... as a messenger for liberty and freedom!
The episode deals in typical South Park fashion with a contemporary controversy, one that has even made it into the courts: whether homosexuals should be allowed to lead Boy Scout troops. The episode makes fun of the old-fashioned types in the town who insist on denying a troop leadership to Big Gay Al (a recurrent character whose name says it all). It turns out that the ostensibly straight man the Boy Scouts choose to replace Big Gay Al is a real pedophile who starts abusing the boys immediately by photographing them naked. As it frequently does, South Park, even as it stereotypes homosexuals, displays sympathy for them and their right to live their lives as they see fit. But just as the episode seems to be simply taking the side of those who condemn the Boy Scouts for homophobia, it swerves in an unexpected direction. Big Gay Al himself defends the right of the Boy Scouts to exclude homosexuals on the principle of freedom of association. An organization should be able to set up its own rules and the law should not be able to impose society’s notions of political correctness on a private group. This episode represents South Park at its best – looking at a complicated issue from both sides and coming up with a judicious resolution of the issue. And the principle on which the issue is resolved is freedom. As the episode shows, Big Gay Al should be free to be homosexual, but the Boy Scouts should also be free as an organization to make their own rules and exclude him from a leadership post if they want to.
It's been a while since I came across a real good article like this one. I thought it was particularly brilliant in "de-constructing" a seemingly "simple concept" (i.e. South Park is an offensive cartoon/show) to show that there is more to it than meets the eye...
.... especially given the fact that through satire, it plays a wonderful role at social commentary.
And it's a darn good commentator at that!
Please read the entire article with an open mind - you just might be surprised!
Dec 6, '06
I laugh at South Park till they starting killing my sacred cows then like everyone else I get mad. Then I realize what I am doing and I start laughing at myself.
Last edit by oramar on Dec 6, '06