Bob Chapek and The Walt Disney Company continue to face backlash for choosing to remain silent on Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill instead of satisfying a vocal contingent’s demands to provide corporate support against the legislation.
We at Disney Fanatic have reported twice now that Chapek and the Disney leadership see best to face the situation internally and through the content, it puts out into the world.
However, the demands for the corporate powerhouse to attack and condemn a state government and a bill protecting parents’ rights concerning the education of their children from kindergarten through third grade have not ceased. And an in-office memo has been shared across news networks and social media.
According to Spectrum News 13, “Chapek said the decision not to release a statement was because ‘they are often weaponized’ to ‘further divide and inflame.'”
“As we have seen time and again, corporate statements do very little to change outcomes or minds,” the memo read. “Instead, they are often weaponized by one side or the other to further divide and inflame. Simply put, they can be counterproductive and undermine more effective ways to achieve change.”
“I don’t want anyone to mistake a lack of a statement for a lack of support,” Chapek continued. “We all share the same goal of a more tolerant, respectful world. Where we may differ is in the tactics to get there. And because this struggle is much bigger than any one bill in any one state, I believe the best way for our company to bring about lasting change is through the inspiring content we produce, the welcoming culture we create and the diverse community organizations we support.”
Chapek also acknowledged the disappointment in his decision, admitting “that disappointment was compounded by the fact that, while not perfect, our company has a long history of supporting the LGBTQ+ community.” He also reaffirmed that the company stands with its LGBTQ+ employees and said that Disney’s new chief corporate affairs officer Geoff Morrell is “reassessing” Disney’s advocacy strategies.
Chapek’s actions are a staunch departure from his predecessor Bob Iger who threatened to pull all Disney movie production out of the State of Georgia after a controversy-sparking abortion bill was passed.
The Walt Disney Company has become a corporation beloved by the LGBTQ+ community and its allies for both work and play, and we at Disney Fanatic have recently reported that Disney has continued to earn praise for its LGBTQ+-friendly work environment.
The Parental Rights in Education bill is expected to be passed in Tallahassee shortly.