Democratic fundraiser/actor Ben Affleck — and the next big-screen “Batman” — recently gave an interview to Playboy. His own bias against Republicans, he admits, prevents him from fully enjoying a Republican actor’s performance. “It’s … hard,” said Affleck, “to get people to suspend disbelief.”
Affleck said: “When I watch a guy I know is a big Republican, part of me thinks, I probably wouldn’t like this person if I met him, or we would have different opinions. That (bleep) fogs the mind when you should be paying attention and be swept into the illusion.”
Fair enough. But how do you think conservatives feel?
Nearly every actor who cuts loose about politics, let alone campaigns for or donates to causes or politicians, almost always supports Democrats and liberal causes. Nothing wrong with this. But it’s not even close to a fair fight. Of America’s stars — old, young and in-between — the many who speak out are invariably Democrats.
A Clint Eastwood is more than offset by the many performers like Cher, who said: “If you’re black in this country, if you’re a woman in this country, if you are any minority in this country at all, what could possibly possess you to vote Republican? … You won’t have one f—ing right left.” Or like Julia Roberts, who said, “Republican comes in the dictionary just after ‘reptile’ and just above ‘repugnant.'” Or Ed Asner, from Disney’s film “Up,” who contributed his name and voice to a cartoon political ad showing a dastardly rich man literally urinating on the poor.
Sean Penn drips with contempt toward the awful guys on the other side.
Tea partiers, including Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex., says Penn, have a “mental health problem” which “would be solved by committing them” to a psychiatric facility with an “executive order” from the president.
Why such a microscopic number of outspoken conservatives? Fear. Cuban-born actress Maria Conchita Alonso, for example, is a recent cautionary tale. Cast to star in the Latino version of the Vagina Monologues, Alonso cut an ad for a California tea party “secure the borders” candidate. Big mistake. The play’s theatre, located in the heavily Hispanic Mission District of San Francisco, received threats to disrupt the performance — if Alonso remained in the cast.
When Alonso “quit,” the play’s producer shrugged: “We really can’t have her in the show, unfortunately. Of course she has the right to say whatever she wants. But we’re in the middle of the Mission. Doing what she is doing is against what we believe.” Against what we believe?! How far is this from “Are you now, or have you ever been … ?”
How do you think conservatives feel?
Affleck and his buddy, fellow A-lister Matt Damon, held fundraisers for the successful senate races of New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and for the election and re-election of President Barack Obama. Democrats all, or people who — to conservatives — are “against what we believe.”
Of Hollywood’s political contributions in the last two presidential election cycles, 86 percent went to Democrats in 2008, and 79 percent in 2012. More than 90 percent of contributions by celebrities to the 2012 presidential race went to Obama over Republican opponent Mitt Romney. The Wall Street Journal said, “(DreamWorks co-founder Jeffrey) Katzenberg wrote a $2 million check to jump-start Priorities USA Action, the super PAC supporting the president. His fundraising work has yielded as much as $7 million over the past five years.”
Miramax’s Harvey Weinstein is another Democratic Hollywood power player and fundraiser. He, too, shows no reluctance to show his contempt toward the very people Weinstein counts on to pay to see his movies. His take on the congressional Republicans who opposed Obama during the government shutdown? “Some of them are, you know,” said Weinstein, “unfortunately (racist).”
For his book “Primetime Hollywood,” conservative talk show host Ben Shapiro interviewed several major Hollywood primetime television producers — the people who make the fare we see. One after another, they saluted — even cheered — their hostility toward conservatives. Some bragged about injecting liberal messages in programming, while admitting they refuse to knowingly hire a conservative. One, Susan Harris, who created “Golden Girls,” called conservatives “idiots” with “medieval minds.”
MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell, formerly a “West Wing” writer, explained why the show lacked sympathetic Republican characters: “You’ll never, ever, get the Republican TV show. The Writers Guild of America, my union, is, at a minimum, 99 percent leftist liberal. … And we don’t know how to write it. We don’t.”
Got that? Affleck can’t stomach watching a Republican. “West Wing’s” O’Donnell can’t stomach writing about one. But Hollywood expects the audience to stomach them.
Do bigmouth lefty actors think their skills override the audience’s politics, that conservatives can “suspend disbelief” — even as Affleck admits he can’t when the actor is a “Big Republican”?
If audiences gave leftwing actors, producers and studios the Maria Conchita Alonso treatment, half the country would never set foot in a theatre. Hollywood, after all, oozes with “Big Democrats” whose politics, for much of the country, go “against what we believe.”
Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host.