The Celebrities Behind the Anti-Gun March

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Lending support to the recent anti-Second Amendment march, which was misleadingly called the “March for Our Lives,” was a sizable roster of Hollywood elites.

The participating celebrities, who are routinely shielded 24/7 by their own armed security guards, were among those who were financing and supporting the nationwide protests.

The goal in mind was a singular one—to get other people to give up their God-given and constitutionally protected right to defend themselves and their families with firearms.

The Washington, D.C. protest, along with its so-called “sibling” events, was organized and funded with a considerable amount of help from Hollywood liberals and leftist organizations. Thousands of high school students were bussed to various locales via groups and individuals with links to the Democratic Party.

Despite its official noble sounding name, numerous media outlets, including BuzzfeedNews, reported that organizers were really pushing for full-on gun control legislation. It has also become increasingly clear that the march was specifically designed to gin up the voter registration rolls for the upcoming mid-term elections.

Democratic groups in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia boosted the number of attendees by providing free transportation for participants to Washington, D.C. According to Bethesda Magazine, a Maryland Democratic House member hosted a pre-march rally and bussed supporters to the march. And the Washington Post reported that the Democrat mayor of Baltimore arranged for thousands of students to be driven to the march by bus. Democratic groups in New York, Virginia, and Pennsylvania also reportedly provided buses to participants.

As a further incentive for the younger demographic, organizers put together a free concert with an all-star billing, which included Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande, Common, Demi Lovato, Jennifer Hudson, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Vic Mensa, and Ben Platt.

During the concert, performers proceeded to supplement their music with politically loaded protest visuals.

– Cyrus performed “The Climb” while holding a sign that read “Never Again.”

– Lovato concluded her performance with a raised fist and the words “MSD strong!”

– After Grande sang “Be Alright” she was joined on stage by some attendees who engaged in a group hug and selfie snaps.

– Hudson closed out the show in 1960s protest fashion with a version of Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin’.”

A number of entertainment figures provided money to the organizers of the event, including Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, and George Clooney. Taylor Swift, who has made it a point to remain apolitical, indicated that she, too, had donated to the march.

Clooney and Spielberg took to the streets to join the protesters. Other celebrities who made their presence at the march known included Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, Jimmy Fallon, Dennis Rodman, and Julianne Moore.

Paul McCartney joined in a march in New York and Amy Schumer spoke at a rally in Los Angeles.

Celebrities who used social media to digitally participate included Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Justin Bieber, Alyssa Milano, Michael Moore, and Debra Messing.

It is apparent that organizers of the march harbor ambition that extends far beyond the initial event. Plans are in the making to lobby lawmakers to achieve desired ends. The finance vehicle for the protest, “The March for Our Lives Action Fund,” is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization, which, according to records, was registered on March 8, 2018.

The majority of non-profit groups are registered as 501(c)(3) charitable organizations; this allows donors to receive a charitable tax deduction for their gifts.

However, 501(c)(4) organizations are formed in order to conduct lobbying and legislative advocacy. The choice of this nonprofit vehicle means that donors actually lose tax deductibility for their donations.

On the group’s website, “The March for Our Lives Action Fund” has telegraphed its intent to pursue lobbying, indicating that funds will be used “to fight for comprehensive gun safety legislation at the local, state, and federal level.”

The website also offers a “March for Our Lives voter registration toolkit,” which appears to be a blatant effort to boost Democratic candidates at the polls.

Sexual Harassment Allegations Surface against the President of the Motion Picture Academy

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The last thing Hollywood needs is another high-profile scandal. Unfortunately, this is exactly what recently landed at the doorstep of a once respected institution.

The president of the Motion Picture Academy, who was at the organization’s helm in the midst of the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct disclosures, is himself now the subject of an investigation involving multiple accusations of sexual harassment.

According to Variety, John Bailey, the president of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, is under investigation for sexual harassment allegations. The probe was launched after the Academy received three separate claims of impropriety.

For months the entertainment industry has been in deep distress as a result of the numerous allegations of sexual misconduct, which were revealed in reports in outlets such as the New York Times and the New Yorker.

