Evidence is mounting that it might be safe at last for Hollywood’s patriots to step out of the closet and show some support for President Bush and an impending war with Iraq.
“Law & Order” actor Fred Thompson has cut a television commercial where he extols, “Thank goodness we have a president with the courage to protect our country.”
Thompson’s ad is in response to an ad from Martin Sheen, the pretend president on NBC’s “The West Wing,” who scolded in his commercial, “Don’t invade Iraq. Inspections work. War won’t.”
Thompson’s ad is an effort from the grassroots organization Citizens United, which implores at its Web site, citizensunited.org, “Fight the Hollywood Left/support President Bush on Iraq.”
Beyond being an accomplished actor, Thompson, of course, was a real-life Republican U.S. senator. His right-leaning political positions, therefore, are familiar in Hollywood.
But even before Thompson’s TV commercial, some of the more brave in Hollywood had been challenging the Bush-bashing, ultra-noisy Hollywood leftists that seem to dominate the entertainment industry.
Dennis Miller, the comedian who used to be a liberal, was at his best recently on “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno,” where he praised the president while verbally assaulting Hollywood peaceniks.
“If you’re in a peace march and the guy next to you has a sign that says ‘Bush is Hitler,’ forget the peace thing for a second and beat his ass,” Miller said to thunderous applause.
And his disdain for France and Germany, two countries that appear decidedly anti-American of late, was even more lethal. “You are dead to me,” he said of the French, just after calling them “pricks.” And, no, NBC didn’t bleep that part out.
“I would call the French scumbags, but that, of course, would be a disservice to bags filled with scum,” he said. “I say we invade Iraq, then invade Chirac.”
Germans have the “skankiest” record on the planet, he charged. They might oppose a war with Iraq simply because it’s not on a grand enough scale.
Then there’s musician Kid Rock who while backstage at the Grammy Awards, where it’s a near sin to be anything but anti-Bush and antiwar, actually stuck up for the president.
Bush doesn’t pick on musicians, why should they pick on him, he said in slightly more colorful language. ”Politicians and music don’t mix. It’s like whiskey and wine. We ought to stay out of it.”
Then, according to reports, he told us what he thinks of both Saddam Hussein and Kim Jong Il: “We got to kill that mother-f**ker Saddam. Slit his throat. Kill him and the guy in North Korea.”
There’s also Darryl Worley, whose song “Have You Forgotten?” is working its way up the country chart. The patriotic anthem begins: “I hear people saying we don’t need this war. I say there’s some things worth fighting for. What about our freedom and this piece of ground? We didn’t get to keep ‘em by backing down.”
When it comes to musicians defending the Bush administration, of course, Worley and Kid Rock come late to the party. Charlie Daniels, Ted Nugent and some others have been there for a while.
“With our men and women in the military in harms way defending freedom, we should be thankful that many of our young people have answered the call of patriotism and love of country to serve in our armed forces and defend our way of life,” Nugent wrote at his Web site, tednugent.com.
For those who don’t spend their days devouring media in search of Hollywood activism, a new Web site, celiberal.com, has sprung up to make the task easier. There’s a list of Hollywood’s liberals, and a shorter list of Hollywood’s out-of-the-closet conservatives.
The site has links to relevant news stories and appropriate audio, such as the semi-famous debate between actors David Clennon (from TV’s “The Agency”) and James Woods on Sean Hannity’s radio program.
Example of Clennon’s bumper-sticker logic: “This is a war about the control of oil,” and, “What do you have against Muslims and Arabs?”
Needless to say, Woods came out on top.
But before one assumes Hollywood’s antiwar left is giving up, they should note the recent launching of yet another group of Bush-bashing celebrities, this one called Musicians United to Win Without War.
The group is loaded with well-known geopolitical strategists like Fat Joe, Zap Mama, Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes, Fugazi and Mobb Deep.
Not to worry. Put the whole lot of them in a room with Ted Nugent and let em debate. My money would go on Ted.