Disneyland’s White Rabbit Refuses to Touch The Blacks

Some asshole in a White Rabbit costume at Disneyland refused to hug a black kid (whose last name was Black — you can’t make this stuff up, people.)

I have two theories. Either the asshole rabbit is racist, or the asshole rabbit is a germophobe who didn’t want to get cooties because everybody knows that little black kids are gross and dirty.

Their skin is brown, for fuck’s sake. Maybe if they bathed more often, assholes rabbits would want to hug them.

[read full post at ABLC]






75 replies
  1. 1
    freelancer says:

    Are we sure it was White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland and not the rabbit from Song of the South? (Don’t read the youtube comments.)

    Also, State workers in Mississippi fucked up, but in fairness, there’s not that big a difference between the two flags.

  2. 2
    JustRuss says:

    After playing Batman:Arkham City, I wouldn’t let a dude in a white rabbit costume anywhere near my kid. Heck, even in the Disney cartoon he’s not very friendly. Still, no excuse for this.

  3. 3
    Walker says:

    If this is verified, this mascot is gone. Disney prides itself as a customer service company and unless this kid was a physical threat to the Disney employee, that employee has no excuse for not hugging the kid.

  4. 4
    Tonybrown74 says:

    I didn’t realize that BLACK!1eleventy-one! was contagious.

    I need to warn my white (and asians, latinos, etc) friends …

  5. 5
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    Dang. I would have pegged the Caterpillar as the secret racist.

  6. 6
    gnomedad says:

    Are these the Blacks Romney had good relations with?

    Also, as noted by a commenter at ABL’s place, the comments at the LA CBS site are mind-numbing.

  7. 7

    I swear, there just can’t be one fucking day that goes by that something doesn’t happen to make me want to just give up on this country and go somewhere else to live.

    But I guess this “black children are dirty” thing must run deep. I remember once when I was in 4th grade, one of my friends was walking to the lunch table with his food, and a little girl a few years younger ran up and grabbed some of his food off his tray. She was black. So he went to one of the lunchroom ladies, mothers of children who sometimes vilunteered to keep the lunchroom civilized, and he told her what this girl had done. So she went and got him his food back and brought it to him at the table where we were sitting, but he didn’t want it. She asked him why, and before he could think, he blurted out, “Because black people never wash their hands!” As soon as he said it, he actually slapped his hands over his mouth, which might be the only time I ever saw somebody do that. The punchline, needless to say, was that he was black. She didn’t get pissed off, she just asked him something like, “Do you really believe that?” I could tell he was ashamed, as well he might have been. I felt kind of tainted myself, for being his friend.

    Anyway, I guess the point is, if there is a point, that he wasn’t the kind of kid who was likely to grow up to wear a sheet; the third of our little trio was a black classmate, so he wasn’t “racist” in the way most Americans think of the word, as a klan thug. But even a kid, one of whose two best friends was black, could soak up this kind of prejudice.

    That’s why I think these pieces you post are so important. It’s that they make anybody who reads them really think about racism. We need to talk about it. We need to understand how deep it goes. It infects all of us, and in many ways it is like a sickness. I can understand why many whites don’t want to talk about it. It’s still wrong to fight against talking about it, but I understand it.

    It’s that most white people aren’t klan thugs, and whenever race and racism come up, most whites can only understand racism as klan thugs beating up black people. But most racism today isn’t that at all, it’s this miasma of subtle racism that hangs all about us all the time. We grow up in it. We breathe it all our lives. And it subtly leads us to value black lives less than white lives.

    But, you know, since most white people, despite their latent racism, are decent people, they resent being lumped in with what they understand to be the only kind of racism, which is hard-core klanism. They feel put upon and aggrieved and attacked. But that’s because they aren’t willing to listen to the legitimate complaints that black people have.

    As I understand many of the complaints that black Americans bring up, it isn’t, “You whities are all 21st century klansmen who want to bring back slavery, and you personally are responsible for all the oppression that we suffer! You’re evil and you aren’t any better than Simon Legree!” But that isn’t the complaint at all. As I read it, it’s more like, “You personally might not have any conscious racist tendencies at all, but you have grown up in a society that’s been infused with racism for 400 years–as have we all–and sometimes things that you don’t think twice about saying come across in another way to us, and they hurt us. I know you don’t mean those things that way, but they can be hurtful all the same, and I’d like it if we could talk about this.”