As a means of responding, Hollywood set up a sexual harassment commission and embraced the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements.

The revelation involving the head of the Academy comes right on the heels of the immensely unentertaining 90th Academy Awards ceremony, which is now infamous for garnering the most disastrous ratings in the show’s history.

Bailey, a cinematographer and film director, is best known for collaborating with big-name film directors including Paul Schrader, Lawrence Kasdan, and Michael Apted. His list of film credits includes “The Big Chill,” “Ordinary People,” “American Gigolo,” “As Good As It Gets,” and “Groundhog Day.” In 2015 he was awarded the American Society of Cinematographers Lifetime Achievement Award.

The longtime Academy member was elected to the post of Academy president in August 2017 and had previously been president of the Cinematographers branch. During Bailey’s tenure, the Academy voted to revoke Weinstein’s membership just days after the first reports of sexual misconduct surfaced.

The choice of Bailey raised the eyebrows of some high-profile liberals in the entertainment industry, particularly because vociferous Academy members had been pushing for, among other things, a more inclusive Oscar organization.

Consequently, the then-newly elected 75-year-old Caucasian male president received a substantial degree of disapproval over his age as well as his skin color.

At the time Bailey told Variety, “What you just said is [expletive],” adding, “I was born a white man, and I can’t help it that I’m 75 years old. Is this some sort of limiting factor?”

Under Bailey’s leadership, the Academy established a new code of conduct, which provides for disciplining or expelling members over abuse, harassment, or discrimination and also sets up procedures by which such accusations can be adjudicated administratively.

Such claims are to be forwarded by the Membership Department to the Academy’s Membership and Administration Committee, a committee currently led by David Rubin.

If the allegations are deemed to be credible and serious, the matter is sent to the Board of Governors, which then determines whether to suspend or expel the member, in this case, Bailey.

One of the members of the Board of Governors happens to be Bailey’s wife, Carol Littleton, who presumably would have to recuse herself from the proceedings.

If Bailey were ultimately suspended or removed due to the investigation and adjudication, he would be replaced by Academy first vice president and makeup artist Lois Burwell.

A couple of weeks ago Bailey told the annual luncheon for Oscar nominees that the “fossilized bedrock” of Hollywood would be “jack-hammered into oblivion.”

The claims against the Academy president, the subsequent investigation, and adjudication are occurring at a most inopportune time, especially when one factors in the omnipresence of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements.

Any due process Bailey might receive is jeopardized by the profound embarrassment that plagues Hollywood elites over their roles in the ongoing scandal.

Hollywood’s Wrong on Choice of Anita Hill to Lead Sexual Harassment Commission

It has been a couple of months since allegations of sexual improprieties began to rain down on Hollywood, and the entertainment community has been struggling to come to grips with the continuing fallout.

Bombshell accusations that began with Harvey Weinstein have continued to flow and alleged perpetrators of wrongdoing now include Kevin Spacey, Dustin Hoffman, Brett Ratner, Matt Lauer, Louis C.K., Russell Simmons, Charlie Rose, Garrison Keillor, and Tavis Smiley.

Elites from the highest ranks in Hollywood have been under pressure to demonstrate major concern and provide reassurance to the public that something is going to be done to remedy the situation.

Amid all the trepidation and turmoil, the awards season quickly approaches. This is traditionally a high intensity time when the spotlight shines on the entertainment industry to the maximum degree, and the whole world tunes in to prestigious events that include the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards, Critics’ Choice Awards, Grammys, Golden Globes, and, of course, the apex of awards shows, the Oscars.

The mood in the greater Los Angeles community, though, has darkened as a result of the scandals, and the awards shows themselves cannot help but be affected.

Next year’s SAG Awards ceremony, which will dole out thirteen acting awards, will feature female host Kristen Bell and will additionally have all women presenters. The Golden Globes will address the sexual impropriety issues by having all of the actresses involved, including nominees Emma Stone, Jessica Chastain, and Meryl Streep, wear black outfits while on the red carpet as well as during the ceremony itself.

