Before Mike Pence was announced as presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump’s running mate, it goes without saying that the Indiana Governor was subjected to a good deal of vetting by the Trump campaign during which they likely unearthed every aspect of his past. However, arguably, one of Mike Pence’s more obscure points of view is around the Disney animated classic Mulan, using a 1999 blog post to slam the film as liberal propaganda.
According to BuzzFeed, the op-ed piece in question was written by Mike Pence when he was a talk radio show host in Indiana. In that piece, Pence described Mulan as an attempt by a “mischievous liberal” employee at Disney to influence the debate over women in the military. Pence went on to claim that because Mulan was marketed towards younger viewers, it was an attempt from Disney to influence their views on the inclusion of female soldiers in the military, a liberal view as he sees it.
Disney’s 1998 release of Mulan takes place during the Han Dynasty when Fa Mulan, daughter of aged warrior Fa Zhou, pretends to be a man in order to take her father’s place in general conscription during the Hun invasion when women were strictly forbidden from fighting in conflicts.
In his piece, Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Spence spoke about how the actions of a mischievous liberal employee were planned to cause a quiet change among the next generation, a change that would alter their thinking towards the place of women in the military, saying “I suspect that some mischievous liberal at Disney assumes that Mulan’s story will cause a quiet change in the next generation’s attitude about women in combat and they just might be right”.
Pence continued by arguing that women could not serve in the military, and Mulan only provided further proof of this. Pence spoke about how the film’s female protagonist fell in love with her male superior officer, impeding her ability to serve, saying, “It is instructive that even in the Disney film, young Ms. Mulan falls in love with her superior officer! Me thinks the politically correct Disney types completely missed the irony of this part of the story.”
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Mike Pence concluded his piece by saying, “Moral of story: women in military, bad idea.” However, according to Mic News, in his conclusion, Pence appears to forget that Mulan disguised herself as a man in order to get into the military in the first place, occupying the same quarters as men. It’s left some questioning whether or not Mike Pence actually understood the film, and if he did, it’s pretty clear that the now Republican vice presidential nominee thought a little too hard about its premise.
That being said, it’s worth remembering that the piece was written by Pence in 1999. It’s possible that Mike Pence has changed his views on female inclusion in the military since the op-ed piece was written when he was a talk radio host, especially since Pence has made his way to the frontlines of politics.
In December last year, a federal mandate required the U.S. military to accept women. However, other armed forces, like the Marine Corps have put tougher physical standards in place to prevent the admission of female soldiers. The issue largely hasn’t arisen during the 2016 presidential campaign. However, Mike Pence could play a large role in shaping Donald Trump’s policy on the matter when he goes head to head with Hillary Clinton later this year.
[Image via Walt Disney Pictures]