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Amazon’s Cinderella and System Change: No More Patriarchy Means a Happy Ending for All

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Amazon's Cinderella and System Change: No More Patriarchy Means a Happy Ending for All

What I Learned From Watching Amazon’s Cinderella musical with my 9 year old son

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Princes in the new Cinderella musical. (Twitter)

It’s rare for my 9 year old son to ask to watch a movie twice. But the new ones Cinderella musical recently released on Amazon was an exception. I have been faithful to make sure he reads books with female protagonists and balances being media diet with gender equality. Happy as I was, he wanted to watch a movie with a female lead twice, which excited me the most about the latest recast of Cinderella was his radical take on the male protagonists.

Cinderella, dating back to the original Grimm story, with its multitude of variations over many decades and cultures, has maintained a steadfast cultural hold. Both the character and the renditions of this story have been evolving for years. Disney, with its progressive (though still debatable) attempts to rewrite girl protagonists (let alone the industrial princess complex), has left its strongest mark on the story through its castles in the park and perpetual touting of their traditional version.

This take is far from that. Directed by Kay Cannon and starring Camila Cabello, the picture is thick with famous actors. There is a Hamilton-esque energy as the town crier raps every announcement, and a (wonderful, for me) dive back into 80s and 90s soundtracks (hello, Madonna and “Material Girl”). But reviews, for the most part, have been negative with most critics calling it campy or trying too hard to tap the hip.

Through my work inside the field of girls’ studiesI’m well aware of the ease with which the trope of empowerment (or, as I like to call it, “fauxpowerment”) is used to label a movie (or anything for that matter) as progressive. Cinderella is determined to become a fashion designer – look, she wants a career, not a marriage! She sings defiantly about avoiding predictable gender roles and routinely breaks the fourth wall – hey, she’s a rebel!

This movie does all that and none of it is really that surprising. a critic called this movie “a musical ode to girlbosses” which one in the end be revealed for the gesture of one note of corporate feminism they are.

Several years ago I wrote about how the Monster High dolls, touted as radical for the way they disproved typical beauty stories (they’re monsters!) was Mattel’s attempt to step out of the mainstream. The problem was that, despite the literal pretense, the storylines were as rooted in gender stereotypes as ever. This Cinderella’s brash statements and wry asides, even when playing directly against traditional writing, don’t strike me as daring.

What used to be surprising, even radical, was the rewriting of the male characters. Virtually every article over the past year complaining about the unequal division of labor between a cis couple trying to work together in a household with children has the chorus that real change won’t come until men get on board. What happens in this movie is just that.

Prince Robert is initially portrayed as a hapless cad, a villain, who mends it with his shady court friends. But in a short time, he candidly talks about the oppression he feels when all choice is taken away, as he is co-opted as a marriage pawn so his father can annex power and land.

His sister, Gwen, starred for comic relief because her ambition contrasts with her lack of power, is meant to highlight the gender inequality that forbids her intellect and privileges her disinterested brother. In one scene, after hiding behind a plant in the hopes of participating in a royal strategy session, she is literally refused a seat at the table and leaves the room sputtering with anger and ideas.

Robert’s sense of oppression smacks a bit of the “but the boys suffer” response of a decade ago, with critics such as Christina Hoff Sommers arguing that girls’ progress puts boys at risk in zero-sum game thinking. The prince, whoever he marries, will still be in power, and Cinderella is still – literally – subject to her class and circumstances. His attempt to bond with Cinderella by commenting that he too was born in a cage elicits sympathy, but doesn’t deny how privileged he will remain.

Post-glass slipper is where the plot really starts to swing far from the expected story. There were so many twists and turns, I have to admit I was worried about how things would end. Not only does Robert appear to be sensitive to it all, he shows a critical awareness of how unfair things are.

“It’s a bad system,” he says honestly, acknowledging the inequality that subordinates his sister, who wants to serve, to his disinterest in the first place. “Nobody asks what I want or how I feel.”

When one of his court friends cries at the thought that they might not find the girl whose foot holds the key (so to speak), and true love might be lost, the scene becomes maudlin, but with a teenage boy (young man?) openly cry and talk not about conquest, but the chance of true love was a scene like no other I’ve seen in this era.

Showing a teenage boy openly crying and not talking about conquest, but the chance for true love was a scene I’ve never seen before in this era.

