Tuesday, November 23, 2010

"It gets better"

46 comments:

Kevin Koch said...

Beautifully done, and very effective. My hat's off to Pixar, and especially to the many people who went on camera and spoke so movingly. You rock!

Anonymous said...

The recent It Gets Better campaign was in response to gay teen-bullying suicides--
And while I'm not trying to be intolerant, am I the only ex-Charlie Brown who's really, really bothered that just about ALL the Anti-Bullying PSA movements in the last few months have tunnel-visioned themselves in response to gay issues?

I'm glad the most high-profile victims could get themselves organized, but where do the straight kids who just don't happen to be good at PE class go for support or assistance, without getting a similar public "taint", just because one particular sub-group happens to be getting things in motion for their own needs?--Identity is hard enough in junior or senior high, and for a book-dumped teen to get the notion that he's "probably" gay because only gay teens are bullied or only gays sticks together against bullying, is not the intended side effect you want to see happen.
It's an issue that affects EVERYBODY, and having a special skybox "clubhouse" for one social group within the issue not only comes off as a little unintentionally selfish, but may end up causing a lot more harm than good.

Kevin Koch said...

I see this as a specific response to a specific issue. I was a skinny, nerdy egg head who got bullied until I finally pushed back in the 8th grade, so I know how terrible the issue can be for straight kids, too. But the idea that anyone would extrapolate from videos like this that ONLY gay kids get bullied, or that most people who are bullied are secretly gay, is a stretch. Frankly, that thought never entered my head as I watched this.

It's pretty rare that straight nerdy kids get beaten to death, or disowned by their families and friends, or get harassed to the point of being suicidal. I got threatened, I got pushed around, but I was never really harmed, now was I thwarted in pursing my own identity. On the other hand, my gay sister once got punched in the face in the hallway of junior high school, and lived in fear of being outed until she was well into college. That ain't no 'skybox clubhouse' that ANYONE wants to be in.

Kevin Koch said...

That should read: "... nor was I thwarted ..."

Anonymous said...

I agree with Anon#1... bullying is bullying regardless of the reasons its inflicted on people.
I'm very happy that this issue has taken the spotlight, but I feel as though the main ingredient to bullying - bad parenting - isn't being hit upon with nearly enough vigor.
Bullies are created by parents who are either bullies themselves or absent from their kids' lives and they should be held responsible.
I'm 100% in favor of the 'it gets better, hang in there' philosophy, but along with that we need to start saying 'Hey, shitty parents - you are going to be held accountable if you raise shitty kids who torment others.'

Anonymous said...

I agree with Kevin. To the 2 Anonymouses, maybe you should sit this one out.

Anonymous said...

There's nothing to stop former victims of bullying from starting a similar campaign. I think that would be awesome. But to criticize the 'It Gets Better' campaign for being, I don't know, elitist or selfish or not sufficiently inclusive reminds me of of people driving by a freeway accident and criticizing the paramedics for not doing a better job.

Lead, follow, or get out of the way.

Anonymous said...

First off: this is a moving PSA. Well done.

But I agree with the anonymouses in their points as well. And I definitely don't think they should "sit this one out" at all.

If I recall correctly there was a case of a girl in Boston killing herself because of bullying. She was straight. To suggest that it's MORE serious to be bullied if one is a gay child as opposed to a "straight" one, is indeed kind of disappointing, as it's too bad this PSA, cool as it is that it was done, doesn't include ALL of the people, gay AND STRAIGHT, who BOTH need to hear that "it gets better".

I'm straight, and I was punched, kicked, bullied and otherwise harrassed in 7th grade. Who wasn't? Do most gay-identified kids who are harrassed kill themselves? No more than straight ones who are harassed do imo. But the bottom line is it IS serious--and it's also that this campaign is not targeted only to gay kids.

Maybe the studio is going to do one for all children, not just gay ones. Who knows. But while it's good, important and powerful, it could have been even better.

Anonymous said...

I'm waiting for the PSA from Pixar that includes fat kids that wear Hawaiian shirts that get bullied...

Anonymous said...

But the idea that anyone would extrapolate from videos like this that ONLY gay kids get bullied, or that most people who are bullied are secretly gay, is a stretch. Frankly, that thought never entered my head as I watched this.

