Disney World removes ‘ladies and gentlemen’ from Magic Kingdom greeting to be 'inclusive'
Walt Disney World's greeting for its Magic Kingdom fireworks show has been changed to be more "inclusive" by removing gendered language.
The theme park's narration no longer says "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls" and has been replaced by the phrase “Good evening, dreamers of all ages” during the pre-show announcement.
This change was revealed the evening of June 29 when Disney cast members received a preview for the new fireworks show, according to the Faithwire.
A spokesperson for Disney told CBS News that the move is "part of a broader effort" to be more inclusive, adding: "It's not about one or two things."
Social media users have had mixed reactions to the change, with some celebrating it and others criticizing the progressive move from tradition.
The nightly fireworks show at Magic Kingdom over the iconic Cinderella’s castle in Orlando, Florida, was officially re-introduced on Thursday after a hiatus for over a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Faithwire.
Disney announced in April that “Inclusion” was added as its "Fifth Key" to guide cast members in interacting with guests. The other four keys are "Safety, Courtesy, Show and Efficiency."
“Inclusion is essential to our culture and leads us forward as we continue to realize our rich legacy of engaging storytelling, exceptional service, and Disney magic,” a blog on Disney’s website reads.
“We’re bringing the spirit of the Inclusion Key to life across our business,” the post continued. It listed several park attractions that will receive enhancements to become “more inclusive.”
Tokyo Disneyland made the shift to non-gendered language in March to accommodate those who identify as something other than male or female, HuffPost reported.
“It is a comprehensive judgment considering the current social situation, such as diversity,” a spokesperson for Oriental Land Company, which licenses the Japanese Disney brand, said. “Currently, information on parades and shows, Country Bear Theater in Tokyo Disneyland, and the Enchanted Tiki Room: Some attractions, such as Stitch Presents ‘Aloha e Como Mai,’ have already changed.”
Though historically known for family-friendly entertainment, the Walt Disney Company now frequently pushes an LGBT agenda.
In June, which LGBT activists have designated as "Pride Month," the company launched the Rainbow Collection, a series of toys and clothes for adults and children decorated with the LGBT rainbow flag.
“The Walt Disney Company is giving funds as part of our ongoing commitment to organizations around the world that support LGBTQ+ communities,” the company tweeted with information regarding the Rainbow Collection.
Several LGBT groups supported by Disney include GLSEN, Diversity Role Models, Minus18, BeLonG To Youth Services, ARELAS and the It Gets Better Project.
Under pressure from activist groups in recent years, Disney has introduced LGBT characters in its films.
The Disney-Pixar animated film “Onward," released in March 2020, featured a lesbian character for the first time. Later in 2020, Pixar’s short film “Out” became the animation studio’s first production to feature a gay lead character.
The Christian Post reached out the Walt Disney World for comment but did not receive a response by press time.
Emily Wood is a reporter for The Christian Post. She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org