Societal change often signifies a generational shift in attitudes and beliefs. As those with older viewpoints grow old and/or die, the younger generation establishes its power over the way the world works, and therefore has the ability to make changes in regards to social issues. Of course, people are constantly influenced by each others’ ideas (especially those of their elders), and even the most negative notions about society can persist for centuries.
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that the most innocent opinions can come directly from children. As numerous comedy sketches and shows like Kids Say The Darndest Things have repeatedly demonstrated, children have some of the most unbiased, uncorrupted opinions about things, and they’re often unafraid to speak their minds on those issues.
One such series is Kids React. The show, created by sibling filmmakers Benny and Rafi Fine, is sort of like a modern web-series update of the Art Linkletter/Bill Cosby classic. Each short episode documents the reactions of children to various videos, from things with societal impact such as the “bi-racial Cheerios commercial” or just plain goofy things such as “10 Bets You Will Always Win.”
The newest episode consists of kids reacting to same-sex marriage proposals. Thirteen Californian children between the ages of 5 and 13 were filmed and interviewed while watching the proposals in order to capture their uninhibited reactions.
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The resulting video is an honest portrayal of the widely varying opinions on gay marriage currently held by individuals throughout the country. Some of the children find nothing wrong with the proposals, some find them abhorrent. All have an interesting comment to add.
“Okay, so, they’re gay. But, that’s okay,” one of the kids says as he slowly discovers that the video being shown to him is a gay male proposal.
“A guy proposing to a guy?!” another girl exclaims, discovering the same thing.
“So they’re gay? Oh,” one kid says.
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When pressed further, however, that same kid admits that he believes “gay is wrong.” But when asked why he thinks that, he just says, “I don’t know.”
The entire 15-min episode is worth watching, as it offers a relatively innocent yet still-powerful depiction of how people feel about same-sex marriages. The Fine Brothers explain that this depiction was their intention with the video.
“The opinions of the children about these issues can give incredibly valuable insight into where our society currently stands and where we are headed as people. It’s important to discuss these topics openly in hopes of a better tomorrow through dialogue and conversation,” the filmmakers write at the beginning of the clip.