Partly Cloudy


As a child of the 50’s I watched cartoons without so much of a thought to anything other than pure entertainment. This was just the way it was; men with pitch-black skin and huge smiles devouring enormous wedges of watermelon or greasy bubble lips drooling over platters of sizzling fried chicken. They spoke in thick over the top southern dialect while picking cotton, the pink palms of their hands highly contrasting the dark skin of their bodies. At regular intervals cotton sacks were dropped, plows cast aside, banjos grabbed and enthusiastic dancing commenced.

I’m not an extremist looking to find fault with the *true evil* meaning hidden in a cute cartoon but I have to ask myself does the “Dark Stormy Cloud” only dole out what we consider dangerous animals? I have to wonder why yet again a dark entity is signified as being risky or threatening… All animals are wonderful but even kitties, puppies and bunnies bite; nonetheless those baby animals are being handed over by happy White clouds and although Mr. Dark Cloud appears embarrassed, he hands over a baby alligator, a bighorn sheep, a porcupine and an electric eel, all considered dangerous animals.

Why is dark skin considered unattractive? Why is black considered evil and white an expression of beauty and luxury? Is it because in the Bible, John 3:20 “Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear their deeds will be exposed”? While white denotes clear, pure and good, unstained, genuine and honorable, black evokes dark shadows, nightmares, vampires, wicked witches, villains, the boogie man and things that go bump in the night.

Are we now just sugar coating bigotry from a bygone era, disguising racism, intolerance, xenophobia and stereotypes as cute fluffy clouds?



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