I've seen the conservative Right speaking out against schools doing too much anti-bully counseling, BECAUSE they'd gotten it into their heads that promoting Anti-Bullying was somehow a front for promoting Gay Tolerance, as if the two issues were one and the same--That's how much the public stereotype is taking hold, when even the opposition believes it too.

In suggesting that the two groups of victims come together on one issue, I'm recalling the time that Jewish activists became some of the most active supporters of 60's black civil rights, because they also knew what it was like to be socially persecuted--You'd think gays and straights would be similarly be able to unite their differences or their self-interests on the same basic human-rights front...But as you can see from even the most well-meaning PSA, it doesn't take long for the discussion to turn from "Why I was picked on in high school" to "The day I found the courage to Come Out". Maybe we don't want to hear about the day you came Out, we want to hear about how you were picked on and what you could or couldn't do about it--That's why the issue is for every human being.

Bullies are created by parents who are either bullies themselves or absent from their kids' lives and they should be held responsible.
I'm 100% in favor of the 'it gets better, hang in there' philosophy, but along with that we need to start saying 'Hey, shitty parents - you are going to be held accountable if you raise shitty kids who torment others.


Again, I'm glad gays can support their issue, but either it's everyone's issue or it's their specific one, choose one public face:
I'd compare it to the statistic that there are as 50-50 many male victims of prostate cancer each year as female victims of breast cancer...And yet prostate cancer research receives less than a fraction of the charity funds that breast cancer does, simply because The View and Lifetime Network can get their victims "organized" on a "misunderstood" social issue, and men, trusting in traditional channels, can't get themselves organized on the same soapbox--Does one set of victims find a cure and the other doesn't, simply because one knew how to get better press? Or do we stop playing Martyr Club long enough to find what we all have in common?

Anonymous said...

Anon@3:00: he used to be skinny.

Anonymous said...

To suggest that it's MORE serious to be bullied if one is a gay child as opposed to a "straight" one, is indeed kind of disappointing

Thats just it: no one is suggesting that. Hence, sit down and shut it.

I find your suggestion that the unintentional omission of any and all non-homosexual bullying implies that only gay bashing is deserving of a "it gets better" video guilty of complaining for complaining's sake.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 3:06

Stop telling people to shut up you bully!

Anonymous said...

*kills self*

Ed said...

Do most gay-identified kids who are harrassed kill themselves? No more than straight ones who are harassed do imo.

There is considerable data to show that gay teens are far more likely to commit suicide than straight teens. I think that's why this campaign has a direct focus--gay bullying has a substantive consequence demonstrably more serious than "regular" bullying.

But hey--no one's stopping you. If you feel non-gay bullying is serious enough to warrant a concerted youtube campaign, go for it! You have my complete support!

Cody S. said...

Perhaps I just read it wrong when watching this video - but it seemed to me that 'Bullying' really wasn't the topic of focus. Instead it just seems to me like they were reaching out to gay and/or questioning youth who may be struggling with the way they fit into the world.

In my eyes, it not an 'anti-bullying' PSA, so much as it's a a message specifically targeted towards a particular demographic that is both in the media spotlight (as per recent events) and statistically at higher risk of endangering their lives due to way the topic is addressed by the nation/world at large.

I don't feel like it's pretending anybody's life (Straight, Gay, etc) is any more or less important than another's. It's just MADE for a certain group of people - by folks who are a part of that group and want to reach out.

Anonymous said...

This is a white straight-man's world. Demand is for entertainment that exploits ass and tits and cheeks and thighs. Nothing is going to change that. And they will always feel threatened by being pursued by one of their own sex. Or even being looked at more than they like to be. We are here and we are going to get them and shove it down their throats at the point of __________.

Anonymous said...

Yawn. More Hollywood posing and crusading. Pixar has finally jumped the shark.

Anonymous said...

Yes, it's "MADE for a certain group of people". To quote from the website's main page, it's for gay/bi/trans and other bullied teens.

Is it really an awful suggestion that it might actually HELP gay/trans/bi kids' problems with bullying if they are grouped with straight kids who are also bullied for whatever stupid, meanspirited and nasty reasons?

Also, please link to the data that proves gay teens are "far more likely to commit suicide". Are you stating that of all the under 18s/kids who commit suicide, the vast majority are gay?

I'd like to see an end to ANY tolerance for bullying for ANY reason. Teens are horribly vulnerable. Particularly girls.

