It's Time To Remove The Hall of Presidents at Walt Disney World: Op-Ed

Hall of Presidents Entrance Magic Kingdom Walt Disney World

The Hall of Presidents at Walt Disney World for at least over two decades has been the most controversial attraction at Walt Disney World. It has continually been plagued with protests and angry guests inside the show at least since President Bill Clinton, and the protests have continued and escalated with every president since them. It is time for Disney to remove this attraction.

This show was originally envisioned by Walt Disney himself, but in a different way than it currently exists. It was set to be located in a historical setting within Disneyland and be a museum-like display, in tribute to the founding fathers of the United States. That is not the attraction that got built, and the current version bears even less resemblance to that original vision.

The show originally included only speeches from historical presidents, , and a minor appearance by each new president in a nonspeaking role. In this way, it really was just a tribute to the office. But once the current president began to speak, the controversy began growing every year, politicizing the attraction.

These incidents began to grow year over year, being perpetuated by social media showcasing guests yelling at the animatronics. When you need to add spikes and security guards to keep guests from vandalizing an attraction, it might not be worth saving.

Disney has also shown a great ability to make other patriotic American themed attractions in recent years, from revamps of Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln and the American Adventure, to multiple Muppet themed patriotic offerings. This is all to say that Disney could easily replace the attraction with another one of potential educational value.

Disney attractions are supposed to be enjoyed by all, and right now no matter who the president is for a significant portion of guests this show isn't the escapism that Disney World should be, but a tie to unpleasant parts of reality.

Disney is a place meant to offer the world an escape into other worlds. If a Disney attraction cannot be enjoyed by all, for reasons Disney has no control over, then we really should be asking if it has a place in the parks at all.