Two prominent stars say what many Hollywood dwellers have been hinting at since Nov. 8, 2016.
For a while one message rang out from Team Hollywood in the Age of Trump. The industry didn’t want you as a customer if you wear a red MAGA hat.
Oh, celebrities didn’t actually mouth those words. Instead, they embedded their disgust for both President Donald Trump and his admirers in nearly everything they did.
- TV shows
- Late night monologues.
- Press interviews
- Social media
We got the message, even if they didn’t actually say it.
Denver audiences heard it loud and clear when liberal comic George Lopez appeared at the Carousel Ball Oct. 7. The diabetes fundraiser hired Lopez to be the emcee and he quickly launched into some presidential barbs. Trump-friendly booster Greg Maffei of Liberty Media dropped $250,000 toward the cause while asking Lopez to cut the political barbs.
Lopez ignored the request. The booing commenced.Local media personality Ed Greene took over for Lopez as the night’s emcee but not before the comic spat out lines like this:
“Thank you for changing my opinion on old white men, but it doesn’t change the way I feel about orange men,” Lopez cracked. “Listen, it’s about the kids . . . I apologize for bringing politics to an event. This is America — it still is. So I apologize to your white privilege.”
He might as well have said, “if you like Trump, I don’t want you in my crowd.”
Now, two stars are literally saying just that.
Eminem appeared at the BET Awards this week to do more than plug his new album. He unleashed a four-plus minute rap against President Trump.
That’s hardly worth a news item alone. Virtually every player at every level of the entertainment world is against this Commander in Chief. Trump. Some announce it in verse. A few have wished him dead in colorful ways.
Eminem didn’t go that far. Instead, he turned some of his ire against Trump towards those who support the president.
And any fan of mine who’s a supporter of his
I’m drawing in the sand a line: you’re either for or against
And if you can’t decide who you like more and you’re split
On who you should stand beside, I’ll do it for you with this:
Not to be outdone, Meyers offered up a clunky rap response of his own.
“And I was inspired by that, so tonight, I say to any fans of this show who are also big fans of Donald Trump, it’s time to make a decision,” said Meyers. “Get off the fence. Do you support him or do you support this show, that constantly mocks and denigrates everything about him? I know it’s a tough call, but the time has come to make a decision. Now, I’m not much of a rapper, but here it goes. My name is Seth and I’m here to say, if you like Trump, then go away.”
Who’s next? Stephen Colbert? George Clooney? Amy Schumer? Heck, she already compared Trump supporters to KKK members, so taking the next step is a modest effort.
It’s now not enough to slam the president’s every move now. You have to make audiences pick sides.
It’s reminiscent of President George W. Bush’s famous “you are either with us or against us” speech after 9/11. Ironically, liberals shrieked over that comment for being too black and white.
Suddenly black and white is A OK. The press adulation for Eminem’s rap proved considerable. Take CNN. The left-leaning network served up the clickbait-worthy “11 Fiercest Lines” roundup of the rapper’s lyrics.
Few, if any, in the press spoke out against Meyers’ rant.
Jimmy Kimmel, who turned from the Everyman yukster to fierce progressive over the past few weeks, is leaning toward the Eminem approach.
“I want everyone with a television to watch the show, but if they’re so turned off by my opinion on health care and gun violence, then … I probably wouldn’t want to have a conversation with them anyway.”
“Good riddance?” Smith asked.
“Well, not good riddance, but riddance,” Kimmel said, laughing.
There’s an interesting psychological game going on here, and it’s one Hollywood, Inc. might not relish. The more teeth gnashing we see out of both the press and Hollywood, the more reluctant Trump supporters side with him.
Entertainers should entertain. The mainstream media should report the facts, not take sides. Seeing both fail to fulfill their duty makes some citizens sympathetic to both President Trump and his histrionics.
We’re already seeing some of the results of this “choose him or us” playbook. Box office numbers are cratering since Trump took office. The president’s Twitter war against NFL players refusing to respect the National Anthem is turning into a slaughter.
- Football ratings are sinking fast.
- The NFL brand is suddenly tarnished.
- Some DirecTV NFL fans are demanding their money back
We may see more stars follow the Meyers and Eminem route. It’s either Trump … or us might be the next “resistance” meme for celebrities.
Only stars might not like the results. Nor will their accountants.