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What the Disney 'Don’t Say Gay' Protest Is About and Why It Matters

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
AP Photo/Richard Drew, File

To the woke, there are no conscientious defenders.

Poor Bob Chapek. He is going to live to regret that. 

Anyone not living under a rock can tell you. The social justice Left is hopping mad over the Parental Rights in Education bill in Florida, aka the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, and wants everyone to know it. More than that, they want Disney to stop it. To make Disney bow down to their demands, they pressured and embarrassed the company and its CEO over the last month in every possible way imaginable. And it worked. Chapek surrendered. Disney will now be a threatening mouthpiece for the Left. 


This is a mistake. Disney still needs to pay its bills, and now they've managed to make everyone mad. Cue the Schadenfreude

How we got here:

The kerfuffle started after Governor Ron DeSantis hinted at his support for the Parental Rights in Education bill last month, which would prevent sex education and discussions of gender for students kindergarten through third grade. The media have somewhat deceitfully claimed the bill prevents gay teachers from mentioning their same-sex relationships, which it does not. Some fuming mad Disney employees with previous complaints demanded Disney use their political leverage as the largest employer in Florida to stop the bill. 

Back during the reign of former Disney CEO Bob Iger, that sort of behavior was to be expected; Iger wanted to be President of the United States and, during his 15-year tenure, forced the company into every progressive cause imaginable. Hence why, over the last decade, we have gone through seemingly dozens of releases featuring the first X gay or X black characters. So much so that it's become a running joke, as Forbes wrote: “How Many Times Is Disney Going To Introduce Its ‘First’ Gay Character?”

But Chapek was not Iger, and he felt the best path for the company was for Disney to return to its politically neutral stance. So Chapek said as much in a companywide email on March 7th. This completely reasonable stance, however, did not hold. The media and activists turned apoplectic on Disney, airing every piece of dirty laundry they could get their hands on. By the end of the week, it had worked. 


Disney officially came out against the bill; Chapek pledged his undying support for the progressive Left as an "outspoken champion," agreeing to an apology tour, donating to LGBTQ campaigns, and even calling up Governor DeSantis. 

Lunatics Running the Asylum:

Chapek, that poor fool, hoping beyond hope, that if he could only sate the mob, they would go away, and he could get back to doing business. You know how that strategy generally works out. 

Under Iger, the progressive creators that saw themselves first as activists came to dominate the institutions inside the company, from Lucas Arts to Marvel Studios, from Theme Parks to Pixar and animation; but also Hulu, Disney+, FOX, ESPN, National Geographic, etc. These individuals inside these companies had long been looking for opportunities to use moral blackmail to leverage their power, and thus the media gave it to them.

This is where the LGBTQ protests come in. The protestors essentially want veto power over all Disney content. They want to expand Disney’s LGBTQIA+ content and have control through transparent reporting on content creation and inception. They also want an end to all political donations involved with the bill, aka Republicans, and stopping all employees from relocating to Florida.

Moreover, it's working. Donations for lefty causes have been made, and support for republicans has been pulled. Pixar announced they got Disney to let them put back a gay kiss in their new film "Lightyear" that had been removed. 


Conservatives Fight Back:

Conservatives, for once, are pushing back. A group of "not explicitly progressive" employees banded together and submitted an anonymous letter stating they wished the company remained politically neutral and listing the discrimination they have experienced at the hands of their progressive coworkers. It's a powerful letter.

“Much has been made of our internal efforts to Reimagine Tomorrow, but as much as diversity and inclusion are promoted, the tomorrow being reimagined doesn’t seem to have much room for religious or political conservatives within the company. Left-leaning cast members are free to promote their agenda and organize on company time using company resources. They call their fellow employees “bigots” and pressure TWDC to use corporate influence to further their left-wing legislative goals.

Yikes. Working at Disney sounds like a nightmare.

However, it’s not just some anonymous employees at Disney that are upset by Walt’s company siding with the far-left, but also the normies.  I've heard from apolitical friends wondering if their dollars are still welcome with the House of Mouse. People who were willing to give the company a chance, with their more red-meat nerd projects, like "The Mandalorian," which I have written positively about, are starting to say no thanks. 

Disney the Monster:

Moreover, can you blame them; Disney discovering its newfound morality is farcical. No major US corporation is more ruthless, cruel, and selfish than the corrupt conglomerate started by the kindly Walt Disney. Never forget, in 2019, that in the face of pressure from the Chinese Communist Party, Disney agreed to film Mulan, in the Xinjiang province, around the Uighur concentration camps; and then, for good measure, thank eight different government departments involved in the genocide in the film's ending credits. 


How bad is Disney? This company is known for standing in the way of the last wishes of dying children. A company known for blacklisting journalists and bloggers that dare feature even the most milquetoast criticism. A company that will censor content featuring black actors and creators if it makes any third-world crackpot dictator unhappy. A company so artistically dead it fundamentally screwed up US copyright law, just so it could release worse live-action remakes for the rest of time. While it soaks families' wallets for all their worth at their theme parks. 


Dear conservatives, and Disney nerds, don’t grieve for the House of Mouse.

Disney courted the social-justice crowd. Now they are being eaten from the inside out like a parasitic wasp in a cricket. What the Left wants is obeisance. But what they will reap is a massive downturn in sales.

This attempt to weaponize Disney will create a significant consumer backlash. Remember how Last Jedi cratered Star Wars; people do not want this garbage. By joining the culture war so vividly, Disney will push the apolitical to have to take sides, and they will not be joining the side that likes to bully everyone else. China no longer has Disney's back. The company must become increasingly dependent on you, the everyday consumers, or risk ruin. Chapek knows that, as does the media. Now we must see if Bob finds his courage or watches as the Left razes his company to the ground. 


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