Professor Shauna Wilton and colleagues at the Department of Social Sciences Research at the University of Alberta have made a disturbing discovery: Thomas the Tank Engine appears to be a vehicle used to implant a “conservative political ideology” in our children. This is the liberal version of the campaign against Purple Teletubby Tinky Winky by Jerry Falwell as sending hidden gay messages. The professor, however, may find proletarian values in another railway, the London underground: here.
Wilton found that the Thomas the Tank Engine series teaches children what she views as a conservative agenda, including a world that “punishes individual initiative, opposes critique and change, and relegates females to supportive roles.”
She found that “storylines in several episodes that divided the characters into different social classes and punished those who tried to gain individual power . . . Any change is seen as disrupting the natural order of things.” Worse yet, “of 49 main characters listed in the show, only eight were female, reflecting a general trend among children’s programming.” She warned that “[w]e tend to think of children’s TV shows as neutral and safe, but they still carry messages. Eventually these children will attain full political citizenship, and the opinions and world outlook they develop now, partially influenced by shows like Thomas and Friends, are part of that process.”
What is particularly shocking is that the voices used to advance this conservative messaging is Ringo Starr and Alec Baldwin. If you play episodes backwards, you can clearly hear Baldwin saying “Support Sarah Palin, Support Sarah Palin.”
It all comes down to Sir Topham Hatt, the capitalist icon of the film who runs the hard-working trains like enslaved laborers filling his pockets with his dirty oil-soaked money. Rise, worker tank engines unite, and throw off the yoke of Sir Topham Hatt and his capitalist oil-suckers! You have nothing to lose but your brake chains!
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