Scoot: F*** Trump: how does it hurt America

June 11, 2018 - 10:21 am

“F*** Trump” were the words actor Robert De Niro used as he prepared to introduce Bruce Springsteen at last night’s Tony Awards.

De Niro, a long-time vocal critic of President Trump, came to the podium at the Tony Awards and said, “I’m gonna say one thing.  F*** Trump.  It’s no longer down with Trump.  It’s F*** Trump.” 

The actor’s words received a standing ovation from the audience in attendance for the awards show at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.  CBS bleeped out “F*** Trump” preventing the TV viewing audience from hearing the words, but it seems we always know what is being said in those situations. 

Without actually hearing “F*** Trump,” the nationwide viewing audience knew what a popular actor said about the President of the United States.  Many were virtually standing with the audience in attendance, but others were appalled that anyone would use such vulgarity in talking about President Trump.

Regardless of who the president is, thinking that about a president is certainly not uncommon; but when it is blurted out in front of an audience in attendance and a national viewing audience it does deserve attention. 

It is interesting that the lack of civility that was generally reserved for conversations in bars or at family gatherings has become part of expressing political views on a national stage during an event dedicated to entertainment.  If you support President Trump, then what De Niro said was appalling.  If you do not support President Trump, the comment about Trump is welcomed.

Though CBS did bleep out the vulgar comment, there is little doubt the viewing audience knew exactly what De Niro said; and that means the actual words were not necessary to successfully communicate the sentiment.  The point is that America knows what Robert De Niro said about President Trump. 

What does this lack of civility reveal about America?  Is a verbal lack of civility a precursor to a physical lack of civility?  We should all hope that the expressions of deep frustration over politics in America remain verbal and even find a way to subside, but the growing animosity being expressed by all sides of the political spectrum is worth noting.

Maybe this is a good time to remember that“F*** Trump” are just words, and the same feelings about the President could be descriptively expressed with the same meaning but without the use of vulgarity.

We have become a nation that is overly sensitive and too easily offended.  Robert De Niro should have more respect for the office of the presidency than to blurt out “F*** Trump” at the Tony Awards, but this is a tendency not unique to Trump.  It doesn’t seem like it to those who defend President Trump at every opportunity, but this lack of civility has been evolving in this country and started to ramp up with President George W. Bush before escalating during President Obama’s two terms in office.  But let’s be honest, the use of vulgarity in passionate conversations about a sitting president is nothing new.

Also consider that in the same way the President Trump has used language that previous presidents would not dare used to address his base, Robert De Niro was pandering to an anti-Trump audience at the Tony Awards.

I know; people will say, “But they never said that about President Obama.”  It will also be said that, “The liberal media and liberal Hollywood are to blame for allowing this incivility to grow.”  Blaming the lack of civility from liberals ignores the lack of civility that also lives within the conservative movement.

In the end, what Robert De Niro said is not going to change anyone’s mind about President Trump.  You either like him or you don’t, and what De Niro said was either a cheer or the ultimate putdown depending on your political views.

One of the hosts of “Fox & Friends” commented that what De Niro said is just another reason why you should not watch “Meet The Parents,” a movie De Niro starred in.  Another reason?  There are no other reasons - it’s a funny movie!  But the Fox host did plant the idea of boycotting ALL Robert De Niro movies. 

Are you going to stop watching any movie in which De Niro appears?  That would include: “The Godfather,” “Taxi Driver,” “Raging Bull,” “Meet The Parents,” “Little Fockers,” “Analyze This,” “The Deer Hunter” and “Silver Linings Playbook.”  Do you change your attitude about movies, or any entertainment, because of the political views of an actor?

Robert De Niro should not have said “F*** Trump” at the Tony Awards, even if that’s what he thinks of Trump.  But his words are not going to hurt us or change anything other than the obvious lack of civility that is now part of the “American way.”

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