beccatoria: (Default)
So, Toys R Us actually phoned me back, so since I was yelling about them in my last post, I thought I should actually update everyone on what happened. It was...fairly anticlimactic, as suspected? About as useless, but a little less indifferent.

Cliff's Notes: A non-dismissive, respectful human called me, but ultimately nothing useful was concluded. )
beccatoria: (sisko will not tolerate thisi bullshit)
So something weird happened the other day. I was in Toys R Us (as you are when you're bored and have nowhere else to go), with a friend. And his girlfriend texted him and said could he look out for a present she could give to a kid she knows who's in hospital, since we were there anyway, and she loves Disney stuff, and Jasmine is her favourite Princess. Armed with this knowledge we headed to the Disney Princess aisle. Now, I know that Toys R Us is not the Disney Store, but they have a whole specifically branded aisle, and what I found really disturbed me.

There was no Jasmine doll. I was a little disappointed, but basically figured, okay, fine, for whatever reason there's no Jasmines today, and started looking around the rest of the aisle.

There were dolls for Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, Ariel and Rapunzel. There were no dolls, and strictly speaking she's not an Official Disney Princess (because Pixar), but there was merchandise available for Brave in the form of Merida costumes and plushie bears.

There was no merchandise of any kind for Jasmine, Tiana, Pocahontas or Mulan.

When I went home, I looked up the official Disney Princess line-up and confirmed my suspicions. There were dolls available for EVERY white Disney Princess.

Not a single one of the Disney Princesses from other ethnicities was represented at all (nor were any other characters of colour.)

That's like...the 40% of the Princess Line-up who aren't white were nowhere to be found, but the 60% who were white had perfect attendance. That's not fucking subtle. I wish I'd had a camera, I would have taken a picture.

I dunno, man, the more I think about it, the more...pissed off I get. Like, the fact that Disney has an Official List of these Princesses should be a way to make sure this doesn't happen, not that it does anyway. And it's such a clean split.

Anyway, I emailed Toys R Us about it. If they reply, I'll update to let people know what they said.

I was...honestly shocked, which is probably naive of me, but something about the brazen shamelessness of it all was super disturbing. Or like, not even shamelessness, just...fucking epic ignorance. Like the person doing the ordering or sorting out the line-up probably didn't even think for a split second about what was going on there, cus everyone knows thinking about race makes you a racist.

beccatoria: (even the cylons are like wtf?)
Hey guys - thanks to my flist, two things have been brought to my attention that I feel I ought to share. One is fun, the other is not fun.

The fun thing is that [ profile] emmiere linked me to this piece of awesome:

I love it for a couple of reasons. The music itself is not my favourite thing ever, though I like it. But I do really love her voice, it reminds me of some of my parents stuff from the sixties, I think, though obviously updated via 2010. Which ties into the real reason I keep watching it, almost hypnotically: the dancing. I do not even know what she is doing but it's amazing! It's like some fantastic hybrid of tap dancing, jive dancing and ballet!

Plus apparently her entire ArchAndroid album is basically her pretending to be rebellious android named Cindy Mayweather. I mean, really, what's not to love?

* * *

On the other end of the spectrum, [ profile] sabaceanbabe linked to this. Basically it's about a fic that some people in SPN RPF fandom wrote that is incredibly racist. I'm not in SPN fandom, and I dislike RPF, so I've only heard about this because it's making the rounds on LJ, but one of the points in the linked post is that silence on the issue isn't really helpful. So I'm not posting this because I have anything new to say on the matter - all the issues of intent and effect and apologies and who is hurt at what point and why and when that matters - all that is dealt with in the post linked to and various posts and comments branching off of that. I have nothing smarter to add on the topic that others have not already said. This is just me not being quiet about it, and practicing the idea that when something that ridiculously nuts comes across one's path, the correct response probably isn't to quietly excuse oneself because "it doesn't affect me" or "isn't quietly disapproving enough" or "it wasn't in my fandom" but to comment, "This is wrong, I do not approve" publicly, before moving on.

This is wrong and I do not approve.

And if you ever see me doing anything a fraction as weird as this, please stage some kind of intervention.
beccatoria: (sisko will not tolerate this bullshit!)
Today, my Ma called up the Council to sort out voting and stuff since she has very recently become a british citizen and now holds dual US/UK citizenship. The woman she spoke to told her she needed a british passport or she couldn't vote. My mother was really, really sure this was not true as long as she had evidence of her citizenship (in this case a certificate of naturalisation). She asked three times and was told, incorrectly, three times, that she needed a passport. She finally asked to speak to the supervisor and was finally told that, okay, her certificate of naturalisation was actually acceptable instead of a passport.

