Analysis by WorldTribune Staff, March 25, 2022
After being called out by the woke leftist mob for not objecting strenuously enough to a Florida law which prohibits the teaching of sexually-charged material in kindergarten through third grade, CEO Bob Chapek said Disney would ensure that more LGBTQ+ material is created for children.
Disney employees walked out of the company's headquarters on Tuesday to protest the response to Florida's Parental Rights in Education bill, which passed the state Senate in early March and is supported by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis. Opponents have disingenuously labeled it the "Don't Say Gay" bill.
On Friday, reports emerged that Disney was reinstating a kissing scene between two women in the upcoming "Toy Story" spinoff, "Lightyear" — after Pixar employees accused the parent company of cutting gay characters from films.
The protesting employees are demanding that Disney show its support for its LGBTQ+ employees by "stopping construction and investment in the state of Florida until hateful legislation is repealed."
Chapek, already facing leadership problems amid a rift with his predecessor Bob Iger, bowed to the woke mob and proclaimed that Disney made a mistake by not publicly decrying the bill.
"I and the leadership team are determined to use this moment as a catalyst for more meaningful and lasting change," Chapek said during a virtual town hall meeting.
Chapek told employees that Disney would put together a task force overseen by film executive Paul Roeder and Disney Parks marketing executive Lisa Becket to ensure that more LGBTQ-awareness content is available for children.
One Twitter user hit back: "Why does Disney not complain about the way China treats gay people, Ugyhurs, or the people that make the clothes you wear."
Another user said they've renounced the company's parks altogether: "I used to take my kids there every year. Now I refuse to take my grandkids back. You've made everything less magical and everything gay."
Polling has shown widespread support for Florida's Parental Rights in Education legislation.
A Daily Wire poll found the bill was supported by 69% of Republicans, 62% of Democrats, and 57% of self-identified independents. There was not a significant difference in support among whites (63%), blacks (66%), and Latinos (62%) or by age.
Further, majorities said it was "inappropriate" for teachers to instruct students in kindergarten through third grade on various sexual orientations (65%) and "inappropriate" to discuss "gender identities, such as transgenderism" (66%).
More than half of survey respondents (52%) said they support provisions in the Parental Rights bill allowing parents to take schools to court if they believe their children have been taught material related to these topics in a way they believe is inappropriate.
“Most Floridians, no matter their orientation, agree that instruction on sexuality and gender theory is inappropriate in grades K-3,” a spokeswoman for DeSantis said in a statement to the Daily Wire. DeSantis supports HB1557 and has challenged news reporters who've inaccurately described the legislation as the "Don't Say Gay" bill.
Meanwhile, Romualdas Dulskis, a Teamsters official in Orlando whose local represents costumed characters who portray Mickey Mouse, Cinderella and Stich at Walt Disney World along with bus drivers and other Disney workers, said his union did not support the walkout.
"That's just not the way we are going to go about this," he said.
Union leaders said contracts prohibit work stoppages or disruptions.
"I don't want to downplay anyone's efforts, if someone feels what they are doing is the right way to make an impact," said Eric Clinton, president of Unite Here! Local 362, which represents custodians, housekeepers and other Disney World workers. "We aren't part of that. It would violate our contract if members of our union participated, though we are concerned about the issue, of course."
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