Ed Asner: Hollywood Anti-War Left Won’t Protest Syria to Avoid Feeling “Anti-Black”

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


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I guess releasing The Help, The Butler and Sally Hemings: The Musical didn’t salve their consciences enough to stick to the principles they had 10 years ago.

In 2003, ahead of a U.S. attack on Iraq, a robust anti-war movement in Hollywood included a TV commercial starring Martin Sheen and Sean Penn visiting Baghdad. There were online petitions signed by Ed Asner; letters to President George W. Bush pleading for peace were signed by Matt Damon, Tim Robbins, Barbra Streisand and Alec Baldwin; former M*A*S*H star Mike Farrell fronted multiple press conferences where celebrities denounced war. In interviews, Janeane Garofalo stopped identifying herself as an actor — she preferred to be called a member of the U.S. anti-war movement.

And no one has heard from her since. Or from any of them.

“What he is talking about in Syria is a potential war crime,” Farrell said. “It will be illegal, and if citizens are killed it certainly could be considered a war crime.”

That’s Mike Farrell, who left acting to be a member of the anti-war movement before Janeane Garofalo was born.

“It will be a done deal before Hollywood is mobilized,” Asner said. “This country will either bomb the hell out of Syria or not before Hollywood gets off its ass.”

Another reason some Hollywood progressives have been reticent to speak out against war in Syria, according to Asner, is fear of being called racist.

“A lot of people don’t want to feel anti-black by being opposed to Obama,” he said.

As much as Obama is loved by Hollywood power-brokers, Asner says he doesn’t fear backlash by speaking against the president.

“Hollywood can’t mobilize for that either,” he joked. “If they try to punish me, what are they gonna do? Take away my pension?”

It’s safe to attack Obama from the left. And Ed Asner dropped out of acting to join the left before Janeane Garofalo’s mother was born. But it’s interesting that Ed Asner writes that they don’t want to “feel” anti-black, rather than be “seen” that way.

It’s a distinction that matters.

  • Veracious_one

    The only thing ‘black’ going on in Syria is the Black flag the Muslim terrorists proudly display…. Ed Asner writes that they don’t want to “feel” anti-black,
    I guess ED ‘the clueless’ is pro-Islamic terrorist…

    • defcon 4

      I think Asner meant anti-black in the sense of opposing the POTUS.

  • Steve West

    First time I’ve agreed with Asner, and Dan Greenfield has become my favorite writer.

    • defcon 4

      IF only we could have political leaders of Daniel Greenfield’s moral and ethical caliber.

  • tkellybal

    How often do I agree with Asner? He’s 100% correct on this. I also agree with the importance of the distinction between “feeling” and being “seen” as racist. Our Nation is completely f*cked in the head over race.

    • Veracious_one

      Islam is not a race….

      • Brucew56

        “Race” is today primarily a sociological designation, identifying a class sharing some outward physical characteristics and some commonalities of culture and history. He meant anti-black. We have A BLACK PERSON IN THE OVAL OFFICE. Hollywood does not want to offend other blacks.

        • objectivefactsmatter

          ““Race” is today primarily a sociological designation…”

          Racial distinctions come from Ideology that falsely point to genetic factors for what amount to aesthetic distinctions.

          There is no paradigm under which Islam is racial or Muslims are identified as a distinct race.

          “He meant anti-black.”

          True

  • Veracious_one

    Ed Asner: Hollywood Anti-War Left Won’t Protest Syria to Avoid Feeling “Anti-Black”

    he means ‘anti-Obama’…

  • Biff Henderson

    Is it PC to call Obama the Raisin Head-in-Chief? If you know the ins and out of Islam and respect it the answer is obvious. Mo is the perfect example for all Muslims to emulate. Allah’s Apostle referred to blacks as raisin heads and by finding offense in it you would be mocking the Sunna. Referring to Obama as a raisin read or slave is respectable.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      You can refer to him as a Raisin “Head-in-Chief” if you’re a Muslim. Then it’s PC.

      • Biff Henderson

        By extension. if you called any black Muslim a raisin head or slave, Mo, having used these terms to describe members of the Negro race; it is acceptable because it is Sunna.

        • objectivefactsmatter

          I understand that. My point is that the left is just fine with letting anyone have any standards they will come up with, but holds conservatives to a standard that is deliberately not attainable.

          There are really no consistent standards on the left. If you’re an ally, anything goes. Islamic imperialism is now a firm ally of the left. It started out with Muslims as “class victims” and now look where we’ve arrived.

          • Biff Henderson

            Identity politics assumes victim hood. The standards of the Left has a pecking order and when they clash with one another the aggrieved most often remain silent least they fall further down the ladder to dare question the occasional hiccups that occur in the celebrate diversity cluster****. Better to have your moments in the sun than to be cast into the shadow.

          • objectivefactsmatter

            “Why risk that hard won participation medal in an exclusive club that comes with real power, status and entitlements?”

            Because the true racists and bigots on the left convinced them that it’s not possible, or at least not possible without “selling out.” Success in many realms is considered by some to be “white” or at least on “white terms” if you want to win with “the establishment.” If they don’t let you do it according to your vision, they’re oppressing you culturally or racially.

            That’s where these ideas come from about “multiculturalism.” What’s wrong with diversity? It’s too vague. Multiculturalism as a buzzword is more clearly intended to imply that there are important distinctions for their stupid theories about class identity. You can’t judge “the other” culture because that’s racist. I had someone tell me that yesterday. Yesterday, 2013…

            Some progress.

          • Biff Henderson

            I quit beating my head against the wall dealing with the advocates of PC MC. I offer them this link and say If this won’t convince you nothing will.

            http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pagename=objectivism_diversity