She said, politely, that she understood it was an unusual situation but she thought perhaps it would be good if something could be done to make sure that the wrong information wasn't passed on again to someone else since they'd be unlikely to be as tenacious as her in asking for someone to check.

She wasn't really expecting a great response, or even for anything to really be done after she hung up, but what she absolutely was not expecting was for the supervisor to say, "It's because we get a lot of Pakistanis and Somalis getting shirty when we tell them they're not qualified." o_O

My mom said she didn't see how giving these people wrong information would help the situation and then hung up. She's going to make a complaint about it.

Because...seriously. SERIOUSLY? It's like...admitted policy to lie to immigrant communities about their ability to exercise their civic duties should they be entitled to them? I understand that people can get shirty when they don't hear what they want; call centres are stressful, but if they get shirty when you're lying to them for blatantly racist reasons, I'm not sure how you have anyone to blame but yourself.

Sure, a lot of the people calling up might genuinely not be entitled to vote, but if they're not, it's not like they can fake the documents they do need any easier than they can fake a british passport.

The only possible reason I can come up with that this is accepted behaviour in this office is an assumption that anyone calling from these communities is either not entitled to vote, or not entitled to information. It's a lazy, racist time-saving tactic and I dread to think how many british citizens have been disenfranchised by it. A single one is too many.


(Also, I know, I'm still being LJcraptacular at, you know, posting and stuff. Still working on it... Still waiting for [ profile] twelvecolonies to post the results of the vidding challenge so I can actually post my vid. If it's not done by the end November I'll post it anyway because dammit, it's been two months since I posted a vid and that's Not On.)
beccatoria: (ace is not amused)
Torchwood's got some well-problematic stuff going on with race. From what I can gather from my utterly-disconnected-to-current-fandom-way-out-of-date-radar, some people are trying to deny this with the whole, "british racism is different from american racism," thing. Which it is, but not in any way that makes Torchwood less problematic about race.

Fair warning; ramblings about racism in Torchwood and how I hope welshness doesn't get tied up in it, and fears about wider fandom, while trying to be at least vaguely objective and probably failing, follow. )

And I'm...really confused. Obviously.
beccatoria: (Default)
I haven't felt moved to write about Heroes this week, though I did enjoy it. Instead I'm going to tackle the few episodes of the Sarah Jane Adventures I've seen. Mild spoilers through the third episode follow!

Suddenly, the Slitheen are Scary! )

The Trouble with Tennant! )

Sarah Jane & Friendship with Kids! )

Sarah Jane & Friendship with Clyde! )

Take care y'all! :)

In other news I am knee-deep in Knights of the Old Republic II on XBoX. It's...well it's weird. I think it's breaking my brain. I can't decide if it's attrocious or horribly underrated. I'm leaning towards the former. It's like someone told the world's most epic, mythic, INCREDIBLE story to an idiot who thinks being cool is all about cliches and twin-customised-duel-wielding katanas and making angsty statements and being emo, and then that person made a video game.
beccatoria: (kara leoben flesh & bone)
Okay, first, the title. Why? Just…why? What is it supposed to mean? Apparently there’s supposed to be a comma in it (see above) but it still doesn’t make any sense.

I’m convinced there’s a fantastic episode hiding in here somewhere. Here is what it could have been about: )

Racism among our heroes. )

Oh Chief, you anti-Gnostic fool, is your marriage on the rocks? )

Dee! You were interesting! I love it when that happens! )

Politics of the racist. )

Crazy Love For Tigh! TIGH! )

Holding out for a Helo (&Co.) )

Imaginary Gaius & Caprica up a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-being recorded. )

Roslin & Zarek up a…no, wait, that’s going to blind my mind’s eye. Let’s just call this cut Tyler Zarek, or maybe, Tom Durdan. )

In summary, this really could have been a phenomenal episode if it had had slightly more build-up regarding the racial tensions re: the Saggitarions earlier in the season, and if it had had an ending that lived up to the intriguing and subtle racial commentary that existed in the first thirty-five minutes of the show. Unfortunately, it didn’t. It had a two-dimensional, easy-out ending, and nothing Dr Robert shouted would have come off as anything other than the ravings of a mad-man. If it had been a story of an insane, murderous Doctor, the ending would have been fine. But it wasn’t. It was a story about racism, and slapping on the insane, murderous Doctor ending undercut a lot of the power that might otherwise have existed in the intelligent and layered setup.

June 2016

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