What’s beginning to seem miraculous isn’t Cinderella’s brash trade-off of her career over marriage, nor is the Prince standing on the sidelines, patiently waiting for her decision. It is that the king, (played with great success by Pierce Brosnan), gives in to the expected succession and his earlier insistence that his son should marry a woman of a certain class, and perhaps most tellingly, says frankly, “I was wrong.”

The Queen (full of Minnie Driver’s dry humor and Dorothy Parker’s pithy joke, “What fresh hell is this?”) is candid about how frustrating her role has been, then openly claims, “You’re wrong.” , on a public forum in one of the film’s final scenes, a recapitulation of the overthrow of patriarchal expectation.

Just as pure ‘leaning’ has been debunked for putting the responsibility on the individual versus denouncing systemic exploitative systems, this Cinderella gets what she wants most as a radical shift of structural power takes place. The Prince suddenly doesn’t have to marry for status, the Queen is suddenly free to speak, and the King suddenly understands the ridiculous gender bias and anoints his daughter as the next in line. She leaves the room in heels of joy and asks if everyone Real heard what he said – because it knocks over any code.

At one point in the film, the evil stepmother solos as she tells how she tried to escape from her assigned role (by continuing her training as a pianist after being married with children), only to be knocked down again and then modeled internalized oppression as she is the enforcer of the patriarchy within their fatherless household.

As joyous as all this radical transformation is, what is most unrealistic is how easily it all happens. The cheering crowd of villagers seamlessly accept that the prince will not marry and that his sister will rule instead. There is an audible pause before the introduction of Cinderella because the phrase “royal friend” was never coined. She and the prince plan to travel together (unaccompanied?) presumably to pursue her career prospects – but how easy this will be is not made clear. My only disappointment came from admitting how fairytale it really is to expect sudden changes from established institutions. If only it were that simple in real life.

What I found so commendable was how clearly the film showed that systems underlying power must change, versus another ‘it was a struggle, but she made the’ story of individual willpower. And the main male figures were involved – both for their captivity (the prince) and their damage when they refuse to relinquish (the king) when everyone around them (the queen) points out the damage that has been done through a system that primarily serves them. The king’s sudden relief, the reversal of fiat, and then penance allow for an alternate ending.

Seeing how a patriarchal system must change—and the revision that reveals shedding? That’s a story I want to show my young son twice.

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BREAKING: Fire in Crystal City restaurant row 23rd Street

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BREAKING: Fire in Crystal City restaurant row 23rd Street

(Updated at 9:50am) Firefighters fought a major fire Saturday night at 23rd Street S. restaurant row in Crystal City.

The fire was reportedly in the building that houses the Andalusian Hookah Bar and Top Thai restaurant on the 500 block of 23rd Street. Those businesses are directly adjacent to Crystal City Sports Pub and Federico Ristorante Italiano.

Firefighters from several local jurisdictions helped to finally extinguish the smoky fire with two alarms. The fire has created unsafe conditions for firefighters in the building and flames can now be seen from the roof, according to scanner traffic.

Smoke from the fire could be seen in the air throughout the Crystal City area.

The Crystal City Sports Pub was evacuated during the fire as smoke began to fill the building. But co-owner Billy Bayne said the fire department’s quick work and coordination saved his company and others in line.

“To the best of our knowledge, there is no major damage to the Sports Pub,” Bayne said, noting that there may be smoke and other damage that needs to be repaired. “Thank goodness for the fire brigade and the police … they are all heroes, they did a great job.”

Shortly before midnight, the Arlington County Fire Department reported that all fires had been extinguished. So far, there have been no reports of significant injuries.

Photo (2) via Google Maps

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Triad McDonald’s Hosts Free COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic and Tests

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Triad McDonald's Hosts Free COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic and Tests

Next Tuesday, three McDonald’s locations in the Triad are hosting a free COVID-19 vaccination clinic and testing for anyone who needs it. Click on the video player above for more headlines from WXII 12 News. The event is in partnership with NC Counts. will take place on December 7 from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM at the following locations: -7609 Albet Pick Rd, Greensboro, NC 27409-1400 Heartland Dr., Kernersville, NC 27284-1480 Jag Branch Blvd., Kernersville NC 27284 Vaccinations are free, no insurance or ID is required, and no appointments are needed. Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines will be available, including the Pfizer vaccine for children 12 years and older. Those who receive a vaccine are eligible for a free order of McDonald’s medium fries at these restaurant locations that day. Recipients of the first vaccine are eligible for a cash gift card. is a great way for McDonald’s to support the health of our residents and employees. We can’t think of a better way to get vaccinated than enjoying it with free McDonald’s fries,” said Ryan Lang, McDonald’s owner/operator of all three locations.