    And the great thing is, when we talk this way, I almost always learn something. I learn that maybe something I’d never given any thought to can hurt someone else. I might have been blameless before, since I knew nothing about it, and I don’t need to feel guilty, but once I learn, I can change. That’s the point. That’s good. Everybody wins.

    I know it’s kind of presumptuous of me to assume that I can understand what black Americans think and feel, and I don’t mean the quotes I made up to be definitive; it’s just the way I understand them. If I’m wrong, then I hope somebody will set me straight.

  8. 8

    i don’t normally say it but this post is a great example of things that give liberals a bad name.

    you know when my sympathy for the family involved ended? after i read that (a) disneyland quickly apologized and offered the family a VIP pass and $500, and (b) the family turned it down and rushed off to sue.

    do i hear anyone asserting that disneyland is institutionally racially insensitive and that stuff like this is condoned? i didn’t think so. as a result, this is just some guy in a bunny costume acting like a dick. news at 11.

    when some rednecks at a GOP convention throw food at a black reporter and yell things involving monkey eating in a jungle, THAT’s something to get in High Dudgeon because, yes, the GOP is institutionally racially insensitive and stuff like that happens all the time.

    sigh.

  9. 9
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    I have two theories. Either the asshole rabbit is racist, or the asshole rabbit is a germophobe who didn’t want to get cooties because everybody knows that little black kids are gross and dirty.

    Actually that’s just one theory.

  10. 10

    @Walker: precisely. which is why this story is just about some random racist dick in a bunny costume. it doesn’t warrant what i guess this post is trying to go for, which is roughly OMFG!!!11! Disnee iz RaCIalist!!

  11. 11
    Vincent Williams says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: Hey, forget about it, Metavirus. It’s ABL.

  12. 12
    gnomedad says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:

    OMFG!!!11! Disnee iz RaCIalist!!

    Not for a moment did I think that was the point of this post.

  13. 13
    opie_jeanne says:

    I won’t go to the links.

    That employee is toast.

    My youngest worked at Disneyland (which is in Anaheim) as a character for several years, and she played Alice as well as Mickey and Minnie and Donald, Pinocchio, Piglet, Lilo, Stitch, and a couple more I can’t remember. The costumes with heads are hot and heavy, and those characters have a lot of trouble with guests forgetting that there is a live person inside the costume. She told us horror stories about the guests all the time, about girls wearing Mickey costume getting felt up to check if they were boys, getting punched and kicked by kids whose parents thought it was hilarious, and worse. Her neck was injured by a man, an adult, who leaned on Donald’s bill while she was wearing the costume. The costumed characters are with a handler for protection but they can’t always intervene quickly enough.

    She was good at her job and loved it because most of the time it was working with kids and adults who were delighted to see her even if they didn’t know who she was supposed to be. (As Wendy from Peter Pan she got that question a lot). There were special needs kids who were brought into the park at times when it was closed to the public, children who were cancer patients, homeless children who had never been to see a movie let alone Disneyland, impoverished kids sponsored by Boys and Girls Club (Disneyland has an annual fund raiser for them, a huge talent show). There were the canoe races pitting executives against parking lot attendants against characters, and there was the Prom for the character employees, hosted by the park. They dressed in evening gowns and tuxedos rather than costumes, and had a great time.

    The best part of her employment there was that they worked around her college schedule and still considered her a full time employee so that she got full benefits.

  14. 14
    Ruckus says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:
    Maybe the story is really about a company that tries not to racist and still sometimes fails because this type of racism is still prevalent in our society. Maybe not the same as 50-150yrs ago but we still have a long way to go. Does that $500 and free passes make up for the way the kids were treated? It wouldn’t to me if it were my kids.

  15. 15
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Walker: My daughter, as a character working at Disneyland, constantly hugged children who were sick with things like chicken pox and the flu because if you spent all that money to come half-way around the world and your kid gets sick, you’re going to drag that kid into the park no matter what.

