Disney has been catching a lot of heat from conservatives and those who feel strongly that the mega-sized entertainment company has been pushing agenda-based ideology onto children through Park and film experiences. This has led Disney into a nasty fight over politics, and many fans are jumping ship as the perception of Disney’s morals creates strained relationships with usually loyal Disney fans who adhere to more conservative values.
As the world rapidly changes from what we’ve known, in an effort to keep up, Disney, widely considered a liberal institution, has adopted policy and procedure which enhances the idea of inclusion amongst the company. Becoming a leader for civil movements concerned with LGBTQ+, Disney, whose primary audience is children, how been met with a lot of backlash, especially after recent incidents involving allowing biological male Cast Members to dress as women within the Parks. A recent viral video set the internet on fire with debate after a male Cast Member at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at Disneyland was shown dressed as a fairy godmother leading children into the salon.
Although Disney has been friendly with the gay community for a long time, amongst public pressure, their recent efforts to stand alongside those that identify as such have landed them in political warfare with the State of Florida. Bob Chapek sent out a strongly worded message highlighting what some have called the “Don’t Say Gay” bill and calling out Florida officials for causing “pain, frustration, and sadness” for those LGBTQ+ identifiers Disney employs. Since then, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Disney have engaged in a savage back and forth that has turned many Disney loyalists off from the company.
For those sitting on the fence regarding their convictions about still consuming Disney-related materials, a recent TikTok video from Disney Style may be enough to push some over the edge. Posted in an article published by conservative columnist Todd Starnes, the video, which was published to TikTok in July of 2023, shows user @seannaltman instructing viewers on how to dress like Minnie Mouse for their next Disney Park day. In celebration of the Disney 100, the video is tagged as an ad with Disney Style on the app and has been making its way around the internet to much debate. Labeled “Minnie is Me,” the video features Seann displaying clothing items to help Guests who want to Disney Bound as Minnie Mouse in the Parks.
Suppose you’re unfamiliar with the concept of Disney Bounding. If that’s the case, the concept is simple. Disney Bounding is a popular way for Guests to further immerse themselves into the magic at Disneyland or Walt Disney World by dressing like a Disney character. Usually, outfits are styled using matching color pallets and are heavy on accessories. Viewing Seann’s TikTok ad will give viewers a great idea of what Disney Bounding looks like. In the video, Seann uses everyday items like a dress, belts, and hair products to look like Minnie Mouse. Seann explains that to “be as bold as Minnie,” he must ensure his make-up matches the famous Disney mouse. Seann tops the look off with long black stockings, bright yellow heels, and a large red bow placed directly between the two buns he created in his hair to resemble Minnie Ears. Seann finishes the video by saying he now “looks just like Minnie Mouse and fits in perfectly with her friends.”
As the video appears to be an actual Disney Style ad, although Todd Starnes claims that Disney has tried to distance themselves from claims of “grooming,” others have a differing opinion and suggest that video promotes beauty and inclusiveness, which are two facets of what Disney is all about. However, some still note that the distinction between women and men is essential, and by blurring the lines, society is creating confusion for children who aren’t yet ready to process complex thinking, which is the basis for Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill that has drawn Disney into the struggle with Disney World’s home state.