Commentary

Sciascia: Disney Deserves Everything It's Getting in California, But Its Employees Deserve Better

Why is it that being right so often means feeling wrong? Whether you like to admit it or not, “I told you so” moments have an unfortunate and abiding habit of leaving the correct party far more melancholy than they ought to feel.

On the issue of economic fallout stemming from our nation’s unscientific and ever-changing coronavirus response, no exception exists for that rule — only exacerbation.

A lesson learned, in this instance, will invariably mean lots of human hurt and no shortage of livelihoods hanging in the balance.

Nobody knows this better than liberal California’s richest resident: The Walt Disney Company.

According to a recent report from the Daily Mail, Disney is finally rearing up to meet the challenge of left-wing big government head-on.

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Unfortunately, its “big move” is far too little and comes far too late.

In light of an off-the-cuff Oct. 8 decision by California’s far-left Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom to delay theme park re-opening efforts, Disneyland Resort President Ken Potrock took a stand last week, lambasting California leadership for the “arbitrary” and burdensome nature of state public health guidelines and enforcement.

Do you think The Walt Disney Co. is getting what it deserves?

“We have proven that we can responsibly reopen, with science-based health and safety protocols strictly enforced at our theme park properties around the world,” Potrock wrote in a public statement.

“Nevertheless the State of California continues to ignore this fact, instead mandating arbitrary guidelines that it knows are unworkable and that hold us to a higher standard vastly different from other reopened businesses and state-operated facilities,” he added.

“Together with our labor unions we want to get people back to work, but these State guidelines will keep us shuttered for the foreseeable future, forcing thousands more people out of work, leading to the inevitable closure of small family-owned businesses, and irreparably devastating the Anaheim/Southern California community.”

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Of course, the executive was absolutely right.

With Walt Disney World Resort already open in Florida, albeit under heavy attendance and social distancing restrictions, there remains no real reason for its California predecessor not to re-open.

Its significantly smaller acreage may require even tighter restrictions, but isn’t a mild re-opening effort better than nothing at all?

The answer seems self-evident, particularly given USA Today reports suggesting Disney’s California Adventure theme park will be welcome to open its turnstiles once again next month for shopping and eating only.

Why Disneyland Resort‘s wide array of attractions and other shopping centers cannot do the same is no mystery, however.

In fact, it is the natural result of our culture’s long-lived willingness to legitimize left-wing power plays — and it has cost at least 28,000 Cast Members their livelihoods, according to The New York Times.

CBS News reports also indicated poor public health policy has resulted in at least $5 billion in financial losses for resort.

But as a longtime lover of all things Disney, I have a hard time feeling for the company itself.

With constant pandering to the social justice left, Disney made the bed it’s been forced to lie in this last few months.

The company has, at every turn, cozied up with communist China and the Black Lives Matter mob, giving in to left-wing tyranny at both the systemic and cultural level.

Worse still, it has been complicit in such things, on several occasions, maintaining ownership of several left-wing establishment media news outlets and joining with the rest of the Hollywood left in strong-arming conservative Georgia over groundbreaking pro-life legislation in 2019.

All the while, cancel culture and big government leftism have festered at the forefront of American culture, the cancer eventually taking hold in The Walt Disney Company’s own home state.

And I would proudly say that I hope the condition is terminal, were it not for the damage further financial downturn might do to an immense number of decent folks — many of them being my friends and former Castmates.

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Andrew J. Sciascia is the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal. Having joined up as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, he went on to cover the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for the outlet, regularly co-hosting its video podcast, "WJ Live," as well.
Andrew J. Sciascia is the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal and regularly co-hosts the outlet's video podcast, "WJ Live."

Sciascia first joined up with The Western Journal as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, before graduating with a degree in criminal justice and political science from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he served as editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and worked briefly as a political operative with the Massachusetts Republican Party.

He has since covered the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for The Western Journal, and now focuses his reporting on Congress and the national campaign trail. His work has also appeared in The Daily Caller.




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