The Terrors of the Minivan! Why Popular Culture Wages War Against Large Families
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August 19, 2013 - 12:30 pm
I’m one of Them. I’m a mom who has more than two children. Every day I climb behind the wheel of a minivan, load my kids into the back and drive to places that I need to be because I’m the mother of four kids and if I’m not dropping off at a violin lesson I’m picking up from a sleepover or swim practice or, perhaps, as a refreshing change of pace, taking a trip to the emergency room. Parents like me are the butt of jokes and the subject of ridicule in popular culture. Paul Nardizzi nails the minivan angst in this clip from Comedy Central.
Written from the point of view of the depressed father, we’re treated to images of a hideously unattractive mother and hordes of screaming children driving in an aquarium-like minivan. I found it terribly offensive, right after I finished laughing myself into hiccups.
The minivan symbolizes a family too large to fit into a sedan, and that means more than two children. Large families are ridiculed in our society, made the object of punch-lines and stereotypes, and sometimes that ridicule spills over into malevolence and hatred. Don’t think so? Let’s take a look.