A Southern California family is suing Disneyland, claiming a racist character refused to hug their children.
Jason and Annelia Black said the person portraying the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland refused to hug or touch their two sons, 6-year-old Jason Jr. and 9-year-old Elijah.
Jason Black Jr. said he really wanted to hug the White Rabbit, “but he turned his back,” which made him sad.
His brother echoed the sentiment, saying, “The rabbit was turning his back on me. Then I went up to try to hold his hand, but he kept on flicking my hand off.”
Jason Black Sr. said, “Our first instinct was okay, maybe they have new policies, maybe they aren’t supposed to touch the kids.” He and his wife watched as the White Rabbit interacted with other children and said he seemed more than happy to show affection toward white children.
“There was two other kids that came up, and the rabbit showered them… hugged them, kissed them, posed with them and took pictures,” Jason Black Sr. said. “Meanwhile, that made my kids feel horrible.”
The incident happened last August, and the Blacks said they filed an official complaint. According to CBS Los Angeles, they were offered VIP passes and $500 for their troubles. They turned down both offers. The family said they were also asked to sign a confidentiality agreement.
“They’re not trying to get something they don’t deserve,” the family’s attorney, Daniel Gilleon, said, “All they’ve asked for is a little bit of recognition that this should not have happened.”
The Blacks said they want a public apology from Disneyland, and they also want the employee to be fired. They are also asking for surveillance video to prove that the employee refused to hug their sons.
Disney and its collective properties have been accused of racism before. Shortly after the company announced its first Hispanic-influenced princess, Sofia, advocacy groups said the fair-skinned and blue-eyed princess did not accurately represent the Hispanic population.