    In a full costume with a head, such as the White Rabbit, there is less chance of catching stuff but more chance that the kid will decide you’re a punching bag.

  16. 16

    @gnomedad: i guess i’m just unclear on what the point of the post is then. there are millions of racist assholes doing racist asshole things in millions of different jobs millions of times a day. maybe a racist asshole doing a racist asshole thing at disneyland is interesting because he’s wearing a bunny costume, but maybe not. it’s certainly not, IMHO, cause to slap the indignation meter onto Disney as an organization and crank it to “Disneyland offered the Black family $500 and some VIP passes and the Blacks were like, DON’T THINK SO FUCKERS, FIRE THAT BITCH AND APOLOGIZE”

  17. 17
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: The person inside that rabbit costume is mostly likely a female; most of the characters are female.

  18. 18

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:

    Yeah, dick, well, guess what? If you own a business, you are responsible for what your workers do. If you don’t like that, then feel free. Go lobby to change the law. But as it is, Disney is responsible for this. What happened is just wrong. And they know how bad this is, that’s why they tried to buy off the family with $500 and wanted them to sign a confidentiality agreement. The family said, “Fuck you!” to that, as I think they should have.

  19. 19

    @Ruckus: disney is a hugely progressive company when it comes to, e.g., diversity in employment, gay partnership benefits, and on and on. no matter how good a company is, there will always be some asshole nuts out there. things like this really shouldn’t reflect badly on disney unless they treated the family like shit when they complained and didn’t do anything about it. an apology, a VIP pass, $500 and disciplinary action against the employee is a pretty nice way to handle it in my opinion. moreover, this incident CERTAINLY doesn’t warrant disney getting hauled into court over it.

  20. 20
    Ruckus says:

    @opie_jeanne:
    We had family friends whose kids worked at disneyland when I was a kid and they told the same stories. But they really liked working there because they were treated well and it was fun, not something you could say about working at mcd’s or the Jolly Roger, a fish and chips joint, where no matter what kind of soap you used, you couldn’t get rid of the smell.

  21. 21

    @opie_jeanne: sorry, i’ve been trying to break my default male pronoun habit for a while.

  22. 22
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:
    This is my daughter who is 4’10”, and you can see the relative height of the White Rabbit. Probably a female inside the rabbit costume. They have minimum/maximum height limits for every character. She was right at the bottom of the height requirement for every character, so the person in the rabbit costume is probably 5’4″. http://www.flickr.com/photos/s.....500338646/

  23. 23
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:i guess i’m just unclear on what the point of the post is then.

    That, and capitalization.

    Piefilter.

  24. 24

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.): of course a company is responsible for what their employees do. which is why they apologized and tried to compensate the family for the incident. and disney is without question disciplining the employee. so what else are they supposed to do? does an isolated racist incident at theme park really warrant hauling the company into court on a complaint that on its face fails to state any claim on which relief could be granted (no, a racist dick being mean to you isn’t actionable)?

  25. 25
  26. 26
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.): Well, what would you have liked Disneyland to do for this family? Not snark, I would like to know what, beyond an official apology, you’d like them to do.

    That person wearing the rabbit suit is toast.

  27. 27
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:

    i guess i’m just unclear on what the point of the post is then.

    You could always ask instead of being a dildo.

  28. 28
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: No problem. I was surprised to learn how few guys worked in costume, even though as many auditioned for the job. Most guys are too tall to be anything other than Goofy.

  29. 29
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    @opie_jeanne: Most guys are too tall to be anything other than Goofy.

    The mascot for my old college team worked as Goofy for a while. She was a woman, but a very tall one. She was a talented clown; could juggle, ride one of those 8-foot-tall unicycles, all that stuff, and all while wearing one of those character outfits. Impressive.

  30. 30
    Ruckus says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:

    They didn’t want $500 and free passes. And neither would I. I don’t whore my kids or myself out for racists. I would want a public apology and knowing that this person would be fired so that at least I know the chances of this happening again would be lessened. The cost of being racist has to be higher than $500 bucks from a huge corporation that makes billions a year, and it doesn’t have to be actual money. But it does have to be solutions that go towards solving a problem and throwing a few bucks at it is not the answer.

