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Right-Wing Group Protests Disney World “Gay Day” Event

Right-Wing Group Protests Disney World “Gay Day” Event

For the last 20 years, an unofficial event has occurred at Disney World in Orlando each summer. The event, popularly called “Gay Day,” celebrates LGBTQ awareness and inclusion, drawing hundreds of gay and lesbian couples and supporters to the Disney World theme park. Although The Walt Disney Corporation has never officially sanctioned this celebratory day, it has continued to draw support every year.

The event is scheduled to occur in early June this summer, and has purportedly drawn in up to 150,000 supporters in the past. The official Gay Days website offers information about booking hotel rooms in the Orlando area for attendees and calls the event, “an all-over town, something-for-everyone vacation extravaganza.”

The cheerful colors of the Gay Days website contrasts with the website for the Florida Family Association’s site, which condemns the event, scheduled for June 2nd this year. FFA organizers argue that the event is “highly offensive.” Their website also claims that in past years as many as ” ten thousand (10,000) people entered the Magic Kingdom only to promptly exit before 1:00 pm after witnessing Gay Day patrons.” Furthermore, the website argues that innocent children should be saved “from the unexpected exposure to this coming out party.”

The FFA has raised funds in order to fly a large banner over the Orlando park in order to warn patrons of the upcoming event. The banner reads, “Warning Gay Day at Disney 6/4.” According to the Huffington Post, organizers at the FFA have raised enough money to fly the banner over the park for two full days.

The Florida Family Association condemns the “revelry” of gay couples enjoying the parks of Orlando, implying that gay and lesbian couples are offensive. The article on their site also includes a rash of pictures of unsuspecting Gay Day attendees wearing matching shirts and smiling together as they enjoy the park. It is highly probable that the people in the photos were unaware that their photos now grace the FFA website.

Gay Days events organizers state that,  “We have young, old, all races and beliefs, parents, gay AA groups, and every other section of our community attending Gay Days each year.” This inclusive message contrasts sharply with the FFA’s insistence that the happiness of certain individuals should be hidden from public view. The Florida Family Association’s tone and emphasis seems very similar to the anti-propaganda laws that have gone into effect in Russia recently, which also condemn any expression of gay or lesbian sexuality in public spaces.

Related Stories:

More Anti-Gay Laws, Arrests in Russia

Catholic Church Dumps Another Charity Due to LGBT Support

EU Hopefuls Told to Act on LGBT Discrimination

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Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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36 comments

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5:44PM PDT on May 28, 2012

Yeah, because the last "boycott" of Disney by religious right-wingers worked so well......... No problem, more room for fun for gay couples and straights who aren't threatened by those pesky non-white-bread-50s-era-Cleaver-clones.

12:04PM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Disneyland in California, has had "gay day" for many years....... we all wear red, so we know who our "family members" are. I have enjoyed it, and the regular partrons are not repulsed by it, so no harm to the fragile "straight" community.

11:08AM PDT on Apr 24, 2012

First I've heard of "Gay Day" i think they're wonderful ideas

10:03AM PDT on Apr 23, 2012

Business generally love gays - they spend more money and behave better than lots of heteros.

9:42AM PDT on Apr 23, 2012

Hmm lets see lose 10's of thousands of "family" patrons yet gain 150,000 gays. Big loss.

9:39AM PDT on Apr 23, 2012

From Florida Family Association website

"How would you feel if you entered the Magic Kingdom anticipating a normal day of fun with your family only to witness thousands of same-sex couples holding hands, hugging, kissing and wearing tee-shirts that promoted their lifestyle? "

probably the same as I feel any other day.

3:03PM PDT on Apr 19, 2012

Isn't Tinkerbell a fairy? Minnie and Mickey have never married! Goofy looks like a questionable dresser, Donald Duck hangs around with the nephews for way too many years! The dress up characters are always hugging and kissing kids, Captain Hook wears too much eye makeup. Is Disney art imitating life?

3:01PM PDT on Apr 19, 2012

I'd be more cautious since everyone's allowed to pack guns!!!! I wonder if Disney has a "check your gun at the gate" policy?????

2:49PM PDT on Apr 19, 2012

Disney doesn't sponsor Gay Days, nor do they discourage it. I have heard they notify guests staying in their hotels, the Magic Kingdom will be crowded.

As for flying a banner over the park, that could be tricky since Disney got the Magic Kingdom declared a no-fly zone after 911. They could fly banners elsewhere over property.

Years ago, the Southern Baptist Conference (I think) announced a boycott of Disney. A few years later they cancelled it when they realized neither Disney nor their Disney fan members cared what they said.

The worst things to worry about Gay Day at WDW is crowds and heat. Early June can be hot and humid. Those are the main reason non-Gays avoid Gay Days. We also avoid cheerleaders at the Studios when they are in town. They are too loud.

Have fun, stay hydrated and bring sun screen!

1:42PM PDT on Apr 19, 2012

Damn! I hate being cut off!
Here's the rest:

IF any of us do that (And I REPEAT just the innocent, simple acts of hugging, holding hands, a peck of a kiss not tonsil hockey) depending on where we're at, we may wind up in a hospital or dead. That's not an exaggeration. It's the ugly and sad truth.
I would love to not have to have "gay days". But by that, I don't mean what the phobes mean. I want the day to exist that it doesn't matter who is holding hands with what sex. That if two men kiss goodbye in the kiss and go lane at the metro (which if you've never been to a city that has them, there are lanes and signs that say "kiss-n-go!) they don't have to worry that someone's going to run them over with their car.
I want the day to exist that whatever blended family exists can go anywhere on their vacation and not fear for their lives or their children's lives because they mistakenly held hands.
If any of that is shoving it down your throats than YOU ARE THE PROBLEM.
WE'RE NOT.

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