Next Tuesday, three McDonald’s locations in the Triad are hosting a free COVID-19 vaccination clinic and testing for anyone who needs it.

Click on the video player above for more headlines from WXII 12 News.

The event is in partnership with NC Counts.

It will take place on December 7 from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM at the following locations:

-7609 Albet Pick Rd, Greensboro, NC 27409

-1400 Heartland Dr., Kernersville, NC 27284

– 1480 Jag Branch Blvd., Kernersville NC 27284

Vaccines are free, no insurance or ID is required, and no appointments are needed.

Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines will be available, including the Pfizer vaccine for ages 12 and older.

Those who receive a vaccine will be eligible for a free order of McDonald’s medium-sized French fries that day at these restaurant locations.

Recipients of the first vaccine are eligible for a cash gift card.

“Partnering with NC Counts on this important program for our community is a great way for McDonald’s to support the health of our residents and employees. We can’t think of a better way to get vaccinated than enjoying it with free McDonald’s fries,” says Ryan Lang, McDonald’s owner/operator of all three locations.

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Cranley calls for lottery commission oversight of sports betting | News

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Cranley calls for lottery commission oversight of sports betting |  News

(Ohio Capital Journal) — Hopeful Democratic Governor John Cranley is calling on state lawmakers to abandon a sports betting measure already approved by the Senate, and instead introduce sports betting under the current authority of the Ohio Lottery Commission . Cranley argues that this approach would avoid a lengthy lawsuit and make more money available for public schools.

The mayor of Cincinnati has promised, if elected governor, he will appoint members of the Lottery Commission who would use their position to offer sports betting in Ohio. Under SB 176, passed by the Senate in June, the state Casino Control Commission would oversee sports betting instead of the Lottery Commission.

The debate over which committee should oversee sports gambling has long been a sticking point for lawmakers trying to legalize gambling. The lottery is constitutionally required to send the proceeds exclusively to public education, while SB 176 would split the proceeds of the 10% tax on gambling tickets between public and non-public schools.

“The constitution says if you do it through the Lottery Commission, every dollar should go to public education,” Cranley said. “This bill is vague about that and says we’re essentially going to figure out what we’re going to do with the money later. We’ll do it publicly, privately, we’ll do vouchers, all kinds of things that could undermine public education.”

Earlier this year, House lawmakers rejected a Senate offer to tie the gambling provisions to an unrelated veterans’ ID card bill. But now home leaders are suggesting they may have reached a compromise.

Cranley argued that if they use SB 176 as a starting point, they are likely going to go to court.

“This thing is unconstitutional in two ways,” Cranley said. “First, the Casino Control Commission does not have the power to make sports betting under the Constitution, and you cannot pass a law that violates the Ohio Constitution. Only the Lottery Commission has the power under the Constitution to extend gambling beyond the four casinos. And under the constitution, gambling proceeds should go to public education unless they’re for the four casinos.”

To back up his claims about the existing authority of the Lottery Commission, Cranley points to a 2019 Legislative Service Commission report prepared for former Rep. Dave Greenspan, who determined that the Lottery Commission likely has the authority to proceed.

“Since the Lottery Act grants broad powers to the State Lottery Commission to conduct lotteries and the lotteries are exempt from the Gambling Act, it appears that the Commission may be able to establish and operate a sports betting lottery under Ohio law. the report said. .

But while legislative analysts believe the Lottery Commission can act, they don’t take the position that the Lottery Commission alone can act. In the analysis for SB 176, they write that the Ohio Supreme Court has yet to weigh in, and the question will come down to the definition of “lottery,” which remains vague in the state constitution.

If the courts interpret a betting order as a lottery, “that seems to prohibit any sports game outside the context of the state lottery or casinos,” the analysis said.

On the other hand, if the courts took a narrower view and defined a lottery as a specific form of gambling, legislators would probably have room to enact sports betting as they saw fit. Ohio’s Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has already supported that reading of the constitution.

Cranley is currently competing for Ohio’s Democratic nomination for governor in 2022 against Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley, who also criticized current sports betting proposals.

“Nan believes that if we’re going to legalize sports betting, we need to do it in a way that benefits Ohio’s communities and businesses, not out-of-state businesses,” Whaley spokesman Courtney Rice said in a statement. “The people of Ohio are tired of the sweetheart deals that are made in backrooms. Our state government is too corrupt to trust that much money without a much more transparent process than we’ve seen so far.”

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