Loud and Proud
What values do we teach our children?
Even when we don’t think they’re paying attention, children are watching, listening, and learning all about the world around them. This means they follow by example, catching parents and family members at their worst moments, but approaching everything with that innocent bliss of childhood.
Leave it to a kid to point out someone’s flaws without realizing it’s rude, or to question an incongruity that they don’t understand in the world. Why are some people treated better than others? Why do some people have two mommies or two daddies?
As ever before, our children are the future, and regardless of this world of hatred and hypocrisy we introduce them to, they are bound to leave behind a better place where we can only hope humans of all backgrounds and lifestyles are treated with equality and respect. Luckily, children’s programming now includes a more accurate representation of what the real world is like, and all it took was a little love.
Meet the couple that just made history.
The Loud House
The Loud House is an animated children’s series that debuted on Nickelodeon on May 2 of this year. It introduced viewers to Lincoln Loud, an 11-year-old and only boy in a family with ten sisters, all of whom have strikingly different personalities, thus leading to some major chaos and plenty of comical plots in the Loud household.
Another main character coming from outside the Loud family is Lincoln’s best friend, Clyde McBride, a bespectacled only child and faithful sidekick to Lincoln’s adventures. Only there’s something else about Clyde that’s really very important…
Mr. and Mr. McBride
Clyde has two fathers, Howard and Harold.
That’s right: A main character on the most popular show of the most popular children’s network in summer 2016 is the son of an interracial gay couple.
Though we’re hardly even shown the Loud children’s parents, who remain offscreen à la Peanuts, Clyde’s parents are prominently featured on the episode “Overnight Success,” which aired on July 20 and immediately had fans falling for the progressive characters.
Though somewhat stereotypical in their neatly-dressed appearance, overly-emotional actions, and semi-neurotic nature, the McBrides represent a huge stride forward as well as a lovely point of intersectionality as they cross the bridge for both same-sex and interracial couples, nonetheless on a children’s TV show. By making young people familiar with this kind of love—a reality our society at large often refuses to accept—we are normalizing the “alternate” relationship and introducing impressionable audiences to the fact that these people do exist. Furthermore, while they may be different, they certainly do not deserve differential treatment. The McBrides represent the new normal.