No one above suggested that the PSA was anything but a good idea. To tell anyone who comments on its social meanings/context to sit down and shut up is not exactly in favor of any kind of honest, open discussion. In fact it's PC bandwagonning at its most annoying.

Anonymous said...

Whatever makes you feel better. You call it open, honest discussion, I call it complaining and distracting from the point. Get over it.

Anonymous said...

5:03:
Yes, what makes me feel better, is when I get over and conquer you.

Anonymous said...

I've seen the conservative Right speaking out against schools doing too much anti-bully counseling, BECAUSE they'd gotten it into their heads that promoting Anti-Bullying was somehow a front for promoting Gay Tolerance

This is further evidence that the conservative Right populated by intolerant boobs. It is not evidence that gay adults should stop being encouraging to gay youths.

Anonymous said...

Whatever makes you feel better. You call it open, honest discussion, I call it complaining and distracting from the point. Get over it.

"Get over it"? Someone clearly hasn't left the schoolyard.

Reading exactly what you want to read in a reasoned comment, ignoring the rest, only wanting to read and breathe in an echo chamber?

YOU should get over it, knee-jerker. Although apparently you never will.

Anonymous said...

Is this going to play in front of Pixar's films in addition to the web?

Anonymous said...

Is this going to play in front of Pixar's films in addition to the web?

(Well, Disney could try playing it on the Blu-ray for "Lion King"...Maybe then we wouldn't pick on Scar so much.) ;)

Anonymous said...

Anyone trying to turn this in to some "political" statement is CORRECT. Gay people aren't looking for "special rights." They're looking for the SAME CIVIL RIGHTS guaranteed under the Constitution as everyone. We THANKFULLY do not live in a theocracy--no matter how the gNOp teabaggers keep trying to legislate their brand of "morality." It's a shell game to keep people from paying attention to how much they're working to RUIN this country.

We live in a CIVIL Society, and American Citizens shouldn't be defined by their sexuality. I sure wish the gNOp and religious wingnuts would respect the Constitution enough to stop trying to do so.

Brilliant video. Thank you, Pixar.

Anonymous said...

Know what, you're right. You changed my mind. I think this video, while nice, should be for everyone, not just gay people. They dont deserve to have their own video. Its reverse prejudice, I say!

*rolls eyes*

Anonymous said...

We are not the "United" States as long as the homo-fag-haters succeed in keeping civil rights of gays a state-by-state decision. Diddo on the institution of marrraige.
The day we get our way is the day we see some pretty outrageous displays meant to fix their wagon-wheel good and hard.

Anonymous said...

Having read all the comments, I conclude that those who are seemingly upset that the video is about anti-gay bullying rather than general bullying are trying to conceal their own anti-gay sentiments within a deceptive cloak of disingenuous concern.

The makers of these videos have been upfront that their concern is gay suicides. If you have concerns of general bullying, I have heard little to no voicing of that concern prior to this. Now you're trying to hijack these videos to thwart their message.

Make your own videos.

Anonymous said...

Like Cody, I didn't see this as an anti-bullying message.I didn't realize that was the topic until after watching it, and then noticing the context.
I still thought it well done and important as a message to young gays struggling to find themselves, and dealing with the prejudices that still exist.
It seemed to imply that things get better if you can get a job at Pixar, but maybe I'm too cynical. I applaud the video.

Anonymous said...

The bigger question is: will the Southern Baptists boycott all Pixar films now that it's clear Pixar is 'infested with Gays'!!!

Anonymous said...

I love how no matter what the issue everyone on this blog always goes back to blaming white, straight, male republicans for all the world's woes.
Oh how I wish you could all spend an "It's a Wonderful Life" type of day where they never existed.
You're just as bigoted as the most ignorant, toothless southern, hillbilly cracker.

Anonymous said...

Clearly you ^ need to re-watch It's a Wonderful Life...
That'd be the same as saying Oh how I wish you could all spend an "It's a Wonderful Life" type of day where POTTER never existed.

Anonymous said...

Oh, the poor, POOR straight, white republicans. They've had it rough.

Anonymous said...

s this going to play in front of Pixar's films in addition to the web?

(Well, Disney could try playing it on the Blu-ray for "Lion King"...Maybe then we wouldn't pick on Scar so much.) ;)

They should play in at the end of "World of Color" on the water screen.

Anonymous said...

