Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston





Monday, January 9, 2017

Meryl Streep -- Smarter and More Decent Than Trump Will Ever Be

“I love you all. You’ll have to forgive me, I’ve lost my voice in screaming in lamentation this weekend and I have lost my mind sometimes earlier this year so I have to read. Thank you, Hollywood Foreign Press, just to pick up on what Hugh Laurie said, you and all of us in this room, really, belong to the most vilified segments in American society right now. Think about it: Hollywood, foreigners and the press. But who are we, and what is Hollywood anyway? It’s just a bunch of people from other places. I was born and raised and educated in the public schools in New Jersey; Viola [Davis] was born in sharecroppers cabin in South Carolina and came up in Central Falls, Rhode Island; Sarah Paulson was born in Florida, raised by a single mom in Brooklyn; Sarah Jessica Parker was one of seven or eight kids from Ohio; Amy Adams was born in Vicenza, Veneto, Italy; and Natalie Portman was born in Jerusalem. Where are their birth certificates? And the beautiful Ruth Negga was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, raised in Ireland and she’s here nominated for playing a small town girl from Virginia. Ryan Gosling, like all the nicest people, is Canadian. And Dev Patel was born in Kenya, raised in London, and is here playing an Indian raised in Tasmania. So Hollywood is crawling with outsiders and foreigners, and if we kick them all out, you’ll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts.

An actor’s only job is to enter the lives of people who are different from us and let you feel what that feels like, and there were many, many, many powerful performances that did exactly that — breathtaking, compassionate work. But there was one performance this year that stunned me, it sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good, there was nothing good about it. But it was effective and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh, and show their teeth. It was the moment where the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter. Someone he outranked in privilege, power and the capacity to fight back. It kind of broke my heart when I saw it and I still can’t get it out of head because it wasn’t in a movie, it was real life. And this instinct to humiliate when it’s modeled by someone in a public platform, by someone powerful, it filters down into everybody’s life because it gives permission for other people to do the same thing. Disrespect invites disrespect, violence incites violence, and when the powerful use their position to bully others, we all lose.

Okay this brings me to the press. We need the principled press to hold power to account, to call him them on the carpet for every outrage. That’s why our founders enshrined the press and its freedoms in our constitution. So I only ask the famously well-heeled Hollywood Foreign Press and all of us in our community to join me in supporting the Committee to Protect Journalists because we’re gonna need them going forward and they’ll need us to safeguard the truth.

One more thing — once, when I was standing around on the set one day whining about something, we were going to work through supper or the long hours or whatever, Tommy Lee Jones said to me, isn’t it such a privilege Meryl, just to be an actor? Yeah it is, and we have to remind each other of the privilege and the responsibility of the actor’s empathy. We should all be very proud of the work Hollywood honors here tonight. As my friend, the dearly departed Princess Leia said to me, take your broken heart, make it into art. Thank you friend.”

Following Streep’s speech, many Hollywood stars praised her words .
 "It was a huge middle finger directed to a politician who can’t even dream of Queen Meryl’s grace." --Matthew Jacobs, HuffPost


Infidel753 said...

"We need the principled press to hold power to account, to call him them on the carpet for every outrage."

If the mainstream press during the campaign had been one-tenth as forthright and blunt and truthful as Streep is here, and as the arts community in general has been -- that is, if they had done their goddamn job instead of indulging in both-siderism and wanking over e-mail "scandals" which they knew perfectly well were bullshit -- then we wouldn't be in this mess right now.

The media failed us. I hope the Meryl Streeps of the world keep on telling it like it is. We're going to need them.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Trump responded to Meryl Streep's powerful speech by throwing a Twitter tantrum. A mature, well-grounded man would have ignored the whole thing, but Trump is a little man-child who is obsessed with what other people think and say about him.

World leaders will know how to get under this Troglyditic lout's skin.

Anonymous said...

What a damaged man he is. He doesn't have a clue how to be presidential or a decent human being.

Ray Cranston said...

I'm cool with people who have a platform using it to resist normalizing Trump, but people shouldn't get carried away with how effective any single act can be. That said, chipping away constantly at someone's reputation works and eventually works big - see Clinton, Hillary.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Anon@8:13 and Ray,

Trump sent out his usual, childish revenge tweets, and continued to make a fool of himself in front of the world.

‘Stop embarrassing yourself’: The internet heaps scorn on Trump for slapping back at Meryl Streep

Evan Miller said...

And the day begins for the President-elect. Holy jumpin' fn shitballs. Will we be waking up to this con man's 3rd grade tantrums every day? Grow up, asshole - you've got some other things to do now.

TOM said...

Meryl Streep is a Hillary flunky who lost big time

Rational Nation USA said...

Alternative reality right wing weblogs are having their usual tantrums and meltdowns. They can't handle truth anymore than their man-CHILD narcissistic make believe leader can.

The world is laughing at us. For good reason.

Dave Miller said...

Even Z at The Mother Ship said he was mocking the guy... of course as of now, no one is agreeing with her. Maybe because to do so would open the flood gates of truth regarding the guy...

Dave Miller said...

Here's a rich response to being questioned on the incident...from Kelly Anne Conway when CNN's Chris Cuomo interviewed her this AM...

CNN “New Day” host Chris Cuomo called out Trump for mocking a disabled New York Times reporter during a 2015 rally. But Conway insisted that’s not what he was doing.

