Florida lawmakers voted to end the Walt Disney Company’s special, self-government privileges, which it never should have received. Since 1967, Disney has operated its own mini-state, surrounded by Florida — much as the Vatican is encircled by Rome.
The Reedy Creek Improvement District exempts Disney from certain taxes and regulations that burden other companies. This arrangement also empowers the Magic Kingdom to establish its own levies, ordinances and emergency services in and around its Disney World theme parks.
Let’s hope Disney enjoyed this cushy 55-year ride. Too bad its rotten corporate citizenship cost it these precious goodies.
“The word ‘gay’ is not in the legislation,” Gov. Ron DeSantis (R–Fla.) told Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson. “It’s a lie, but it’s a lie because they have to lie because if they admitted what they were really for — sexualizing kindergartners and first graders — they know that would not fly with the public.”
Disney said it wants “this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts.” So Disney believes that it’s an unacceptable burden to ask teachers to instruct their students on (as the law states) “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” no sooner than fourth grade.
Disney and its allies evidently cannot wait that long. Instead, they are desperate to discuss sexuality with kindergartners through third graders — ages 5 through 8.
Disney’s hypocrisy is more towering than Space Mountain. While it fights this new law as an alleged cornerstone of homophobia, Disney is delighted to conduct business in lethally homophobic countries.
- Disney Cruise Lines’ ships sail into Dominica and Antigua, where glamorous onshore activities await. These Caribbean islands punish gay sex with maximum 10- and 15-year prison terms, respectively.
- Disney Vacation Club offers a Private Adventure to Egypt. “You’ll be awed by the storied history of the people, places and cultures of this ancient country,” Disney promises.
How fun! Just remember that gay sex could cost you three years behind bars.
The Egyptian Bedayaa Organization’s legal-aid project reported 25 anti-gay arrests in 2020 and 92 in 2019. In September 2017, authorities nabbed 66 people for waving a rainbow flag.
- The Disney+ streaming service is expanding into Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Oman, the Palestinian Authority, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Yemen. These places are not known for their pride parades. In fact, they criminalize homosexuality.
“Don’t say gay”? Try “Don’t be gay.”
Disney’s most brutal new markets are Saudi Arabia — where homosexuality can trigger chemical castration and capital punishment — and Yemen, where same-sex intimacy can trigger execution.
As this controversy exploded, Team Disney sorely needed adult supervision. Rather than repeat lies, it should have presented facts to its ignorant, enraged employees.
CEO Bob Chapek should have stood up to the Wokistani children on his staff and said: “We are a for-profit company, not a super PAC. Many of our customers — who pay your salaries — are parents who bring their kids to our movies and amusement parks, not expecting us to discuss sex with their children. We avoid political controversies, not least the promotion of sexually charged classroom lessons for boys and girls aged 5 through 8.
“If you can handle this, carry on. If this is more than you can manage, the front door is right there. You are welcome to quit, go home and scream whatever slogans you wish. Otherwise, follow me and return to work. End of statement.”
But rather than lead, Chapek waved a white banner and then whimpered beneath his desk.
The moral of this Disney epic?
The Maoist mobs’ assault on America’s executive suites will continue until CEOs resist the overpaid adolescents on their staffs, practice in loco parentis and speed their white flags to the nearest landfill.
Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News Contributor, a contributing editor with National Review Online and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.