Disneyland Cop Ban Update: More Characters “Canceled”

in Disneyland Resort

Calvin Blue, a police officer that is part of the Citizens of Buena Vista Street at Disneyland Resort. the image is overlaid with a red "permanently banned" stamp across the center.

Credit: Inside the Magic

This week, Inside the Magic reported that a growing number of Disneyland Resort guests were uncomfortable with positive depictions of police officers at the Southern California Disney park. Namely, they felt it was time to discontinue meet-and-greets with Judy Hopps, a police officer rabbit from Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Zootopia (2016). Now, some feel uncomfortable with any police presence at the Disney parks.

The idea of a “secret police” at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort has intrigued the public for decades. It’s true that undercover or plain-clothed security or police officers roam the Disney theme parks–just not to the degree of rumored snipers on Main Street, U.S.A.

santa ana police department recruitment photo with four officers
Credit: Santa Ana Police Department Official Website

While some guests would feel safer with a visibly increased police presence at the Disney parks, others feel Disneyland security is sufficient. Beyond removing fictional depictions of law enforcement, other guests dream of the day the Anaheim Police Department no longer patrols Disneyland Resort.

Judy Hopps: The Most Controversial Disneyland Police Officer

Officer Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) was the first “prey” animal to join the Zootopia Police Department. She teams up with petty criminal Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) to save the city from a mysterious evil force. “Determined to prove herself, Officer Judy Hopps, the first bunny on Zootopia’s police force, jumps at the chance to crack her first case – even if it means partnering with scam-artist fox Nick Wilde to solve the mystery,” Disney writes.

Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) boards the train to Zootopia in "Hopp On Board", the first 'Zootopia+' short. Credit: Disney Animation Studios
Credit: Disney

Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde greet guests daily at Disney California Adventure Park. Many fans feel conflicted about the positive representation of a police officer at a Disney park, given that Americans are increasingly unsupportive of law enforcement.

“I love Zootopia and these characters but there is also part of me that just doesn’t want to see cops when I’m in Disneyland,” u/RdCrestdBreegull wrote on Reddit.

“ACAB means Judy too,” u/Adventurous_Main5468 replied. “My mate just got back from Shanghai Disney and said that the focus on military Judy was wild.”

Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps, as portrayed at Walt Disney World.
Credit: Disney

These comments received hundreds of upvotes from fellow Disney Parks fans.

Unfortunately for these guests, Walt Disney Imagineering is doubling down on its love for Judy Hopps. “Zootopia” opened at Shanghai Disneyland last year, paving the way for the developing Zootopia land in Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort.

Stormtroopers – A Galactic Mistake?

Stormtrooper at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Credit: myfrozenlife, Flickr

Some guests felt the same about the First Order’s presence in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. (JJ Abrams admitted in 2015 that stormtroopers and First Order were modeled after the Nazis in Germany during World War II.)

“They do not belong in the Happiest Place on Earth!” said u/NamasteHere.

“I feel the same way,” u/Key_Tune7358 commented.

Stormtroopers in Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Credit: Inside the Magic

Like Judy Hopps, stormtroopers aren’t leaving Disneyland Resort or Walt Disney World Resort anytime soon. Guests constantly mob them as they roam Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and they’re integral to one of the most popular Disney Park attractions, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.

Officer Calvin Blue – Travel Back in Time

The discussion about Judy Hopps led some Disney Parks fans to mention their discomfort with Officer Calvin Blue, a citizen of Buena Vista Street. For more than a decade, Officer Blue has roamed the “main street” at Disney California Adventure Park, giving citations for “infectious displays of municipal optimism” or “exemplary neonatal vehicle navigation.”

Sunshine Plaza and Buena Vista Street are set in 1920s Hollywood, making some guests uncomfortable with the inaccurately optimistic depiction of a police officer for that time.

“The old-timey cops around the fountain just have such a ….racist feel about them,” said u/Urbanstix. “…If they were real, [they] wouldn’t let a Black person past them.”

Officer Calvin Blue at Disney California Adventure Park smiles.
Credit: Disney Parks Blog

“I’m so glad I’m not alone,” u/WestWeather5660 replied.

These comments about Officer Calvin Blue also received dozens of votes of support from fellow Disney Parks fans.

Of the police-related characters criticized, Officer Blue is most likely to be removed from Disneyland Resort–more likely for budgetary reasons than online controversy. Walt Disney World Resort laid off the “Citizens of Hollywood” in 2020, stating that the street-atmosphere characters would not return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. After an outcry from fans, a smaller group returned to the Central Florida Disney park last year.

Real Police Officers at Disneyland

A picture of Sleeping Beauty Castle with Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse's Partners statue in the foreground at Disneyland Park in Disneyland Resort
Credit: Ed Aguila, Inside the Magic

The Anaheim Police Department stations officers at Disneyland Resort to respond to emergencies and issue trespass warnings. Security handles most conflicts at Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure Park, and Downtown Disney, but law enforcement officers step in when things get heated.

Some guests find the permanent presence of police officers unnerving, arguing that there’s no need for patrol officers at Disneyland Resort. At most, they say that law enforcement could respond to calls at the Southern California Disney Resort without staying there 24/7.

In response to the above comments about Judy Hopps, u/chambees quipped that they “don’t want to see cops anywhere” at Disneyland Resort.

Mickey's Fun Wheel and Incredicoaster on Pixar Pier at Disneyland Resort's California Adventure
Credit: Brandi Alexandra via Unsplash

Again, the comments received supportive votes from fellow social media users.

“Good point, thank you,” u/Adventurous_Main5468 replied.

Of the proposed police bans at Disneyland Resort, this is the least likely. Beyond giving the appearance of safety, law enforcement has a history with The Mouse. Walt Disney worked with the Anaheim Police Department while developing Disneyland Park, writing the police chief this formal thank-you letter in 1955:

“[Your] support, in no small measure, will greatly contribute to whatever success Disneyland may enjoy,” Walt wrote. “I’m looking forward with much pleasure to having you join with us for the preview and dedication of Disneyland.”

Do police officers, fictional or real, have a place at Disneyland Park, Downtown Disney, and Disney California Adventure Park? In the comments, share your thoughts on the proposed ban with Inside the Magic. 

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