Grrr! The Liberal Double Standard

Roker on Cruise | Stupid Lit'l Dreamer | Shameless Self-Promotion | Grrr! Book Of Month

Al Roker's Liberal Double Standard

Yes, Tom Cruise (search) is overexposed, and I've written so much about him over the past few weeks I am beginning to question my sexuality ... well, not really.

But I am Grrr'd beyond belief at the liberal double standard being practiced over at the venerable "Today" show.

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Al Roker (search) went on the record with this quote, after Cruise got into a heated argument with Matt Lauer (search) on the pros and cons of antidepressant drugs:

"You're an actor, not a med student."

Roker backpedaled from his statement even as he made it:

"But the best part about being American is that you can say whatever the heck you want in this country, as loopy and as goofy as it might sound."

Well that's true, Al, but I question your timing.

I don't know about antidepressant drugs or the Scientology behind Cruise's feelings about them, and I am definitely not defending what he said about Brooke Shields and her decision to go on medication for post-partum depression, but I do know this: Neither you nor anybody else over at the "Today" show said anything of the kind when actors like Sean Penn, Martin Sheen, Tim Robbins, Ashton Kutcher, Bruce Springsteen, the Dixie Chicks and Jon Bon Jovi were spouting off about the Bush administration during the election.

Where were you then, Al? Because "you're an actor, not a foreign-policy expert" came to my mind plenty last November.

Oh, I see. It's easy to come out against Cruise these days. He's no longer repped by the most powerful public relations firm in the world, so there's no danger of losing the next big star for upsetting such a high-profile client.

And after all, it's plain as day that Cruise's star is fading faster than Russell Crowe's "Cinderella Man" disappeared from theaters. Cruise is acting like a whack-job, frankly. But hey, like I said in previous columns, the guy's in love. So what if he's a little kooky about it? After 25 years in the spotlight, it's about time the guy cracked up a bit, isn't it?

Maybe he should get his heart stapled. Maybe then he wouldn't act so in love.

And since so much of this negative press does have to do with Cruise not being repped by the big PR firm to the stars, he might finally see just how phony all the love from the elite media has been all of these years.

Sycophants, Tom — all of them. Maybe now you'll realize who your true friends are.

If Roker's statement wasn't strong enough to get the "Today" show spin on antidepressant drugs, Katie Couric followed up with a story about them, interviewing Dr. Steven Sharfstein, who said:

"Cruise might be a halfway decent actor, but when he plays doctor he's being totally irresponsible."

Totally irresponsible? Come on! And let's not forget that it was Lauer who brought it up. As far as Cruise was concerned, he was there to profess his love for Katie Holmes (search), err, promote "War of the Worlds."

Stupid Lit'l Dreamer (by Michelle Siegel, Fox News Intern)

It seems as though dreams do come true when it comes to James Cotten, who is currently working as a casting director and actor in a movie being filmed in Little Rock, Ark.

Cotten's current film "Come Early Morning," starring Ashley Judd, is a giant step in the right direction for this aspiring director ("Come Early Morning" is directed by the beautiful actress Joey Lauren Adams — Straka added the beautiful part.)

"My career path is telling stories," he said recently in an interview with the Sequoya County Times.

Indeed, Cotten has a lot of stories to tell, having thought of over 60 ideas for films, 10 of which have evolved into screenplays. He has currently been raising funds to make "Sugar Creek," a story he adapted from the Book of Revelations.

"I want a movie that says me," Cotten told The Times.

Cotten, from Sallisaw, Okla., started working in the movie business at the age of 18, when he was cast a role in the 1995 film "The Tuskegee Airmen."

"I loved acting. It's absolutely fun to put your feet in someone else's shoes," he said, but his first love is directing.

Cotten wants to make artistic and thought-provoking films that are fun to watch. "The truth is this is what I want to be," he said. "You have to struggle to make it happen. You have to fight to get people to pay attention."

Good luck, James.

Shameless Self-Promotion

Click in this Friday on for "The Real Deal," where our talented editor Nancy Foster puts together a Best of Outtakes episode.

Also this weekend, check out FOX Magazine Sunday night for my piece on the Bob Hope exhibit, which was up last summer at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.

This July 4, it's important to remember great Americans as we celebrate our great nation's freedom. Happy Independence Day everyone ... and NO FIRECRACKERS AFTER MIDNIGHT!

Grrr! Book Of The Month

My last column highlighted former NYPD cop Rob Cea's book "No Lights, No Sirens." I love this book.

It's raw, it's honest, and it makes no apologies about life on the streets as an undercover cop. Time have changed since Cea was in the "Badlands," but this gritty book makes for a good read as you head into July 4th weekend.

It's also the first of the Grrr! Book Of The Month, which will become a new feature in the column.

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Mike Straka is the director of operations and special projects for, and covers entertainment and features on the Sunday program "FOX Magazine." He also writes the weekly Grrr! Column and hosts "The Real Deal" video segments on