  31. 31

    Reading the comments on the CBS site makes me want to beat somebody to death.

    And how sad is it that I wrote this:

    Well, douchebag, it’s because a shitload of stuff is racially motivated.

    You assholes only understand racism as “Klan thug lynches blameless black guy,” and anything short of that doesn’t rate as racism. But, guess what, fuckface, racism is all around us. It’s why a black guy without a police record has a harder time getting work that a white guy who’s done time. It’s why a black family often has a harder time getting a bank loan than a white family with less income and a worse credit rating.

    It’s all around us. We’ve grown up surrounded by it. Most of us aren’t hardcore klansmen; but we still have latent racist tendencies, since we’ve grown up in a society that has sytemically devalued black lives for 400 years. You can say that it isn’t our fault, and you’d be right. Most of us don’t go out of our way to say or do racist things. But we do them all the same, because, guess what, genius, we don’t see racism the same way black Americans do, because it doesn’t happen to us. It goes right over our heads.

    We only become douchebags when, if somebody points out that something somebody did or said was racist, we say, as you did, “Oh, that wasn’t racist at all. Why don’t you lighten up? We enlightened white people will tell you ignorant black folk when something is really racist. Until then, kindly shut your faces and don’t bother us with your whining.”

    But, guess what, asshole? When a black person tells you that something that happened to them was racist, it was. Sorry, but that’s how it is. Black Americans have been on the wrong end of racism in this country for 400 years, and they have a pretty fucking good understanding of what rates as racism. If they tell you something is racist, then accept that and try to learn something from it. You’ll be a better person for it, believe me.

    And it goes into moderation because I used some naughty words, but some subhuman creep wrote this:

    Why? Because they know they’re not as capable as Whites. They’re jealous, demanding and mentally ill. I’ll bet they didn’t tip the waitress at any restaurants where they ate.

    And that went right up?

  32. 32

    @Cassidy: i don’t really think my comments call for insults.

  33. 33

    @Ruckus: so accepting an apology, a VIP pass, and $500 – in addition to the company disciplining the employee – is “whor[ing] my kids or myself out for racists”? no one is asserting that disney is a shitty company when it comes to race and diversity. so what else are they supposed to do? public floggings at the magic castle? hauling disney into court over this is outrageous.

  34. 34

    @opie_jeanne: i do think i remember reading that somewhere. it makes sense, given the height of many of the characters.

  35. 35
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: No. You’re being a dildo. It was called for.

    It was actually you’re first comment, the one about how dare they not take the $500 bucks and stop being so insulted. Maybe if they weren’t so sensitive, you know? Then you kind of went downhill from there. If Mcarglebargle has taught us anything, doubling down on stupid is never a good idea.

  36. 36

    @Cassidy: you’re entitled to your opinion. i’m just offering up my two cents. and i’m doing it without calling people names.

  37. 37
    gwangung says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: And most people don’t think they’re being racist when they say racist things.

    Personally, I don’t think you were trying to be a douche. But I can see how people could take it that way.

  38. 38

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:
    @opie_jeanne:

    Well, I don’t know if there’s anything that would make me happy. Sometimes the only answer is a lawsuit, I think. We’re only going to work through the racism that still infests this country if, 1, we white people find it within ourselves to be willing to talk about racism without waving it off as no big deal or some uppity black folk looking for a payout, and, 2, there come to be serious consequences for racism, and one of those consequences is serious punitive damages against businesses where this kind of shit happens.

    You can say that this isn’t altogether fair to Disney, and maybe you’d be right. But, damn it, businesses are going to really think about taking a lead in fighting racism if they know that they might be liable for tens or hundreds of millons of dollars when some douchebag who works for them pulls this kind of shit. So, really, I don’t care much if it’s unfair to Disney. This happened on their watch, and they can fork over a boatload of money.

  39. 39
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: Yeah well, try to do it with a little less “them black people are so sensitive hyuck, hyuck”.

