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Culture War Roundup for the week of July 17, 2023

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The increase in LGBT identification among young people is mostly driven by women identifying as bisexual with minimal changes in behavior. While there may be some combination of social contagion and environmental effects on the much smaller but still notable rise in the number of trans/genderfluid/whatever else people, I doubt that kid's TV shows have much to do with it compared to the bottomless cesspool of the internet drawing people in at an early age and amplifying the tiniest stirrings of attraction into whole new life paths as they exhaust more pedestrian sexual (and any other sort of) interests.

While sexual or other minorities may seize on a particular piece of popular media and claim it for their own, directing their members to engage with it and building an association, I think the causation doesn't usually run the other way, and people out of the loop will have no idea that that's what it's "supposed to mean" i.e. I could not have caught any implication that Timon and Pumbaa were a gay couple when I watched The Lion King because at that age I didn't know what gay people were, ditto for the Reflection song in Mulan being the "trans anthem," or My Little Pony being a gateway into...I don't even remember what anymore (being a furry?).