Hey, Disney As Long As You're Changing One Racist Ride ...
As we recently mentioned, there's been a very vocal outcry against Disney's Splash Mountain ride, which prominently features characters from the notoriously racist movie Song of the South -- despite the fact that the ride was built in 1989 and the movie has been the target of protests and boycotts since 1946. Walt Disney himself was warned of a "potential racially charged blowback" by his own staff before the movie had even been released, so people being fed up with this crap in the future year of 2020 shouldn't really be surprising to anyone.
Now Disney has finally conceded, announcing that Splash Mountain will be "completely reimagined" to feature characters from a more recent movie. Though sadly not a National Treasure-themed ride where a lifelike Nicolas Cage commits animatronic felonies, instead, Disney took a cue from the fans and will be retheming the ride with a new story inspired by The Princess and the Frog.
Which makes total sense; not only does the 2009 film feature Disney's first Black Princess, Tiana, but its New Orleans bayou setting would fit well with a log ride. Plus this is Disney's first Princess and the Frog-themed attraction, with the exception of a Mardi Gras party. But hey, Disney, as long as you're overhauling racist attractions, there are a few other parts of the park we'd like to draw your attention to.
Even though the version of Peter Pan on Disney+ carries a disclaimer warning of its "outdated cultural depictions." But those same offensive Indigenous stereotypes are still very much a part of the Peter Pan's Flight ride.
Disneyland's Main Street still features a "Cigar Store Indian" despite the fact that A) these statues reinforce the "noble savage" stereotype, with protests against displaying them falling on "deaf ears in white America" since at least the 1930s. And B) the goddamn tobacco shop closed in 1990. Now the statue is seemingly just used for dumbasses to take photos with.
Then there's the Jungle Cruise ride, which features not just replicas of exotic animals, but villainous African cannibals. It's a retrograde, colonialist fantasy filled with god awful puns.
Modifying these rides doesn't mean crapping on history, because these rides are constantly changing. When the Jungle Cruise first opened in 1955, it didn't even feature any terrible jokes. If Disneyland didn't ever change, there would be a gun shop and an "Indian Village" where there's currently a life-size Millennium Falcon. And who knows what will happen when everybody finds out where Mickey Mouse came from.
Top Image: Disney