  40. 40

    @gwangung: thanks. if i’m not coming across to some folks as trying to be constructive, i apologize. anyone who knows me or reads what i write on my blog will quickly attest to the fact that i am rapacious in calling out racist republican dipshits when they (inevitably) do or say racist shit. i just think there’s a point at which yelling at every tiny example of racist shit — at the same DECIBEL LEVEL as the institutionally outrageous racist shit that really matters — eventually dilutes and cheapens the fights that we need to be having. especially when we’re only talking about some isolated random racist asshole in a bunny suit.

  41. 41

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.): (1) You wrote: “businesses are going to really think about taking a lead in fighting racism”.

    i really don’t get it. disney is one of the most progressive companies out there in terms of diversity, lgbt inclusion, etc. are they really supposed to be punished for not achieving perfection?

    (2) You wrote: “Sometimes the only answer is a lawsuit”.

    This is absolutely wrong. The courts aren’t there to hear claims that have no basis in the law. Nothing legally actionable took place. No one was assaulted. No theft occurred. You can’t just file a claim because you feel like it.

  42. 42
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:

    racist shit that really matters

    And how exactly do you determine this? So, casual racism is cool as long as it’s not “institutional” state sponsored?

  43. 43

    @Cassidy: definitely very sorry if i came across like that in any way. the family was ABSOLUTELY justified in being outraged. i would have been too (big time). i just think that the outrage has to be directed at the right target(s).

  44. 44
    Ruckus says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape:
    I’ve answered the question twice now. I wouldn’t want the $500. Offering me that is saying that my silence and acceptance of my and my children’s place can be bought. To put it in crude racist terms, it makes me the house nigger. For giving up my humanity and pride I get a few bucks. If an employee at disney treated you and your kids that way you would wonder what the fuck is going on, but if you are a black family you know, because they get this all the time in this country. They go to one place that says this won’t happen here and damned if it didn’t.

  45. 45
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: But who are you to decide that? Who are you to decide that their pain and humiliation, the humiliation that child most likely felt is not “good enough”? Who are you to decide they should have taken their $500 and some VIP passes and slunk away after signing a confidentiality agreement? Who are you to decide that they should be silent on this?

    This happened to them; not you. You don’t get to decide that and I don’t care how progressive you think you are, judging them and lacking compassion because they didn’t pick the target you’ve chosen as sufficient is not cool at all.

  46. 46

    @Cassidy: perhaps that wasn’t a good way to put it. what i mean is that it’s just not practical (or possible) to throw up the big outrage sign for every isolated incident of racist shit that happens millions of times in this country. i guess it’s just a matter of perspective. and also a matter of trying to avoid slapping around a very progressive company just because a random racist asshole did an outrageous thing.

  47. 47
    mk3872 says:

    How does it make the actor racist if he didn’t HUG someone??

    My kids (who are white) don’t really like being hugged by characters like this and so they don’t hug the characters, who in turn, don’t initiate a hug either.

    This seems very, very far fetched to sue Disney over not getting a hug.

  48. 48
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: I think you’re combining two different issues. For one, yes the bullshit flag needs to be thrown up for every instance of bigotry in this country; every single, god damned one. Why? Because it needs to become a mantra that not even one will be tolerated. Not even one instance is too small or one person’s pride and self worth is too small to fight for.

    Secondly, progressive companies are good, but even progressive companies get so big they lose sight. People like this don’t suddenly develop bigoted feelings overnight. Someone, a co-worker or supervisor, knew or suspected that this employee had these feelings and beliefs and said nothing. Now, once Disney gets a little ding in the public relations and, maybe, the wallet, you know what they’re going to do? Diversity training. While that may make us all groan, I guarantee that the underlying theme will be “don’t let your freak flag fly while you’re at work…or we’ll terminate your ass”.

  49. 49
    Cassidy says:

    @mk3872: You should read the link.

  50. 50
    jrg says:

    This is the worst instance of institutionalized racism I’ve ever seen. Ever. Everyone working at Disney should be fired. The company should be liquidated and given to this poor family.

    This is also a case study in white privilege. I’ll bet that guy in the bunny suit didn’t even have to try to get that awesome job. That poor kid is probably so scarred he’ll never be able to get a job, let alone one as awesome as dressing up like a fucking bunny rabbit at Disney world.

