Can a mere handful of people influence the actions of a
mega-corporation like Disney?
You bet, if those
people are loud enough, have the right contacts, and are dealing with a “hot-button” issue.
And there are few
issues as “hot” as alcohol, because almost any aspect of the topic can be
transformed into a drunk-driving diatribe.
It goes without
saying that I’m against drunk driving. What sane person isn’t? We could debate
what constitutes “impaired” and what doesn’t, but nobody wants to see innocent
people killed by someone who should not have been behind the wheel of a car.
But do the people
who pressured Disney to back away from its plans to market a wine featuring the
star of its animated hit, “Ratatouille,” on the label, really think some
7-year-old child was going to a) sneak a taste of the wine, b) actually like it
enough to consume a sufficient amount to become “impaired,” c) find their
parents’ car keys, and then d) drive their parents’ car?
If all of that
were to transpire under the roof of some home, I think that says more about the
parents than the kid.
Then there’s the
whole subject of using a cute cartoon image on the label of the bottle. Critics
say that this would attract kids to the bottle on the supermarket – or, in this
case, the Costco – shelf, and make them interested in tasting what’s inside.
Maybe so. But
have we forgotten that very small yet very powerful word that should be a part
of every responsible parent’s vocabulary? That word is “no,” and I have a
feeling the people who lobbied against the “Ratatouille” wine may never have
heard of it, let alone spoken it.
If more people
took their parenting responsibilities seriously, they wouldnâ€™t need the
government or lobbying groups to do their parenting for them.
reports, Disney’s plans called for a mere 500 cases of the “Ratatouille” wine
to be sold through Costco stores. But there was enough internet chatter and
perceived threats that company officials decided to back away from the project.
The last thing they wanted was an alcohol-based debate on the internet and
elsewhere with the Disney name right in the thick of it.
You can bet that
the wine allotted for the “Ratatouille” promotion will still be sold by Costco – it simply will have a different label on it.
people who lobbied so hard against the project will no doubt sleep easier
tonight, knowing that they’ve protected their kids from the evils of a bottle
of wine with a drawing of a rat on the label.