Sure, Gru of “Despicable Me” fame started out bad. The animated super-villain’s first name, after all, is Felonious.
But white supremacist bad?
Two families are suing Universal Studios for north of $30,000 because an actor dressed up like Gru made the “OK” hand gesture in photos with their five- and -six-year-old biracial daughters. It’s a civil rights lawsuit, the families contend, because the guy in the Gru costume was making the universal symbol for “white power.”
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which is highly attentive to signs of race-based hate, says “[this] symbol in most contexts is entirely innocuous and harmless,” but can sometimes become “a sincere expression of white supremacy.” The ADL emphasizes that, given the common nature of the symbol, “particular care must be taken not to jump to conclusions about the intent behind someone who has used [it].”
The young girls’ families nonetheless seem to have jumped to quick conclusions, The Federalist recently reported. Tiffany Zinger, mother of the six-year-old girl, said, “[“Gru”] put his hand on her as if he was just doing it regularly, and as I was looking at the camera, he started to put the universal white supremacist hate sign on her shoulder.”
Or perhaps the Gru guy was putting up the universal sign for OK — as in, I guess I’m OK with putting on this sweaty costume and schlepping myself around this theme park. Sure, I would have loved to have my own sitcom or a feature film at this point in my career, but this is OK, I guess.
The lawsuit claims a five-year-old girl was in a similar photo-op with Gru. While both photos were taken in 2019, the lawsuit was filed on June 23, and goes so far as to cite “several high-profile hate crimes during which the suspects [allegedly] displayed the hand gesture, including the riots at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.”
WKMG in Orlando reports, “both families are claiming the girls suffered mental anguish, loss of dignity, humiliation, embarrassment and other emotional distress.”
And $30,000-plus ought to cover the cost of their anguish.
Who’s the villain in this story?
Wokeland is despicable.