Disney’s willing act of CCP-style cancel culture is philistine and chilling. It is effectively sacrificing a piece of its own art to appease the Beijing authorities who are looking with worried eyes upon the freedom-hungry people of Hong Kong. It is amazing how swiftly woke corporations ditch their blather about lives mattering and justice being important the minute it comes to China. Disney itself has form in this area. Its 2020 movie Mulan came to be embroiled in controversy when its star Liu Yifei voiced her support for Beijing’s brutal crushing of the democracy protests in Hong Kong. So Disney will bemoan police injustice against black Americans but happily work with people who cheer shocking police clampdowns on Hongkongers? Worse, the credits for Mulan thanked eight government entities in China, including Xinjiang, home to the persecuted Uyghur people. ‘We stand for justice’, Disney crowed in that BLM ad it released last year. But not for the Uyghurs? Well, we wouldn’t want to do anything to irritate the lucrative Chinese market, would we?
Woke celebs and businesses often come unstuck in the face of China. Colin Kaepernick makes justice-themed commercials for Nike but says little about the poorly paid, poorly treated Chinese workers who make Nike stuff. When Boston Celtics basketball player Enes Kanter called out China for its human-rights abuses, he got little backing from the woke sports set. ‘NBA and Nike choose silence as Enes Kanter takes on China’, as one headline put it. The China question exposes the hollowness, the flimsiness, the look-at-me posturing nature of so much 21st-century virtue-signalling. These people strike a camera-friendly pose against fashionable injustices but they go schtum in the face of genuine injustice. Perhaps profits matter more than lives.