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The Associated Press Attempts More Disney Guilt by Association

A recent article hints at blaming Disney for the homelessness in suburban Orlando.

by
Chris Queen

Bio

April 26, 2014 - 9:00 am
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Walt_Disney_World_Resort_entrance

Are Disney and its guests responsible for Orlando’s homeless population? The AP seems to suggest so.

Back in February, I wrote about a phenomenon I call Disney Guilt By Association, a particular type of disinformation in which members of the media attach Disney to negative news stories where the company has an incidental link. In my original article, I wrote:

On far too many occasions Disney has come up against agents of disinformation trying to tarnish its founder, and the company at large finds itself the target of media hatred. From the antics of its former child stars – as if the studio could be responsible for their personal behavior – to the recent attempts to deface Walt Disney that seem to come from out of nowhere, members of the media try to attach any scandal they can to Disney, manufacturing a type of guilt by association.

The Associated Press has published an article documenting the plight of the homeless in the Orlando area (“In Disney’s Shadow, Homeless Families Struggle.”) (The piece even includes the tag, “Homeless in Disney’s Shadow,” as though this particular phenomenon warranted repeated investigation.) The article, which lists no author, chronicles several families who have moved to Orlando seeking a prosperous living, only to find themselves living in seedy motels.

The problem has created a backlash among the mostly mom-and-pop businesses, with some owners suing the county sheriff to force his deputies to evict guests who haven’t paid or who have turned their rooms into semipermanent residences. It also shines a light on the gap among those who work and live in this county that sits in the shadow of Walt Disney World, and the big-spending tourists who flock here. On any given day, tourists pay nearly $100 per person to get into Orlando’s theme parks. There, they may be waited on by homeless parents. From their hotels, they jog past bus stops where homeless children wait to head to school. They buy coffee at Starbucks next to the motels that have become families’ homes. [...] “The fact that we’re the happiest place on Earth and No. 1 travel destination is good news, but this service-based economy is actually creating a dynamic of homelessness,” [consultant Catherine] Jackson said. Many of the county’s homeless moved here to find jobs in the tourism industry, so they lack the social networks of family or churches, Jackson said. (emphasis mine)

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All Comments   (19)
All Comments   (19)
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Of course the tourists aren't aware of Orlando homeless. They're TOURISTS. They're on vacation. Why would they be aware of Orlando at all, when they have nothing to do with Orlando, or Florida at all? They fly in, take the shuttle to their Disney resort for the week, then fly back out.

Gone are the days when you'd drive down the Florida highways through endless acres of orange groves, with a stop at an orange stand for a glass of fresh-squeezed, with a side trip to Weeki Watchee thrown in for good measure. Boy, I miss those days.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Once again you right wing nuts are way off base...The article is pointing out that these employees that WORK for Disney , another one of these billion dollar companies (see Walmart,McDonald's) that don't pay their employees a living wage. The article points out that Disney pays their employees minimum wage which is not correlated to the cost of living to that area. Once again you right wing nuts are so quick calling these working people lazy..
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Look carefully at the image. The guy standing right in front of that bicycle. Isn't that a *fishing rod*?? WTF? If I were homeless I'd be out looking for more work to earn more money to get some bloody housing not heading out to do some fishing. Fishing is what you do when work is done, you're on vacation or you've made enough money and you're taking a break like the weekend is for many people.

So I'm supposed to feel sorry for the guy waiting in line for free handouts that he plans on taking with him so he doesn't have to buy lunch while he spends his day fishing?

Yeah I'm going to feel really bad about that. Go ahead and hold your breath while you wait.

And don't even get me started on the fact that the people being displayed are all young and appear to be in good health. If I were young and in good health it would be worth your life to stand between me and work.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
This "guilt by association" is MUCH more profoundly practiced regarding the GOP. AS much as I detest the GOP's failure to live up their platform, at least they have the better platform and I defend them to prevent America becoming even more a one party state.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
I lived in L.A. for 21 years & NEVER ONCE did it occur to me to "blame" NBC for the homeless in Burbank/Universal City or CNN for the homeless in Hollywood. What REALLY "p.o.'s" me though is that I know MANY people who work for Disney in Burbank, Glendale, North Hollywood, Anaheim etc. & I can tell you there aren't many companies in these areas doing better as "corporate citizens". The company donates to LOTS of causes, as do their employees & the employee based "Volunt-Ears" program gives LOTS of time & draws media attention to many charitable causes. I find it IMPOSSIBLE to believe that this same passion for giving is NOT also alive & well in their Orlando location!!
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
But this is just another case of income distribution issues, some have enough money to come and visit, others for whatever complex of reasons, don't. Should every corporation be responsible for problems in their area? I was always taught that this is, to some extent, exactly the case, the corporation should be a good citizen. That may not solve all problems, but it should at least show attention and intent. So guilt by association is not really a valid argument, but I don't discard that there may still be an issue there as well.

I would be curious to see some numbers on pay and benefits for the workers in the park. How many are minimum wage with no benefits?
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
If you have the skills that are in demand and your current employer isn't paying you enough then you quit and get a better job. If you can't get a better job then that's your problem. Time to up those job skills. Unwilling to put in the time and effort to improve yourself? Not my problem.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
I wonder how many of these homeless had families who originally were located in Atlanta or the South, who then streamed north to work in the Detroit factories, who did not bother to educate themselves or to learn to do anything that a robot can do more efficiently, and who are now moving back south from Detroit and other places that unions have priced out of competitive existance.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Millions of Americans are on food stamps, UNDER AN OBAMA SECOND TERM PRESIDENCY....

Millions of Americans are unable to find work, UNDER AN OBAMA SECOND TERM PRESIDENCY....

Syria continues to slaughter its own people, UNDER AN OBAMA SECOND TERM PRESIDENCY....

Two can play that game.

39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
U SO TOTALLY ROCK!!
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
The AP and the rest of the old media are being taken less seriously every story.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Fortunately illegal immigration has raised wages and lowered apt. rents, cuz that's how numbers work.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
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