Rosie Jon is a Westport mother of 3. She’s an artist. And she was born without arms.
Rosie is an advocate for all children — “gifts from Heaven,” she calls them. She is especially passionate about children born with special abilities.
So Rosie is disturbed by Warner Brothers’ new movie “The Witches.” It portrays witches with deformed, toeless feet which they hide by wearing pointed shoes, and 3 -fingered claws they hide with gloves.
The Grand High Witch — leader of all the world’s witches — is played by Anne Hathaway.
She too is a Westporter. Rosie asked “06880” to post this open letter to her neighbor:
Dear Anne Hathaway,
For my children, having a mother with no arms has given them a daily lesson on how our differences are what make us special and unique.
They know that nothing is impossible when you live your life from your heart and soul, loving one another, no matter what our differences are.
So it saddens me deeply to see a community that is close to my heart be hurt by your latest movie.
I admire you and your work, and how you put your heart into everything you do.
I also love that you are a fellow Westport mother. You have shared your big,
compassionate heart for others with our town too, such as joining our town’s
peaceful protests for Black Lives Matter back in June.
We know you care deeply about those who don’t have a voice.
Because I have always appreciated your work, I wanted to let you know that
your latest movie, “The Witches,” by Warner Bros. has caused heartbreak in the Limb Difference community. It has hit me and others in this vulnerable community especially hard.
The children’s film, based on Roald Dahl’s book, took the liberty of changing your character from the original story, to have a limb disability to add “fear” and “evil” to the character.
Unfortunately, this has been very hurtful to a community of “lucky fins” who
already have to face a world that judges anyone with a difference with fear and discrimination.
The limb difference community wants the world to see that our differences are to be celebrated, not feared.
A wonderful organization called Lucky Fin Project aims to “celebrate the wonderfully made, one ‘lucky fin’ at a time.” I would love for you to take the opportunity to see the beauty of this organization that is helping the world see
children with limb differences as precious gifts, who were born to make a difference — and definitely not be seen as scary “witches.”
We don’t blame you. We love you. And I feel strongly that this is an opportunity for you to use your platform to educate children and adults about how disability is not something “ugly” or “scary,” but something to embrace with love and acceptance.
We can help families have these important conversations at home. For instance, I address this in my blog post, from my own personal experiences living in Westport with a limb difference.
My dear friend Anne Lawton, a journalist and fellow Westport mother, and I would love to interview you (maybe via Zoom?) to send out a
message of hope to these beautiful children.
I also know an extraordinary 11-year-old girl, Maddie Hostetter, who has modelled for Tommy Hilfiger Children’s Adaptive Clothing Line, whom we can invite to share her experiences living with a limb difference in today’s world with
But most of all, reaching out to this community and lending your hand to them will help heal some of the hurt that this movie has caused.