Discussing the Gina Carano situation with a former UFC executive - I Did Some Digging
A digital detective digs into The Case of the Hurt, Hurt Feelings
Hey all, I’m working behind the scenes to develop a Fine Art of Violence video show for the BloodyElbow youtube channel while transforming this column into something more readable. Last week’s column investigating the claim that Jon Jones made more money than his brothers in the NFL (combined!) was a watershed moment.
I was hit with inspiration, how about a column that asks: can a middle-aged man, using only an internet search engine and twitter DM’s find the answers to the myriad unsubstantiated claims that float across our MMA headlines? The answer is… sometimes!
Let us begin in the past. Many years ago a website called Gawker published a video of WWE wrestler Hulk Hogan having sex with his friend, Bubba the Love Sponge’s wife. Hogan sued the publication and ultimately won a hefty $140 million judgement. The curious part of this whole situation was that Hogan’s lawsuit was financed by billionaire tech bro Peter Thiel in the amount of $10 million dollars.
Thiel is thought to have harbored a grudge against the media outlet after a 2007 article outed him as gay. Elon Musk is another tech bro with a long standing grudge against everything and anything he deems ‘woke,’ and it appears he wishes to use Gina Carano’s firing from her acting gig on The Mandalorian as his cause célèbre. Musk is again living out the Mark Twain observation that there is no such thing as an original idea.
Now that we are up to speed… yesterday I was on Twitter and saw former UFC executive Ant Evans opining on the Gina Carano situation. Ant cited a “morality clause,” and wrote that Disney would be “forced to contrast” her firing Carano with other stars who said and did “far worse.”
Bloody Elbow Newsletter is a reader-supported publication. Please, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
This struck me as wishful thinking. While the Carano firing for saying unpleasant things was a big story, surely it couldn’t be the only time this has happened. So I did a little digging and came up with a list of similar situations where someone had been fired by Disney for various reasons.
Ryan Gosling was fired as a 12 year old Mouseketeer for educating his peers about “adult topics.”
Jake Paul was “weaned off” of the show Bizardvaark for the stunts he pulled on his YouTube channel.
PewDiePie had his Disney show cancelled after some of his YouTube stunts were deemed antisemetic.
Roseanne Barr was fired from Disney+ after a series of tweets that included comparing a black woman to Planet of the Apes.
James Gunn was fired (and later rehired) after old offensive tweets were unearthed.
Finally, sci-fi writer Harlan Eillson was fired for jokingly suggesting that Disney do a “porn flick” in the company cafeteria.
So there we have it, a list showing that Disney has fired numerous people for saying things that the company deemed worthy of firing. And furthermore, there is no morality clause needed because California is an “at-will” employment state. In simplest terms that means At-will employment means that you can fire an employee for any lawful reason or no reason at all. You don't have to show cause, give warnings or multiple chances, or have a hearing.
To my surprise, Mr. Evans did not find this edifying in the least and simply Tweeted back to me a gif (pronounced ‘gif’) of Rachel Zegler. This confused me until Evans explained that she was a “brat” who was a “PR nightmare” who delayed a movie. At this point I realized that we were not having a conversation. Maybe this wasn’t about Gina Carano after all.