Granted, the NRA has done a swell job whipping America into lethal shape: So Many Guns! Also, by arguing Dallas police murder victim Botham Jean might not have died if he'd been armed - except then he'd be an armed black man and so totally a target for anyone and def the police - it continues its impassioned if garbled white supremacist mission to make it impossible for any dead black man not to be culpable in his own death. When not enabling the murders of black men, gay people and children, though, the NRA is staying busy fighting the awful specter of ethnic diversity and gender equality in its latest incarnation: The U.K.'s Thomas and Friends, a 30-year-old animated kids' show, has introduced a Kenyan train, and new girl trains, into the placid midst of Thomas and his tank engine friends.
The changes, said parent company Mattel, are aimed at putting Thomas on a more inclusive track, with a focus on gender equality and diversity. They took the move seriously: After consulting with the U.N. and African experts, they created Nia, Swahili for "purpose," modeled on a 1920s-era African Railways engine; its bright designs are based on traditional Maasai and Samburu patterns. Adventurous and with strong values, Nia teaches Thomas about the value of friendships between different cultures. Other new female figures include an outspoken electric locomotive and an Indian train yard controller.
But what the? Mixing brown and black trains in with blue-gray trains? The horror. (Weirdly, Nia looks as blue-gray as the rest, but we all know her deep dark secret.) Always on top of the day's crucial issues, albeit on the wrong side of history, NRA spokeswoman, screechy cheerleader and vile human being Dana Loesch went on her NRATV show Relentless - and it is - to blast the show's "stop in Virtue Town." "Am I to understand this entire time that Thomas and his trains were white?" she squawks. "How do you bring ethnic diversity to a show that literally has no ethnicities because they're trains?!"
Loesch had much aggrieved company among white people enraged by "the crackpot lefty pc brigade." "Thomas is too white for today's retarded social warriors" who "managed to infest Thomas with your (sic) forced diversity," they sneered. Maybe Thomas is an imperialist, one sniped, or "next they will want him gay," actually a fine idea. But Loesch had others. Pretending to mull the show's "racist undertones," she flashed a bizarre image of Thomas and his snooty diverse friends wearing white KKK hoods, riding on flaming tracks. "Oh, I get it...Fine," she smirked. "Thomas the Tank Engine has been a blight on race relations for far too long." Okay... In truth, the only thing we get about this weird KKK-hood-thing is that Loesch and her fear-mongering, paranoid ilk have been a blight on humanity for far too long. Follow their money, and vote 'em out.