As for the form of seriousness and sorrow that the Oscars will display has yet to be made known. It is highly likely, however, that a similar approach will be taken during the Academy Awards telecast.

The general form-over-substance expressions are, in many instances, rather harmless. This is not the case with regard to a recent appointment to head a new presumably powerful Hollywood group.

If there were any doubts that the entertainment community remains decidedly out of touch with the majority of its customers, the choice of Anita Hill to chair Hollywood’s newly formed Commission on Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality in the Workplace is the latest manifestation of a kind of tone deafness on the part of Tinseltown, especially when it comes to the Hollywood brand.

Hollywood executives have decided to follow the lead of politicians in the nation’s capital, the ones who routinely convene a “blue ribbon commission” to give the perception that problems are being solved. A similar body has been created to deal with the growing list of Hollywood sexual abuse scandals.

Hollywood executives have chosen precisely the wrong individual to head the commission. The announcement that Hill would be taking the top spot came after a meeting was spearheaded by Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy, Nike Foundation Founder and Co-Chair Maria Eitel, entertainment attorney Nina Shaw, and venture capitalist Freada Kapor Klein.

Hollywood’s deep concern over the issue of sexual misconduct is reflected by the power players that attended the event, which included Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger, Paramount Chairman and CEO Jim Gianopulos, CBS Corp. Chairman and CEO Leslie Moonves, Warner Bros. Chairman and CEO Kevin Tsujihara, Universal Chairman and CEO Jeff Shell, Sony Chairman and CEO Tony Vinciquerra, Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, William Morris Endeavor Co-Chairman Ari Emanuel, CAA Co-Chairman Bryan Lourd, and Founding Partner of ICM Chris Silbermann, along with the heads of the motion picture, recording, and television academies, and the actors, writers, directors, and producers guilds.

Hill achieved fame in the early 1990s when she brought forward allegations of sexual harassment during the Senate confirmation process for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

The problem for Hollywood is that Hill failed to tell the truth. Her behavior was inconsistent with someone who had been a victim of sexual harassment. Hill followed Justice Thomas from one job to another, made numerous personal telephone calls to the man she claimed had sexually harassed her, and the calls continued even after she was no longer working for him. She denied having ever made the calls but changed her story after phone records were produced.

Hill initially asked that her name not be mentioned when the accusations were presented to Justice Thomas. The accusations referred to events that were supposed to have occurred when only she and Justice Thomas were in the same room, so if the allegations were true, Justice Thomas would certainly have known who had made them. The anonymity request only made sense if the charges were false.

On several occasions, Hill denied that she had communicated with a Democratic staffer. She later reversed herself when under oath.

A witness that was supposed to be corroborating Hill’s accusations claimed that Hill told her details about the supposed sexual harassment in a telephone call. However, it turned out that the call took place before Hill worked for Justice Thomas.

Polls taken following the hearings, which had been televised daily, showed that twice as many Americans believed Justice Thomas over Hill.

The left continued to attempt to smear Justice Thomas in the intervening years and even went as far as producing an HBO film, which disingenuously attempted to make Hill into a heroine.

Harvey Weinstein: Hollywood’s Open Secret

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The Hollywood left and the Democratic Party are reeling from the recent revelations reported by the New York Times, which describe three decades of alleged serial sexual harassment on the part of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

Each story seems to follow a similar plotline. A young female employee or Hollywood hopeful in search of a film role is invited to what is represented as a professional meeting with Weinstein. Instead of a meeting, though, what the individual encounters is an attempt to coerce various sexual favors.

More that 20 women, former employees and well known celebrities, were referenced in the New York Times report. Weinstein reportedly paid settlements to at least 8 different women, and other media outlets are planning to release further investigative stories about the filmmaker’s purported misconduct.

With the prospect of more sordid details yet to come, the Hollywood left and its favorite political party are feeling the heat. For his part, Weinstein appears to be of the mindset that he can resurrect his image by simply demonstrating his unwavering adherence to the tenets of liberalism.

Despite his stature as a movie executive, bought-and-paid-for connections with numerous politicians, and sizable crisis management machine, Weinstein’s effort to be granted the same latitude as Woody Allen or Roman Polanski does not appear to be working.

