Stephen Miller’s Conservative Legal Group Claims Disney’s DEI Initiatives Are ‘Unlawful Discrimination’

The foundation, founded by the far-right Trump speechwriter, took issue with projects ranging from “The Marvels” to “Muppet Babies” ahead of a Disney shareholder meeting

Stephen Miller and Bob Iger
Stephen Miller and Bob Iger (Credit: Getty Images)

Would-be Disney board member Nelson Peltz isn’t the only one who’s not a fan of “Black Panther” and other diverse offerings from the media giant. Conservative foundation America First Legal, which was founded by former senior Trump advisor Stephen Miller, sent a letter last week to the media company’s board of directors. It claimed that Disney’s diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives are “unlawful discrimination” that “mislead shareholders.”

The timing of the conservative criticism, just before Disney’s annual shareholders meeting on Wednesday, comes after Bob Iger critic Peltz complained about “The Marvels” and “Black Panther” to the Financial Times: “Why do I have to have a Marvel that’s all women? Not that I have anything against women, but why do I have to do that? Why can’t I have Marvels that are both? Why do I need an all-Black cast?”

Besides taking aim at Disney’s diversity efforts, the letter, which is also on the foundation’s website, listed a number of programs it found offensive. Among them: A “Muppet Babies” episode in which male muppet Gonzo plays a princess; “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania,” which “put woke ideology front and center,” such as referring to people getting tear-gassed by the police as “peaceful protestors”; and “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” because a “character wear[s] an LGBTQ pride pin front and center for most of the film.” That character was the young superhero America Chavez.

The Questlove-produced “Rise Up, Sing Out” kids series, which is not mentioned by name, is also listed because: “Children can be seen making protest signs featuring the ‘black power’ fist” and “a Black character warns a younger Black character that police might try to stop him on the street because he is Black.”

The letter claims that diversity initiatives have negatively affected Disney’s value, even though Disney’s stock has risen more than 30% this year-to-date. Most of the financial statistics in the missive are from 2021.

America First Legal is asking for an independent monitor to look into their charges.

Disney holds it annual shareholders meeting this Wednesday, April 3, where Peltz and the entertainment giant’s former CFO Jay Rasulo will stand election for seats on the board.

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