Saturday, September 10, 2011

Replace fear with Laughter

Replace fear with Laughter
       Walt Disney was a proud American. During WWI he lied about his age so he could serve as a Red Cross ambulance driver in France.

       During WWII his studio was taken over by the United States Army. The Disney studio is in Burbank and near both an armory and Lockheed and other aerospace engendering firms that were designing and building equipment for the U. S. Government war effort. The studio was a perfect staging ground for the army so they could protect those assets.

       Walt was not happy with the takeover of his studio but understood the need. He knew his hardship could save lives. The studio almost went bankrupted during WWII due to several factors, loss of staff when they went to fight, loss of revenue because overseas markets were closed, what staff he had was kept busy making training and propaganda shorts for the government so they could not work on feature length movie projects that were in the works.

       With his losses you might think Walt would be bitter. Instead he spent his own money to make a feature length movie he knew would make no money in return, Victory Through Air Power. He made it to show how America could win the war if we committed to long range bombers. The story goes Walt made the movie and nobody wanted to market it. He got it out anyway and somehow Winston Churchill saw the movie while n Canada. Churchill convinced President Roosevelt to see the movie and when he did he signed a contract for more long range bombers and that was the turning point of the war.

       Do you see the trend? Walt believed in America. He believed in the ideals that our founding fathers stood for. You don’t believe me? Check out Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln. You will find it interesting how history is portrayed there. The truth is spoken. Lincoln did not start the war to free the slaves. He knew he could not force total equality with one act. He like our founding fathers knew changes happened slowly and at times had to come painfully slowly to protect the fragile Union.

       So why is this important today? Well, tomorrow is a day full of emotion. People will feel fear, anger, hate and guilt as they remember the events of 9/11/01. Do you want another way to deal with it? How about remembering what Walt said is one of America’s greatest assets. Walt said, “Laughter is America's most important export.”

On 9/11/01 the terrorists wanted us to cower in fear. That is definition of a terrorist. Instead let’s export laughter. Let’s find joy in life and live life to the fullest. Let’s export laughter to our family, friends, neighbors, strangers and the world and by doing so change the world. Let’s export laughter instead of fear and hate. Let’s export laughter and with it understanding and compassion to bring healing.

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