  51. 51
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.):

    Mumph, I assume that was also you who posted that excellent rantcomment on the Mississippi flag thread linked in the first comment here. Both very very well done. Thanks for articulating these assumed/received attitudes so clearly.

  52. 52

    oh well, sorry to have set off threads that devolve into @Ruckus:”it makes me the house nigger”. it obviously didn’t come across to some that i am also outraged by the actions of this park employee. it also didn’t apparently come across that i absolutely feel that the family was justified in being outraged by the actions of the park employee. overall, i was just trying to put in my two cents on whether it was justified to paint disney as an ogre in this instance – and on the meta question of whether this dilutes the effectiveness of outrage over much more insidious examples. thanks for listening.

  53. 53
    Cassidy says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: ABL Mentions Disny twice: in the title and lead sentence. The meat of the post:

    I have two theories. Either the asshole rabbit is racist, or the asshole rabbit is a germophobe who didn’t want to get cooties because everybody knows that little black kids are gross and dirty.
    Their skin is brown, for fuck’s sake. Maybe if they bathed more often, assholes rabbits would want to hug them.

    So, I’m not really sure how that morphed into “ZOMG! LET’S GO BURN DOWN DISNEY!!!!”

  54. 54
    scav says:

    The confidentiality agreement is what would get up my nose. If they were truly fully engaged in their support for diversity and tolerence, why hide the fact they had hired and fired a racist individual? Sounds like they’re more interested in projecting being a diverse friendly place in this instance. They have, as a company, made less tepid stands in other contexts. But the confidentiality agreement, even if boilerplate, still would get up my nose.

  55. 55
    Original Lee says:

    @Cassidy: If I had been in their shoes, the confidentiality agreement would have been the deal-breaker. It’s normal for businesses to give you some perks to make up for an incident (and the amount shows that Disney knew it was pretty bad), but I would think they would like the family to say what Disney did when their employee messed up, instead of hushing it up.

  56. 56
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    @Cassidy: So, I’m not really sure how that morphed into “ZOMG! LET’S GO BURN DOWN DISNEY!!!!”

    Through careful, measured utter failure to read the post before going off screeching.

  57. 57
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.):
    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Clearly I was referring to the other comments thread on the white rabbit, not the flag. Sorry for confusion. I stand by my compliments.

  58. 58
    Cassidy says:

    @Original Lee: Yeah, that’s my feeling. I think I would have been able to accept a “hey, sorry our employee was an ass, here’s our highest VIP passes for the next year” and have been cool. The confidentiality statement, though, that’s shitty.

  59. 59
    ruemara says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: Did you ever consider that your comments are insulting? I doubt it, because if you consider things through, the answer on why the Blacks did not accept free park passes and $500 would become rather apparent.

  60. 60

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Yes, I wrote that.

    Also, I’d like to ask, respectfully, how many of those saying how “far-fetched” it is or how much of an overreaction this is, how many of you are white people?

  61. 61

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Yes, I wrote that.

    Also, I’d like to ask–respectfully–how many of those saying how “far-fetched” it is or how much of an overreaction this is, how many of you are white people?

  62. 62
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.): I have never been on the receiving end of something like that, so I have no idea what I think would be an appropriate apology or compensation. As a result, I think I will leave it to the family to decide what is satisfactory to them.

  63. 63

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    That seems to me to be the best way to look at it.

  64. 64
    Schlemizel says:

    I worked with a guy in FL that had worked at DW while he was in school. He had a lot of interesting stories about work life at the rodent ranch. One that he particularly liked was that almost every one of the characters in costume was African-American. He would laugh & say “I wonder what some of those good old boys would say if they knew that was a black guy inside Mickey Mouse hugging his little daughter?”

  65. 65
    AxelFoley says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.):

    I swear, there just can’t be one fucking day that goes by that something doesn’t happen to make me want to just give up on this country and go somewhere else to live.

