Disney learns the Hard Way that You can Never be Woke enough

As corporations rush to virtue-signal their “woke-ness” by plastering their brands with rainbows and denying their services to anyone guilty of WrongThink, some are finding, too late, that you can never be woke enough for the inquisitors of “social justice”.

Mega-corporation Disney has bent over backwards to signal its social justice credentials. From “gay days” at Disneyland to clumsily shoe-horned “lgbt” characters, there is nothing Disney won’t do to pander to the “progressive” mob, no matter that old Uncle Walt would be spinning in his cryo-vat.

But even Disney are finding that you can never be “progressive” enough for the offenderati.

What happens when you take a classic story created by a Syrian writer, modernized with a multi-ethnic, multi-national cast, that tops the box office from the United States to the Middle East?

If the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is involved, you get empty cries of “Islamophobia.”

“The Aladdin myth is rooted by racism, Orientalism and Islamophobia,” CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad said in a May 21 statement. “To release it during the Trump era of rapidly rising anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant and racist animus only serves to normalize stereotyping and to marginalize minority communities.”

Three weeks after its release, there have been no reports that the film is being embraced by the president’s supporters or fueling any political sentiment whatsoever. That’s because it’s a movie.

And not a particularly good one, by all accounts. Like all the obviously money-grubbing “live action remakes” of Disney classics, it’s fast becoming obvious that all the computer verisimilitude in the world can’t compete with the magic of cartoons.

CAIR’s complaint is an odd one, since Muslims do not constitute a race, and represent ethnicities from across the globe. As for claims that the story is rooted in Orientalism, the “Arabian Nights” stories are a Middle Eastern creation that has existed for more than a millennium. “Arabian Nights” stories originate from Persian, Indian, Egyptian, Syrian and Iraqi stories. According to Egyptian actress Lubna Abdel Aziz, television shows based on the “Arabian Nights” often premiered during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

It’s also odd that Awad labels the film an example of Islamophobia when it is based on a story that has been popular among children and adults in predominantly Muslim countries. The story of “Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp,” is believed to have been created by 18th century Syrian writer Hanna Diyab.

Even the original classic suffered from the censorious attentions of the gimlet-eyed offence-takers. The original lyric of Arabian Nights, “Oh, I come from a land…where they cut off your ear if they don’t like your face” was quickly amended after complaints from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. The same organisation had previously protested against the Cure, over their brilliant debut single, Killing an Arab. The fact that the song title derives from Albert Camus’ acclaimed novel, L’Etranger (The Stranger) counts for naught when there’s a spurious “offence” to be taken.

But there seems to be a deeper motive to CAIR’s confected “outrage”.

The new Disney’s Aladdin star is the Egyptian-born Canadian Mena Massoud. Massoud sent an Arabic-language Instagram message to Egyptians…[ending] with the slogan, “Tahya Masr,” or “Long Live Egypt,” three times. This is a slogan for the June 30, 2013 revolution that prompted the Egyptian army to oust Islamist President Mohamed Morsi.

Massoud’s use of the phrase angered Islamists and their allies, who called for a boycott of the movie.

Attacking works of art and cinema has been part of the Muslim Brotherhood agenda in Egypt for decades…CAIR was created in 1994 within a Muslim Brotherhood network and continues to embrace many of the same issues as the Egyptian Islamist movement.


Today, CAIR is closely associated with American left-wing political stars like Linda Sarsour, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.