I love Disney. I love Disney movies, I love Disneyland, and I love the Disney magic. During COVID-19 I’ve reminisced about my past Disney trips — in California, Florida and Paris to be exact. What I haven’t done is jump on a plane and go to Disney World with the park’s reopening.
On Sunday, July 12, 2020, Florida reported the highest daily increase in positive COVID-19 cases of all the states. They broke the record that nobody wanted to break.
In one day they reported 15, 300 new COVID-19 cases. And Disney World still opened its gates this past weekend.
Yes, wearing a mask was a requirement for entrance, but we’ve all seen the pictures of how diligently the masses are properly wearing them; and for those who don’t know: most people aren’t.
With Florida and the USA’s COVID-19 cases skyrocketing, an amusement park reopening is just what the doctor ordered right?
I have grown up on Disney. To this day I still love Disney films and have recently become fascinated with the Disney film making process. A great documentary short series “Into the Unknown: Making Frozen 2” deep-dives into this more.
However, I am not in love with the idea of Disney re-opening its gates to guests while the pandemic roars on in the U.S. No matter what sanitary precautions they set out, the chances of infection are high.
Disney World was built to be a feat of architecture and wonder. It was meant to be smelled, and heard and touched. Everything from the construction of the buildings, to the streets and every ride que in between is meant to be part of the experience. If people go, they aren’t going to keep their hands in at all times—rides or not.
And to the people bringing their families to the park? Do you not feel wrong about the insane amount of exposure that you are subjecting yourself and your children to, just to go on some rides that will be guaranteed to be there in six months or a year when hopefully the pandemic is under more control?
I think of all the moving parts of those parks, including ride attendants who are in close contact with guests at the park all day long. I put myself in their shoes and imagine being told that yes, I would likely get sick if I come back to work, but if I didn’t I would have no job at all in the middle of an economic crisis. Those employees also have families.
With the numbers the way they are currently, it baffles me to watch the photos and videos online rolling in of people shoving themselves together like sardines, most wearing their masks improperly, just to ride a rollercoaster. To me there is an inherent level of selfishness that is part of the decision process of deciding to go to an amusement park right now.
What I do know is those who come back from their Disney vacation sick, probably won’t be having a ‘magical day.’