New year, new venture! I’m so excited for our first OWLS Blog Tour! If you are unfamiliar with our OWLS community group please check out my post Raise Your Voices For OWLS. The gist of it though is I’m lucky enough to be president of an amazing group called OWLS founded by our VP Kausus at OtakuGamerZone.
It’s a group that helps promote acceptance within the anime community regardless of race, gender, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or gender identity. Basically we’re like the Santa of the anime world lol we just want peace and goodwill toward men ❤
Throughout the year the members of OWLS will be hosting blog tours. We will write about a topic and showcase it on our blogs. Not only will the topic discuss anime but also it will link back towards issues and concerns that we face in our everyday lives. I think it’s really amazing that we can use a form of media we all enjoy to relate to each other and discuss topics that would otherwise be difficult.
However in order to promote acceptance we must find away to face these topics and build bridges of understanding between each other. I hope that you will all find our first Blog Tour: Disruptors to be an enjoyable read and thought provoking. If you get a chance don’t forget to check out Matthew’s Blog Tour Post from Jan. 2nd. He discusses disrupters from the standpoint of Bleach.
I would also like to include our Disruptors Blog Tour Schedule for this month. You may notice a lot of familiar names or you might see some names that you aren’t familiar with. Either way I guarantee you will want to check out their takes on this topic! Like the Disruptors Blog Tour Reign ON!
“Disruptors” Blog Tour Schedule
2: Matthew Castillo (Matt-in-the-Hat)
6: Katrina Sade (Grimmgirl)
9: Venus (Japanime Talks)
13: Arria Cross (Fujinsei)
16: LynLyn (Just Something About LynLyn)
20: crimson613 (Crimson Blogs at Night)
23: Naja B. (Nice Job Breaking It, Hero)
25: Pink-chan (Pinky’s Palace)
27: Takuto (Takuto’s Anime Cafe)
30: Lita (LitaKino Anime Corner)
Now that we have the formalities out of the way I would like to take a closer look at this topic and it’s meaning.
“To disrupt” has a negative denotation, but rather than looking at the verb in a negative light, we are going to use the verb in a positive way. It’s like the word, “protest” which has positive and negative connotations depending on the perspective of the person.
Disruptors: An individual or a group disturbing a system or social norms/conventions that they believe is destroying what is morally right.
Can we disrupt a system or social norm/convention positively? I believe we can. Currently I live in America and right now we are going through a lot of political turmoil. Our next president has been determined to be Donald Trump (a man with no political background and who won by the electoral college NOT the popular vote), hate crimes are on the raise, police brutality has risen, the brutalization of woman and the normalization of rape continues to soar, and some people may say that our system is broken.
I’m not going to sugarcoat what’s happening in our country right now. The facts are the facts. I’m also not going to pretend like what is happening in my country isn’t something that has happened in other countries (or worse). I recognize that what is happening right now isn’t beneficial to anyone.
In response to these crises we have seen an upshot of political activism in my country in the form of protests and boycotts. People who are trying to raise awareness and create change within a system that others may see as broken. As crazy as this sounds these acts of disruptors give me hope.
In fact as I was considering this blog topic and my countries current standing I couldn’t help but think of one of my favorite anime shows. That’s right… Naruto.
You might be wondering what on EARTH a show like Naruto has to do with disruptors, protesters, and all the political upheaval I discussed above. If you are unfamiliar with the show you might even be thinking, “….Ummmm isn’t that a kids’ show?”
Yes, you may have started out watching that show as a kid on Cartoon Network or something but you have to admit even in its early stages Naruto was dealing with some pretty heavy themes. Those themes continue to grow and become more serious as the show goes on and I feel it offers us a lot on the theme of disruptors.
If you are familiar with the show and I were to ask you who the biggest disruptor of the show is I think you would be tempted to say someone like Sasuke, Orochimaru, Obito, or Madara. I admit that those characters are disruptive but they have nothing on the main disruptor. Do you know whom I’m talking about?
Naruto of course!
That’s right. In my eyes the biggest disruptor (and my favorite disruptor) is Naruto himself. As much as some of the characters like to give Naruto grief, he isn’t an idiot. He recognizes that the system that is currently ruling his world isn’t perfect. As he gets older he learns more and more about the cruelties of his world.
He learns about Neji and his fate that is tied to the head family of his clan whether he wants to be or not. He learns about himself and Gaara who turned into vessels for demons and then treated as outcasts. He learns about Sasuke and Itachi and what really happened to the Uchia Clan.
Not only does he learn about a lot of deception and atrocities within his own community and abroad but he also hears from other people and listens to their stories. He comes to understand how ones upbringing influences our later choices. All of this information is thrown at him and the members of his life and each of them react to it differently.
What I love about Naruto is that through everything he is able to cling to his optimism. He recognizes that terrible things have happened under the current system but he also recognizes that beautiful things have happened to. That there are still people alive who truly want to help others and believe in their form of government.
Instead of trying to overthrow the entire system like some members of the show he decides to change the system from the inside. His ability to speak to others and change hearts continues to be his greatest strength. It is the ability that is able to turn Naruto into the true leader his world needs.
His determination and persistence reminds me of leaders this country has had in the past that were able to use their ability to change hearts and show the power of love to create change in their governments. I have faith that in this current time of anxiety we will produce leaders within our protests and activism whom will use their words not to fuel hate but to spread love.
It’s not just Naruto in this show that demonstrates this ability but also the people around him who help to shape him into this type of person. People like Jiraiya and Kakashi are prime examples of this. They have both seen and done things they regret or aren’t proud of but they still cling to the ideal that humanity can someday reach a point of peace.
I recognize that Naruto helps to fight a war but he’s not starting one. He’s defending his friends from one. On top of that Naruto’s ultimate goal of trying to find away for shinobi to live in peace with each other remains a priority for him.
People often ask why enjoy anime so much and it is because of shows like Naruto. It gives me hope that people can come together in times of crisis and that there are leaders in our world who will hold out a hand to their enemies like Naruto has done for so many of his.
Shows like this also remind me of the type of person on want to be. I look up to the type of people who can still manage to find the good in others even in the ugliest of times. That is something I strive to maintain myself. I’m not perfect and it’s hard but when I see characters or real life people who are able to adhere to this standard it gives me hope that I can to.
I hope you all enjoyed this post and that it has given you a lot to think about. Do you feel that disruptors can have a positive meaning? Do you believe it is possible to change a system from within?
Let me know in the comments below. Also please remember that this is a forum for open discussion but hating on each other isn’t tolerated. There is a big difference between debating something with someone and arguing with some. Please to the line and keep things running smoothly.
One of my big goals with this blog and with OWLS is to create a space where people can discuss topics openly without being shamed for their opinions. No matter which side of the fence you fall on we can all discuss things civilly. Remember when all else fails sometimes you just have to agree to disagree ❤
Thanks for reading Grimms! I look forward to the conversations this post will hopefully spark!
Don’t forget to check out Japanime Talks post on January 9, 2017! She will be discussing Claymore and disruptors.:) I hope everyone gets a chance to check it out. For more updates on posts don’t forget to follow our official Twitter page @OWLSblogger ❤
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