The Walt Disney Company CEO recently addressed employees in a town hall and positioned himself as the arbiter of what is right and wrong will also claiming the company will continue to promote acts of grave depravity under his leadership.
Video footage was obtained by journalist Christopher F. Rufo who shared Iger’s response to a question regarding Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill or the anti-grooming bill as it was dubbed by Florida governor Ron DeSantis’ Press Secretary Christina Pushaw.
Disney initially indicated they were not going to get involved in the political discussion around the Parental Rights in Education bill that states, “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third
parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age100 appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”
While the company originally claimed they would not get involved in the debate surrounding the bill, then Disney CEO Bob Chapek indicated they would work around the bill and others like it through their content.
He sent an email to Disney employees saying, “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 continued, “There’s a reason content is at the top of this list. For nearly a century, our company’s stories have opened minds, inspired dreams, shown the world both as it is and how we wish it could be, and now more than ever before, represent the incredible diversity of our society.”
“We are telling important stories, raising voices, and I believe, changing hearts and minds,” he added.
However, shortly after admitting that he would use Disney’s content to work around the bill, he also positioned the company against the bill penning another later stating in part, “To my fellow colleagues, but especially our LGBTQ+ community, Thank you to all who have reached out to me sharing your pain, frustration and sadness over the company’s response to the Florida ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill. Speaking to you, reading your messages, and meeting with you have helped me better understand how painful our silence was.”
“It is clear that this is not just an issue about a bill in Florida, but instead yet another challenge to basic human rights. You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down. I am sorry,” he apologized.
The bill was passed and the Florida legislature and governor Ron DeSantis then moved to punish Disney by repealing the 1967 Reedy Creek Improvement Act that granted Disney a special tax and governing jurisdiction.
In response to a question regarding Disney’s battle with the state of Florida, Iger stated, “Well, first of all, our LGBTQ employees are very important to us and we care deeply about them. That is a given.”
In response to the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” legislation, Iger said Disney would still promote “inclusion,” but suggested that the company must strike a “delicate balance” and “listen to [its] audience” and “have respect for the people that [it’s] serving.” This is a retreat. pic.twitter.com/bZBnQdm616
— Christopher F. Rufo ⚔️ (@realchrisrufo) November 29, 2022
He continued, “Secondly, this company has been telling stories for a hundred years and those stories have had a meaningful, positive impact on the world. And one of the reasons that they’ve had a meaningful, positive impact is one of our core values is inclusion, acceptance, and tolerance. And we can’t lose that. We just can’t lose that.”
Iger then brought up the Marvel Studios film Black Panther as an example, “I think about Black Panther and the impact that had on the world or a film like Coco, and how we actually changed the world for the good. It must continue.”
“We also — when you tell stories it’s a delicate balance,” he opined. “You’re talking to an audience, but it’s also important to listen to an audience. It’s important to have respect for the people that you’re serving, that you are trying to reach, and not have disdain for it.”
He then stated, “That said we’re not going to make everybody happy all the time and we’re not going to try to. We’re certainly not going to lessen our core values to make everybody happy all the time. So it’s complicated and there’s a balance.”
Iger then went on to indicate he and his Disney employees who tell stories are the arbiters of what is right and wrong, “And at one point, I said, ‘We do what we believe is right,’ and someone criticized me saying, ‘Well, who are you to say that’s right?’ Well, when you are in a job like mine or you are responsible for the storytelling that many of you are responsible for, you get paid to have a sense for what is right. Not everybody will agree with you.”
“That’s just not the way the world is these days, but it doesn’t mean you should stop trying to do the right thing,” he concluded.
Bob Iger and the employees at The Walt Disney Company are not the arbiters of what is right and wrong. That privilege belongs to God and God alone. And God has made it very clear what is right and wrong.
Specifically, God destroyed the city of Sodom after the people there attempted to rape two of his angels sent to Lot. The Book of Genesis states, “Before they went to bed, the townsmen of Sodom, both young and old—all the people to the last man—surrounded the house. They called to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to your house tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have sexual relations with them.”
Holy Scripture continues, “Lot went out to meet them at the entrance. When he had shut the door behind him, he said, ‘I beg you, my brothers, do not do this wicked thing!'”
After the people of Sodom refuse to listen to Lot, Genesis informs us, “the LORD rained down sulfur upon Sodom and Gomorrah, fire from the LORD out of heaven. He overthrew those cities and the whole Plain, together with the inhabitants of the cities and the produce of the soil.”
The Catechism of the Catholic Church also instructs, “Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained.
It continues, “Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.’ They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.”
The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible,” it goes on. “This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.”
“Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition,” it instructs.
The Catechism concludes, “Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.”
It is thus wrong to promote a lifestyle involving acts of grave depravity especially to young children.
What do you make of Iger’s comments as the returning CEO of The Walt Disney Company?