundreds and thousands of children growing up who think the way they feel is wrong. They try to hide it, for fear of judgement. It took seventeen years for someone very close to me to come out as gay—and even then, she faced judgement and anger from her own family members.
We like to think we’re a fair and just society. But the reactions to #GiveElsaAGirlfriend show that we’re clearly not. A few seconds browsing the comments of the Today Show Facebook post clearly reveals this.
Children don’t “need to be exposed”? This language insinuates that homosexuality is a bad thing we shouldn’t be exposed to—because god forbid anyone dares to differ from the norm. This is akin to people saying “I’m not racist, but . . .” and proceeding to make a racist comment. Yes, you are racist. And yes, if you do harbour these views, you are homophobic and part of the problem.
Stop shoving homosexuality down people’s throats? Oh, you mean like how heterosexuality is currently shoved down people’s throats by assuming it’s the norm? Newsflash: people are born the way they are—and it’s only through bigoted people like this that questioning young people hide their sexuality out of fear. It’s why members of the LGBTQIA+ community are 14 times more likely to take their own lives. It’s why up to 84% of trans people have thought about taking their own lives, and about 50% have tried. But it’s just your opinion, right? And you’re entitled to have it? And your opinions by no means perpetuate the harm and prosecution the LGBTQIA+ community face, right?
Is being gay the worst thing a child can be? I’d much rather be gay than be a bigoted asshole. Let me make this clear for you: there is nothing wrong with being gay. Stop your malicious words that tells people who are questioning—or embracing—their sexuality that they are wrong, bad or lesser. You think members of the LGBTQIA+ community are equal? Think again.
Disney, please ignore the bigots. Just #GiveElsaAGirlfriend already. Because by normalising homosexuality, we begin to dissect and dissipate harmful and homophobic conceptions of sexuality. And please remember, if you’re a member of the privileged group in society, unless you’re defending the voices of the oppressed, your opinion literally doesn’t matter. Spread love, not hate, Australia.
Do you think Disney should let homophobia go and give Elsa a girlfriend? Let us know in the comments.