The tactical failure may be occurring, in part, because Weinstein’s alleged sexual abuse has a number of high-profile celebrity victims, including actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan.

There is another component that is of even greater import for Weinstein in general and the Democratic Party in particular; that is, the issue of women’s rights and its attendant agenda items, which includes sexual harassment in the workplace. As the mid-term elections loom, liberals can in no way afford to protect a Hollywood filmmaker, even one that has been a prime source of financial support for left-wing campaigns and political causes.

Weinstein assembled a team of political spin doctors and public relations experts to counter recent allegations. He enlisted the help of Democrat public relations firm SKDKnickerbocker and former Obama White House Communications Director Anita Dunn.

He had also brought onboard attorney Lisa Bloom, the daughter of high-powered agenda-driven attorney Gloria Allred, to provide tutelage on feminist principles, and former President Bill Clinton’s chief crisis manager Lanny Davis, who is known for his quick responses to sexual abuse allegations. However, Davis and Bloom have abruptly left “Team Harvey,” perhaps pulling out after Weinstein combined an attempted apology with a threat to sue the newspaper that broke the story.

Weinstein had sent a poorly written statement to the New York Times, which shifted the blame for his behavior on having supposedly grown up in a sexist time. In the same statement, he makes a commitment to seek therapy.

It would be of interest to know whether any of Weinstein’s experts advised him to make the claim that a “right wing conspiracy” is to blame for the predicament in which he finds himself. It would be equally intriguing to know whether he was counseled to include in a release, which was supposedly written to express remorse, his intention to go after the NRA.

Perhaps to demonstrate that he is still trendy after all these years, Weinstein included in his statement a quote, which he purportedly obtained from a Jay Z tune, to somehow partially explicate a long history of alleged harassment. (Reports indicate that no such lyrics exist in any released Jay Z material.)

“Jay Z wrote in 4:44 ‘I’m not the man I thought I was and I better be that man for my children.’ The same is true for me,” Weinstein wrote.

It is predictable that Weinstein would believe that Hollywood would let him off the hook for any abusive behavior toward women. After all, he has held a unique position in Hollywood for a very long stretch. Along the way he was able to grab a Best Picture Oscar for “Shakespeare in Love” and to also create a large number of critically acclaimed films that include “Sex, Lies, and Videotape,” “Pulp Fiction,” and “Good Will Hunting.”

When he served as head of Miramax along with his brother Bob, he pioneered the art of turning an artsy independent film into box-office gold. Known as the master of the Academy Award campaign, he was able to obtain nominations for lesser known titles. In fact, Miramax snagged an unprecedented 249 Academy Award nominations and was able to secure 60 wins in a mere 15 years.

After Weinstein and his brother left Miramax and started up the Weinstein Co., they were able to use their Oscar formula to win Best Picture two years in a row for “The King’s Speech” and “The Artist.” All the while Weinstein nurtured the image of the consummate liberal, supporting left-leaning causes, particularly feminism, to bolster his progressive bona fides.

In light of the New York Times article, one cannot help but see the irony of Weinstein’s 2015 distribution of “The Hunting Ground,” a documentary that examines sexual assault on American college campuses.

The entertainment community ignored the incessant rumors about Weinstein that circulated for years. Hollywood insiders knew about Weinstein’s purported conduct and in keeping quiet became enablers of the most hypocritical kind.

Reacting to the New York Times article, Rebecca Traister wrote in The Cut, “I have been having conversations about Harvey Weinstein’s history of sexual harassment for more than 17 years,” adding that she had heard from “lots of other people, now other reporters, who were working, often for years, to nail down the story of Harvey’s sexual abuses.”

“It wasn’t a secret to the inner circle,” said Kathy DeClesis, Bob Weinstein’s assistant in the early 1990s, as quoted by the New York Times.

“The only thing I’m surprised about,” one former Miramax executive, who worked closely with Weinstein, told the Los Angeles Times, “is how long it took.”

