What's so special about Disney's newest princess? Take a look and see for yourself.

Thank you, Disney Junior.

On Jan. 29, 2015, Disney Junior announced it had a new princess.

We present to you: Princess Elena.


As you can tell from HelloGiggles' tweet, Elena is Latina.

This makes her the first Latina Disney princess.

Now hold on — before you say, "But why does that matter?" we wanted to throw a few facts and numbers at ya.

40% of American youth ages 19 and under are children of color.

But white prime-time characters in youth television make up a whopping 77%.

And about Latino characters...

"Latino characters were four times as likely to portray domestic workers than were other racial groups." — Children Now Prime Time Diversity Report, 2003-2004

There is nothing wrong with being a domestic worker. What is wrong is that shows continue to portray certain races and ethnicities in the same roles, and the lack of career diversity is what many young people of color are growing up seeing on television.

Still feeling skeptical? Time for a few anecdotes.

"I never truly noticed when I was younger, and it was only recently that I could put a name to it, but representation in media has been important to my mother and affected everything she tried to surround me with as a child—the Pocahontas comforter, the ... black fairy figurines she fought to find, my dozens of black Barbies, the black dolls, the black angels—she wanted to make sure that I knew black was beautiful in a world that often tells us that we're not." — Jocelyn, via Disney for Princesses' Tumblr

So back to the question: Why does having a Latina Princess Elena matter?

Because representation matters.

More
Rice University

A plaque marking the death of a glacier comes with a haunting message to future generations.

The former Okjökull glacier in western Iceland is the first to lose its status as a glacier due to climate change. Known now as simply "Ok," the once sprawling ice sheet has melted to about seven percent of what it was a century ago and was declared no longer a glacier in 2014.

Scientists predict that in the next 200 years, if the climate crisis is not mitigated, the rest of Iceland's 400 glaciers will meet the same fate.

Next month, the land that Ok once covered will be marked with a memorial plaque. Researchers from Rice University in Houston, Texas, Icelandic author Andri Snær Magnason, and geologist Oddur Sigurðsson—who first declared the glacier's lost status—will unveil the plaque in a public ceremony on August 18.

The plaque's text begins, "A letter to the future," then reads:

Keep Reading Show less
Planet
Photo by Raul Varzar on Unsplash

A quarter of domestic cats have had their claws removed. Even though it might make the owners lives a little easier, the procedure can be incredibly painful for the animals and has been described as "barbaric."

Most of Europe and Canada have banned cat declawing (onychectomy), as well as several U.S. cities, but New York just became the first state to do so. Now, any vet who declaws a cat in the there will face a fine of $1,000, unless the procedure is medically necessary.

"Declawing is a cruel and painful procedure that can create physical and behavioral problems for helpless animals, and today it stops," New York GovernorAndrew Cuomo saidin a statement, per USA Today.

Some people get their cat declawed to stop their furniture and flesh from being destroyed. However, declawing a cat isn't the best way to stop a cat from scratching. In fact, it's probably the worst. "If a person has an issue with a cat scratching, well, first of all, I'd advise them don't get a cat because that is the very nature of a cat. But, secondly, there are ways to change cats' behavior. Get scratching posts. There are vinyl sheathes that could be placed on the nails," Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal said. Rosenthal sponsored the bill and is a cat owner, herself. "[T]here's many ways to address that behavior." None of the ways you address the problem should include taking it's claws off.

Keep Reading Show less
Cities
Alie Ward

Your dinner plate shouldn't shame you for eating off of it. But that's exactly what a set being sold at Macy's did.

The retailer has since removed the dinnerware from their concept shop, Story, after facing social media backlash for the "toxic message" they were sending.

The plates, made by Pourtions, have circles on them to indicate what a proper portion should look like, along with "helpful — and hilarious — visual cues" to keep people from "overindulging."

There are serval different styles, with one version labeling the largest portion as "mom jeans," the medium portion as "favorite jeans," and the smallest portion as "skinny jeans."

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being

In today's installment of the perils of being a woman, a 21-year-old woman shared her experience being "slut-shamed" by her nurse practitioner during a visit to urgent care for an STD check.

The woman recently had sex with someone she had only just met, and it was her first time hooking up with someone she had not "developed deep connections with."

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being