A Fight at the Castle Lighting ~ What happened to Acts of Kindness?

A Fight at the Castle Lighting ~ What happened to Acts of Kindness? 1

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This Thursday’s Random Acts of Kindness article has a different spin, and for good reason. I know everyone is excited for Christmas fun at Disney Parks, and things get hectic and crazy. I fully understand. Some people are at Disney for the first time, some are locals, etc, but we all want to have a great time. Manners sometimes get lost in the fray, and that definitely happened last night.

I got to the MK early last night for the new Castle lighting show. We picked up the boys from school and headed straight over to get a good spot, as I had reporting to do for TMSM. We sat near the front of the Castle, but again we were early, so I let the boys take a walk, the Move It Shake It parade rolled by, etc. As we sat there, I had more people push, poke and step on me, that I finally got up. A lady next to me said “so much for getting here early” and was upset that people did the same to her and her kids. But, we just decided to shake it off and wait. People forget courtesy sometimes, even if someone would say “I’m sorry” or “Excuse me” that sure would help. I only was bothered for a second, then I was ok, and I kept it to myself. As time went on, and it got closer to showtime, things just got more and more crowded, and tensions started rising. Even I didn’t expect what happened next.

There was a large group standing around, and people started to push forward. Some were sitting on the ground, some of us had been there for two hours or better. I was just chatting with others and waiting for the show, and I looked to my left and an actual scuffle had broken out. Apparently, people were pushing and ramming with strollers at each other, and punches were actually thrown. Yes, a fist fight at our Happy Place. Cast Members did a great job of diffusing the situation and things went back to normal quickly, but that’s not the point. Where is the kindness toward other people? I mean, you’re at Disney World, not a boxing match. Is it worth arguing or assaulting other people just to get closer to the Castle? My gosh NO! The thing is, you can see from pretty much anywhere up front, there was no need to fight or whatever just to move up a few feet, it’s not worth it. I felt a little disappointed, because things like that shouldn’t happen at Disney, and I truly don’t understand why people get all fired up for no good reason. It’s not fair to other guests, nor is it right to do in front of all the children sitting by. That’s not Disney magic.

I don’t write this as to preach at you all, or to put anyone down, that’s not my intention. I think it’s just important to remember that other people are just as eager and excited as you are to be at a Disney park or event, and a little kindness can go a long, long way. Did I get frustrated that we got stepped on yesterday? Sure did. Did I get up and confront people or take a swing? Oh heck no! Sometimes we just have to “let it go” and try to make the best of our situation. Why ruin your time at Disney because people annoy you? Not worth it! I know we can’t be happy and content all the time, we can get a little hot under the collar even at Disney parks. Sometimes folks just need to take a step back, breathe, and realize being the bigger person and rising above the situation is the better way to go. Again, Disney magic and kindness is a better solution. So, till next week, smile, & make someone else smile too by extending an act of kindness that could make their day. You never know who could really use the extra love and magic!

Side note ~ Among the crazy commotion last night, Main Streeter Angela and her sweet son found me in the crowd and came up to say hello and asked for a pic. That’s the best feeling in the world! Our Main Streeters are the BEST and a true blessing! Thank you to all of you who extend kindness to us and support what we do! We love you for it! xo M

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Author: Michele

Michele Atwood is the Owner/Editor of The Main Street Mouse and it’s subsidiaries and author of the book “Moving to Main Street U.S.A.” Michele also contributes Disney news to the Joe Kelley Morning Show on 96.5 WDBO in Orlando. She and her family made the move from Michigan to the Orlando area to pursue their Disney dreams. Michele is a life long Disney fan, and has two sons who have followed suit, each going on their first Disney trip before their first birthday’s. Part of the goal Michele has for The Main Street Mouse is not only to keep members informed, but to create somewhat of a Disney Family by relating to others through personal experiences and opinions. Also, Michele is making it a priority to share stories of inspiration and hope to other Disney Fans in an effort to share the Magic and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others.

7 Responses to A Fight at the Castle Lighting ~ What happened to Acts of Kindness?

  1. We are passholders as well and have made many, many trips to the parks. It is almost a given that we have an encounter with rude people while waiting for a parade or show. If we really want to see something we get there at least 2 hours ahead of time and it NEVER fails that we have someone come and try and squeeze in next to us where there really is not space for another person. One time, someone came and squeezed in and then was waving to the rest of their group, which was about 8 MORE people. My husband had had enough and went and got a cast member, explained the situation and they asked them to find another space. It is easy to lose your patience with people when you have been the one waiting for so long, but the best thing to do is get a cast member and they will take care of it. In the case above with the child spilling their soda, a cast member should have definitely been told. Those people should not have only been asked to move but possibly escorted out of the park. It is just unacceptable and needs to be addressed!

