Tammy Bruce on the ‘woke’ Disney controversy
Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce joins ‘Faulkner Focus’ to discuss Disney going ‘woke’ and opposing Florida’s parental rights law.
Some families across the country are reconsidering their previously Disney-friendly stance in their homes or their lives — including the movies, the streaming service, the theme parks and other offerings from the entertainment and media conglomerate.
That’s partly because Disney’s CEO, Bob Chapek, has opposed a new bill signed into law this week by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis; it’s known as the Parental Rights in Education bill.
The law prohibits Florida teachers from instructing very young students — those in kindergarten through third grade — about gender identity and sexual orientation. Initially, Chapek had not taken a public stance on it, but some people believe he ultimately caved to a minority of far-left “wokers” who are upset about the new law.
Here’s a tweet from the Disney company that went out this week:
But it’s not just this. Disney World and Disneyland have decided to ban the use of “gender greetings” within their parks — so the terms “boys and girls” and “ladies and gentlemen” will no longer be uttered by employees on Disney grounds.
These instances and more of left-leaning policies are why some concerned parents, grandparents and others have changed or are revising their views of Disney. Here are opinions and insights from a variety of individuals, as shared with Fox News Digital this week in exclusive interviews.
‘This isn’t your grandmother’s Disney’
Patti Garibay, an Ohio-based parent and grandparent, is executive director and founder of American Heritage Girls, a faith-focused alternative to the Girl Scouts. She told Fox News Digital this week via email, “It is time to void your household of all things Disney.”
"Today’s Disney," said one mom and grandmother, "promotes a full spectrum of lifestyles that rarely align with the biblical values of good and evil."
She explained, “Walt Disney most often cited his most important lesson as that of ‘goodwill always triumphs over evil.’ Today’s Disney promotes a full spectrum of lifestyles that rarely align with the biblical values of good and evil, which God calls us to.”
She continued, “It has been said before and it bears saying again, ‘Walt would turn over in his grave’ to see what his beloved company has become.”
“It is time to void your household of all things Disney.”
Added Garibay, “It’s no longer a safe haven for families to promote good over evil, but rather an environment without a moral compass.”
Garibay also said, “Christians should wake up to the fact that this isn’t your grandmother’s Disney. In fact,” she said, “Disney is now devoted to confusing your children.”
Disney will ‘lose on this wokeness gamble’
A Tennessee father of a 10-month-old daughter told Fox News Digital, “As a new father, I have decided not to expose my baby to any of Disney’s products — anything they stream, or the theme parks. There are so many other wholesome options for her.”
A statue of Walt Disney is shown here at Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
He also said that, in time, “I will let her watch the older Disney films on DVD that I was raised on — they taught values that kids need and can understand, things like loyalty, friendship, working through obstacles, and the love of family.”
He added, “Disney doesn’t seem to understand that parents have so many options now. Ultimately, I think they’re going to lose on this wokeness gamble.”
‘You can’t promote innocence and sex at the same time’
A mother and grandmother in her early 60s who lives outside Boston, Mass., told Fox News Digital in an email on Thursday, “I gave up on Disney years ago when they started opening the parks up for gay pride activities while families were there.”
She added, “A children’s theme park is no place for this. You can’t promote both innocence and sex at the same time. This was a clear signal to families about where they are headed as a company.”
She also noted, “As a Christian grandmother, my job is to protect, guide and love.” She said that “participating in anything Disney forces me to abandon all three.”
‘Parents are deeply frustrated’
Kelly Claggett, a mother and owner of The Local Farm to Table & Venue in Grove, Oklahoma, shared with Fox News Digital, “Parents are deeply frustrated because we have to fight so hard to raise our kids with important values like honesty, integrity and learning the Golden Rule.”
“The executives at Disney [must] live in some kind of bubble and don’t know everyday moms and dads like us.”
She also said, “Disney used to offer us wonderful content that reinforced good values. When I read about ‘woke Disney,’ my friends and I all felt the same way — clearly the executives at Disney live in some kind of bubble and don’t know everyday moms and dads like us.”
She said that, as a result, “They are losing our families’ business and that of almost everyone I know.” Claggett said her family “is actively looking for and watching alternatives like ‘The Tuttle Twins’ that fill in where Disney is leaving off.”
‘They’ve tarnished their brand’
A New Jersey-based wife, sister and aunt who has long loved watching Disney films and visiting Disney theme parks said, “For conservatives who are longtime Disney fans, the company’s sharp left turn presents a real conundrum.”
“We are done and will not be funding that [Disney] machine any longer.”
She added, “Do I love Disney films, stories and art? Yes. Do I love the theme parks? Absolutely. To me, the theme parks drip with creativity and story, and as a creative person, I gravitate to that.”
The Walt Disney character Mickey Mouse greets children at the Magic Kingdom in Nov. 11, 2001, in Orlando, Florida.
(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
She admitted that for her, “some of this probably comes down to pure nostalgia.”
However, she added, “Do I love their politics? No! They’ve tarnished their brand with their most recent political activism targeting Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Act — a bill most Americans support.”
Yet she still wishes for the best. “My hope,” she said, “is that the company comes to its senses, remembers who their customers are and gets back to doing what they do best: Entertain ‘dreamers of all ages.’”
