The Crown – All Things Bright and Beautiful

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With none of our usual shows to watch–hey, it was only Monday–, Tabitha and I sat down and watched The Crown. We are on Season 3 Episode 3: “Aberfan”. Should make for night of light television viewing, no?

The methodical way this episode began should have been our first clue. The shots of school children going about their day in school; the lingering shots of a little girl practicing for her school assembly, her dad coming home from work only to lovingly listen to her.

As an American… as a History-Political Science degree holder… I had no idea.

In the end, 116 children, 5 teachers, and 23 locals died.

Got me thinking about how our American Presidents respond to disaster. Roosevelt with his speech after Pearl Harbor; Bush traveling to the 9/11 site and making a speech as well. Moments where we put down our differences and unite as a country. Our President’s words speaking as if for all of us.

Aberfan wasn’t one of those moments. It took the Queen eight days to visit the disaster site. Reportedly, this is one of the Queens biggest regrets.

But “Aberfan” made for some solid performances on The Crown. I especially enjoyed the gentleman who plays Prince Phillip, and his response to the aftermath.

Thankful that “Aberfan” also helped me understand a moment in history.

Gender, Politics, and the Media We Consume

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Voltron: Legendary Defender

Wyatt and I loved watching Netflix’s Voltron: Legendary Defender. Who doesn’t like a little space magic mixed with sword-carrying robots? In the midst of Voltron’s fight against an evil galactic empire, the show reveals that one of the characters is gay. This sudden character relationship fact hadn’t been hinted at for over six seasons. Suddenly Season 7 premieres and Volton’s leader, Shiro, is in a relationship with another man named Adam (shown via flashback). The show never mentions Shiro’s relationship again until the series finale, when Shiro and Adam kiss in the closing credits.

Voltron: Legendary Defender is an amazing show that disappointed me by injecting gender politics into something aimed at children.

Last year, I powered through Sayonara Wild Hearts on Apple Arcade. Sayonara Wild Hearts is a music-based action game (see video above) where your protagonist fights against past loves/relationships. The game’s finale has you kissing former flames instead of killing them. Wyatt happened to be sitting next to me as the kissing started:

W: “Are you playing as a boy?”

Me: “Nope.”

W: “So did two girls just kiss?”

Me: “Umm, maybe…. yeah.”

Life went on, and I didn’t make too big of a deal about that scene. I had read/heard online that Sayonara Wild Heart’s story was open to interpretation but why the sudden gender moment? All my love for Wild Hearts died as I felt as if the fourth wall had been broken by gender politics once again.

Mutazione

The other night, I was playing Mutazione on Apple Arcade. During one of the in-game conversations, the protagonist admits to another character that she likes a fellow female classmate of hers. The two of them exchange notes to one another via their lockers. This isn’t a game ending revelation to me, but I got thinking about what the developers worldview is. Nothing sinister… but definitely foreign from my own worldview.

I told Wyatt recently that the Bible is clear on homosexuality (it’s a solid no). But that does not mean we have to treat others poorly nor use others relationship preferences as an excuse not to love them.

Hollywood and even game developers continue to increase LGBTQ representation in the media we consume. We, as Christians, need to continue to be a voice in the Internet wilderness. Proclaiming that God so loved the world that He gave his only Son, so that none shall perish but have everlasting life.

From Across the Net – “When Parents Feel Like We Are Mostly Failing Most of the Time”

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Appreciated this piece from Tim Challies. Especially liked his list of principles, he has been pondering, towards the end of the article.

As parents in this digital world, it’s like we have planted ourselves and our families on a beach. Though the water is rising, we have convinced ourselves that we can somehow hold back the tide. But inevitably it just keeps creeping higher and higher up the beach until our best plans, like feeble little sandcastles, are swept away. There seems to be a kind of inevitability about it, that before long we’ll all always be staring at our devices. In fact, it seems like our devices have wills of their own, and this is exactly what they want. They want to dominate our lives. They want to be our main thing.

You can read more here

Photo by Austrian National Library on Unsplash

From Across the Net – “10 Ways Porn Culture Will Target Your Kids in 2020 (Be Prepared, Not Scared!)”

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Some of the points, on this list, seem like no duh parenting moments; other points come across as alarmist. But, I did find a few things helpful, like this:

Teach kids that when someone offers to show them anything on a screen, they should ask “What is it?” before looking.

And this regarding streaming services:

Many will tell you to just set up a separate profile for the kids–easy! But that’s not enough. The profiles are not password protected and kids can easily switch profiles. Your best line of defense is to set up parental controls. Some parents find it annoying that they have to enter a password so that they themselves can watch content, but it’s a small price to pay to protect your child from mature content!

Photo by Thibault Penin on Unsplash

I have to admit, I always thought that having separate profiles would be enough. Setting up a PIN, for all accounts, to help govern content watched, seems smart.

You can read more here