Disney swept away by the American culture war

Disney is now one of the most hated brands in the United States: 77e out of 100, according to the 2023 ranking produced by Axios-Harris. In 2019, the company pranced in the lead, ranking fourth among the most loved brands. But she has since suffered a descent into hell. The California media and entertainment giant falls victim to the culture war that is tearing America apart and in which it has allowed itself to be drawn.

Disney is now hated by the right for its so-called “woke” policies and despised by the left for not doing enough. The firm entered in 2022 in open war with the governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis, candidate for the Republican nomination for the presidential election of 2024, when it opposed the law of the Sunshine State banning the teaching of homosexuality at school dubbed “Don’t Say Gay”. To go to a Disney park in the United States is almost to perform a militant act on the left. We are no longer greeted with too much gender “Madam, Sir, boys and girls”but of an inclusive “Welcome, dreamers of all ages”.

How could the company have become the spearhead of LGBT, the incarnation of wokism in the United States? Not thanks to its founder, Walt Disney (1901-1966). The man of Irish descent was a brutal manager, violently opposed to labor unions, who cut wages sharply and faced a strike in 1941. In the midst of the Cold War, in 1947, he denounced three of his employees during a hearing in the United States Congress on un-American activities, a prelude to McCarthyism. His cartoons, inspired by European tales, loved fair-haired, pretty and silent princesses. As for the animals, they had African-American voices – a detail that goes unnoticed in Europe – when it came to representing King Louis, a sloth monkey from the jungle bookor the talkative crows of Dumbo.

Disney educates

For decades, including after the death of the founder, the firm tracked down the small detail that could shock the political correctness of the time. “The mission of the Disney brand has always been very clear: to do nothing that will disturb or confuse the family audience.declared, in 2022, to the New York Times Martin Kaplan, professor at the University of Southern California and alumnus of Walt Disney. But we’re so divided today, so excited, that even Disney is having a hard time bringing us together. »

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