8:39 AM
I resemble that remark you bonehead. My best friend is a die-hard staunch Republican that has a 3'X5' framed photo of the US setting of an A-bomb in the south Pacific (an example, I add, that caused the lead-up to 9/11; but I digress). Generally, few on this blog agree the problems of gay bashing are caused by white anglo-saxon/protestant southern baptist right-leaning pigheads like you, contrary to you grouping everybody that comes to this blog seeing them the way I do. Actually, I see the problem as more widespread than that. But I am not going to change you or my friend, however, when he votes 'no' on gay marraige, but supports state-granted civil unions, and he,nor his wife can tell the difference between their rights gained within the instituion of marraige and the rights denied through the priviledge of civil union, I see him as biggoted as you say I am. You pighead.

Anonymous said...

God you liberals are always so full of anger. You were probably bullied.

Anonymous said...

I think the point was that 'hating' people, including those who may be misguided, is something of a hypocritical stance to take. How can you expect someone who may not agree with the homosexual lifestyle to adopt a stance of tolerance and therefore vote in favor of their rights when they themselves are being stereotyped and told how evil they are?
Two wrongs don't make a right.

Anonymous said...

Better get used to "you liberals," because, as history teaches us, the new ideas become the old ideas in very few generations.

Fight it all you want, but in a relatively small amount of time (say, 5-10 generations or less), homosexuality will be completely accepted, atheism/agnosticism will be the majority, and the dominant race will be "other."

Anonymous said...

PS) You're right. Christians never act angry

Anonymous said...

**We are not the "United" States as long as the homo-fag-haters succeed in keeping civil rights of gays a state-by-state decision. Diddo on the institution of marrraige.
The day we get our way is the day we see some pretty outrageous displays meant to fix their wagon-wheel good and hard.**

First, take some grammar and spelling classes, dude.

Second...so you're telling me that a tiny group of people should be allowed to redefine the meaning of marriage, and that nobody else should get a say in the matter?

Wow, how American is that? You've inspired me to coin a whole new word: Fagscist.

Anonymous said...

Wow...a real Homophobe! Since you seem so proud, tell us who you are so we can all spot you in a crowd...

Anonymous said...

^Wow! A real heterophobe! One who thinks that a rite and tradition created by and for heterosexuals to sanctify and celebrate a particular relationship - the one between male and female, the only sexual relationship, incidentally, regarded as significant by nature and which forms the cornerstone of heterosexual culture - should be expanded to all, and nobody has any business protesting that, else they be labeled a "homophobe". The gays can take the institution of marriage and shape it any way they want and heteros can't utter a word of protest or they're bigots.

Sorry, sweetie, that won't cut it anymore. Civil unions are available in many states to gay couples, and the genius of the concept of civil unions is that it acknowledges the difference between gay and straight couples while granting gay couples most, if not all, of the same rights and privileges straight married couples possess. It's a much more honest policy than the fluffy-brained cotton candy politically-correct pretensions advocates of gay marriage propose, the worst of which is the idea that the primal union of male and female is somehow irrelevant to marriage. You advocates of gay marriage need to get off your high horses and stop calling people with perfectly reasonable objections to gay marriage bigots. That argument doesn't wash and makes you look like jerks as well.

Anonymous said...

Sorry sweetie (are you trying to tell us something...?>) you are by definition a Homophobe. You can try and twist it anyway you want, but you are absolutely in favor of denying equal rights to the Gay community.
Your objections are in no way 'perfectly reasonable' or hold any water whatsoever.
When you can prove how allowing Gays to marry destroys the 'precious' institution of marriage or harms anything but your fragile grasp of your own heterosexuality than you might be able to convince others. Until then you are nothing but a rights denying Homophobe.
Accept your title proudly.

I accept the fact that I'm bigotted against Homophobes like you without any shame whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

"Wow...a real Homophobe! Since you seem so proud, tell us who you are so we can all spot you in a crowd..."

Oh, and then what will you do? Blacklist him? Burn him in effigy? Break all the windows out of his house, a la Kristallnacht?

Some of the behavior by the gay marriage folk remind me of that South Park episode about Rob Reiner and his anti-smoking thugs. You ought to watch that episode, dude, you'll get a laugh and maybe learn something.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, dude, you cannot use the Holocaust to defend bigots.
I hope you see the irony of that?

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