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Another blow to DeSantis: Disney tourism numbers expected to be unaffected by his crusade
Disney is reportedly expected to be largely unaffected by the repeated attacks of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
DeSantis has turned all his political guns blazing on Disney after the entertainment giant dared to criticize his legislation prohibiting any mention of LGBTQ people in most elementary school classrooms. He has repeatedly attacked the corporation in speeches, took over the board that administers their special taxing district, and threatened to toll the roads into the Walt Disney World resort complex, or even build a state prison next to it.
But it doesn't seem like his threats are having much effect on Disney's bottom line, or tourism numbers, reported Orlando Weekly on Friday.
"In a recent interview with Travel Weekly, [Dana] Young, the president and CEO of Visit Florida, was asked about several topics that could have a negative bearing on the state," reported Jim Turner. "Included were the legal and political battles that sprung up after Disney opposed a controversial 2022 law that restricts instruction about sexual orientation and gender identity in schools. The law was titled by supporters as the 'Parental Rights in Education' bill but is derided by critics as 'don’t say gay.'"
“That is a business decision that we don't feel impacts the tourism product that Disney has,” said Young. “Disney has been a longtime partner of Visit Florida. They continue to be a valued partner of Visit Florida, buying into a lot of our programs. People love Disney, they love visiting Disney, and they will continue to go to Disney.”
IN OTHER NEWS: Donald Trump wants to retire the term ‘woke’ and his reasoning might surprise you
While Disney tourism may be expected to continue to thrive, Disney itself has still responded with a lawsuit against DeSantis, arguing the governor's actions have discriminated against their freedom of speech.
However, in a wrinkle this week, the judge overseeing that case recused himself due to owning stock in Disney, resulting in the case being reassigned to another judge appointed by former President Donald Trump.
Donald Trump wants to retire the term ‘woke’ and his reasoning might surprise you
Donald Trump wants to put “woke” to rest.
The former president earlier this week said that he’s “sick” of the catch-all phrase that's used to rile up the conservative base.
“It’s gotten sick, and I don’t like the term woke, because I hear woke, woke, woke,” Trump said Thursday at a Westside Conservative Breakfast in Urbandale, Iowa.
“You know it’s like just a term they use half the people can’t even define it. They don’t know what it is.”
Trump’s assertion can easily be dismissed as a jab at his chief political rival, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has made his “war on woke” the focus of his agenda.
But MSNBC’s Zeeshan Aleem suggests that it may be a rare moment in which the former president is being insightful.
“It’s not exactly clear who was he referring to when he said “they,” but it’s likely he meant people on the right who use the term to discredit or fearmonger about any policy vaguely associated with the principle of social equality or inclusiveness. It could even be a jab at DeSantis, who has made opposing ‘wokeness’ one of the animating principles of his presidential campaign," Aleem writes for MSNBC in a column published under the headline “What Trump's claim that he's over the term 'woke' reveals.”
“It was also one of those rare moments in which Trump said something true, and maybe even slightly introspective.”
Recent polling data backs Trump’s assertion.
A USA Today/Ipsos poll, the findings of which were published in March, suggests that no broad consensus over the term’s meaning exists, and that Americans are divided over whether they view “wokeness” as a compliment or an insult.
The poll shows a split between those who view “woke” to mean being aware of social injustice, which is considered the Democratic party view of the term, and others who associate the term with political correctness taken to an extreme, which is how Republicans typically characterize “wokeness.”
According to the poll, 56 percent of Americans view the term to mean “to be informed, educated on, and aware of social injustices,” and 39 percent consider it to be “overly politically correct and police others’ words.”
Republicans, according to the poll, are not monolithic in their view of “wokeness,” with more than a third (37 percent) of respondents associating the term with being aware of social injustice, and 56 percent describing it to mean being overly politically correct.
IN OTHER NEWS: Elliot Page accuses big-name actor of hurling homophobic threats
Aleem writes that, “The term 'woke' dates back to at least the early 20th century, and was originally used by people who positively affiliated with the term as a shorthand for awareness of social injustice and bigotry. But in recent years, the right has appropriated the term and rendered it unintelligible.”
“DeSantis’ 2024 campaign launch last week was so packed with jargon tied to the anti-woke crusade that it was hard to understand what he was really saying. Trump is right: The term doesn’t mean much anymore when used by the right.”
Canadian actor Elliot Page was accosted by an unidentified big-name actor who deluged him with homophobic threats, he wrote in his new memoir, according to The Daily Beast on Friday.
"The incident, recounted in a chapter Page bluntly titled 'Famous A--hole at Party,' took place between Page and an unnamed but prominent actor at a birthday party in 2014, Page told People in a new interview. According to Page, the actor told him he wasn’t really gay, just 'afraid of men,' and said 'I’m going to f—k you to make you realize you aren’t gay.'"
According to the report, Page "then tried to brush off the encounter when the two crossed paths at a gym several days later."
Page, who has featured in several films including Inception, came out as a transgender man in 2020. He was assigned female at birth, and, prior to 2020, he had identified himself as gay rather than transgender.
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“I’m purposely not sharing his name,” Page said to People Magazine. However, he added, “he will hear about this and know it’s him.”
Much of the discrimination efforts against transgender people over the last few years, including Republican-backed laws restricting them from sports and restroom use, have been sold with rhetoric focusing on the demonization of transgender women. However, transgender men also face discrimination and social struggles.
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