The Donald has made it official. He will not run as a third party candidate for President if Mitt Romney is the Republican nominee. Since this will hit the 6:30 news shows tonight, and since this man is as much a celebrity as he is a real estate mogul, I thought I’d take a moment to share a pet peeve of mine. I absolutely hate for celebrities to mix up in politics and then tell the rest of us how we should think and vote. And that goes for celebrities on both sides of the political aisle. And more and more that aisle seems to get blurry to the point where it’s hard to tell any difference between the two parties unless you’re hanging around at the fringes.
Before I go on a rant about Trump endorsing Romney, allow me to get the kudos out of the way first. Trump is a gutsy businessman, not afraid of risk, and is a winner. He’s outspoken, usually the smartest guy in the room, and can work the world of marketing and advertising like no other. I own a few of his books and learned a few things from them. That being said, didn’t this guy just threaten to run for President as a Reform Party candidate in 2000, and a few years before that claim he was a democrat and threatened to run for the big office then, too? Yes, he did. So which side of the aisle is it, Trump? Are you just that hungry for attention?
I don’t mind the endorsements of celebrities, but the constant preaching and complaining is a big turn off to the public at large, or so I suspect. We all have our political opinions. But there is just something about celebrities that look down their noses and tell us how to vote as if they are smarter than you and I.
Take for example the rock bands U2 and R.E.M. Incredibly talented bands. I bought a few of their CD’s and cassettes back in the day. I own nearly every album made by U2, the music is great. And when musicians involve themselves in humanitarian causes I think it’s great, a great example. But when you stand up with your microphone and tell me to vote for a candidate…well, that’s my decision. Not yours. And when celebrities become too involved it’s a downer for me. Politics always gets dirty. Are you endorsing dirty campaign tactics, too? If you endorsed Obama are you endorsing 8% perpetual unemployment or are you going to be his cheerleader or still blame Bush? If you endorse Romney are you going to stand by the unethical negative campaign ads that distort someone’s records or take their statements out of context? Ads like that are nothing more than lies, if you ask me.
I missed the entire season of Sunday Night Football (NFL) during the 2010 season because NBC had Keith Olbermann as a host. I love football, but I refuse to put a dime into anyone’s pocket who is so smug as to literally call half of America “idiots” because they did not vote for his candidate. It doesn’t mean that the guy hasn’t made some good points on his show or been clever and funny when he was on ESPN. I just don’t like the divisiveness.
A celebrity runs the risk of alienating the very people who made them what they are when they go political. It’s just a bad mix. Sean Penn is a great actor and I’ve seen a ton of his movies. He’s probably a cool guy to have a cold one with and talk sports and movies. His last movie might have been the best work he’s ever done but I’d never know. When he started hanging out with dictators and telling me how I should think I decided that I’d given Spicoli enough of my money.