Political preaching and cultural fear-mongering seem to know no bounds today, especially when it comes to America’s coastal celebrities. We’ve got yet another round of Hollywood ridiculousness for you — our fourth in as many weeks — as the words and actions out of Hollywood are not only hard to believe but difficult to keep up with (though someone has to).
So take a deep breath — and dive in.
Sally Field, Rosie Perez, Jeffrey Wright, Steve Buscemi and others have teamed to give the world exactly what it was craving: another strident and politics-preaching celebrity video.
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After countless videos of celebrities preaching about electing Hillary Clinton and making sure the Electoral College didn’t do its job, now we have a new one. We can listen to celebs from the two coasts tell all the rest of us to “fight” the Trump administration and his various Cabinet picks.
“We demand that you block nominees who threaten the rights of women, the LGBT community, people of color, immigrants, and the poor,” Key and Field say in the video, which was released Tuesday — the same day members of Congress were sworn in on Capitol Hill.
The video also claims hate crimes are on the rise because of Donald Trump, and that women and people of color are being harmed in his name.
It’s hard to know what to make of these videos. They clearly don’t work. Results actually would tell you they typically have the opposite effect than intended. Yet we keep getting them. At this point, they play like parodies being created by Trump’s team to ensure a second term in office. If there’s one thing people are clearly sick of, it’s celebrity preaching. Unfortunately, celebrities are not even close to being sick of what they do.
Lindsay Lohan was never exactly known for her worldly views or her concern with real issues beyond partying and creating troubles on set. However, being away from the limelight seems to have changed her perspective.
The young actress posted a poem to her Instagram account on Tuesday in which she spoke of fixing “idle ISIS minds.” What makes the poem more significant is that Lohan has been working closely on the Syrian refugee crisis. She has visited refugee camps and hospitals in Turkey and even provided free energy drinks to camps. You read that right — energy drinks. To her credit, the energy drink, Mintanine, does “not use synthetic flavors or caffeine, no taurin, no aspartame, no inosit, but natural guarani.”
Anyway, back to the poem. Lohan wrote, “Just go to bed and close the blinds/still and so on, i cannot help but want to fix all of these idle isis minds/because/there has to be something i can figure out/rather than living in a world of fear and doubt/they now shoot, we used to shout.”
It’s hard to know what to make of the poem or Lohan’s intentions. She seems to condemn ISIS — but energy drinks and poems from a D-list celebrity seem an odd antidote to the world’s problems. Still, Lohan has at least put her money where her mouth is, unlike many other celebrities. She reportedly spent the holidays volunteering in refugee camps.
Rebecca Ferguson revealed this week that she was asked to perform at the inauguration, but would only sing on one condition. The U.K. “X Factor” runner-up demands that she sing “Strange Fruit,” a protest song against racism in 1930s America sung most famously by Billie Holliday.
She posted on Twitter on Monday: “I’ve been asked and this is my answer. If you allow me to sing ‘strange fruit’ a song that has huge historical importance, a song that was blacklisted in the United States for being too controversial. A song that speaks to all the disregarded and down trodden black people in the United States. A song that is a reminder of how love is the only thing that will conquer all the hatred in this world, then I will graciously accept your invitation and see you in Washington. Best Rebecca X.”
The song references a lynching and condemns racism. While not a typical song for what is supposed to be a hopeful event about the future — rather than the past — one would think Ferguson could have her way if she had conducted a one-on-one conversation with Trump or his inauguration team. The fact that she posted the demand online for all to see as if it’s a ransom for the honor of hearing her talents speaks volumes to the head-in-the-clouds mentality of many celebrities.
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By posting online, she’s revealed she has no intention of singing at the inauguration or even considering it. She, like many other stars, is looking for a short route to attention and a way to condemn the Trump administration — which has so far spent precisely zero days in office.
“By definition most comedy tends to be insensitive. I wasn’t attempting to be insensitive. I was attempting to tell a joke. And that’s what I do.”
If she had acted like a normal human being and had a private conversation as an artist with a business seeking her talents, perhaps she could have sung “Strange Fruit.” Perhaps it could have been a beautiful and surprising moment. We will never know now. As the inauguration is proving, oh so many prefer to put their politics way above their art.
Michael Shannon, Rosie O’Donnell, and Debra Messing are among the celebrities to add their names to an effort calling for a month-long resistance of Donald Trump before he takes office. An ad running in The New York Times boasted about the plans by a group called Refuse Fascism. “No! In the Name of Humanity We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America!” reads the ad.
The hope appears to be to stop Trump from taking office. The group says it hopes to reach a “crescendo” by Jan. 20. They call for D.C. protests and walkouts from schools and work. “The struggle must grow,” they say. The group says its ultimate goal is to fill the D.C. streets with millions “demanding that Trump-Pence be prevented from taking office before January 20th.”
It should go without saying that if movements like this ever ran full-page ads in major newspapers before Obama’s inauguration, words like “treason” would be thrown around by the mainstream media. The behavior of activists and celebrities in not accepting election results remains not just hypocritical, but potentially dangerous. Donald Trump will be president and it’s not healthy for any portion of a country — especially those with the power of media attention — to so aggressively oppose the mere idea of it. It’s polarization and fear-mongering at its finest. If this is the behavior we can expect from celebrities for the next four years, then Trump may have a fairly easy re-election campaign.
Finally, on a much milder note, D.L. Hughley did what all comedians do on Twitter. He told a joke. The trouble is his joke was about the death of Debbie Reynolds following the passing of her daughter, Carrie Fisher — and not many people found this funny.
“Debbie Reynolds died a day after her daughter did! Black Mama’s don’t die cuz they kids do! They cry and say God don’t make no mistakes!” the comedian tweeted on Dec. 29, the day after Reynolds’ passing.
The comedian took a lot of heat for his untimely joke, but his response is what was most surprising. In a surprisingly candid interview with TMZ, Hughley said, “By definition most comedy tends to be insensitive. I wasn’t attempting to be insensitive. I was attempting to tell a joke. And that’s what I do.”
He was then asked if Donald Trump would bring an end to political correctness as president. The typically liberal comedian said, “I think that that probably is why he got elected.”
And there it is, folks — a celebrity admitting it wasn’t racism, misogyny, and bigotry that got Trump elected — but rather a boiling-over frustration with an out-of-control PC culture.