January 28, 2013
By James Tarr
As part of the recent push for gun control, the improperly-named Mayors Against Illegal Guns — they're actually against all guns — launched the campaign "Demand a Plan." A key part of it is a video featuring A-list celebrities calling on Americans to demand a gun control plan from their elected officials. Problem is, almost all of these celebrities have made a lot of money waving guns around on-screen. The staggering hypocrisy of the video was too much for at least one person, who put together a video response to "Demand a Plan" that has since gone viral. Bluntly titled, "Demand A Plan — Demand Celebrities Go F*** Themselves," it deftly intersperses the celebrities' call for gun control with clips from their movies where they're shooting guns.
For some reason, American society seems to idolize celebrities and actors much the same way Britons do royalty, even though they don't actually do anything. Think about it: Their job is to play dress-up and make-believe, all while being paid huge sums of money, surrounded by people who constantly tell them they're great. Is it any wonder they've lost touch with reality? Why anyone pays attention to what actors say offscreen is a mystery to me, but people do. While the list of celebrities who think with their heart — and in doing so, are strangers to logic — is very long, so here is a short list of "artists" who are publicly anti-gun, yet have no problem using guns to make money.
Every movie George Clooney makes is very well done, and I can separate my feelings about the man from my admiration for his skill (I particularly enjoyed The Descendants). However, his returns at the box office haven't been so good lately, and that might be because he's made no secret of his far-left political leanings. Having made a career playing a hit man (The American
, pictured), spec-ops soldiers (The Peacemaker
, Three Kings
) and a CIA operative (Syriana
), anyone unfamiliar with Hollywood actors might be surprised Clooney is anti-gun. Not only is he an anti-gun liberal, he once made a tasteless joke about Charlton Heston's Alzheimer's
. Maybe that's why The American
barely broke even. It's hard to swallow the star of The Ides of March
(2011) and The Men Who Stare at Goats
(2009) — both left-leaning political movies — as a gun-toting action hero.
I was actually disappointed to see Jeremy Renner in "Demand a Plan" because I really enjoy his work. He's been burning up the screen lately, appearing in The Avengers
, The Bourne Legacy
, Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol
, and yet still is apparently anti-gun. The viral video response to "Demand a Plan" makes sure to use lots of clips of Renner from The Town
(2010), where he plays a bank-robbing sociopath fond of full-auto weapons. Apparently he thinks "hypocrite" is a small town in Greece.
Pictured: Renner in a publicity still for S.W.A.T. (2003).
It may surprise you that the star of literally a dozen Westerns has spoken out in favor of gun control, but that's exactly what Kevin Costner did after the mass shooting at Virginia Tech in 2007. The admitted shotgun owner and hunter stated, "I think there should be a lot of gun laws." He also commented that he thought the NRA was out of line. Maybe Costner's reason hasn't completely deserted him, and if the right person can explain to him that there are already 20,000 gun laws on the books, and that the Second Amendment isn't about hunting, he might see the light. We can always hope.
While he has gravitated toward action movies later in his career, it's not a bad idea to remind people that Mark Wahlberg started out with Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch — not exactly a poster child for the Heritage Foundation. If it wasn't for roles which required him to shoot guns (The Departed, Three Kings, Four Brothers, Max Payne, and Shooter), Wahlberg would barely have a career. Yet, he has spoken out against guns, Charlton Heston and the NRA. In Hollywood, it seems that common sense need not apply.
The star of the first three Bourne action movies (pictured, 2007's The Bourne Ultimatum), Damon has spent a lot of time onscreen with guns in his hand, even though he is a hard-core leftist and has spoken out for gun control. A direct quote from him: "I actually hate guns." A lot of actors and directors — when they start to get overtly left-wing political in their choices — suddenly find their box office success evaporating; I give you Rob Reiner, Sean Penn, Tim Robbins and Kevin Spacey as prime examples, but Matt Damon may be the next. His anti-American military/government rant, Green Zone (2010), had a huge budget and was supposed to be a giant hit, but instead lost money at the box office. His newest movie, Promised Land, is a rant against frakking and 'Big Oil ', and it looks to be a huge flop as well, taking in only $7.5 million dollars in its first four weeks of release.
I am not sure I can find a better example of celebrity gun hypocrisy than a comment made by director Spike Lee. Not long after directing Summer of Sam
in 1999, a film about the 'Son of Sam ' murders in New York, Spike Lee stated that NRA President Charlton Heston should be shot with a .44 Bulldog
(the weapon used by Son of Sam). Lee stated later he was joking, and Heston himself brushed it off, saying, "I know at the time Ice-T threatened to kill me. Maybe he handed the contract to Spike Lee." Apparently there is a double standard when it comes to threatening and inflammatory statements, because if a conservative threatened to kill Michael Bloomberg for the patently fascist things he's said and done in New York City, every news media outlet in the country would cover it for weeks.
With Uma Thurman coming out in favor of gun control, we have gone from the ridiculous to the sublime. Does she not remember filming the Kill Bill films (pictured)? Admittedly, almost all of the dozens of people she killed in the movie were victims of her samurai sword, but if there was ever a movie which glorified and glamorized violence, it's Kill Bill — or at least it was until Django Unchained came out — yet no celebrities are petitioning to ban Quentin Tarantino. Or samurai swords.
His name may only be vaguely familiar to you, but that is because he is a director, not an actor. Donner has made his living directing action movies, including all four Lethal Weapon films, Conspiracy Theory (1997), and most recently, 16 Blocks (2006) with Bruce Willis, a gun-heavy cop movie, but don't let that fool you. His photo on IMDB shows him wearing an anti-fur button (pictured), and if there's a liberal cause, he's all over it. His profile on IMDB also states that he "often places PSA posters/stickers for animal rights, human rights and gun control" in his movies, and that is why he made this list — I specifically remember a car chase/gun fight scene from either Lethal Weapon 3 or 4, or Assassins (all of which were mediocre at best), where the backdrop for the gunfight was an anti-gun poster on the side of a city bus. If that is not the definition of hypocrisy, I don't know what is. Donner started out directing TV shows, including episodes of The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Wild Wild West, Have Gun - Will Travel, The Rifleman, Wanted: Dead or Alive... Seeing a pattern?
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