One of Hollywood’s most popular stars now says industry “bullies” helped elect Donald Trump.
Zoe Saldana is known to millions of fans as Gamora in Marvel Studios‘ “Guardians of the Galaxy” movies, but she made it clear on Jan. 13 that she does not want to be seen as a “bully” in real life. The Hollywood star weighed in on President-elect Trump and “arrogant” peers Friday while promoting her new film, “Live By Night.”
“We got cocky and became arrogant and we also became bullies,” Ms. Saldana told Agence France-Presse. “We were trying to single out a man for all these things he was doing wrong … and that created empathy in a big group of people in America that felt bad for him and that are believing in his promises.”
Still, Saldana's politics didn’t stop her from getting hammered on Twitter by the enforcers of tolerance. A comment telling Saldana to "sit down", for example, was retweeted nearly five thousand times. Others merely suggested she was stupid.
Whether you agree with Saldana’s premise or not, it is not exactly an idea beyond the pale. There has been much ink spilled by respected liberal pundits and seasoned liberal political operatives saying much the same thing.
So why the freakout?
My hunch is that it is related to the nature of identity politics, which requires creating sharp differences in identity, not merely differences of opinion. Reasonable people can disagree on tax policy, foreign policy, the proper role of government, etc.; but to create a difference in identity requires something stronger and more visceral.
Women have written articles for Intellectual Takeout explaining the pressure to conform to the Idea of feminism. When a successful black woman like Ms. Saldana says something that even obliquely undermines the narrative, well, that cannot go without reprimand.
If we want a society built on identity politics we need some good, old-fashioned, rigid conformity, not free-thinking people.
[Image Credit: By Photo by Sgt. Michael Connors [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]