Tesla's preorder figures are almost hard to believe. We should all be happy about that.

Last night, Tesla Motors' CEO Elon Musk unveiled their newest electric car — the Model 3. And the world went wild.

As of this writing, Tesla's already taken nearly 200,000 preorders in just 24 hours.




That's ridiculous, and they've even had to limit it to two cars per person. But why have so many people signed up for this awesome, emissions-free, world-saving car?

Well, for one, it's incredibly sexy.

From an ecological viewpoint, electric cars are really cool. The use batteries and electric motors instead of fossil fuels, which means they don't create carbon dioxide or airborne pollutants. But for a long time, they weren't the coolest-looking things on the road.

However, if your idea of green technology is something that looks like a glorified golf cart, this will blow your mind.


Image courtesy of Tesla Motors.

The car just looks awesome. And it comes with a lot of cool features too: the center console is a 15" computer screen that sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, the whole roof and rear windshield are a single sheet of glass, and it's got autopilot.

Autopilot!

But the big thing isn't just the look — it's the price tag too.

One of the huge drivers of Tesla's ridiculous first-day sales is definitely the price.

The base version of the Model 3 will sell for about $35,000, and Musk estimates that the average Model 3 will run about $42,000. Subtract from that the tax credit (up to $7,500) you might be eligible for from the government for buying an electric car and the total's really not bad, especially for a car this cool.

Image courtesy of Tesla Motors.

One of the big hurdles that a lot of green technology, like electric cars, has had to overcome is getting the price down to where regular people can actually afford it. Unfortunately, a lot of these earth-saving technologies have kind of been just for the 1%. Tesla's previous dream car, the Model S, started closer to $60-70,000, for example.

But this ... man — $35,000. I'm not rich, but I could afford that.

And Tesla's not the only company making a push for affordable green technology. The Chevy Bolt, another electric car due to debut next year, will also be in the I-don't-own-a-private-jet price range.

These preorder sales numbers prove something awesome — people really, reeeeally want green technology. You just have to give it to them.

Image courtesy of Tesla Motors.

This isn't a niche market. This isn't a trend. This is something people want and are passionate about. And it feels awesome to see companies dedicated to making Earth-saving, fossil-fuel-addiction-breaking technology really accessible to everyone.

Tesla's sales figures show that a green future isn't just possible, it's undeniable.

Watch Tesla's Model 3 unveiling:

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Comedy legend Carol Burnett once said, "Giving birth is like taking your lower lip and forcing it over your head." She wasn't joking.

Going through childbirth is widely acknowledged as one of the most grueling things a human can endure. Having birthed three babies myself, I can attest that Burnett's description is fairly accurate—if that seemingly impossible lip-stretching feat lasted for hours and involved a much more sensitive part of your body.

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Disney has come under fire for problematic portrayals of non-white and non-western cultures in many of its older movies. They aren't the only one, of course, but since their movies are an iconic part of most American kids' childhoods, Disney's messaging holds a lot of power.

Fortunately, that power can be used for good, and Disney can serve as an example to other companies if they learn from their mistakes, account for their misdeeds, and do the right thing going forward. Without getting too many hopes up, it appears that the entertainment giant may have actually done just that with the new Frozen II film.

According to NOW Toronto, the producers of Frozen II have entered into a contract with the Sámi people—the Indigenous people of the Scandinavian regions—to ensure that they portray the culture with respect.

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Though there was not a direct portrayal of the Sámi in the first Frozen movie, the choral chant that opens the film was inspired by an ancient Sámi vocal tradition. In addition, the clothing worn by Kristoff closely resembled what a Sámi reindeer herder would wear. The inclusion of these elements of Sámi culture with no context or acknowledgement sparked conversations about cultural appropriation and erasure on social media.

Frozen II features Indigenous culture much more directly, and even addressed the issue of Indigenous erasure. Filmmakers Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck, along with producer Peter Del Vecho, consulted with experts on how to do that respectfully—the experts, of course, being the Sámi people themselves.

Sámi leaders met with Disney producer Peter Del Vecho in September 2019.Sámediggi Sametinget/Flickr

The Sámi parliaments of Norway, Sweden and Finland, and the non-governmental Saami Council reached out to the filmmakers when they found out their culture would be highlighted in the film. They formed a Sámi expert advisory group, called Verddet, to assist filmmakers in with how to accurately and respectfully portray Sámi culture, history, and society.

In a contract signed by Walt Disney Animation Studios and Sámi leaders, the Sámi stated their position that "their collective and individual culture, including aesthetic elements, music, language, stories, histories, and other traditional cultural expressions are property that belong to the Sámi," and "that to adequately respect the rights that the Sámi have to and in their culture, it is necessary to ensure sensitivity, allow for free, prior, and informed consent, and ensure that adequate benefit sharing is employed."

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Disney agreed to work with the advisory group, to produce a version of Frozen II in one Sámi language, as well as to "pursue cross-learning opportunities" and "arrange for contributions back to the Sámi society."

Anne Lájla Utsi, managing director at the International Sámi Film Institute, was part of the Verddet advisory group. She told NOW, "This is a good example of how a big, international company like Disney acknowledges the fact that we own our own culture and stories. It hasn't happened before."

"Disney's team really wanted to make it right," said Utsi. "They didn't want to make any mistakes or hurt anybody. We felt that they took it seriously. And the film shows that. We in Verddet are truly proud of this collaboration."

Sounds like you've done well this time, Disney. Let's hope such cultural sensitivity and collaboration continues, and that other filmmakers and production companies will follow suit.

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