The rivalry between the Florida Gov. and Disney continues to rage on.
The Walt Disney Company has found itself surrounded by controversy as of late, with one of the biggest stories being how the company has handled Florida’s new controversial “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Known as the “Don’t Say Gay Bill”, this piece of legislation is as simple as the title. As stated by NPR, “The legislation prohibits any instruction about sexuality or gender between kindergarten and third grade, or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”
At Disney’s annual shareholder’s meeting, Disney CEO Bob Chapek finally addressed how The Walt Disney Company felt about this bill, saying he and the rest of the company do not support it. Disney CEO Bob Chapek said he wanted to address the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, saying that Disney was “opposed to the bill from the outset” and that Disney will pledge $5 million to protect LGBTQ+ rights.
In a wild turn of events, the Human Rights Campaign actually announced that it would be rejecting this sizable donation until “more meaningful action was taken” by the company. Now, the bill has finally been signed into law by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, prompting Disney to respond with a message:
“Florida’s HB 1557, also known as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, should never have passed and should never have been signed into law,” the statement reads. “Our goal as a company is for this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts, and we remain committed to supporting the national and state organizations working to achieve that. We are dedicated to standing up for the rights and safety of LGBTQ+ members of the Disney family, as well as the LGBTQ+ community in Florida and across the country.”
After this very public disavowal of the bill with claims of repealing it, Gov. Ron DeSantis held a conference, mentioning the company’s stance on this new piece of legislation and sharing it on his official Twitter account (@GovRonDeSantis):
The state of Florida is governed according to the interests of the people, not according to the political posturing of corporate executives in California. We will never allow corporate influence to repeal the substantive rights of parents in our state.
The state of Florida is governed according to the interests of the people, not according to the political posturing of corporate executives in California.
We will never allow corporate influence to repeal the substantive rights of parents in our state. pic.twitter.com/vEDEKekcaH
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) March 29, 2022
The Gov. criticized the company and other aspects of the Hollywood industry at large. “For Disney to come out and put a statement and say that the bill should have never passed and they are going to actively work to repeal it — I think, one, was fundamentally dishonest. But two, I think that crossed the line”, said the Gov., “This state is governed by the interests of the people of the state of Florida. It is not based on the demands of California corporate executives. They do not run this state. They do not control this state”.
While there is always room for growth, the relationship between The Walt Disney Company and the Florida Gov. seems incredibly strained for now.
How do you feel about this current controversy for the Walt Disney Company? Let us know in the comment below.
Let the expert team at Academy Travel help you plan your next magical vacation to Disneyland Resort, including Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure, and the Downtown Disney District. Or what about Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the Disney Springs shopping and dining district!