Lest you be deceived by the title and think that I’m the one accusing Disney of having a gay agenda, I’m not. I’ll probably get around to that in a moment, but the phrase is a direct quote from Disney Television Executive Producer Latoya Raveneau. He proudly stated on video that he was “wherever I could, just basically adding queerness. . . . No one would stop me and no one was trying to stop me.” And yes, he described this as his, “not-at-all-secret gay agenda to insert queerness into children’s animation.” So how is that working out for Big Mouse in terms of winning the battle for hearts and minds, or even more importantly, ticket sales? It may be a bit early to tell, but a recent survey conducted by the Trafalgar Group might be of interest to their board of directors. The study found that a pretty significant majority of voters aren’t embracing this plan and it will probably make them less likely to engage Disney’s services. (National Review)
More than 68 percent of general-election voters say they are less likely to do business with Disney after reports that it plans to include sexual ideology in new content for children, a new poll found.
The Trafalgar Group’s new National Issues Survey on Disney, which was sponsored by the Convention of States Action, found that more than 69 percent of respondents said they were likely to support “family-friendly alternatives” to Disney. ..
The poll was conducted between April 4 and 8 among a sample of 1,079 likely general election voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.99 percent.
I’ll get back to the “gay agenda” thing in a moment, but first, let’s look at the numbers. When asked to consider the inclusion of this sort of material in Disney’s animated programming, 85.3 percent of Republicans, 72.5 percent of independents and 48.2 percent of Democrats said it would make them “less likely to continue using Disney products.”
78 percent of Republicans, 72 percent of independents and 59 percent of Democrats further answered that they would support “a family-friendly alternative to Disney.” Those numbers aren’t even close to being viable if you’re trying to reach a national audience. Nearly half of the Democrats don’t even go along with this. It doesn’t matter what your personal views on gay rights and all the rest might be. We’re talking about the brutal realities of capitalism here. This is not a good business model. And those of you saying that it’s more important for Disney to “stand up for what’s right” probably aren’t on the board of directors that have to keep an eye on the Mouse’s stock values. The breakdown in the survey along party lines further suggests that this is yet another area where Democrats have failed to read the room.
As to the appropriateness of this content for young children, there are ways for this to be handled responsibly. First of all, it should always be the responsibility of parents to determine the age at which their children are ready to handle complex discussions regarding sexuality and how those topics should be approached. But as long-time readers are probably aware (to the annoyance of some), I am not now nor have I ever been at war with the gay community. I was a regular speaker and participant at GoProud events back in the day when they were still in operation. I also didn’t take part in the fight to ban gay marriage, though the final solution the government arrived at wasn’t the best one, in my opinion.
As far as educating your children goes, no matter your background, religious beliefs, or anything else, the reality is that there are gay people in the world. In fact, there are really quite a few of them. (Either that or they’ve been doing an amazing job of faking it for all of recorded history.) And as I said, there are ways for parents to approach this subject with young children without sexualizing them or “indoctrinating” them or what have you. When appropriate or when questions arise, it’s simple enough to just say something along the following lines. ‘Most young boys grow up and want to marry girls. Most young girls grow up and want to marry boys. But some boys grow up and want to marry boys and some girls grow up and want to marry girls. You will meet all sorts of people as you grow up.’
Tougher questions will come later, but parents should retain the option to educate them appropriately and try to instill in them the values they hope to see them carry forward into adulthood. (Though that doesn’t always work out, since young people can be famously stubborn and rebellious.) It’s not the job of the schools and it is most certainly not the job of Disney.