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Patriotism, Disney Style

Nearly five decades after Walt Disney's death, the company he founded continues his tradition of celebrating American exceptionalism.

by
Chris Queen

Bio

May 31, 2013 - 1:00 pm
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Mickey Mouse Independence Day

We live in an era where children in their formative years do not know what patriotism means. My grandparents’ generation knew what it meant to love America and to stand up for its ideals, but the leftists of my parents’ generation — the Baby Boomers — screwed it up for all of us. To them, the only measure of patriotism was opposition to President Bush. Remember: “dissent is patriotic.” (Tell that to the IRS.)

I was blessed to grow up with parents who loved America despite having lived through the ’60s, but many members of my generation don’t know how to be patriotic, thanks to political correctness, multiculturalism, and the growing influence of the far Left.

While the vast majority of pop culture mocks patriotism, one famous name has celebrated American exceptionalism for more than seven decades: Disney. This unabashed love of America began with the company’s founder.

Walt Disney grew up as part of the World War I generation — a time that saw both the enthusiasm of the dawn of the 20th century and the unspeakable horror of threats to freedom and peace across the globe.¬†Though too young to serve in the war, Disney worked in the Red Cross Ambulance Corps after the war. He wanted to serve his country, one way or another.

After his move to Hollywood, Disney’s love for America drove him in many ways to develop the unique entertainment he created and to lead his studio the way he did. He believed that America’s values were worth celebrating and sharing with the world. He once said:

Our heritage and ideals, our code and standards — the things we live by and teach our children — are preserved or diminished by how freely we exchange ideas and feelings.

Disney admitted to a patriotism that occasionally overwhelmed him. He once confessed, “I get red, white, and blue at times.” His love of country showed up in his films and television programs and has carried on in the theme parks that bear his name nearly half a century after his death. Sometimes the Disney brand of patriotism makes itself known in subtle ways, while at other times, it jumps directly in your face.

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The You Tube Page for 'Education for Death' ,the Disney take on Nazi Education has a mention that some readers might find the video offensive.

True, film .made as war propaganda in the 1940s. is not completely politically correct.But it is an excellent take down of Nazi ideology. A powerful comment on the power of film. Funny as well.

I'm offended by someone finding this film offensive.

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Can't wait to take my kids back to Disneyland and have them see Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I was 5 when Disney first came on TV in 1955. For all those years, for ALL the years of my growing up, Disney was very special to me.

It seemed very natural to me that Disney would celebrate the American heritage.

When my daughter was 5 or 6, it seemed very natural to me that she would see the wonder of Ariel and the new Disney movies.

Disney is a treasure.

America is a treasure.

It's sad that there are people who will snarl at anything good to prove their thesis that everything sucks.

Disney is my best memory.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I'd put the American Adventure about Hall of Presidents for patriotism. It's about the people, not about the politicians. The statues lining the walls, well:

"As you sit down before the show, you will notice 12 statues, 6 on each side of the theater. These are the "Spirits of America." On the left side of the theater, from front to back, are Individualism, Innovation, Tomorrow, Independence, Compassion, and Discovery . On the right side of the theater, from front to back, are Freedom, Heritage, Pioneering, Knowledge, Self-Reliance , and Adventure. They are all life-sized, and are highlighted during the final sequence of the show."

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
You left out one of the coolest things about Disney Parks' patriotism for libertarians. The American Adventure pavilion at Epcot is filled with quotes from great Americans about America's greatness. But the first quote most people see, directly across the hall from the entrance, is from Ayn Rand. What other modern media empire would do that?!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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