Monday, September 25, 2017

Stephen King Gets IT Right

The new film version of Stephen King's novel It captivates viewers with adorable children and horrible apparitions, but the real demons that torment kids are clearly identified, despite the cryptic title. The spawn from hell are broken dysfunctional families (and they are legion). Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy put it thus: "All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."

Yes, clowns can be creepy. Still, the corruption of the nest where humans are hatched clips far more wings than childhood party favors gone bad. Barney was also kind of creepy. Yet, it was mostly neglect that pushed a generation to suckle icky purple milk from the saggy purple breast of a cheesy purple friend. What the hell am I saying? A mom and dad who love each other and devote themselves to their offspring is a rare and priceless gift.

That isn't just the lifetime observation of a deeply-flawed sage. The U.S. government National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect found the rate of maltreatment for children living with both biological parents to be a tiny fraction of the rate for all other family structures. Plus, that merely includes the traditional abuse. Children programmed to hate a gender by a twisted single parent or abducted from a devoted single parent who has no help and only two hands are not included in the childhood misery stats.

What is the IT that cannot be named? While media terrify black folks with ghostly shrouded klansmen or toothless cackling nazis and NFL millionaires whine that racist cops are the blight across America's landscape, reliable statistics show the violent spawn of dysfunctional black families pillaging, raping, and murdering their black neighbors in epidemic proportions. Yet, it's not a black thing. From white Appalachian addicts to brown Mexican narcos, the spawn of hellacious homes terrorize us all, while countless shattered and scrambled families try desperately to give their children some semblance of the picket-fence paradise-lost dream of a happy nurturing home.

Stephen King´s It should be reclassified as nonfiction. There may not be any demonic tragic clown named Pennywise living beneath the streets of one North American town, but there is a destructive tragic folly living on the streets of every North American town: the failure to view healthy families as society's big project. We are penny wise but so pound foolish.

If you wanna change the world, shoulder the Herculean task of constructing a great marriage and family then shine that light to everyone else. Not man or woman enough? Then join us self-important multitaskers striving to fix the world while denying the real problem we have little solution for. We have met the enemy, and IT is us. I've now written my first horror lit. I give it an under-13-only rating, because children can relate to it instinctively, but I fear it may be too traumatizing for adults.

1 comment:

  1. I haven't seen it, or read it- mostly because I just don't go for horror.