Ba-dee, a dee, that’s all, Pepé! This week, Pepé Le Pew, the handsy French skunk of “Looney Tunes,” became the latest cultural fixture to get the guillotine when he was axed from the upcoming movie “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” amid shouts that the cartoon character is a rapist. Dave Chappelle first pointed out Pepé’s pervy ways in a 2000 comedy special called “Killin’ Them Softly.” The comedian made a funny joke about him, we laughed and everybody moved on. I grant you, some of those gropey old Pepé episodes can make you cringe nowadays as if they were part of a documentary about 2021 Albany. But before Warner Bros. turned the little guy into roadkill, couldn’t they have first tried to change up the character’s image for the LeBron James-led sequel? Reportedly, in the cut scene he was going to learn something about consent. Pepé could’ve morphed into a harmless flirt, or a pretentious Frenchman instead of a lech. Not this time. Le Pew is l’histoire. And, as you might imagine with an animated show that began in 1930, just about everyone and everything in “Looney Tunes” is objectionable by today’s puritanical standards.
Culture & Race
Over the past two weeks, nearly two flights per day arrived in Canada from Delhi carrying passengers who subsequently tested positive for COVID-19. Publicly-available data from Health Canada shows 27 flights from the Indian capital landed at Canadian airports over the past 14 days — almost as many that landed at Toronto in the entire month of February.
A Twitter post by the Nation of Islam linking to a video where its leader, Louis Farrakhan, claims the coronavirus vaccine is deadly has remained on Twitter since March 1. Twitter has yet to take action on the video despite its policies against coronavirus misinformation. Facebook took down a corresponding post on its site. “Now variants are popping up here and there, making null and void what you call your vaccine,” Farrakhan says in the video. “I have friends that are turning because I told them not to take this vaccine. You cannot disprove what we have said.”
Canada’s House of Commons recently voted 266 to 0 to declare Beijing’s ongoing persecution of its Turkic Muslim minorities in Xinjiang, including Uyghurs, to be genocide within the 1948 Genocide Convention. The motion also called on Canada’s government to push for the relocation of the 2022 Winter Olympics out of Beijing if this crime against humanity doesn’t cease.
BC news outlet quietly deletes article with black academic critical of the Black Lives Matter movement
News 1130 radio contacted Sonia Orlu first for an interview. Yet they didn’t bother to notify her when taking it down. What started as an informal piece last year geared towards family and friends evolved into a formal critique of the Black Lives Matter movement. Ms. Orlu made it clear in an interview with The Post Millennial that: she doesn’t see herself as a victim, acknowledges racism exists, but most importantly that systemic racism needs to be proven rather than asserted. As of Friday night, Sonia Orlu sits at 60 followers on Twitter. She describes herself as a PhD student in Political Science at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver. “More recently, she has begun studying issues relating to identity politics, diversity and inclusion, and free speech in the era of social media as the new public square.”
China’s government finds itself in a fight against shifts subverting traditional cultural norms. According to NBC News, the Chinese government intends to “encourage masculinity” for the male students in their education system. This flying in the face of many postmodernist gender theories that subvert the roles of gender altogether. People in that field are even responding as much. This issue has been on the minds of Beijing officials since December 2020, according to an official proposal. In it we learn that the Chinese government wants the Ministry of Education to hire more physical education teachers and bolster the learning in that department. The same is intended for the country’s health education. On a final note the government proposal suggests research into topics like the “influence of the phenomenon of internet celebrities on adolescents’ values.”
The US Department of Education suspended a decision that found racial “affinity groups” discriminated against students and staff, The Post has learned. The goal of the programs — used by the New York City public school system and other school districts — is to separate students and staff by racial groups in order to help address discrimination and “white privilege.” But the practice of separating schools into racial groups is discriminatory, a determination obtained by the Post found. The findings — reached during the waning days of former President Trump’s time in office in early January — were in response to a complaint about a Chicago-area school district’s “racial equity” training programs and lesson plans: Sources said the findings, if implemented, could apply to New York City and other school districts.
ZURICH — A far-right proposal to ban facial coverings in Switzerland won a narrow victory in a binding referendum on Sunday instigated by the same group that organized a 2009 ban on new minarets. The measure to amend the Swiss constitution passed by a 51.2-48.8% margin, provisional official results showed. The proposal under the Swiss system of direct democracy does not mention Islam directly and also aims to stop violent street protesters from wearing masks, yet local politicians, media and campaigners have dubbed it the burqa ban.
Hollywood and the Chinese film industry have been engaged in a complicated cultural and economic dance for many years. The Chinese have now taken the lead. In a good news/bad news scenario, Bloomberg reports that box office returns in China are projected to jump to $9 billion this year, almost back to pre-COVID totals — happy proof that people will indeed flock back to movie theatres once they feel it’s safe. (COVID is more or less under control in China.) In the first six days of Lunar New Year, theatres pulled in $1.2 billion.
‘If you need to do a little bit of homework … [to] better educate your kids, then that is what’s required’ News this week that Dr. Seuss Enterprises will stop publishing six books by the children’s lit icon — titles that “portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong” — doesn’t come as a surprise to some book-lovers, but it’s forcing many others to revisit what might have been childhood favourites through a new, more modern lens. Decades might have passed since reading one of these titles, or perhaps there’s a book that you’ve shared with a child in your life more recently, but many are pondering just what to do. Get rid of problematic books? Just skip certain pages? Keep them around and try to explain?