Bad news for those of us who (blood)thirsted over the Cullen family while binge-reading Stephenie Meyers's Twilight saga in middle school -- it turns out Jasper Hale, a.k.a Edward Cullen's older brother, was probably cool with slavery. Yikes.
Earlier today, The Sacramento Bee's Ashley Wong pointed out an interesting tidbit many of us may have conveniently forgot about the Cullen sibling's, erm, questionable backstory -- Hale served as the youngest major in the Texas Cavalry during the American Civil War before entering into vampire-dom. "my world shattered yesterday when one of my high school students told me Jasper Cullen from Twilight fought for the Confederacy," she wrote. "it raises all kinds of ethical questions now like who *should* become a vampire? who *deserves* immortal life."
This um, arguably racist revelation comes from a scene at the beginning of Eclipse, when Hale explains how, exactly, he knows so much about newborn vampires. "All the training the Confederate Army gave me was useless against the newborns. Still, I've never lost a fight," he casually tells Bella.
"Hey, this happened during the civil war?" she replies, seemingly unconcerned with the fact that her soon-to-be brother-in-law essentially fought on behalf of slavery.
"I was the youngest major in the Texas Cavalry, all without having seen a real battle," he explained. "Until I met a certain immortal ... Maria." She seems like a pretty stand-up gal if she managed to singlehandedly stop her man from fighting on behalf of racist causes. The book series provides no further explanation regarding Jasper's views on race, avoiding the topic altogether throughout the series.
Yet Wong wasn't the first person on social media to point out this overlooked historical tidbit since the film's release. Earlier this year, following both the announcement of Midnight Sun, Meyer's new Twilight companion novel, and the civil unrest surrounding racism in the United States, the issue of Hale's backstory has remained a hot topic on Twitter, frustrating longtime fans.
"The way they ruined his storyline by making him a confederate soldier ... was it that hard to just let him be the sexy white boy damn," wrote @MeanMug_Mamii back in July in a post that has since garnered more than 193,000 likes.
"jasper was the hottest man in the entire twilight series but of course he was in the fucking confederate army WHY CANT I HAVE NICE THINGS," mused user @gabagoolmiller echoing pretty much all of our thoughts.
"I was team jasper until i processed what 'confederate soldier' meant. wtf Stephanie," replied @a_Trectadactyl_ in response to the age-old question of Edward or Jacob.
"why did jasper have to be a confederate officer he easily could've fought for the north," asked @thotsandnotions "literally wouldn't change the storyline at alll."
Well, folks, there you have it -- although vampires may be immune to death, they are most definitely not immune to getting canceled for the racist antics of their past lives. Now, if anyone needs me, I'll be switching over to Team Jacob -- Taylor Lautner was cuter, after all.