In the liberal enclave that is Hollywood the Trump Presidency has raised antagonism against conservatives to new levels.
“I’m not attacking you!” said talk host Jimmy Kimmel, to his guest Tim Allen. Allen had just said he attended the Presidential inauguration, and Kimmel launched into his apology unprovoked. This may be due to his just coming off hosting the Oscars, where he tore into President Trump throughout the ceremony.
Allen works in a rather rarified strata, an avowed conservative who gets work. That is a comfort afforded very few in Dream Land, reserved for mainly top level executives and producers, and a small number of established A-List performers. Others meanwhile are finding it increasingly necessary to be tight-lipped about their political predilections.
In the four months since the election of Donald Trump the entertainment community has been throwing a perpetual tantrum. From calls for protests to grandstanding interviews, the celebrity set has been in a sophomoric whine-spiral. And it only seems to be intensifying.
The just-concluded awards season was littered with speeches and lectures about Trump and his policies. Angry cant has been hurled from podiums during a time they should be in the thrall of glory. Continuously the misguided and misinformed tried to tell us what was proper, ranting to the extent you could easily forget the movies and performances they were trying to celebrate.
The stark reality is these pampered and privileged millionaires, with the world deposited at their pedicured feet, have allowed one man to completely derail their happiness. But as shameful and embarrassing as these public displays have become, there is a growing cloud of hostility in the wider entertainment business. The day-to-day reality is for many working in the industry holding views that trend to the right of center is becoming a threat to their profession.
The LA Times recently spoke with a number of prominent conservatives in the entertainment business – some on the record, some off — who detailed what life is like in Hollywood in the new Trump era. Many echoed Tim Allen’s viewpoint, that direct antagonism is the new order of the day.
Gerald Molen, a producer on two Jurassic Park films, notes how in the past those with opposing views in the industry could still have lunch and conduct business with each other. Not any longer, he states. “The acrimony — it’s there. It’s front and center.”
This may not be strictly a case of Trump vitriol (while that is primary) but also a part of the larger issue of “their side” losing with the defeat of Hillary Clinton. There is a members-only conservative organization for entertainment workers called The Friends Of Abe, where they can convene without fear of professional reprisal. Another conservative filmmaker who is a member describes the wider cause of the hatred.
- If Hollywood continues to overreact to Trump and toxify people’s professional lives, FOA will grow. We got started under [George W.] Bush, not under Obama. Hollywood was a more pleasant place for conservatives during Obama’s tenure because Hollywood was in a good mood.
That is by appearances the proper summation. This goes further than the celebrity leftist set feeling as if they are no longer “in control”, in regards to the White House occupant. They also had to face a reality that their voices were not heeded in electing Hillary. This has turned many into becoming more strident.
And rather than turning to introspection and realizing their polarizing politics turned voters to the Trump tent, they are turning up the volume on the rhetoric. In the process, while bleating that tolerance is their driving force, they are actively trying to silence, or even drive conservatives out of Hollywood.