Just look at her Hair! Jasmine the Sex-Slave.

04 January 2011 10:26 by SarainAkko
The winter chill has caught up with us here meaning mommy is sick. And with our daytime care providers also out of commission, everyone is stuck at home with whatever sick-mommy can dream up as appropriate time-occupying activities. Although we haven't got a TV, we have laptops and YouTube and lots of cartoons that have never been seen by the likes of my kids before.

The 4 year old is familiar with the story of Aladdin so I figured I could give in and let her watch this one Disney-ized cartoon without scarring her for life. We skipped over some of the more fiery "Cave of Wonders" parts but somewhere towards the end of the movie I must have passed out only to be awoken by a very concerned child screaming.

"Mommy! Mommy! This is wrong! Look! Isn't this all wrong?"

Ah yes, we'd arrived at the scene where Jaffar has become an evil sorcerer and Jasmine his helplessly bound prisoner. The costume our heroine now dons is straight-up Princess Leih, but crafted by Disney so slightly more sexually explicit (cause she's a cartoon and that makes it OK).

I shook myself from my fevered stupor I began to think of the ensuing discussion. I figured it could be brief and PG but include some of the following points:

1). Jaffar is behaving very badly
2). It is never OK to force someone to do something they don't want to
3). Our bodies are just for us
4). Forcing a princess to be your sex-slave is wrong etc...

"No Mommy! Look at her hair. It's all wrong! That's not her dress! It's WRONG!"

Wait, we're concerned about a ponytail and a red version of her usual harem costume? Jasmine the sex-slave hasn't phased you? Don't you even care that this princess is in chains and in imminent danger?

(Cause this get-up was so much better?)
Oh, alright then. 

In all honesty, I was slightly relieved that the world was still this simple. Evil exists in inconsistency and bad is just bad. By her estimation, Jaffar had not grown in his scoundrely evilness from the beginning of the movie to this point. Jaffar just had greater control over Jasmine and her ponytail now, and that's wrong.

Does this make my child insensitive to another's plight? I am sure it does not.

She responds appropriately to babies crying, her brother's playtime injuries and even sick mommy passed out on the couch. She is concerned when she feels story book characters are in danger and when Brobee is about to eat food off the floor. Women in chains kneeling before evil men is just slightly out of her frame of reference, the whole situation is wrong and she doesn't have the spectrum of evil to help her decide which is worse, not yet at least.

I suppose the outrage a grown adult feels over a cartoon depicting something reminiscent of the final enslavement of women is just not the appropriate response of a four year old. At least not this one. And you know what? I'm glad. She has a lifetime to fight misconceptions and discrimination, unfair treatment and objectification. Today she is allowed to be pissed about the inconsistency a couple of animators tried to perpetrate against her otherwise enjoyable cartoon.

The above Demotivational poster was found during a quick web search titles "Jasmine sex slave."

It seems there are plenty of results of pissed off people who also think that Jasmine, the sex-slave, is wrong. Or maybe they're just concerned about her hairdo?

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