Dear Angry Facebook Friend,
Jon here. You remember me, right?
I sure remember you. You’re the guy who called me a “theatre freak” in middle school, a “queer” in high school, and now—ever since I packed up my life and moved from Michigan to Los Angeles—you’re commenting on my Facebook posts, calling me a “coastal elite.”
Anyway, it’s me.
I know you’re angry about Meryl Streep’s speech at the recent Golden Globes. She really went in on President Donald Trump, huh? I’ve seen your angry posts on Facebook and Twitter. I see you sharing Tomi Lauren’s “Final Thoughts” and retweeting Bill O’Reilly’s 140 character rants. And I don’t want to tell you how to feel or what to post. Who am I, after all? Just that queer from high school! But I do think we should talk about your anger—an anger that I think is… how do I say this… a little misdirected.
Before you write off Meryl’s speech about inclusion and accountability as nonsense from a Hollywood elite who’s out of touch with everyday Americans, remember that you elected a billionaire tyrant who lives in a golden mansion and hosted the Celebrity Apprentice. A man who has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. A man who has made much of his fortune off the entertainment industry.
I might be willing to listen to your anti-Hollywood arguments if you, oh, I don’t know, didn’t just elect a reality star to the highest office in the world.
So where do you draw a line? When The Dixie Chicks spoke against George W. Bush and the War in Iraq, you told them to shut up and sing. When Michael Moore won an Academy Award for Fahrenheit 9/11 and delivered an anti-war message during his acceptance speech, you said it wasn’t the time for political statements. And now you believe Meryl should keep her nose out of the recent election. But what about your man Donald? He gets to have a voice? He gets to go on Twitter tirades? He gets to be the leader of the free world? What am I missing here?
I shouldn’t be surprised by your party’s hypocritical ways. After all, your favorite president Ronald Reagan was a Hollywood star who ignored the cries of millions of everyday gay Americans dying of AIDS. You know all about gays, right? You made it awful clear you knew how to spot a homo back in high school. Remember? When you pushed me up against my locker and called me a fag?
Hollywood is, like any other place, divided and complicated. In fact, historically it was controlled by right-wing men in suits. That’s how McCarthyism happened, that’s how conservative golden boy Ronald Reagan came to power, and ― yep ― that’s how we got The Apprentice & the Donald. So when you talk about “coastal elites,” you’re spouting meaningless labels that describe the right more than the left.
You should know, Angry Facebook Friend, my life is anything but elite. I’m an actor and writer—and in LA lingo that means I’ve simultaneously driven for Uber, worked at a theme park, and tutored elementary school children in order to make enough money to pay rent and produce original work. I’m living the capitalist dream! Pulling myself up by my worn-out Converse shoe-straps.
So go ahead and continue to sit behind your keyboard and call me names. Call me a coastal elite because I moved out of a state that continually votes against my rights as a human being. Keep trying to explain your Hollywood star’s promise to make America great again.
I’ll be here in LA attempting to make some art. Or maybe I should just go suck dick. That’s what you always told me to do, anyway.