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Author: QueenieBee Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 49604  
Subject: Re: Disney's politics Date: 4/7/2000 10:00 PM
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*sigh* Lurker here, but I just had to say a few things.

I am a longtime Disney employee. I am a woman. I am exceptionally well paid by this company. And I am extremely happy.

I can assure you, Mr. Scott, that there is no hidden antifeminist, facist, racist agenda. I personally strive for the opposite in my own work every day.

I had to do some research on Pocahontas (the real one) for my job. Perhaps Disney didn't get all the facts straight, but they also omitted many ugly facts about Pocahontas' people as well. Yes, they were wiped out by European colonialism, but they were guilty of their own form of brutality, including cruel torture of their enemies (not all of them Europeans). Should Disney have included THAT in their movie, as well? Just to get the facts perfectly straight? I thought not.

Let's talk about "Aladdin" for a second. Yes, Jasmine is a princess. But a princess who's being forced to get married, who doesn't WANT to get married. Aladdin the poor street rat runs into Jasmine, hiding as a commoner in the streets. Sparks fly. He's in love... but when he finds out she's a princess, he knows he doesn't have a shot at her. BOOM, in steps the genie, turns him into a rich guy so he can win the girl, but guess what... she doesn't LIKE the rich braggart. She likes the poor little genuine street rat. How about that for a screwed up value? Further, should we judge Aladdin because he chases the girl the way you judge Ariel for chasing the boy?

Okay, Lion King... after watching Lion King, instead of wondering if your daughter is interpreting it as an antidemocratic statement, why not talk about why lions are portrayed as Kings? Here's where you could introduce the concept of a METAPHOR. Lions are at the top of the food chain, therefore they're the "kings". You could also talk about REAL lions in Africa, explain the "circle of life" concept, the food chain, the whole nine yards. Very educational.

Here's one you haven't yet discussed: "Tarzan." Now this was a difficult property, having been taken from a book which was considered (rightfully so) racist by many African Americans. But Disney took it and turned it into a story about how, despite being of different races (or species), families are about compassion and understanding. When young Tarzan frets that he's different from the other apes, Kala the mother gorilla points out that he has two eyes, two nose, two ears, and they both have beating hearts. And when Tarzan is given the choice to leave the jungle and join his own kind, he chooses to stay with his adopted family, who he considers his real family.

Oh, I could go on and on. Yes, if you look hard enough you can twist the message to be as sick as you like. But we try so hard to put real heart and soul into these properties, and it hurts me to see people accusing us of having such hateful agendas.

Your heart is in the right place, Mr. Scott, and I admire that you care so much for your daughter that you want to shield her from the wrong message. But being so reactionary sets a bad precedent. Do you want her to grow up seeing conspiracy everywhere?

Good luck to you, but I promise... no agenda.


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