    But I guess this “black children are dirty” thing must run deep. I remember once when I was in 4th grade, one of my friends was walking to the lunch table with his food, and a little girl a few years younger ran up and grabbed some of his food off his tray. She was black. So he went to one of the lunchroom ladies, mothers of children who sometimes vilunteered to keep the lunchroom civilized, and he told her what this girl had done. So she went and got him his food back and brought it to him at the table where we were sitting, but he didn’t want it. She asked him why, and before he could think, he blurted out, “Because black people never wash their hands!” As soon as he said it, he actually slapped his hands over his mouth, which might be the only time I ever saw somebody do that. The punchline, needless to say, was that he was black. She didn’t get pissed off, she just asked him something like, “Do you really believe that?” I could tell he was ashamed, as well he might have been. I felt kind of tainted myself, for being his friend.

    Anyway, I guess the point is, if there is a point, that he wasn’t the kind of kid who was likely to grow up to wear a sheet; the third of our little trio was a black classmate, so he wasn’t “racist” in the way most Americans think of the word, as a klan thug. But even a kid, one of whose two best friends was black, could soak up this kind of prejudice.

    That’s why I think these pieces you post are so important. It’s that they make anybody who reads them really think about racism. We need to talk about it. We need to understand how deep it goes. It infects all of us, and in many ways it is like a sickness. I can understand why many whites don’t want to talk about it. It’s still wrong to fight against talking about it, but I understand it.

    It’s that most white people aren’t klan thugs, and whenever race and racism come up, most whites can only understand racism as klan thugs beating up black people. But most racism today isn’t that at all, it’s this miasma of subtle racism that hangs all about us all the time. We grow up in it. We breathe it all our lives. And it subtly leads us to value black lives less than white lives.

    But, you know, since most white people, despite their latent racism, are decent people, they resent being lumped in with what they understand to be the only kind of racism, which is hard-core klanism. They feel put upon and aggrieved and attacked. But that’s because they aren’t willing to listen to the legitimate complaints that black people have.
    As I understand many of the complaints that black Americans bring up, it isn’t, “You whities are all 21st century klansmen who want to bring back slavery, and you personally are responsible for all the oppression that we suffer! You’re evil and you aren’t any better than Simon Legree!” But that isn’t the complaint at all. As I read it, it’s more like, “You personally might not have any conscious racist tendencies at all, but you have grown up in a society that’s been infused with racism for 400 years–as have we all–and sometimes things that you don’t think twice about saying come across in another way to us, and they hurt us. I know you don’t mean those things that way, but they can be hurtful all the same, and I’d like it if we could talk about this.”

    And the great thing is, when we talk this way, I almost always learn something. I learn that maybe something I’d never given any thought to can hurt someone else. I might have been blameless before, since I knew nothing about it, and I don’t need to feel guilty, but once I learn, I can change. That’s the point. That’s good. Everybody wins.
    I know it’s kind of presumptuous of me to assume that I can understand what black Americans think and feel, and I don’t mean the quotes I made up to be definitive; it’s just the way I understand them. If I’m wrong, then I hope somebody will set me straight.

    Damn. This is probably the deepest, most profound statement on this, or any other subject, at Balloon Juice.

    Well said, sir. Well said indeed.

  66. 66
    Gian says:

    With regard to confidentiality. I expect that’s standard to be asked anytime a company coughs up a settlement with or without a lawsuit. The widespread use of confidentiality agreements as standard practice is the shbject of some controversy.
    If the employee was fired and given a compensation package when fired i bet it included a confidentiality agreement and waiver of all claims.

    I read the story when it first hit the wires and for those who dont look deeper the rabbit immediately after snubbing this kid entertained others of a different race. Not like the rabbit snubbed kid and ran to go pee or was off shift.

    The kid is wronged. What should the compensation be?
    I expect that Disney has a bunch of levels of authority to go up to offer compensation of various amounts
    Maybe the family simply wanted more than the corporation will give without being sued?
    So far the rabbit is a villian and Disney should train employees not to let their bigot flags. And disney had a fuss recently with a woman who wanted to wear a head scarf for religious reasons

  67. 67
    Joel says:

    @Metavirus @ Library Grape: what the fuck are you talking about?

  68. 68
    Darkrose says:

    Ever since hearing this, I’ve been thinking about a family story.

