Celebs “Speaking Out” Will Destroy Their Ratings

in Culture/Politics

Meryl Streep took to the stage at the Golden Globes Award ceremony Sunday night to slam President-elect Donald Trump for his mocking a disabled reporter back in the fall of 2015. Trump predictively logged on Twitter later that night and called Streep an, “over-rated Hillary flunky.” This comes after top Hollywood celebs produced a plethora of pro-Clinton propaganda and called Trump out explicitly on stage plenty of times. Celebrities aren’t just hurting Democrats by politicizing entertainment—they are diminishing themselves.

Celebrities making political statements is nothing new. In fact, President Ronald Reagan was an active promoter of conservative and free-market principles during his stint as spokesman for General Electric and president of the Screen Actors Guild. According to Thomas Sowell, however, Reagan had intently studied the issues before making any political statements.

Today, however, many of the celebs seem out of touch with the general population, especially when addressing the public or making a political point. While Reagan appeared as a plainspoken, down-to-earth man, Streep presented herself as the elitist narcissist that she is. Today’s pop-culture icons look down their noses at Trump voters and rural folks. This attitude is claimed to be one of the driving factors in Trump’s victory.

Even more importantly, the politicization of entertainment is hurting the Democrats, the everyday folks, and the celebrities themselves—while helping Republicans. The wave of backlash against the biased media and the Hollywood elite which pushed Trump to victory was primarily formed in response to stunts like this. It turns out that having a lot of rich, snarky, and self-obsessed folks on the Left as their spokespeople does not help the Democrats all that much—especially with everyday, middle-class people.

Celebrities using their art as a platform for their political views is not helping them too much either. Just take a look at the NFL, whose viewership and ratings have gone down the toilet since the Colin Kaepernick hullabaloo. An internal NFL memo issued in October blamed the ratings crash on the entertainment provided by the Presidential election. While the election may be more entertaining than the NFL at times, this didn’t explain the ratings drop. An October Rasmussen report poll found that nearly one-third of Americans were less likely to watch an NFL game due to players participating in national anthem protests such as kneeling down for the anthem or raising one’s hand in a fist while it is playing.

The average football fan is portrayed in the media as a Budweiser drinkin’, red-blooded American. If this stereotype is even partly true, it would stand to reason that those folks don’t take too kindly to having their anthem being disrespected by an ungrateful millionaire football player. They may well change channels and watch college football instead.

If Hollywood isn’t careful, the same thing could happen to them. As our President-elect would say, “the theater is a safe and special place.” People watch the Golden Globes or any of the fifty-some other awards shows to see actors and movie trailers or even to get away from the 24-hour media circus which is American politics. They just aren’t looking to see another celebrity freak out about something Trump said or did. After all, if Americans want to see leftist antics, they’ll just flip the channel over to CNN.

John Sulzer is a senior contributor at The Liberty Conservative. John has been writing on politics, culture, and public policy since 2015 from a conservative perspective. His work can also be found at the Ludwig von Mises Institute and Western Free Press.


  1. The NFL’s ratings are down because of general sleaziness that has little to do with politics. Battered wives, deflated footballs, etc.

    Leftist Hollywood actors are nothing new. Some political issues are safer to take than others, but that depends on your audience. Remember how the Dixie Chicks got flamed for badmouthing Bush in 2003? Their popularity went back up in the long run as Bush’s poll numbers went down. I would imagine that if the Irag War had concluded with no post-war insurgency, then the Dixie Chicks would have had to start singing pop music like Taylor Swift and Miley Cyrus ended up doing.

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