Actor, filmmaker, and Sundance Film Festival founder Robert Redford published an essay titled “A Brief Statement About Big Things” on the Sundance Institute’s website Saturday, writing that he feels “out of place in the country I was born into.”
Known for iconic acting roles in the classics “The Way We Were” with Barbra Streisand, “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” with screen legend Paul Newman, and the Nixon-era Watergate investigation classic “All the President’s Men,” the 82-year-old is also well-known as the director of “Ordinary People” and “A River Runs Through It.”
Redford is known, too, as an outspoken liberal activist, and although he and other liberals might not ever acknowledge it, his feelings mirror how many Americans felt during the Obama presidency. That administration ushered in the Affordable Care Act, aggressive “comprehensive sex education” in the nation’s classrooms, the repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” LGBT policy in the military, and the 2015 Iran nuclear deal — which President Donald Trump abandoned earlier this year.
Redford’s “overtly political speech” was published the same day that Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh was voted onto the Supreme Court after a protracted and fraught confirmation process.
Kavanaugh is not mentioned by name in his piece, but Redford called out “bigotry, mean-spiritedness, and mockery as the now-normal tools of the trade,” which follows the liberal activist playbook.
Many of Hollywood’s elite were angered by the Senate, which on Saturday passed Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the high court by a vote of 50-48. Their anger is no surprise, given they’ve been so aggressive in their opposition to the nominee — but it’s still incredible to observe how extreme they’re willing to be in their efforts to keep their party’s narrative going, with seemingly no thought for how many other Americans were in favor of Kavanaugh’s ascension to the court.
“The fury now commences. An electoral rampage is underway. November 6th is the day of reckoning. I’m in,” filmmaker Michael Moore, whose latest anti-Trump documentary is flopping, wrote on Twitter in reaction to the news.
“Tonight, for the first time I can remember, I feel out of place in the country I was born into and the citizenship I’ve loved my whole life,” Redford wrote in his essay. “For weeks I’ve watched with sadness as our civil servants have failed us, turning toward bigotry, mean-spiritedness, and mockery as the now-normal tools of the trade.”
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He added, “How can we expect the next generation to step up and serve, to be interested in public life, and to aspire to get involved when all we show them is how to spar, attack, and destroy each other?”
This is ironic, given how aggressive leftists have been in their opposition to Kavanaugh — even allowing outrageous claims of gang rape by a teenage Kavanaugh’s social circle to stand, and attacking Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) for her decision to support the nominee in a memorable speech she gave on the Senate floor Friday.
He continued, “It’s hard to blame young people for calling us out, and pointing to our conflicts between the values we declare, and those we stand behind only when it’s convenient to partisanship. Many people are rightly calling it a damn mess.”
The liberal activist concluded, “We don’t have to share the same motivations to want the same outcomes. Let’s focus on each other, and strengthening our communities, and reflecting on what’s happening. Let’s live in justice and respect and let others fight it out now to the bitter ends. This is our country, too. Every woman, man, and child in it, our American future. We’ve got work to do.”
See more on the history of Hollywood and politics in the vide below.