Streep’s Shrieks

Why on Earth should anyone care what some liberal actress said in a speech at an awards show?  Hollywood actors have been saying stupid things during awards show speeches for decades, and Meryl Streep’s screed was no different.

She began the speech with this:

I’ve lost my voice in screaming and lamentation this weekend, and I have lost my mind sometime earlier this year…

Now, this hasn’t been included in most of the sound bytes or blog posts that I’ve seen, but from my perspective, she’s basically saying “Completely ignore what I’m about to say, because I’m totally off my rocker.”

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And the main thing is, Streep’s tirade was completely refuted by her own tirade.  She went on at some length about the diverse backgrounds of Hollywood actors and actresses, then saying this:

So Hollywood is crawling with outsiders and foreigners and if we kick ‘em all out, you’ll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts.

Because, you know, there’s no diversity in football or MMA; everyone knows that those low-brow forms of entertainment are only performed and consumed by white male cisgender transphobic homophobic Islamophobe rednecks – Trump’s people, by the definition of liberals from Hollywood and New York.

“What is Hollywood, anyway?” Streep read from her speech, “It’s just a bunch of people from other places.”

You know, just like pretty much every other demographic group: a bunch of distinctly different people with different beliefs and different backgrounds get lumped together and generalized as a larger whole.  It’s done all of the time throughout the media, from Hollywood to Millennials to African-American voters to women to white male cisgender transphobic homophobic Islamophobe rednecks.

But when it comes to groups like the Hollywood filmmaking industrial complex, or the mainstream news media, or even university staff, there tend to be certain demands of ideological purity required for membership.  When FOX News first launched in 1996, it was a huge deal, because never before in the history of television news had there been a TV news network with a conservative bent.  Conservatives in Hollywood can quickly find themselves unemployed if they voice their political opinions – just recently, there were reports that Nicolas Cage was reluctant to play the part of Ronald Reagan in a film, because the film would portray Reagan in a positive light.  There may not be any official blacklists in Hollywood these days, but playing certain roles or expressing certain opinions definitely gets factored into hiring decisions in Hollywood.  The movie industry, the news media, and college campuses are known as progressive enclaves because that is what they have become.

Hollywood actors may “belong to the most vilified segments in American society right now,” but that reputation has been earned…and not by skin color or nation of origin, as Meryl Streep assumes, but by the constant churning out of culturally degradating “art,” and through the unofficial blacklisting of conservative actors, producers, writers, and directors, and through exactly the kind of condescending political diatribe that Streep chose to give.

 

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