I Can’t Believe This Is Real Life
Ellie Guzman

Disney is the very same company whose production assistants chased a very large number of harmless lemmings over a cliff to get footage of the animals committing ‘mass suicide’.

I was a kid back then, and I well remember seeing the movie in school and being told the lesson, ‘Just because everyone is doing it doesn’t make it right.’ In other words, ‘don’t be a lemming.’ This was part of a propaganda push against citizens exercising their right to self-medicate with drugs like marijuana. Criminalization of self-medicating and the ongoing drug war, with its millions of casualties, are the result.

A company willing to go so far to endorse a falsehood as part of a propaganda campaign was making another moral point, albeit inadvertently. Y’see, the notion that lemmings voluntarily commit mass suicide is an alternative fact, unsupported by science or by the lemmings themselves. But you can chase them off a cliff, sure enough. Humans have been chasing animals off of cliffs since mammoth-hunting days. It doesn’t mean the animals are volunteering do it on their own.

Here’s the larger moral point: ‘Corporations (and governments) are only as moral as the people working in them.’

Disney’s relationship with reality has always been tenuous, and its morality hasn’t always been pristine. So get a good grip on your moral compass and don’t let go. It won’t be Walt Disney’s face you will see in the mirror every morning, but your own.

Show your support

Clapping shows how much you appreciated Urgelt’s story.