Jennifer Lawrence’s Latest Film Gets ‘F’ Rating from CinemaScore

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By virtually every Hollywood measure, it would have to be said that Jennifer Lawrence has experienced more than her fair share of success over her compact career.

Having earned the title in 2015 and 2016 of highest paid actress in the world, her films have grossed over $5.5 billion worldwide.

The Kentucky born star has been known for possessing an uncanny ability to pick her projects well, while simultaneously nurturing the down-home accessible image that the public finds so appealing.

Things of late seem to have taken a turn for Lawrence, though. Her most recent film is tanking at the box office and her image seems to be suffering from a number of self-inflicted wounds.

Ironically, Lawrence’s box-office run and star status are the stuff of dreams for any Hollywood hopeful or entertainment industry devotee. In her budding career, she had the good fortune of becoming part of two lucrative franchises, with a portrayal of the mutant Mystique in the “X-Men” movies and a role as Katniss Everdeen in the “Hunger Games” film series.

Hollywood decision makers took special note of Lawrence for a role that she played in the 2010 movie “Winter’s Bone,” a film for which she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress.

She additionally garnered coveted critical acclaim and significant award nominations via her subsequent work with director David O. Russell, receiving an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in “Silver Linings Playbook,” which at the age of 22 made her the second-youngest winner of the award. (Twenty-one-year-old Marlee Matlin won the award in 1986 for her role in “Children of a Lesser God.”) She also received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her work in Russell’s “American Hustle.”

The most recent vehicle in which Lawrence has chosen to star is a movie called “mother!” The film is produced, directed, and co-written by Lawrence’s latest romantic interest, Darren Aronofsky.

Unfortunately, the cinematic piece is pretentious, cluttered, and hopelessly self-indulgent.

The public seems to wholeheartedly agree, having given the film a dismal rating of “F” on the respected CinemaScore survey. The film’s box-office performance is considerably below expectations as well. As a result, Lawrence is experiencing her lowest opening ever, checking in at less than $8 million.

Prior to the lead-up of the film, Lawrence’s brand was well-honed, and she was frequently referred to in the media as “America’s Sweetheart.”

However, her image has suffered some blows of late as a result of having fallen victim to the Hollywood syndrome of believing that along with their entertainment fare folks actually want a heaping serving of celebrity sanctimony.

Most recently, while out promoting her new movie, Lawrence suggested that the devastation in Texas and Florida, which was caused by hurricanes Harvey and Irma, was “Mother Nature’s revenge and wrath” due to the sizable portion of the American people that had voted for President Trump and had failed to embrace the theory of man-caused global warming.

Lawrence had already alienated many would-be filmgoers with her avid support of Planned Parenthood and participation in a video this year against any de-funding for the abortion provider.

Her media image is also in the process of being further tarnished by the anti-Christian content in “mother!” The movie clumsily incorporates biblical themes throughout its storyline.

Aronofsky had previously shown his antipathy for faithful Christians and Jews in his 2014 attempt at biblical storytelling, “Noah,” a movie that he also produced, directed, and co-wrote.

Aronofsky himself revealed on Reddit that he had biblical themes in mind in creating “mother!” He wrote, “…when trying to think about mother earth’s relationship to people I decided to turn to the stories of the bible as a way of describing on [sic] version of people’s story on earth.”

In commenting on the “mother!” movie, Daniel Montgomery of GoldDerby wrote that the film is “being described as the Bible by way of Roman Polanski (‘Rosemary’s Baby’) and Lars von Trier (‘Antichrist’).”

Lawrence has never taken more than a few months between movie projects. In fact, the first trailer for her 2018 Russian spy drama, “Red Sparrow,” was just released.

After the paltry box-office performance of her latest star vehicle, Lawrence may actually be taking a leave from acting so that she can take up a new hobby.

“Today” host Savannah Guthrie asked the actress during a recent appearance on the morning show if she was planning to keep releasing back-to-back films or whether she would be taking a break.

“I’m taking one,” Lawrence replied. “I don’t have anything set for two years.”

Guthrie then asked her what she would do with her newfound time during her two year hiatus.

Lawrence answered, “I don’t know. Start making pots?”