“That is not what he did and he has said that 1,000 times,” she said Monday morning. “Why can’t you give him the benefit of the doubt?”

Cuomo shot back, “He can say it a million times but look at the video... he’s making a disgusting gesture on video.”

“Why is everything taken at face value?” she asked. “You can’t give him the benefit of the doubt on this and he’s telling you what was in his heart, you always want to go with what’s come out of his mouth rather than look at what’s in his heart.”

By all means, let's not take a President at his word.

Somehow world leaders are supposed to know what's "in his heart?"

Just one word... dangerous.

Jerry Critter said...

A fine speech that should be repeated every day.

Anonymous said...

"TOM said...
Meryl Streep is a Hillary flunky who lost big time"

Poor confused "TOM." He actually thinks Meryl Streep "lost big time."

Figures. Trump lackey.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Dave, I truly believe that deep inside themselves, Trump supporters are ashamed of the man they and Putin helped put in the White House. It is difficult to think that 62 million Americans would actually be proud of an unhinged and unfit Trump as their president. They're just too embarrassed to admit to themselves that Trump is that much of a disaster.

AS for the Mother Ship, Trump is everything they detest in a human being, except he's branded himself as a shiny new Republican. All I can add to that is this: I'm glad he was welcomed into the GOP because if he were a Democrat, I'd certainly be mortified. He's the representative of the current Republican "movement."

Kevin Robbins said...

Does anyone know how Meryl Streep's approval compares with Trump's?

Dave Miller said...

Shaw... absent a strong denunciation, Donald Trump is 100% the Republican movement, brand, example and embodiment of their of their hopes, dreams, thoughts and viewpoints of what it means to be an American patriot.

The problem is that while he is soon to be our President, a majority of Americans disagree with his, and their views and politics...

Shaw Kenawe said...

ESQUIRE: "One of the more useful traits in a president is the capacity to take criticism with grace and class. So, as Meryl Streep went in on the president-elect during her lifetime achievement award acceptance speech at the Golden Globes last night, it was unsettling (to say the least) to know that Donald Trump was about to stage yet another public meltdown:

The tweets once again displayed that crippling need for approval—particularly from celebrities—that has made Trump's life in the public eye so obviously stressful for him. He also still does not seem to understand that as the President of the United States, people will not need to know him personally to have grounds to criticize him. He was elected to represent Streep in government and on the world stage; it is her right as a citizen to critique his aptitude.

And then there's the claim, once again, that he did not mock a reporter's disability. This has been debunked over and over again, but here's video of the incident in question.
You decide if this constitutes mocking a disability:

skudrunner said...

Can't blame her for being upset. She gave a small fortune to -H- and attended fund raisers in her behalf then she got whopped.
She needs to do what she does best and stick to acting. Maybe the republicans need to ask for equal time from the network because this was not actors rewarding themselves for making millions but a sounding board for a bunch of people who are entertainers.
If they want to make an impact give some of the millions they make to a homeless shelter.

Jerry Critter said...

skud, Are you suggesting that she should be censored for speaking the truth? She is not only an excellent actor, but is a pretty good speaker too.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Skud: "Can't blame her for being upset. She gave a small fortune to -H- and attended fund raisers in her behalf then she got whopped."

Shaw: Hillary won BIGLY in California. Y'know the state where Hollywood is located. Hillary beat Trump by 3 million votes. So no, Hillary did NOT get "whopped." Trump did.

Skud: "She needs to do what she does best and stick to acting."

Shaw: Skud, I don't remember reading this suggestion when a teevee reality show actor decided to get into politics. Can you at least be consistent, if not accurate?

Skud: "Maybe the republicans need to ask for equal time from the network because this was not actors rewarding themselves for making millions but a sounding board for a bunch of people who are entertainers."

Shaw: Speaking of entertainers rewarding themselves for making millions, did you notice that Donald Trump had to pay $25 million dollars to settle a lawsuit against him for rewarding himself by cheating Americans with his fake Trump U.?

Skud: "If they want to make an impact give some of the millions they make to a homeless shelter."

Shaw: Skud, you'd have some creds if you suggested the same thing about Trump and his billionaire cabinet pals to your friends over at the right wing blogs. At least Meryl Streep does something good for the money she earns: she creates art, whereas Trump's billionaire pals create misery for the people they step on, cheat and steal from.

Except for the Trumpistas, Meryl Streep's speech has been seen around the world and greeted with wild approval.

Rational Nation USA said...

Ya just got yourself slapped down hard skud. Again.

Better go back to the drawing table.

skudrunner said...

You do realize there are fifty states and California happens to be one of them. -H- thought only the coasties mattered but she was proven incorrect. I wouldn't refer to acting as art but I am sure you would. For the most part actors are over paid prima donnas who are treated as royalty by a portion of our society. They tried to anoint queen -H- but failed.

The people you malign are people who are very successful and have created a massive amount of wealth. Who better to run the largest non-profit business in the word than people who have run successful businesses.

It seems like your solution is to have people who have a lot of theory and no experience in doing. Remember that those that can do, those than can't teach. Do you hire a professional to manage your fortune or hire someone who read a book, my bet would be a professional.

Hopefully DJT will give up the tweet and let his press spokesman deliver the message. I don't have much hope but can still dream