    I don’t know when my mother got rid of my dad’s old vacation slides, but there was one that was of me in 1972 at Disneyland, hugging Goofy. The odd thing about the picture is that there are no other kids in the immediate vicinity.

    According to the story my parents always told, this was because when I ran up to Goofy, the parents of the other children–all of whom were white–snatched their kids out of the range of my dangerous 2-year-old blackness. I can barely remember what I had for breakfast this morning, so I have no memory of this incident.

    In a weird way, I feel like the attention this incident indicates that maybe we’re inching forward as a species, because in 1972, the idea that black was contagious wasn’t necessarily seen as all that insane of an idea.

  69. 69
    lou says:

    @Zapruder F. Mashtots, D.D.S. (Mumphrey, et al.): I was extremely depressed reading those comments, so I was glad to come back and see that you put up that terrific riposte.

    That one commenter also left this lovely post:

    I miss my nice White world….the one where blacques weren’t seen, weren’t living in my community, going to our schools, eating at our restaurants.
    This couple has educated their kid on how to scream racism over the slightest thing. He’ll grow up to demand reparations. This father lied when he said the rabbit kissed the white child. Disneyland has strict policies about their characters behavior with tourists…besides, look at the rabbit’s head…he couldn’t kiss the child if he had to.

  70. 70
    gvg says:

    I grew up in Orlando. disney used to have a good reputation as a place to work. After eisner not so much but they don’t have a reputation as racist. They DO have a serious reputation for “protecting” their reputation to an extreme that is hard to believe. the stories I heard mostly had to do with covering up death’s in the park. No place is perfectly safe and they have a huge number of visitors. People die. Disney wants confidentiality agreements every time no matter how little fault they might have. Heart attacks of elderly people, people doing stupid forbidden things on rides etc. It all has to be covered up. I expect that was what got up the families nose, and I don’t blame them but I also think Disney management would be incapable of picking up the signals that people would find that even more offensive…the corperate culture there thinks their brand/selling point is a fantasy perfect life. Normal lifes bad luck are not supposed to happen there. Not that racism is normal bad luck, just that most of the deaths I heard about were. Except for the one where they had space mountain ride going too fast at first, nothing I heard of seemed like disney’s fault or a reason not to visit, but they always acted like anything bad would kill them.

  71. 71
    Beverly Hills Cop says:

    Alois Bell would have jumped at the offer.

  72. 72
    mclaren says:

    More frenzied whining about identity politics from Anti-liberal Black Lady, instead of posts about the real dangers to democracy from both parties.

    Congratulations on your attempt to distract us from the genuine dangers facing America — the creeping fascism, the president ordering the murder of U.S. citizens without a trial and without even charging them with a crime, universal surveillance of everyone’s bank records and phone calls and emails without a warrant, the American media helping Bush and Obama cover up government crimes and systematic criminal prosecution of any whistleblowers who dare to reveal those government crimes to the public…

    What trivia will you try to distract us with next? Stories about how snow is racist because it’s (gasp!) white?

    Shithole America is sliding down into barbarism at warp speed, and the jackbooted goons in America’s new brownshirt army (formerly called “police”) are going full gansgter, after getting their mack on wading into the Occupy movement demonstrating to beat and arrest on bogus charges any American who dares to speak up against the New Barbarism run by the top 1%. But Anti-liberal Black Lady can’t talk about that, no, no, noooooooooo, she blows smoke up our asses about white rabbit costume guys at fucking Disneyland.

    Karl Rove ain’t payin’ you enough to be this dumb and this obvious, kiddo. You need to get your game on and come up with much better smoke and mirrors to distract us from the growing bipartisan New American Fascism.

  73. 73
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Feel sorry for those kids. Hope Disney fires him.

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    maus says:

    It makes me sad that people are biting on this troll. Disney requires an EXTENSIVE amount of socialization with guests and racist dickweasels would have shown themselves well before being put into costume.

  75. 75
    maus says:

    @Schlemizel:

    One that he particularly liked was that almost every one of the characters in costume was African-American.

    Also, most of them are women, which leads to the expected reaction when the “perverts” are called into court for “publicly molesting” their daughters.

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