The times are certainly changing and with that, many people have new outlooks and views on how some things of the past look today. Princeton University has an all-male a capella group known as the Princeton Tigertones, and they have been entertaining crowds for years. Now, they will be doing it with one song taken out of their library, as students have complained that “Kiss the Girl” from Disney’s The Little Mermaid raises issues and concerns of consent.
Numerous complaints have been filed by students and as a result, the song has been removed from their “active repertoire,” according to the Daily Princetonian. Apparently, keeping the song in their list has failed in “keeping all members of the audience comfortable,” and it needed to be removed.
Over the years, the group would call up a female audience member and dance around with her on the stage. After that, a male audience member would come up and be danced around as well. While the Princeton Tigertones continue to sing the song from the Disney animated classic, the couple would end up dancing together.
Near the end of the song, the couple would share a kiss as the singers urge the male audience member to “go on and kiss the girl.” For now, that won’t take place any longer at the concerts held by the group.
OPINION | WOLLSTEIN
— Daily Princetonian (@princetonian) November 27, 2018
Wesley Brown is the president of the Tigertones and he is the one who wrote the letter to the editor of the Daily Princetonian. The group apologized to anyone they may have offended or for past audience members they may have made uncomfortable.
A few days before that, though, is when the issue was first brought up by Noa Wollstein of the Daily Princetonian. She noted that the song “Kiss the Girl” from The Little Mermaid isn’t cute, but it is “more misogynistic and dismissive of consent.”
Wollstein went on to say many of the lyrics cause serious issues in today’s world and that the premise from the movie is absurd.
In Disney’s The Little Mermaid, Ursula the sea-witch has taken Ariel’s voice in order to turn her into a human. While Prince Eric doesn’t realize that the former mermaid’s voice is gone for that reason, he tries to kiss her while knowing that verbal consent is “impossible.”
No longer is the animated classic from 1989 being looked at as more “jarring” than a fairytale.
This is not the first time that a song’s content has been brought into question, and it’s happened recently with a Christmas song. As reported by the Inquisitr, a radio station in Cleveland will no longer play “Baby It’s Cold Outside” due to walking the line of consent as well.
The Princeton Tigertones will still be performing and still entertaining audiences with their a capella hits, but they will simply take one song out. It’s not to say that “Kiss the Girl” from Disney’s The Little Mermaid is gone for good, but it isn’t going to be performed as long as it makes people uncomfortable.
In the time of the #MeToo movement, people are going to make sure that everyone is as comfortable as humanly possible and respected as well. No one wants to offend anyone and “Kiss the Girl” likely wasn’t trying to be a song about ignoring consent, but interpretation changes over the years and today is a different era.