I recently received this comment from Brian D., in Louisiana:
“It cracks me up when I hear the hypocrisy from the Republican talking heads complaining about actors voicing political opinions. Don't they worship Ronald Reagan? And now Arnold the Terminator? Go Penn. Go Streisand. Go Baldwin. Go Sheen. Oh wait, I get it now! It's only wrong if they are Democratic actors. I get it now. Silly me.”
Maybe, silly you, Brian. Here's why: I'm certainly not drawing a distinction of parties when I say any actor is free to run for office – liberal, or conservative.
But I'll tell you this, I have much more respect for the actor who puts it all on the line by running for office, than making stump speeches as if he or she was in office. Yet even there, I'm all for free speech and I'm all for realizing the consequences of that free speech. Celebrities have to appreciate that when they take a stand, they take on criticism.
The Dixie Chicks (search) know that well. But that doesn't mean I don't admire them taking the stand in the first place. They spoke and some of their more conservative fans left.
Just like Charlie Daniels ranted and some more liberal fans left.
We're free in this country to say anything we want about this country. But we should know oftentimes there's fallout for those opinions in this country.
I take a stand here and some viewers vow never to ever watch me again here.
Fans are free to stop being fans. I know it and entertainers know it. So, left or right, entertainers shouldn't be shocked when their right to speak their minds runs head-on with critics equally eager to speak their minds.
Now Arnold is going one step further -- from ranting, to running. It's his right to try it, his critics' right to bash it and voters' right to decide it.
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