A Disney shareholder is disgusted and fed up with the company CEO Bob Chapek’s decision to expend company resources to fight a newly passed parental rights law that has been misnamed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Ray Keating, a Disney shareholder and editor of DisneyBizJournal.com, “is speaking out against the company’s involvement in Florida politics by actively opposing the Republican-led ‘Parental Rights in Education’ bill championed by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis,” Fox Business reported Sunday.
Keating when on to say that when companies become political activists, it hardly ever turns out well for them.
“Here’s a suggestion for Disney CEO Bob Chapek: Get back to business, that is, excellence in storytelling, and stop wasting shareholder’s money on political crusades that have nothing to do with Disney’s business,” Keating told Fox News Digital.
“We all have the right to have our voices heard on issues, but not on the shareholders’ dime,” Keating added.
Fox Business continued:
DeSantis signed the legislation into law this week that bars instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through third grade. Critics have depicted the bill as hurtful to LGBTQ inclusiveness and dubbed it the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Under pressure from LGBTQ activists and progressive employees – some of whom who have walked out of the job in protest – Disney’s Chapek’s eventually criticized the Florida legislation, paused all political giving in Florida and apologized to employees.
“You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down,” Chapek said in a statement on March. 11. “I am sorry.”
Last week, Disney announced that it would join legal efforts to have the law struck down.
“Florida’s HB 1557, also known as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, should never have passed and should never have been signed into law,” a Disney statement said. “Our goal as a company is for this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts, and we remain committed to supporting the national and state organizations working to achieve that.”
Fox Business noted further:
Keating, who has written about how Disney’s activism is bad for business, said Disney’s decisions on the Florida bill has meant the company is catching heat from both sides of the political spectrum. Ever since Chapek spoke up, critics on the right have condemned Disney as being too “woke” and even talked of boycotting the resort.
“Disney’s management succumbed to political pressure from activists on the Left, and now it’s getting hit from the Left and the Right,” Keating told Fox News Digital. “If I weren’t a shareholder, I’d find it amusing.”
The word “gay” does not appear in the Florida law. Rather, it states that “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 age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”
Following Disney’s public opposition, DeSantis has said he will consider revoking Disney’s special self-governing status as well as other privileges the company enjoys in the state.
Noting that Disney “has alienated a lot of people now” during comments to reporters in West Palm Beach on Thursday, the governor added: “And so the political influence they’re used to wielding, I think has dissipated. And so the question is, why would you want to have special privileges in the law at all? And I don’t think that we should.”