‘Our children are going through enough’
A mom of a young daughter in the Virginia Beach area of the Old Dominion State shared that her husband — a military man — was against Disney and its products and services even before she was.
“He said, ‘Absolutely not,’ about anything Disney-related even before this garbage came out,” the mom said.
“I think that was the last straw for me as well with Disney,” she continued. “Our children are going through enough. They don’t need the woke culture to destroy their innocence.”
She added, “We are done and will not be funding that [Disney] machine any longer. I am also going to be disconnecting Disney+ in our household.”
Disney’s woke content ‘isn’t the first and won’t be the last challenge that Christian parents face’
“As a Christian father of three,” said James Spencer, PhD, president of the D.L. Moody Center in Northfield, Mass., “I am always concerned that my children may be seeing, hearing, and believing stories that will lead them away from Christ and distract them from proclaiming the gospel.”
“Let’s show our kids what it means to hold our convictions in the midst of a fallen world.”
He added, “While I’ve not gone so far as to ban television in our home, I do spend time talking with my kids about what they are reading and viewing, so that they don’t begin to trust Disney, Paramount, Netflix, or Hulu more than they trust the Scriptures.”
“Disney’s ‘woke’ content may pose a new challenge,” he also said, “but it isn’t the first and won’t be the last challenge that Christian parents face.”
He advised the following: “Christians would do well to come together to tell an alternative story centered on the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. Disney may be contributing to a new story that denies and diminishes God — but they aren’t the first to contribute, nor will they be the last.”
One New York father said that today, he has to "make sure I either watch every single thing fully before my kids watch it — or I’ll just do away with Disney as an entity, to save myself time."
He also said, “As we consider how to cultivate a vibrant faith in Jesus in the next generation of the church, we must remember that the Christian faith is not something we simply know, but something we live out. Let’s show our kids what it means to hold our convictions in the midst of a fallen world while proclaiming the love of Jesus in word and in deed.”
‘Going to Disney is something I’ll never do again’
A father of two in the New York City area — and the son of a U.S. Army veteran — has taken his kids to Disney World in Orlando a few times in the past.
He said this week, “I think placating a small subset of the loudest [Disney] employees who obviously haven’t even read the Florida bill sets a really dangerous standard. But it’s the same standard,” he added, “that we’ve seen from progressives over the last 20-30 years. In this scenario, the loudest, squeakiest, most annoying wheel gets the grease.”
In this photo from 2011, Chinese children are shown performing with Disney actors to celebrate the ground-breaking of Shanghai Disneyland.
This father also said, “The fact that some higher ranking Disney employees are openly saying they’re going to make sure that at least 50% of the characters are LGBTQIA — when that subset of our society is less than 10%, and probably less than 5% — means that I’ll make sure I watch every single thing fully before my kids watch it, or I’ll just do away with Disney as an entity to save myself time.”
“Who would have ever thought that Mickey would turn politically correct? But apparently he has, with a vengeance.”
He added, “Between this and the stupid prices for worsening experiences at their parks, the traditional family ‘plan’ of going to Disney is something I’ll never do again.”
This father also said bluntly, “It’s a shame, because my son — who’s in kindergarten this year — wanted to go. But it’s not worth the money, much less so if Disney’s DEI [diversity, equity and inclusion] initiatives mean I’ll have to deal with Disney ‘princesses’ who have penises.”
Mickey Mouse ‘turned politically correct with a vengeance’
Judge Phil Ginn is a father of four daughters and president of Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES) in Charlotte, N.C. He told Fox News Digital in an email, “Who would have ever thought that Mickey would turn politically correct? But apparently he has, with a vengeance.”
“They’ve chosen to engage in the destruction of the childhood of those they seek to entertain.”
He added, “What is really sad, though, is that instead of focusing on real atrocities such as what is happening in the kingdom of Disney’s ‘blood brother,’ the Chinese Communist Party, they have chosen to engage in the destruction of the childhood of those they seek to entertain.”
Ginn said that Disney’s “destructive notions of hedonistic concepts of sexuality would make even Uncle Walt blush.”
A "Sleeping Beauty" poster, via British poster art, is shown here. From left to right, Maleficent, Princess Aurora and Flora, 1959.
(Photo by LMPC via Getty Images)
“Maybe it’s time,” he added, “for true Christians to break some bad habits about how we spend our money for entertainment — and speak out against the creeping evil in our culture not only with our words, but our pocketbooks as well.”
Kids need ‘a refuge from this crazy culture’
Trent Talbot, a father of two in Houston, Texas, is founder and CEO of BRAVE Books, as well as the author of “The Fight for Freedom Island.”
He told Fox News Digital, “Disney has surrendered to the woke mob and is using its platform to indoctrinate the children of America into becoming the woke activists of tomorrow.”
He added, “Kids need entertainment that is a refuge from this crazy culture, where they can be entertained with just great stories and fun characters. And parents should have confidence that their children are seeing and hearing stories that are good and true.”
Talbot also said this is why his company is working on alternative options — and “there needs to be more companies that step up and create alternative entertainment options for families.”
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