Suddenly we imagine some 16 million Southern Baptists singing that old gospel hymn,
"Dare to be a Daniel,/Dare to stand alone!" Their leaders went voluntarily into the Lion King's den, asking the flock to stand up against the Empire of Disney for adding sex and violence to its reputation for wholesome family entertainment. "Dare to have a purpose firm, /Dare to make it known!"
And, boy, are the Baptists making their purpose known! Their 12,000-strong convention voted this week to boycott all the Walt Disney media enterprises, including the ABC network.
How many Baptists will actually boycott? How many others will follow or resist their example?
Will Disney be affected by it all any more than the lord of the jungle flicking a fly?
The question of whether a boycott "works" fades before the actuality of acting on belief, whether or not that belief is shared. The Baptist convention included a thrust at homosexual employment policies that Disney shares with other firms and some governmental bodies. These policies are meant to prevent discrimination. They should not be confused with the exploitation of homosexuality or heterosexuality for crass show-biz purposes.