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21st September 2010

Text with 25 notes

Pedobear: A Psychological Analysis of a Classic Meme


The typical appearance of Pedobear.

If there’s one Internet meme that has stood the test of time, it’s none other than everyone’s favorite fictional child-chasing bear, Pedobear. A creation from the dark recesses of the Internet, his likeness has been Photoshopped onto many pictures of teens & children (both real & fictional) to signify pedophilia. His creation is technically a joke against pedophilia. One has to wonder why is he still so popular even to this day, why some people would even joke about pedophilia, and what does Pedobear truly represent in general society.

For those that don’t know who/what Pedobear is, here’s a quick biography. It’s basically a cartoon bear that chases after children, preferably girls. Pedobear originated back in 2ch as “Kuma”, which means “bear” in Japanese. He would later show up on 4chan as Pedobear. Users would respond to pictures of inappropriate sexual behavior (involving minors) with a picture of Pedobear. The meme would eventually make it outside of 4chan through various media outlets, mainstream Internet, and in cosplay. As of recently, Pedobear is now considered a real “threat” to children, according to the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Department.

A parody of a children's book featuring Pedobear.

According to Psychology Today, pedophilia is described as a paraphilia, an abnormal or unnatural attraction. Pedophiles suffer from cognitive distortion. They believe that they are genuinely helping children and that their actions are justifiable in developing a child. Pedophilia is also considered a psychological disorder due to the fact that those who have it suffer anxiety, depression, distress, & mental impairment in a variety of areas. The causes for those unfortunate souls varies and hasn’t been entirely proven. It is possible that past childhood abuse, brain makeup, and positive reinforcement of past unacceptable sexual behavior can play a role in how one becomes a pedophile over time.

So why is Pedobear popular? Simple. Because he represents what children like (and what we used to grow up with): teddy bears. Teddy bears signify love and comfort. We are conditioned to believe that teddy bears represent good, wholehearted innocence. Combine with the horrifying image of a pedophile and you get one, really warped character. That’s what makes the character seriously hilarious in a dark way. It’s satire on something that is supposed to be adorable and non-threatening. If you’re curious why society is fascinated with teddy bears and other stuffed animals, it’s because teddy bears have an amazing, calming effect on everyone. They give us a moment of peace when we sometimes need one.

Why do we make jokes about pedophiles? Maybe because we’re a society that jokes about mentally impaired people. Think about it. We live in a world where we call others “retards” without understanding the real meaning about it. People try to stay away from them from the most part. They can’t function normally and we don’t always feel sympathetic towards them at all. Also, we live in a a world where laughter is a social phenomenon. It brings people together in the most amazing way. Human beings are all social creatures. Some jokes also affect certain parts of the brain as well and that is a possible reason why people might make pedo jokes or laugh at them.

Pedobear in a Phoenix Wright parody.

What does Pedobear represent in today’s society? He represents the power of the Internet. 4chan created him and it is now one of the more prominent websites on the ‘Net. The Internet allows us to let go of our inhibitions and do whatever we want to do without repercussions. It is a place that lets us show our dark sides and also creates information overload. Sometimes, people don’t know how to handle the craziness of the Internet.

He also represents our need for sexual curiosities. You can say that our society is more sexual than it has ever been. The media often gives off bad messages on how sex is viewed. Hell, pornography is joked as one of America’s favorite pastimes. Sex sells, right?

I also believe Pedobear highlights the fact that we live in a joke of a world where society contradicts itself. They also take advantage of children for their own selfish purposes. For example, child actors/actresses & performers. The American entertainment industry (& parents) takes advantage of all those child entertainers for their own greed and purposes. They try to justify it saying that those entertainers are “great role models” for young audiences and/or it is great for their economic futures. In a sense, aren’t they also "pedophiles" themselves since they are suffering from cognitive distortion or are they possibly even worse than that? Hell, look at what parents do to their kids (i.e. Jon & Kate Plus 8) by putting them on reality TV. Are they suffering from a huge case of superiority complex that they will do anything to be “better” than everyone else? You tell me.

Cosplayers totally dig Pedobear.

Face it, Pedobear isn’t going to die anytime soon. If society keeps acting the way it’s going to act, Pedobear will keep showing up in crazy pictures & people will cosplay him. Do I find Pedobear hilarious? Absolutely. If you saw the photo of me in a previous entry¬†about him, I’m basically putting the San Luis Obispo police’s stupidity to the test. Pedobear is just a cartoon. Did they invent some way to arrest a cartoon? (For those seriously affected by pedophila, my heartfelt sympathies towards you. I hope those pedophiles get punished and/or some serious help.)

Here’s to you, Pedobear. Go after your loli, fight for your CP, battle Chris Hansen to the death, and more importantly: display the exploitative behavior of humanity and address a need to correct it.

Love Pedobear? Hate the meme? Share your thoughts on the comments section below. I love to hear what everyone thinks of this dark joke on child exploitation.

Comments

Tagged: cognitive distortionmental disordersparaphiliapsychologyteddy bearspsychology of the Internetpsychology of humorparody of societyInternet memesPedobearInternet jokes

  1. clap-yourself-a-lullaby reblogged this from mangatherapy
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