It is unclear how you can applaud the bravery of something, when Ron DeSantis has not imposed anything to stop it.
Listening to the news outlets in this country, you have undoubtedly at some point been treated to the contemporary version of the Hatfields & McCoys—namely the ongoing feud between Disney vs. DeSantis. In 2022, this was a far more dramatic corporate contretemps, as the entertainment titan elected to barge its way into the culture wars, choosing to exert its influence in the battle over Florida’s Parental Rights In Education law.
Disney came out the loser in that scrap, as the fight resulted in a public rebuke of the company; the corporation was later stripped of it special land grants within the state, and on top of that, many of the woke entertainment offerings over the past year have been significant bombs. The lobbying against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis failed even with the press in full support—to the extent that one paper claimed DeSantis had been “outmaneuvered” in the fight, despite the law passing and being shown popular among the voters.
But still today, the media cannot help themselves, and the DeSantis ascendancy on the political stage only makes them more desperate. The latest example arrives from The Daily Beast, which saw a recent announcement by the entertainment company as a resounding victory—in a battle that is not, in fact, being waged. The headline blares: “Disney Defies DeSantis by Hosting Major LGBTQ+ Conference,” which instantly calls up the question: Defies him…how?!
The big news is that the Walt Disney World Resort has announced that it landed a contract with The Out & Equal Workplace Summit, agreeing to be the location for their annual event for the next two years.
Formally staged in Las Vegas, this summit is touted as being the largest LGBT𝜋 conference in the world, with upwards of 5,000 in attendance. As the Daily Beast makes this announcement, we get served up all manner of inaccuracies in order to build up the battle that is not taking place.
Ever since the passage of the law rescinding some of Disney’s land management autonomy as the state took control of the Reedy Creek Improvement District, there really has not been much in the way of discord between Disney and DeSantis. You would not know this based on the coverage by Daily Beast intern Victor Swezey. Right from the opening, we have to buy into the siege in the cultural conflict, in order to sell Disney’s accomplishment.
“As the war between Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Mickey Mouse continues to intensify…” writes Swezey dramatically, and from there, we get layers of falsehoods. He says this move stands “in direct defiance of DeSantis’ crusade to punish the company for its pro-LGBT stances.”
Except, as it is known, that was not the case. It was not as innocent as “the company spoke out against DeSantis”; Disney was “punished” because it willingly entered into a fight with the state government, calling to have the bill (at the time) blocked, and even at one point pledging to help the fight in courts. It was not over their support of LGBT𝜋 policies; it was because Disney pledged to battle the state.
Then in an unrelated issue, Swezey implies that DeSantis also battled against Disney on the matter of DEI policies. “DeSantis has repeatedly railed against “woke capitalism,” accusing companies that utilize DEI trainings of attempting to “advance woke ideology through its employee ranks—and virtue signal in the process.”
The governor has spoken in opposition to these efforts, but he has never taken action against any company engaging in such. In other words, this is something else Disney is not “defying.”
Of course, this being a media outlet, after all, we need to be presented with the big lie told for over a year now. We get rote prevarication of “DeSantis’ Don’t Say Gay bill,” and further lies about what the law entails—all done in order to position Disney as some noble corporation in the fight for LGBT𝜋 rights, and how they have really shown up Governor DeSantis with this latest move.
It is not too clear exactly how staging a major event within the state is seen as a form of rebuke. If you were looking to get revenge on a state government, it is not likely to be felt by drawing in thousands of tourists to spend money during an extended vacation. Boosting the economy and delivering copious tax revenue is not the slap in the face the Daily Beast might want it to be.
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