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Girl with local ties petitions Disney for plus-size princess

After growing up noticing how plus-size women are portrayed negatively in the media, a 17-year-old Farmville native hopes to change that, starting with Disney.

Jewel Moore, daughter of former Halifax County native Kerby Moore and the granddaughter of the late Hugh Moore, has taken action on her strong conviction. 

“I’ve always observed how certain people are portrayed unfairly, especially plus-size women,” said Moore, daughter of Kerby and Janet Moore. “They’re usually stupid, lazy or maybe the villain. At best they’re comic relief.” 

In hopes of getting Disney to lead the change, on Jan. 31 Moore created a petition on Change.org urging the film company to make a plus-size Disney princess. 

The petition reads, “I’m a junior in high school named Jewel. I made this petition because I’m a plus-size young woman, and I know many plus-size girls and women who struggle with confidence and need a positive plus-size character in the media.” 

Originally Moore planned on writing a letter with her concerns and request but decided she needed a backing, “so Disney can see how
important this is to people.” 

So far, Moore has received what she wanted, support and lots of coverage. 

As of Friday, the petition had received 25,701 signatures from supporters, and her story has been broadcasted “all over.” 

Her story has been published on Yahoo, Huffington Post, Seventeen, People and WSET, and Fox News featured a discussion about the topic.

While Moore is “thrilled” to see so many people agree, she can’t help but notice the negativity that has been voiced about it as well, but she says that’s okay. 

“I’m just glad to see that while some may disagree, I’m glad that they recognize it as a topic of discussion. The negativity is just expected,” said Moore who is taking “the good with the bad.” 

At Fuqua School, Moore has received even more support. 

“I’ve received lots of support at school. Everyone has been really loving, helping me out by giving me guidance, and I’m just so appreciative of that,” said Moore. 

In the next week or so, Moore plans to send her petition to Disney and really hopes to get their attention. 

In the meantime, she has been daydreaming about the possibility of this princess. 

While she hasn’t thought of a specific storyline for the princess, she simply hopes it would be positive. 

“The biggest thing is that I want it to be portrayed in a positive light. Most Disney princesses are strong, beautiful or strong-willed. That’s what I want, something positive to learn from so that girls can see that plus-size people can also have those qualities,” said Moore. 

Moore feels if young girls see a plus-size princess, who maybe looks like them, then they are likely to want to be like them. 

Currently, there are 11 princesses in the Disney Princess franchise — Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Belle, Jasmine, Pocahontas, Mulan, Tiana, Rapunzel and Merida. 

Could Disney’s next princess have the moniker “Princess Jewel?”

While they all have different stories and backgrounds, Moore said they fit the “straight skinny women standard beauty” that is shown most often. 

“There shouldn’t be a whole lot of media pointing to one body type,” said Moore. “Plus sizes are really denied that widespread coverage.” 

Being that young girls start looking for role models at a young age, and media begins affecting perspective starting with children, Moore feels it’s best to start with them and Disney.

“I would really like Disney to be leaders on this. They are so influential, and I would like to see them get a hold of the reigns by doing this and set the example for other companies to follow,” Moore concluded.   

The petition can be found online at http://www.change.org/petitions/the-walt-disney-animation-studios-make-plus-size-princesses-in-disney-movies.