Well shoot, Mr. Baum | Mark’s Remarks


I am not sure, but I think I’ve written at least two columns about the animated movies of today and how they are helping in the worldwide campaign to make the male gender obsolete.  You know what I’m talking about, don’t you?

Elsa and Anna, the two sisters in the movie “Frozen,” eventually find that they only need one another.  They don’t need any pesky man to run their kingdom, nor do they need one to be happy or anything like that. They only need one another.

Now, that’s perfectly OK. I’m not saying any woman needs a man to make her happy. No woman should depend on a man for happiness.

But, am I right when I say there has been a movement of sorts, for many years apparently, to emasculate men and denounce gender? Pay attention.

I’ve written about Disney being the main culprit. Watch just about any Disney show and see what gigantic boobs the fathers are in each show. At times, both of the parents are made to look like buffoons.  But, it’s usually the dad.

Sure, using the male figure of a comedy to look like a ding dong has been a thing for a long time.  One has only to watch an episode of any sitcom from any decade in television history. It’s a common comedic device.

But, on most of those shows, the guys still took decent care of their wives and families. They went to work in important jobs and brought home the bacon. They stood up for their families and protected them.  

There’s not a doggone thing wrong with that.

We loved shows like “Mary Tyler Moore” and others where a strong female character told us all she could take care of herself. Again, not a thing wrong with that.

One of my beliefs was that this was a new thing.  Like, the doing away of men in general is some type of new age, feminist thing that has just been around for a short time.

I was watching a really neat documentary about L. Frank Baum, the author who penned the “Wizard of Oz” as well as many other books about the Land of Oz. If you haven’t heard of it, I recommend. PBS showed it a while back, and it’s available on their docuseries app.  If you can’t find it, email me at marksremarks10@gmail.com and I’ll help you out. It’s called “American Oz.” 

Anyway, I was watching this documentary and was amazed to hear how many failures and successes Baum had in his life.  His life story is interesting, eclectic, and you can totally see why he was such a creative guy.

One of the more interesting characteristics was his forward thinking way and his support of causes that weren’t fashionable.  This included the equality of women and voting rights for women. As you may guess, women liked the guy and he was quite a catch before he finally married his wife Maud, the daughter of a leading suffrage activist.

Years later, after failing in the department store business, the printing business, and the newspaper business – not to mention a promising career as an actor – Baum was encouraged by his mother-in-law to write down the fanciful tales he told his children when he was putting them to bed. Out of these writings came “The Wizard of Oz,” which became not only a literary hit, but a cinematic and stage hit as well when it was made into both a stage play and an early motion picture.

All along, if you pay close attention to the story of Dorothy, the same sort of thing going on in the Disney sitcoms of today goes on in “The Wizard of Oz.”  

The wizard is bumbling.  The tin man, the scarecrow, and the lion are all inept and don’t measure up. The farmhands are idiots (just ask Auntie Em). Even Uncle Henry looks apathetic and distant. Many of the lady munchkins are taller than the men. Those two witches are powerful and important.

And all along, I tell you, the power to go back to Kansas was within Dorothy herself. She didn’t need the help of any half-hearted male inhabitant of Oz. She didn’t need the wizard, the tin man or even Uncle Henry. She just tapped the heels of those fashionable shoes together and off she went.  

Even Toto wasn’t much help to her. He was just a pesky, male terrier. See what I mean?

So, this whole “down with men” thing has been going on a lot longer than I thought. Heck, I’m sure it was maybe even around before Baum came along.  

It’s been subtle.  It’s sort of creeped into our society, little by little.

I’m thinking Dorothy might have known exactly what she was doing all along. Maybe she really did drop her house on that witch that withered up and disappeared. Maybe she really intended on getting high in the poppy field.  Maybe she calculated her head injury in the tornado just to make old Auntie Em worry herself sick so that Dorothy could quietly take over that prosperous Kansas farm.

Alice in Wonderland, Miss Muffett, Mother Goose; I ask you, who’s next? 

Frankly, I’m starting to feel that my whole childhood was a lie.

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