A Cautious Man
July 09, 2004
 
The Stars All Appear on the Screen ...
… or not, if some people have their way. There are people who choose not to see a movie or performance, if they disagree with the political views of one of the performers. Others take it to the next level, and organize boycotts of celebrities they disagree with. This goes far beyond boycotting a particular work, because of disagreement with its content; I'm talking about boycotting anything and everything featuring the offending celebrity, as a way to "punish" that person for their political views. I think it's, well, silly, and I've found an example that makes it look especially silly.

The only large-scale efforts in this regard that I've seen are "anti-liberal", such as "Boycott Liberalism", "Boycott Hollywood" and "Patriotic Americans Boycotting Anti-American Hollywood" or PABAAH. It's interesting to read the lists - there are a lot of performers who have run afoul of these people. It's just as interesting to see what movies and shows are to be "shunned". The involvement of just a single "offending celebrity" is enough to taint a whole movie or show. Not only that, but for a lot of these celebrities a single remark or action (such as signing an anti-war petition) is enough to taint that person and anything he or she has ever appeared in. As a result, for example, this weekend you can't go see either the new Will Farrell movie (because Christina Applegate lent her name to "Artists for the U.N.) or Will Smith in I, Robot (co-star James Cromwell signed something entitled "Artists United to Win Without War").

Which brings me now to a new movie, the documentary America's Heart and Soul. As described by WorldNetDaily , "With its patriotic undertones and emphasis on the goodness of Americans, the film is a marked contrast to Michael Moore's Bush-bashing documentary 'Fahrenheit 9/11'". Steve Beard in National Review stated, "While it was never intended to be a response to Moore's snarly conspiratorial docudrama, America's Heart and Soul may prove to be the anti-Fahrenheit 9/11." And, the anti-Michael Moore site MoveAmericaForward held a special viewing of the film, and heartily endorses it.

It therefore pains me to inform people that, alas, due to the participation of one of the aforementioned offending celebrities, there should be calls to boycott the film America's Heart and Soul. Just look at the official website for the film, and the prominent place given to announcing that the movie features "a special song by John Mellencamp." That's not the only "special song" he's written lately, as noted in a news item featured by "Boycott Liberalism", about last evening's Kerry/Edwards fundraiser:
Other celebs also competed to bash Bush. Singer John Mellencamp sang a specially written song that called the president "just another cheap thug" and ridiculed him as the "Texas bambino."
Celebrities have run afoul of the boycotters for a lot less than that. Now, then, if you're a true-blue supporter of the Administration, how do you express your patriotism? Go see the "antidote to Fahrenheit 9/11", or show Mellencamp and the rest of them that you'll refuse to support people who attack your President? I don't suppose you could decide that boycotting everything featuring an offending celebrity is, perhaps, going too far?

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