Antisemitic pamphlets specifically targeting Disney with conspiratorial language were found outside numerous Florida homes Tuesday morning.
Residents in cities like Miami, Coral Gables, Orlando, Jacksonville and Fort Pierce found the pamphlets inside otherwise innocuous-looking gift bags left outside their homes overnight. Contained in the plastic bags were candy corn and images depicting various Disney characters, according to the Miami Herald.
On closer inspection, however, the flyers were found to contain bigoted antisemitic messages targeting the Walt Disney Company, specifically invoking right-wing “grooming” conspiracy theories about the company that have taken hold within the last several months.
“Every single aspect of Disney’s child grooming is Jewish,” the pamphlets read. “Protect your children.”
In the Miami area, the pamphlets were mostly distributed around Coral Gables, including on Granada Boulevard, Capri Street and Cordova Street. Only a few were said to be found in Miami itself, the Herald reported.
The messages linking Disney to “grooming” stem from conspiracy theories that sprung up after the company came out against Florida’s controversial “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which limited the ability of public school faculty to discuss gender and sexuality issues with students.
In light of Disney‘s stance, numerous conservative figures, including some elected officials, began to accuse the company of grooming children, a term used to describe predatory adults manipulating children to accept sexual abuse. This notion itself was inspired by common homophobic rhetoric conflating LGBTQ communities with pedophilia.
In addition to messages targeting Disney, some of the pamphlets contained messaging opposing gun control and immigration, all while retaining the antisemitic focus. Law enforcement officials speaking with the Herald said that it is not currently known how the distribution of flyers was coordinated across so many Florida areas. One user on the app NextDoor claimed to have seen an individual in the Coral Gables area toss something from a light-colored car about 3:30 a.m. EST.
“We have very little information,” Miami police spokeswoman Kenia Fallat said in a statement. “We’re seeing how we can piece the puzzle together.”
Among the Miami-area residents to find a pamphlet outside their homes on Tuesday was Daniela Torrealba, a supervisor in Miami-Dade County’s public defender’s office. The pamphlet she found contained the rhetoric against gun control. Before calling police, she donned plastic gloves and placed the potentially dangerous faux gift bag into another bag, and brought it inside.
“It’s sick and sad to say this is the situation we’re in, but I was initially glad everyone got it,” Torrealba told the Herald. “I was initially worried that we were targeted.”
Newsweek has reached out to Disney and the Miami Police Department for comment.
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