Thursday, August 10, 2006

Double Messages from the Mouse

Here in the happiest place on earth, there's an awful lot of talk about the environment. Yesterday, a young woman asked my daughter, "What can your dad do with that water bottle to help the environment?"

My daughter dutifully replied, "He could recycle it."

Yet after two days of walking up and down Animal Kingdom and Epcot, I've yet to encounter a single recycling bin. How many plastic bottles do you suppose Disney sells in a day? How many do you suppose recycle them, I wondered, as I dumped mine in the trash.

Today, Simba the lion told us a tear-jerking tale about how man has done terrible things to the world, and urged his two companions (Hakuna and Matata?) about how they should not develop the jungle with their money-making scheme.

Driving around the ex-swamp (or whatever it was) that is now Orlando, I couldn't help but notice the huge gap between Disney's words and actions.

Simba's exhibition was full of happy talk about the environment, and how many people are driving bicyles. But all around me were highly overpriced pieces of plastic, probably made in China under God only knows what conditions. And Disney, by refusing to release Fahrenheit 451, helped enable a bunch of crooks who were the worst thing to happen to the environment since New Jersey.

Don't get me wrong, I love Disney World, as do the kids with whom I'm traveling.

But you better not think too much if you really want to enjoy yourself there.
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