  2. I’ve not seen actual fist fights, and I think Disney cast members are trained in handling it as soon as they can get through the crowds. Those involved were probably, or most certainly should have been, escorted from the park. I have experienced the blatant rudeness of people, particularly foreigners, using their strollers as battering rams, or pushing past me, as if I did not exist, just so they can get closer to a parade or fireworks. Some people act like they are in a foot race too, hurrying and darting in and out between people, just so they can be a few feet further in a line. Some people are so damn impatient to get where they want that they won’t wait just 2 seconds for you to pass, and will cut right in front of you to get across to another area. I think it is sort of a crowd mentality that takes over and people quit looking at each other as individual human beings, and animal instincts take over and it becomes a struggle for survival. Even Disney cast members trying to direct crowds seem to be herding us like we’re cattle and to the point of rudeness. I know people do naturally have a certain amount of personal space around them and they get irritated when that space is violated. I once heard of an experiment where the goal was to test the relationship of violence and overcrowding in urban areas. In this study, two rats were put in a good size box, and they amicably shared the space and food. Then the scientists started adding rats a little at a time. As the box more crowded, the rats became more agitated, and more possessive of food and their space. Eventually, the rats became very aggressive and there were some severe fights, and even cannibalism of the young, as things got extremely crowded. Keeping this experiment in mind, I have noticed that there is a distinct difference in lighter off-season crowds and super crowded times of the season. Having said that, I still think most people are able to control their irritation and try to be cooperative. Imagine the mass chaos if most people were stinking, selfish pigs. If you think about it, most people don’t intentionally offend others. I think that is why blatant rudeness really stands out and is remembered. There are always going to be a certain percentage of selfish, highly competitive pigs any where you go, who are only out for themselves whether they are at Disney or in a shopping mall. In a extremely crowded situation, there is naturally going to be a higher percentage of selfish rude pigs, so it may seem that most people’s manners are getting worse. We live on a planet of 7 BILLION people and the percentages of pigs is only going to get worse as the earth becomes overpopulated. I know Disney has crowd limits and will not let people in when limits are met. Maybe they need to look at lowering those limits, but won’t because it is a money-making business when we come right down to it, and that takes precedence over what should be done.

  3. princess tina says:

    I think that peoples behavior at the parks is becoming reprehensible at best ! I have been to the parks over the years ..both with and without children I know when I undertake these vacations a few things await me ,long lines, over excited guests and sometimes exasperated/exhausted park goers. We (the adults) expect public displays from children I have watched my own kids melt down for what ever reason and am extremely sympathetic to parents experiencing this on their “first trip” ,however for the”adults ” who have acted out as witnessed by many a park goer your behavior is not only uncalled for it is unacceptable!My humble opinion is that we are all in this together and being rude, and more currently” entitled” to the point of violence is not acceptable! A Disney vacation is never cheap, and to act out when you encounter the lines etc is ridiculous ! NEWSFLASH people you are at a THEME PARK! for which you spent a great deal of money, it did not include a permission slip for bad behavior Kindness and Manners are FREE yet invaluable use them lavishly!

  4. mms1964 says:

    I was in Epcot in early July and while I was waiting on the main walkway outside Japan for my children to get Mulan’s autograph, some type of fight broke out. I only caught part of it, but it looked like two young (late teen, early 20s) men were yelling/being aggressive towards a much older man. The older man ended up on the ground, and a man next to me with his family went running over; his wife tried to stop him but he said he wasn’t going to stand by and let an old man get beat up by two kids. Security came, the older man refused medical attention, I’m not sure what happened after that. I was just shocked by the whole thing.

  5. I am disappointed in people’s civility and manners wherever I go, not just at Disney… When I was at Disney this July I noticed a huge difference in people’s attitudes than when we were there three years before. Peoples manners just get worse and worse. I guess all we can do is try and teach our kids but it is hard. Everyone is always out for themselves and no one thinks about others anymore… Sad.

  6. Oh boy do I have a story for you! Sept 2013 we were there for our annual family trip, and my daughters were 4 and 2. We decided to go to the night parade and headed over to find a spot. It was very crowded already, but I pushed the stroller behind this gentleman, his wife, and two other adults. They were loud, and having “adult” conversation. My husband and oldest went walking, and Zoey and I sat behind these people when the mad got up and starting yelling at me (mind you we were sitting RIGHT in front of the castle) “Your baby is pissing on me!” Well, my baby had spilled my pop over and some of it was spilling. I apologized, but he kept yelling, swearing, and even called me a “fat a**” To which I replied I was pregnant! He didn’t care, kept yelling people around us left, I offered to clean it up, he screamed. Then when the parade started he stood right up right in front of us so that my kids couldn;t see. ” Serves you right fatty” he said to me in front of my kids.

    it was lovely. We missed the parade. Worst feeling ever, being berated like that is WDW.

  7. Dan Cruz says:

    “I don’t write this as to preach at you all, or to put anyone down, that’s not my intention.”
    Well maybe that’s what some people need, to be preached to or put down. Civility seems to be disappearing, and Walt Disney World is a place where it should be easy to do.

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