Only one of two things happens when celebrities pick up political causes…
- The celebrity gets a lot of support, publicly and financially, and builds a following that could actually effect change; but, then doesn’t.
- Or, they totally blow it from the get go.
At this moment in time, scores of people are gathering outside in the freezing cold of New York City winter to repeatedly chant, “He Will Not Divide Us,” as a part of a four-year-long visual performance art piece created by Shia Labeouf and several other “artistic types.” With the intention to stage a protest for President Donald Trump’s four-year term, Labeouf initiated the “He Will Not Divide Us” campaign as a sign of unity against someone who many liberal and leftist Americans collectively disagree with. With his unique idea, the exhibit is open 24 hours/7 days a week so people can profess their hatred for the new president to a video camera that lives streams directly to HeWillNotDivide.Us on the internet. The only question left to ask is: “What could possibly go wrong?”
As I pointed out in the beginning, Hollywood’s political activism typically is just a series of initiatives and campaigns that come to nothing in the end or are totally botched. Well, Labeouf botched it when he was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault after an altercation with someone who the far left media and blog roll have called a “neo-Nazi.”
If you watch the video, the altercation (is)…
- Was a totally lame fight (No blood).
- A representation of how out of touch celebrities are with normal political discourse.
- A clear indication of why the “He Will Not Divide Us” movement is dividing us.
Simply put, though, we are faced with the predictable outcome of what happens to political extremes in the United States. Spin, citing the New York Daily News, reported that the man who faced the wrath of Labeouf’s uber-activism was caught on the live stream saying that, “Hitler did nothing wrong,” and identifying himself as Jewish himself. Later, which prompted the criminal action, 25-year-old Bronx man walked in between LaBeouf and his camera, prompting the altercation. However, even if the man was a non-condonable neo-Nazi or not, one thing that is for sure is that Labeouf crossed the line in assaulting someone, who was just possibly trolling, for disagreeing with him.
As a millennial, I grew up with this mentality of having a safe space constantly around you. I am also going to clarify that I voted for Trump with reluctance and optimism but, at the moment, much of that optimism is strained. I digress, nevertheless. My point is that the He Will Not Divide Us movement creates a narrative that it is okay to attack and berate, physically and verbally, millions of Americans who willingly or reluctantly voted for the current President. Just because someone doesn’t support your views, what prompts the move for a physical altercation?
People that do this, throughout history, have been crazed individuals that want to see the end of civil discourse as the collective views it and wants to create an environment of fear for believing one way. Hitler did this. Stalin did this. Castro did this. Mao Zedong did this.
I am not defending the views of a self-avowed “neo-Nazi.” Such views are flawed, tyrannical, and genocidal. However, I am defending the right to free speech for all, including the left and the right wingers, to engage in non-violent, civil discourse. The neo-Nazi has every right to speak his or her mind just as an anarchist or socialist activist does theirs.
We live in a free society with a marketplace of different ideas. Regardless, if violence continues, even with a Republican president, free speech is lost. Please support the reaffirmation of that sentiment.
Conservatives and liberals do not need safe spaces, but there should be no safe space for violence. I agree with the charges levied upon Shia Labeouf for this reason, while, simultaneously standing by the exhibit’s right to be in existence.
It’s called respecting the constitutional rights of all, try it sometime.